Angels-Royals Preview

Eric Hosmer hasn’t yet played a full month in the major leagues

for the Kansas City Royals, but his impact is being felt around the

AL.

Hosmer and the Royals will try to start June on a positive note

when they meet the Los Angeles Angels to close a three-game set

Wednesday.

Hosmer finished with two hits, scored twice and drove in two

during a five-run third for Kansas City, which ended a forgettable

May with a 7-3 win over the Angels on Tuesday.

Though he didn’t make his major league debut until May 6, Hosmer

led all AL rookies in batting average for the month at .289.

Hosmer, who has five homers and 17 RBIs in 23 games, hasn’t been

able to carry the team by himself. The Royals were 20-17 after

beating the Yankees in New York on May 12, but then dropped five in

a row while totaling nine runs. They had another five-game slide

May 21-26.

Royals manager Ned Yost praised veteran starter Jeff Francis for

halting Kansas City’s latest three-game losing streak.

“Francis went out and struggled through the first, gave up two

runs,” Yost said. ”He really danced in and out of problems in the

second and third. We scored the five runs and he settled down big

time.”

After one dominating relief appearance with his new club, Felipe

Paulino (0-0, 0.00 ERA) will make his first start for Kansas City

(24-30).

The right-hander was picked up from Colorado for cash

considerations Thursday. Hours after joining the team Friday,

Paulino allowed one hit in 4 1-3 scoreless innings after rookie

Nate Adcock struggled, and the Royals rallied for a 12-7 win in 14

innings over Texas.

Paulino will become the eighth starter used by Kansas City this

year.

“If Adcock had had a real decent start, we’d have probably left

(Paulino) in the pen,” Yost told the Royals’ official website. “But

Paulino has got more weapons right now.”

Paulino is 5-20 with a 5.12 ERA in 34 career starts, all with

Houston. He has never faced the Angels.

Mark Trumbo, Jeff Mathis and former Royal Alberto Callaspo drove

in runs Tuesday for Los Angeles (29-28). Trumbo and Washington’s

Danny Espinosa are tied for the major league lead with 10

homers.

Tyler Chatwood (3-2, 4.13) will make his first appearance versus

the Royals in the finale of their six-game road trip.

The rookie right-hander failed to get a decision Friday at

Minnesota, where he was reached for four runs and eight hits in 5

2-3 innings. Los Angeles scored all its runs over the final two

innings to rally for a 6-5 win.

After beating the Chicago White Sox in his first career road

game on April 16, Chatwood is 0-1 with a 9.75 ERA in three starts

away from home.