Four more wins this week for the Royals as they and the Cleveland Indians continue to surprise atop the AL Central.
The Indians come into town for four and an early divisional battle for first place. The Royals will then head south to Texas. Once again they face a tough schedule drawing the solid pitching of Cleveland in Carrasco, Talbot, Masterson, and Tomlin. Together they have thrown eight straight quality starts. They will then get Holland, Ogando, and Wilson for the Rangers who have thrown five quality starts in their last six outings.
Bruce Chen hurt his back this week but should not miss his next scheduled start. He’s been solid in 3 starts with a 2.37 ERA. Not a bad fill-in if you are desperate in deeper leagues. Robinson Tejeda hit the DL this week with right shoulder inflammation. The team does not have a clear-cut set-up man and will play it by matchups.
Jeremy Jeffress did pick up a spec save this week, which may be indicative of who would be next in line given a Soria injury or trade. Wilson Betemit still has seen playing time with his hot bat, however, Mike Aviles is still getting his chances and raked in 8 RBI this week.
Luke Hochevar has posted back-to-back quality starts. He’s been prone to the long ball giving up 6 jacks. He’s also been very lucky sporting a .203 BABIP. He has displayed a good K/BB rate at 16/4 and his WHIP is 1.01. He shut down the Mariners this week only allowing one hit through seven innings. At this point, he’s a decent spot starter if the match-up is right. Remember, he once was the top overall pick.
Wilson Betemit’s bat remains hot as he slugged .824 over the last week with a 1.424 OPS. It’s hard to know what Ned Yost will do from game to game so watch your daily lineups closely and expect Betemit to keep getting looks as long as he is hot. Both he and Aviles are just keeping the spot warm for Mike Moustakas until June 1st.
Kyle Davies should not be owned in any league. He’s surrendered 23 hits in 14 innings as opponents are hitting .383 off him. If the Royals continue to contend, Davies will have to be dismissed in favor of Dan Duffy who is polished and ready at AAA Omaha.