American League Preview from The Sports Network|
Sunday, April 14th
(All times Eastern)
Toronto Blue Jays (5-6) at Kansas City Royals (6-5), 2:10 p.m.
Probable Starting Pitchers: Toronto - Brandon Morrow (0-1, 5.59)
Kansas City - Ervin Santana (1-1, 3.21)
(Sports Network) - Righty Ervin Santana makes his third start with his new
team on Sunday when the Kansas City Royals host the Toronto Blue Jays in the
finale of a three-game weekend series at Kauffman Stadium.
Santana, a nine-game winner in 30 starts for the Los Angeles Angels of
Anaheim, was acquired in a late October trade that sent minor-leaguer Brandon
Sisk to the Angels.
The 30-year-old debuted with the Royals on April 3 in Chicago and took a 5-2
loss after allowing four runs on five hits in six innings. He was much more
effective in outing No. 2, however, and pitched eight innings of one-run ball
in a 3-1 defeat of the Minnesota Twins on April 8.
Santana has faced the Blue Jays 14 times in 238 big-league outings and is 6-5
against them with three complete games and a 3.95 earned run average in 95 2/3
innings. He got a loss and a no-decision in two matchups in 2012 while
allowing 10 hits and eight runs in 13 innings.
He is 51-38 in 118 career road outings, with a 3.74 ERA - more than a run
lower than the 4.96 clip he's established on the road.
Toronto will counter with righty Brandon Morrow, who'll also make his third
start of the season as he seeks his first win.
The 28-year-old native of Santa Rosa, Calif. pitched six innings of one-run
ball while getting a no-decision in Toronto's 3-2 loss to Cleveland on April
3, then dropped a 7-3 verdict at Detroit on April 9 after allowing five runs
on nine hits in just 3 2/3 innings.
Batters are touching him for a .357 clip so far this season, a far cry from
the stingy .214 he held them to in 21 starts for the Blue Jays in 2012.
Morrow, a former closer, is 3-4 with a save in 10 career meetings with Kansas
City with a 4.54 ERA in 33 2/3 innings.
On Saturday, Jose Bautista hit a two-run homer to help lead the Blue Jays to a
Munenori Kawasaki, who replaced an injured Jose Reyes in the starting lineup,
had a sacrifice fly and scored once for the Blue Jays, winners in three of
their last four games.
Prior to the game, Reyes was placed on the 15-day disabled list with a left
ankle sprain, and Toronto selected the contract of Kawasaki from Triple-A
Buffalo. Reyes suffered the injury in Friday's win. Although MRI results were
not immediately released, Reyes could be out for three months.
R.A. Dickey (1-2) allowed one run on five hits over 6 1/3 innings to earn the
win. Casey Janssen gave up one run in the ninth but was able to record the
final out to pick up his third save of the season.
"Look, nobody has been happy with the way things have gone. Not as a starting
staff" Dickey said. "We all talk about it and we know it's obvious that we
haven't performed up to not only the expectation but our ability. We all feel
very responsible to that. That being said, nobody in here is panicking."
Chris Getz went 3-for-4 with an RBI and Alex Gordon had two hits and drove in
a run for the Royals, who have dropped their last two after winning four
James Shields (1-2) lasted all nine innings, giving up three runs on two hits
to go with six strikeouts.
"He pitched a great ballgame. He threw 115 pitches I think if he could take
one back it'd probably be the curveball to Bautista," Royals manager Ned Yost
said. "He just got it up a little bit. (Bautista is) one of the strongest guys
in the league and ended up hitting a two-run homer off it."
Toronto won six of eight games between the teams in 2012. The Royals won four
of seven in 2011.
04/14 10:26:57 ET