Series Preview: Cleveland Indians at Kansas City Royals

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Denny Medley-US PRESSWIRE

Players to Watch: Royals

  • Billy Butler: Butler has been Kansas City’s best player. While the rest of the team has struggled to find an offensive rhythm, Butler has just kept on hitting. So far in 2012, Butler has a slash line of .307/.377/.509 with 20 home runs, 16 doubles, and 64 RBI. If the Indians can find a way to keep him in check, it significantly limits what they are able to do offensively. Allow Butler to explode and it could be a long three days.
  • Alcides Escobar: Escobar has really come into his own this season. He’s always been able to flash the leather out in the field, but his bat was always lacking. Not this year. In 2012, Escobar has transformed himself into a legitimate offensive threat. While he doesn’t hit for power, he’s turned into a tough out and is willing to hit the ball to all fields. He also has the added benefit of speed. Once he gets on, he’s more than capable of stealing a base or scoring from first on a Billy Butler double.

Players to Watch: Indians

  • Carlos Santana: It appears that Carlos Santana has finally arrived in 2012. After what had been an absolutely awful first 90 games or so, Santana has finally started to turn the corner. He’s striking out less and hitting for more power. Perhaps it’s too little too late, but it should serve as a positive step moving forward if he can keep it up.
  • Jason Kipnis: Kipnis got a much needed day off on Sunday, only his third of the season, and does it ever look like he needed it. After getting off to a great start and having what many felt was an All-Star worthy first half, Kipnis has fallen off in the second half of the season so far. He hasn’t homered since June 17th, and since the All-Star Break has batted only .246 with a whopping 7 RBI. We’ve talked at great lengths about Kipnis’ star power potential. If he’s going to be the star we all expect him to be then now is the time to show it. It’s time for Jason Kipnis to go on a hot streak

How many games will the Indians win this series?

  • 2 (67%, 6 Votes)
  • 0 (22%, 2 Votes)
  • 1 (11%, 1 Votes)
  • 3 (0%, 0 Votes)

Total Voters: 9

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Tags: Alcides Escobar Billy Butler Carlos Santana Derek Lowe Eric Hosmer Jason Kipnis Jeremy Guthrie Josh Tomlin Kansas City Royals Luis Mendoza Luke Hochevar Zach McAllister

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