The Kansas City Royals head into Wednesday on the verge of sweeping a series for the first time this season when they face the Los Angeles Angels. Of course, the Angels are heavy home favorites with a moneyline of -245 compared to Kansas City’s moneyline of +195. The game also has an over/under of eight runs.
Despite having one of the worst records in baseball, the Royals have had a good run lately. They’ve won five of their last six games and eight of their last 13 games, making this their best stretch of the season. On the other hand, Kansas City is still 17 games under .500 and has virtually no chance of getting back in the playoff race this year.
Meanwhile, the Angels still haven’t recovered from the 14-game losing streak they had in late May and early June. They are just 6-7 since that streak ended and on the verge of getting swept yet again. The silver lining is they are just five games under .500 and still have time to turn their season around.
Superman to the Rescue
The Angels will look to Shohei Ohtani to help them avoid getting swept on Wednesday. Ohtani heads to the mound for his 12th start of the season, going 5-4 with a 3.28 ERA over his first 11 starts, striking out 77 batters in 60.1 innings. The Angels have won Ohtani’s last two starts, as the two-way superstar has allowed just one run on seven hits over 13 innings in those two starts.
Things are also looking up for the LA offense after scoring 11 runs in Tuesday’s loss. Of course, the Angels had only scored a total of 20 runs over their previous nine games, so this is not a lineup that’s in good shape right now, especially with Anthony Rendon and David Fletcher on the IL. Mike Trout has saved the day with his power lately, with Jared Walsh also in a groove, although the bottom half of the LA lineup just isn’t getting the job done right now.
The Royal Treatment
Kansas City will send Daniel Lynch to the mound on Wednesday in hopes of pulling off a sweep of the Halos. The lefty is just 3-6 with a 5.19 ERA over his first 12 starts of the season. Lynch got the win in his last start, giving up one run over five innings while striking out ten against the lowly A’s, but even with that start, his ERA in June sits at 6.19.
The good news is that the Royals scored 12 runs on Tuesday and have scored at least four runs in eight of their last 13 games. Whit Merrifield has been steady lately, and rookie Bobby Witt Jr. looks like he might be turning a corner. However, everyone in Kansas City’s lineup has an OPS this year that’s under .800, so it’s still not a particularly dangerous lineup.
Angels in the Outfield
While the Royals have played better lately, it’s still hard to believe they can pull off a sweep. With Ohtani on the mound, the Angels should have enough of a leg up to salvage the series. Play it safe and bet on the Angels to win on Wednesday.
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