(Sports Network) - The Kansas City Royals will continue their pursuit of a
postseason spot when they begin a three-game series with the Cleveland Indians
Monday night at Progressive Field.
The Royals haven't played in the postseason since winning the 1985 World
Series and are 3 1/2 games off the second wild card spot in the American
Kansas City has won 11 of its last 15 games and took a three-game series from
the AL Central-leading Detroit Tigers over the weekend. The Royals won the set
with Sunday's 5-2 victory behind starting pitcher Bruce Chen, who limited
Detroit's intimidating lineup to a pair of runs and five hits in seven
Kelvin Herrera and Greg Holland each threw a scoreless inning of relief, with
Holland picking up his 40th save.
"You want to be at your best this time of year, and our guys are sure doing
that," Royals manager Ned Yost said. "I like everything about our club right
now. I like our bullpen, I like our starting pitching, our defense has been
spectacular, we're running the bases extremely well -- we're very aggressive
on the bases, too."
Eric Hosmer went 3-for-4 with a home run and three RBI, while Alex Gordon and
Billy Butler each contributed a pair of hits and knocked in a run.
Ervin Santana looks to keep K.C.'s momentum going when he toes the rubber
Monday, but is 0-2 in his last six appearances. Santana lasted just 3 1/3
innings in Wednesday's 6-4 loss to Seattle and gave up four runs to fall to
8-8 in 28 starts with a 3.33 ERA this season.
Santana is 1-0 in two starts against the Indians this season and 3-8 with a
4.10 ERA in 16 career starts in this series.
Cleveland is also in the mix for a playoff spot and is tied with Baltimore at
two games off the pace in the AL. The club had a four-game winning streak
stopped with Sunday's 2-1 loss to the New York Mets in the finale of a three-
Eric Young's RBI double in the top of the ninth was the difference and Indians
closer Chris Perez was saddled with the loss. Danny Salazar got the start for
the Tribe and lasted four innings, giving up just a run and striking out eight
"We took two out of three. We're still playing well here at home," Indians
reliever Joe Smith said.
Asdrubal Cabrera was credited with the lone RBI for Cleveland after he was hit
by a pitch with the bases loaded. Jason Giambi joined the 2,000-hit list by
"It's been a long journey," Giambi said. "With all the ups and downs and
things I've gone through, it feels like 4,000. I'll definitely take it and
I'll treasure it, for sure."
Cleveland is 4-2 on a nine-game homestand.
Ubaldo Jimenez draws the start for the Indians Monday and ended a personal
two-start losing streak in Tuesday's 4-3 win over Baltimore. He hurled six
shutout innings and pushed his record to 10-9 in 27 starts to go along with a
Jimenez has faced the Royals four times this season, going 1-0 with a 3.74
ERA, and is 3-2 with a 4.09 ERA in eight career starts against them.
The Indians have won eight of 13 meetings with the Royals this season.
The Sports Network