Royals take 5-game slide into matchup with Indians
Kansas City Royals (45-85, fourth in the AL Central) vs. Cleveland Indians (76-54, second in the AL Central)
Cleveland; Sunday, 1 p.m. EDT
PITCHING PROBABLES: Royals: Eric Skoglund (0-0, 0.00 ERA) Indians: Shane Bieber (12-6, 3.26 ERA)
LINE: Indians -326; over/under is 9 runs
BOTTOM LINE: Kansas City enters the game as losers of their last five games.
The Indians are 36-20 against opponents from the AL Central. The Cleveland pitching staff as a whole has an ERA of 3.73. Shane Bieber leads the team with a 3.26 ERA.
The Royals are 24-38 against AL Central Division opponents. Kansas City has a collective .242 this season, led by Whit Merrifield with an average of .299. The Indians won the last meeting 4-2. Mike Clevinger earned his ninth victory and Franmil Reyes went 1-for-4 with a home run and three RBIs for Cleveland. Glenn Sparkman registered his ninth loss for Kansas City.
TOP PERFORMERS: Jose Ramirez leads the Indians with 56 extra base hits and is batting .254. Carlos Santana is 11-for-36 with two doubles, three home runs and seven RBIs over the last 10 games for Cleveland.
Merrifield leads the Royals with 163 hits and is batting .299. Nick Dini is 1-for-8 with a home run and an RBI over the last 10 games for Kansas City.
LAST 10 GAMES: Indians: 4-6, .251 batting average, 3.78 ERA, outscored opponents by seven runs
Royals: 2-8, .204 batting average, 5.21 ERA, outscored by 27 runs
Indians Injuries: Danny Salazar: (groin), Jefry Rodriguez: (shoulder), Dan Otero: (shoulder), Tyler Olson: (undisclosed), Corey Kluber: (arm), A.J. Cole: (shoulder), Carlos Carrasco: (leukemia), Cody Anderson: (elbow), Bradley Zimmer: (shoulder), Jordan Luplow: (hamstring), Jose Ramirez: (wrist), Christian Arroyo: (forearm).
Royals Injuries: Trevor Oaks: (hip), Jake Newberry: (shoulder), Jesse Hahn: (elbow), Danny Duffy: (hamstring), Adalberto Mondesi: (shoulder), Salvador Perez: (elbow), Cam Gallagher: (oblique).