Two American League teams battling near the top of their respective divisions continue their three-game series with Saturday’s matchup.
Both Kansas City and Texas entered Friday’s action in second place. The Royals trail Cleveland in the AL Central standings, while the Rangers are right on the heels of the Los Angeles Angels in the AL West.
Kansas City pitcher Kyle Davies (1-1, 7.20 ERA) picked up a no-decision in Monday’s effort against Cleveland. The six-year veteran was reached for two runs on seven hits with no walks and seven strikeouts over six innings and 90 pitches.
The Royals eventually dropped that contest as a 105 home ‘pick,’ 7-3, while the combined 10 runs slithered ‘over’ the 9 ½-run closing total. The ‘over’ is 3-1 during his four starts this season.
Davies' lone victory of the season came April 13 versus Minnesota as a 161 road underdog, 10-5, while the combined 15 runs soared ‘over’ the 8 ½-run closing total. The right-hander lasted just five innings, yielding five runs on 10 hits with a walk and four strikeouts.
Kansas City has not beaten the Rangers the previous six times Davies has pitched against Texas, including both efforts last year. The 27-year-old went a combined 12 1/3 innings, surrendering 12 runs (11 earned) on 19 hits (one home run) with four walks and eight strikeouts. The Royals dropped those games as a 134 road underdog, 13-12, and as a 157 home ‘dog, 3-0.
The ‘over’ is 3-1 his past four starts against the Rangers.
Texas hurler Alexi Ogando (2-0, 2.33 ERA) escaped with a no-decision in Sunday’s effort versus the New York Yankees. The Dominican pitched 6 1/3 innings, surrendering five runs on six hits (three home runs) with a walk and a strikeout on 92 pitches.
That marked his season-high pitch total in three starts. The Rangers eventually dropped that contest as a 152 road underdog, 6-5, while the combined 11 runs went ‘over’ the 8 ½-run closing total. The ‘under’ cashed his first two starts of the season.
Ogando beat Detroit in his previous effort April 11 as a 128 road underdog, 2-0. The rookie right-hander tossed seven innings while allowing just two hits with a walk and four strikeouts.
Ogando has never started against the Royals in his brief major league career.
Kansas City has struggled to a 17-35 record its last 52 road games heading into Friday’s matchup. The Royals are just 7-19 their previous 26 meetings with the Rangers.
Texas has seen the ‘under’ go 7-2-1 its past 10 outings overall. The Rangers are also 7-2 their previous 10 home outings.
The Rangers continue to do without MVP slugger Josh Hamilton who suffered a broken arm earlier this month in Detroit. He's expected to be out until the end of May.
Kansas City continues a six-game road trip after this series with three games at Cleveland. Texas follows this series with four home games against Toronto before embarking on a seven-game road trip versus AL West rivals Oakland and Seattle.
First pitch is scheduled for 5:05 p.m. PT from Rangers Ballpark in Arlington. Saturday’s forecast for Arlington, Texas calls for just a 10 percent chance of rain, with a high of 90 degrees and a low of 72.