The Kansas City Royals didn’t have a single walk-off victory in the first 59 games of the season but have recorded back-to-back memorable last-inning wins entering Friday’s opener of the interleague series against the host St. Louis Cardinals. The Royals swept a three-game set from the Milwaukee Brewers, pushing across the winning run in the 11th inning Wednesday before scoring twice in the ninth for a 4-3 win on Thursday. St. Louis has won two straight games.
Friday’s game is the first of six in 10 days between the two squads. The Cardinals won four of six from the Royals last season. St. Louis defeated the Chicago White Sox on Thursday and is tied for second in the National League Central with the Pittsburgh Pirates. The Cardinals trail the Cincinnati Reds by three games. Kansas City’s sweep of Milwaukee was its first three-game conquest of the season. The Royals notched a two-game sweep of the Texas Rangers in mid-May for their lone other sweep.
Royals Cardinals Betting
When: 8:15 PM ET, Friday, June 15, 2012
Where: Busch Stadium, St. Louis, Missouri
TV: 8:15 p.m. ET, Fox Sports Kansas City, Fox Sports Midwest (St. Louis)
PITCHING MATCHUP: Royals RH Vin Mazzaro (2-1, 3.60 ERA) vs. Cardinals RH Kyle Lohse (6-1, 2.90)
Mazzaro is making his fourth start of the season. He lasted just three-plus innings and gave up four runs (three earned) while losing to the Pittsburgh Pirates in his last outing. Mazzaro blanked Oakland on four hits over six innings in his previous start. He has never faced St. Louis.
Lohse pitched 7 2/3 innings of three-hit shutout ball while beating the Cleveland Indians in his last outing. The victory snapped a streak of five straight no-decisions. Lohse has walked just 12 batters in 13 starts. He is 6-5 with a 3.97 ERA in 20 career appearances (19 starts) against Kansas City.
1. Cardinals OF Carlos Beltran sat out Thursday’s game with a stomach virus after going 9-for-15 with three homers over the previous four games.
2. Kansas City’s sweep of the Brewers was its first in an interleague series since taking three in a row from the Cincinnati Reds in 2009.
3. St. Louis OF Allen Craig is batting .388 at home this season.