The Cleveland Indians face off against the Kansas City Royals on Thursday, September 2, 2021, to close down their three-game series at Kauffman Stadium in Kansas City, so we’ve prepared the best Indians vs. Royals betting pick and odds.
The Indians have owned the Royals so far this season, winning nine of their first ten encounters (Wednesday’s clash has been excluded from the analysis). Cleveland is listed as a road fave for Thursday’s closer, according to BetOnline Sportsbook, so let’s take a closer look at this AL Central showdown.
The Tribe’s offense is clipping on all cylinders
The Cleveland Indians beat the Royals 7-2 as +105 underdogs last Tuesday to open this set at Kauffman Stadium. They had 11 hits and 20 total bases, while Amed Rosario went 5-of-5 for five RBI, a drive over the fence, and an inside-the-park home run.
The Indians have tallied 64 runs in their previous 11 outings. Their .883 OPS over the last couple of weeks is the best in the majors in that span by far, as the Indians have smacked a whopping 24 dingers during that 11game stretch.
Triston McKenzie (3-5; 4.83 ERA) will rejoin the Indians’ rotation Thursday after spending ten days on the IL. The 24-year-old righty has been ridiculously good over his previous three starts (21 innings pitched), allowing just three earned runs on seven hits while posting a 24/2 K/BB ratio.
McKenzie is 2-0 with a sparkly 1.35 ERA and 0.79 WHIP in his four career starts and one relief appearance against Kansas City. In three meetings with the Royals this season, he’s allowed only one earned run on five hits and nine walks across 15.2 innings of work.
The Royals hope Kris Bubic can improve
The Kansas City Royals have won eight of their last 13 games thanks to some stellar pitching. They’ve recorded a 2.94 ERA, while the Crowns ‘pen has registered a shiny 2.34 ERA and 3.32 FIP in that 13-game span. On the other side of the ball, the Royals have done a decent job with 60 runs on a .261/.308/.420 batting line.
Kris Bubic will take the hill Thursday, and the 24-year-old southpaw is 4-6 with a pedestrian 5.18 ERA and 1.53 WHIP in 15 starts and eight relief appearances this season. He’s struggled mightily through five starts in August, allowing 18 earned runs across 22.2 innings of work along with a .948 OPS. Last Friday, Kris gave up five earned runs on nine hits and four walks through just 4.1 frames in an 8-7 win at Seattle.
Bubic met the Indians once in May and tossed one scoreless inning in relief. He’s 3-5 with a 4.37 ERA and 1.51 WHIP in 13 career starts and four relief appearances at Kauffman Stadium.
- 7-3 in the last ten games overall
- 6-3 in Triston McKenzie’s last nine starts
- 1-9 in the last ten games against Cleveland
- 3-6 in the last nine games at home
Cleveland Indians vs. Kansas City Royals Pick
The Indians’ offense has been terrific as of late, and I’m looking for more of the same in this favorable matchup with Kris Bubic. Cleveland hits the lefties very well, posting a .420 slugging percentage on the season, and Bubic has been all over the place recently.
I’ve mentioned how good the Royals bullpen has been over the last couple of weeks, while the Indians bullpen has posted a solid 3.43 ERA and 4.21 FIP in that stretch. The visitors have an excellent chance to grab a win, especially if Triston McKenzie puts on another dominant performance.
Pick: Take Cleveland Indians
The current Royals have an awful .307 OPS in 66 at-bats against Triston McKenzie, who’s had problems with control earlier in the season. I don’t trust the Indians starter too much, but McKenzie has been outstanding in each of his previous three starts, so betting on the totals might be a tricky job here.
The Indians could easily score a bunch of runs off Kris Bubic, while the Royals will have a tall task to improve their numbers against McKenzie. The over has hit in six of the last nine meetings between Cleveland and Kansas City, so I’ll stick with this betting trend.
Pick: Go over