Chicago White Sox (0-0) at Kansas City Royals (0-0)
|Date & Time||Monday April 6, 2015, 4:10 PM (EDT)|
The Line: Kansas City Royals -130 / Chicago White Sox +120 --- Over/Under: 7
CSN-Chicago, FS-Kansas City
The Kansas City Royals and the Chicago White Sox face off on Monday at Kauffman Stadium in an AL Central battle as both teams open the 2-15 Major League Baseball seasons.
The Kansas City Royals are coming off of a magical season where they ended a several decade pot season drought and rode the momentum all the way to the World Series. Although the Royals came up short, we saw clutch hitting and pitching that they can carry with them going forward, as well as having post season experience. While losing James Shields from the top of the rotation is a big loss as well as the departure of logtime Royal Billy Butler to Oakland, KC still has pleny in the tank. Eric Hosmer became a leader last season performing in the clutch. Alex Gordon is healthy and producing, Lorenzo Cain still has huge upside as does Salvador Perez. Yodiano Ventura gets the ball for opening day and he is still an emerging star who is only going to get better. Last season Ventura was 14-10 with a with a 3.20 ERA and 159 strikeouts in 183 innings but he only got better going 4-1 in the post season. The Royals bullpen was one of the best in baseball led by closer Greg Holland.
The Chicago White Sox had no problems scoring runs last season but hey didn’t have a bullpen that culd hold a lead, no mater how many times they scored. This season the White Sox have beefed up an already tough lineup and have added strength to the pitching staff and they have the look of a contender. Jose Abreu is back for year two and without trying to get too carried away he has all of the tools to become a future MVP of the league. Abreu gets a lot of help with the additions of Melky Cabrera and Adam LaRoche who along with Abreu are going to one of the toughest porions of any lineup to face. Adam Eaton returns with his gritty play as does Avisail Garcia and Emilio Bonifacio was brought in for his versatility to backup so many positions. With Chris Sale out with a foot injury until April 12th, Jeff Samardzija gets the opening day start as he was signed as a free agent and should improve the rotation. David Robertson was another huge get in the free agent market and he will assume the closer role in hopes of bringing to life one of the worst bullpens in baseball.
Kansas City is 5-1 in their last six games as a home favorite, 6-2 against the AL Central, 13-3 against a right-handed starter, and 7-1 in Ventura’s last eight home starts. Chicago is 5-13 in their last 18 road games, 3-10 on the road against a right-handed starter, 1-5 against the AL Central, and 1-5 as an underdog. Chicago is 1-4 in their last five games against Kansas City.
This could almost be like a playoff atmosphere as the Royals and their fans can’t wait to get back to work after last year’s close call and they look to take it a step further. Personally looking at these two teams the White Sox are the better ball club but with them not playing on the road well in recent years and with way too much to prove, the Royal are my pick here but it is a lean at best.