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Cleveland Indians: Previewing the duel with the Kansas City Royals

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(Photo by Jason O. Watson/Getty Images)
(Photo by Jason O. Watson/Getty Images) /
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(Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images) /

Storylines

The end of June was unkind to the bullpen

For most of June, it seemed like the bullpen was really coming together. Then all hell broke loose as they got roughed up by the Cardinals and A’s. Dan Otero has an ERA of 7.36 in the last seven days and Zach McAllister has a 5.40 ERA in that span. Oliver Perez got yanked before even throwing a pitch in one game and it’s a big mess. It’s all but over for Josh Tomlin as he’s continued to be a liability in the bullpen. Hopefully these guys can get it together before the next homestead.

The Indians big guns are coming a live

I mentioned how Jason Kipnis was finding his groove last week. He’s not the only one. Edwin Encarnacion, Jose Ramirez, and Francisco Lindor all have 20 or more homers. That makes the Indians the only team in baseball to have three players with 20 or more long-balls. If these guys stay hot down the stretch, the Indians winning ways should continue.

Worse/Best case scenario

Worse case: 1-2 series loss

Say what you will about the Indians poor play at times, one thing they do is avoid being swept. Ev every time their on the verge of being swept, their starter comes out and pitches a gem while the offense explodes. If the Royals, take two games from the Indians, expect Trevor Bauer to pitch eight no-hit innings.

Best case: 3-0 series win

I’m not going to say the Indians are playing like a team that wants to sweep anybody on this road trip. But the Royals are bad. We’ve talked a lot about how bad they’ve been in this whole preview and it’s not an exaggeration. They’re playing for the number one pick in next year’s draft.

Next: Indians move up the power rankings again

This series kicks off at 8:10 PM EST tonight and continues through Wednesday with those same start times. Have a happy and safe 4th for July and go Tribe!

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