After a cross-city road trip for the Subway Series against the Mets, the Yankees will return to their home confines for a set against the Royals starting tonight. Kansas City is in the midst of what will likely be another losing season, currently sitting well below .500. When the two teams previously met in Kansas City, the Yankees swept a three-game series, outscoring the Royals 21-6. They’ll look to continue that run as the teams resume their season battle tonight.
Meanwhile, the teams have just had some dealings off the field just last night, making a trade for outfielder Andrew Benintendi. Not only did that weaken the team they’re about to play, but that probably just saved some money on a flight. Anyway, we’ll almost certainly see him make his Yankee debut against his old team during this four-game set.
Before things get started tonight, let’s look at the pitching matchups we’ll see over the next couple days.
Thursday: Jameson Taillon vs. Brady Singer (7:05 PM ET)
Taillon had appeared to right the ship a bit in his final start before the All-Star break, putting in a good outing against Boston. However in his first start after the break, he got hit around by the Orioles, getting knocked out after 2.2 innings, with the bullpen having to come in and strand the bases loaded. Since his perfect game bid in early June, he has a 6.09 ERA with hitters OPSing .908 off him.
For KC, Singer will get the start in the opener, looking to finish off what’s been a pretty good July for him. After he struggled in June, he has a 2.66 ERA and 2.91 FIP in 23.2 innings. The Yankees missed him for the series in Kansas City as he was in the minors at that point, stretching out after starting the season in the majors in the bullpen. His only two meetings with the Yankees came last season, and they got him pretty good both times, knocking him out in the fourth inning twice.
Friday: Gerrit Cole vs. Kris Bubic (7:05 PM ET)
Over the weekend in Baltimore, Cole seemed to be cruising along to a win, allowing just three hits and no runs in the first four innings. The Orioles got him for two in the fifth, but he settled down after that. However, he would end up allowing another two in the seventh, which ended up dooming him to a loss and a less than stellar final line. It’s been a very up-and-down July for him, but he’ll look to close it out with an up against a team he had a nice outing against back in April.
Bubic has really struggled on the whole this season, but has been better of late, putting up a 3.03 ERA in July. Prior to that, one of his only remotely decent starts from the first couple months came against the Yankees in May, when he allowed three runs in five innings.
Saturday: Nestor Cortes vs. Zack Greinke (2:05 PM ET)
For about a month, Cortes had seemed to be dipping after his incredible start, seeing his ERA go from 1.50 to 2.74 over the course of six starts over June and July. However in his last two, he’s shown what made him an All-Star. Cortes has allowed just one run on ten hits and one walk in 13 innings over the two starts that bookended his All-Star appearance.
In late May/June, Greinke missed some time with a right flexor injury. Since his return from that on June 24th, he’s been solid, putting up a 3.19 ERA. Hitters are still OPSing .700 against him in that time, but he’s been fairly solid at limiting damage.
Sunday: Jordan Montgomery vs. TBD (1:35 PM ET)
For a guy who has often been on the wrong end of the run support, the Yankees gave Montgomery a dream start against the Mets, only for him to go and lose the lead in the first inning, eventually dooming them to a loss. In general, the last couple weeks haven’t been great for him, with a 4.97 ERA and 4.88 FIP in his last seven starts.
The Royals have not announced a starter for Sunday’s game at time of writing. Daniel Lynch had been in their rotation, but issues with blisters have seen him hit the IL recently, throwing a wrench into the Royals’ order.