Where: Kauffman Stadium, Kansas City, Missouri
Two American League division leaders face off when the Baltimore Orioles visit the Kansas City Royals on Friday to begin a three-game series. Baltimore leads the AL East at 10-4 after winning its last two against Toronto as Manny Machado extended his hitting streak to 14 contests while the Royals are 6-2 at home on the way to a one half-game lead in the AL Central.
Machado is one of three Orioles (Brian Roberts and Eddie Murray) to start a season by hitting safely in 14 straight games and can set a new career high on Friday. Baltimore will send Yovani Gallardo to the mound to try and improve on the team’s 3-3 record on the road. Kansas City (10-5), which won four of seven against the Orioles last season, took two of three versus Detroit earlier this week. Eric Hosmer has recorded at least one hit in 11 consecutive games for the Royals and reached base in 23 straight regular-season contests, dating back to the 2015.READ MORE: Ocean City Braces For Car Enthusiasts, Traffic Impacts At H20i Rally
PITCHING MATCHUP: Orioles RH Yovani Gallardo (1-0, 5.63 ERA) vs. Royals RH Chris Young (0-3, 7.90)
Gallardo has given up nine runs over 11 innings in his last two starts after producing a solid performance in his season debut. The 30-year-old Mexican, who signed as a free agent in the offseason, has walked six and struck out nine in three outings with his new team. Omar Infante (1-for-12) has struggled against Gallardo, who has been dominant in two career starts versus Kansas City (1-0, 1.93 ERA).
Young is coming off one of his best seasons (11-6) but has not carried over that performance, permitting 12 runs over 13 2/3 innings in his first three starts of 2016. The 36-year-old Texan had his best outing at home, allowing two runs and three hits over five frames. J.J. Hardy is 0-for-9 with three strikeouts versus Young, who is 2-1 with a 3.52 ERA in five career appearances (four starts) against Baltimore.READ MORE: Who's Eligible? Maryland Authorizes Pfizer Booster Shots For Vulnerable Adults In Coronavirus Fight
1. Orioles RHP Darren O’Day has not allowed a run in eight outings (7 1/3 innings) this season and Baltimore is 8-0 in games he has pitched.
2. Royals 3B Mike Moustakas is 6-for-16 with a pair of homers during his four-game hitting streak.
3. Baltimore rookie LF Joey Rickard has reached base in his first 14 major-league games, recording at least one hit in 13 of them.MORE NEWS: Ex-Hyattsville Police Officer Gets Jail Time For Flashing Gun At Teens
PREDICTION: Orioles 6, Royals 4