Meet me in Missouri: Reds vs. Royals Preview, Predictions
After completing a three-game sweep over the Chicago Cubs, the Cincinnati Reds head to Missouri to take on the Kansas City Royals. This series will begin on Monday, and this is the final week of baseball before the All-Star Break.
Cincinnati has improved its record to 43-40 with the sweep over the Cubs, and they have also moved into second place in the NL Central. The Reds have gone 20-20 away from home this season, and this week will be a great opportunity to improve on that mark.
Kansas City comes into this week with an overall record of just 35-48, and the Royals are in 4th place in the AL Central. This team did get off to a great start to the 2021 season, but things have not gone well over the past month.
In the series opener, the Reds are the betting favorites at -115, and they should be favored in most games this week.
Royals Not Playing Well
Kansas City has struggled to score runs this season, and their pitching staff has also struggled to get outs. This is a bad combination for the Royals, and it is the biggest reason that this team is headed in the wrong direction.
The Royals recently suffered through a nine-game losing streak, and this team is going to be selling off some pieces at the Trade Deadline. Mike Minor starts for Kansas City on Monday night, and he could be auditioning for another team.
Veteran catcher Salvador Perez leads the Royals with 20 home runs and 50 RBIs, and he could give the Reds pitching staff some trouble in this series.
Pitching Carrying Reds
The Reds still have a team ERA of 4.57 this season, but the pitching staff just has a great weekend against the Chicago Cubs. Cincinnati allowed just five total runs in sweeping the Chicago Cubs, and a similar pitching performance will be needed this week.
Cincinnati has struggled to play away from the Great American Ball Park at times this season, and this will be a challenge this week. The Reds have a pair of All-Star outfielders leading the way on offense, but this entire lineup needs to produce.
Nick Castellanos continues to lead the team with a .339 batting average, and he has also driven in a team-high 53 runs. Jesse Winker has been on a bit of a power slump of late, but his 19 home runs is still one of the best marks in the National League.
Reds Must Keep Stacking Wins
The Milwaukee Brewers appear to be running away with the NL Central Division, but the Reds have the ability to keep the pressure on. Cincinnati has not moved into second place in the division, and this is another series that should be good for the Reds.
The pitching staff of the Reds has been extremely dominant over the last four games, and that should continue into this series as well. The offense will need to start producing again, but there are enough stars in the lineup to get the job done.
Cincinnati doesn’t need to sweep Kansas City this week, but taking two out of the three games would be nice.
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