Look, I know the Cardinals still have a game against the Mets today and it’s a big one because Jaime Garcia will be making his first start in just over 11 months, but we’re on the eve of the biggest I-70 showdown since 1985. A rare moment in Missouri baseball when the Royals and Cardinals will be playing each other and both are in first place. Not just first place, but doing so in dominating fashion.
Even last year, the Royals were near the bottom of the division when they faced the Cardinals for four games, two in STL and two in KC. The Royals took three out of four. Ever since we missed out on another I-7o World Series, the hype for this upcoming weekend series has been building. This will be the 81st, 82nd and 83rd interleague meeting between our two clubs and the first time both teams have been in first place.
The Cardinals own the best record in the majors at 27-13 and lead by 4.5 games over Chicago. The Royals are off to their best start in franchise history after 40 games, with a 26-14 record. They are up 2.5 games on Detroit.
The series starts on Friday with the Cardinals workhorse Lance Lynn going up against Chris Young who has revitalized his career with the Royals. Lynn threw a season high 119 pitches in his win last Sunday. He’s only 3-3, but his ERA is 2.96 and he is now the veteran on this staff who must lead the rest of the rotation by example.
Mike Moustakas has had the most success against Lynn. Moose is batting .400 with three homers and six RBIs against him. Moose has homered in two of his last three at-bats vs. Lynn. Alex Gordon is batting .500 in ten at-bats against Lynn. Moose had three hits in the 7-1 win over the Reds on Wednesday night, bumping his average up to .342. Keep in mind, when George Brett flirted with .400 in 1980, he was only hitting .301 at this point in the season…just saying.
Young is 3-0 for the Royals with a 0.96 ERA and he kept the Yankees bats quiet in his last start. Young spent a lot of time with San Diego and never did well against the Cardinals with an 0-3 lifetime record. However, the current Cardinals batting order has only faced him a total of 12 times.