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Daily Fantasy Baseball
Mike Matheny has guided the Cards to the best record in baseball. (Talkingredbirds.com)
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Looking ahead to this weekend, one of the more interesting series of the season kicks off when St. Louis heads down the I-70 to Kansas City. The way these two teams have been going this season, we’re expecting — in the words of Deep Purple — some Smoke on the Water.
The NL-leading Cards got off to a blazing start, but have hit a rough patch and the Cubs have taken advantage, pulling within 4.5 games in the NL Central. The Royals, meanwhile, are on fire, and now have the second best record in the AL behind only Houston. In the AL Central, KC has opened up a 2.5-game lead on Detroit.
St. Louis’ offense woke up on Tuesday, matching a season high with 15 hits and reaching double digit runs for just the third time this year. The Cards needed that, as it was just their fourth win over the last 10. However, even with this skid, Manager Mike Matheny’s crew remains the best team in baseball.
Outfielder Randal Grichuk (back) came off the DL last week and enjoyed a nice first game but then on Monday, he was bad. And we mean historically bad. He went 0-for-6 and tied a franchise record by fanning five times.
To the kid’s credit, he was able to shake off that forgettable showing by lashing three hits (two doubles and a triple) on Tuesday with three RBI and a run. Grichuk has been limited to just 10 games this year, but his productivity intrigues us.
KC has won four of its last five games, winning the last two by shutout for its first back-to-back goose eggs since the end of September 1992.
Royals starter Jeremy Guthrie will be charged with keeping that shutout streak going Wednesday, but we don’t like his chances. He’s actually been better lately, tossing his first quality start of the year on May 9 and earning another W last week with a decent outing against Texas.
But the fact is, Guthrie has been too hittable this season, and while his BABIP is higher than usual, it doesn’t explain how bad he’s been. He’s on pace for his worst full-season ERA ever and he’s never had a harder time getting strikeouts. As mentioned, Guthrie has been a bit better lately, but if that doesn’t continue, his rotation spot could be in jeopardy.