Blue Jays-Royals Preview
Adam Lind’s return has kept the Toronto Blue Jays surging on the
road. A four-game series at the punchless Kansas City Royals
appears to be an ideal chance to keep it that way.
Lind looks to build on one of his most impressive performances
of the season when the Blue Jays face the spiraling Royals for the
first time in 2011 on Monday night.
Lind went 4 for 4 with two homers and three RBIs to power
Toronto (30-29) to a 7-4 win at Baltimore in his second game since
a back injury sidelined him since May 8.
“To be able to plug a four-hole hitter back in the lineup, and a
left handed hitter that has had very good success, gives us that
balance,” manager John Farrell told the team’s official website.
“It’s good to see Adam back here with us.”
The Blue Jays are 15-15 on the road, but have won seven of 10 as
the visitor while hitting .290 with 12 homers. They’re also 2-1 on
this seven-game road trip, and Lind is 23 for 46 with seven homers
and 16 RBIs over his last 12 games away from Toronto.
Kansas City (25-34) has dropped 17 of 22 overall, and 11 of 15
at home after losing 6-0 to last-place Minnesota on Sunday that
completed a four-game sweep for the Twins.
The Blue Jays, though, split six meetings with the Royals last
year, and are 3-8 in their last 11 at Kauffman.
Lind has had a tough time with Kansas City, batting .190 with
three homers and seven RBIs in 15 games.
Toronto turns to Brandon Morrow (2-3, 5.11 ERA) for his first
appearance at Kansas City in almost three years. The right-hander
is 0-3 with a 10.57 ERA in five games there, and was pounded in his
only start in a loss with Seattle on Sept. 16, 2008. He surrendered
six runs and three homers in four innings.
The right-hander is 0-1 with a 5.50 ERA in his last three games,
and that defeat came Tuesday when he gave up six runs and nine hits
with nine strikeouts in a 6-3 loss to Cleveland.
Morrow, though, will be contending with a Royals’ team that was
outscored 26-6 over the last four games and managed seven singles
“We’re not putting together much offense right now,” manager Ned
Yost said. “That hurts when you can’t do that.”
Despite Kansas City’s offensive woes, Billy Butler owns a .382
average over the last 14 games. He’s 9 for 20 with two homers and
six RBIs to lead the Royals to four wins in their past five home
matchups with the Blue Jays.
Felipe Paulino (0-0, 0.00) is scheduled to take the mound
against Toronto for the first time as he continues to transition
from the bullpen to the rotation since being acquired from Colorado
on May 26.
The right-hander was impressive in his first start of the
season, yielding four hits in five innings while not getting a
decision in a 2-0 win over Los Angeles on Wednesday. He was even
better in 4 1-3 innings of relief in his Royals’ debut May 27,
allowing one hit in a 12-7 win in 14 at Texas.
“The outing in Texas was in a hitter-friendly park, and he
looked just like he did (in his first start) – dynamic slider, good
fastball, throwing strikes, getting quick outs,” Yost told the
team’s official website.