Guardians (72-78) vs Royals (48-102) Match-Up Preview | 9/18 2:10 PM EST

September 18, 2023

Andy Billman

Game 1 of the Series Against the Kansas City Royals

3 Things Preview For Today’s Game:

1 – Cal 

Cal Quantrill is back on the bump for the Guardians and he has been excellent since coming back from the IL.  He has only given up three runs in 18 innings pitched.

2 – Beyonce

The game with the Royals will be an early start because of a Beyonce concert happening later in the evening in Kansas City. 

3 – 7-3 

The one team Cleveland has enjoyed playing the AL Central is the Kansas City Royals as they are 7-3 entering Monday’s game against the Royals. 

Guardians Notes

Describing the Guardians’ chances of making it to the postseason as “slim” is an understatement. They currently trail the A.L. Central by a daunting 7.0 games with a record of 72-78. Their elimination number stands at six games, so their hopes heavily rely on the Twins encountering a significant downturn. This season has been nothing short of disappointing for Cleveland, particularly considering that the Central division is regarded as the weakest in baseball. Their recent performance has been mediocre, with a 5-5 record in their last ten games.

Taking the mound on Monday is Cal Quantrill, set to make his 17th start in the 2023 season. The right-hander’s stats for the year are less than stellar, with a 3-6 record, a 5.40 ERA, and a 1.45 WHIP. In his most recent outing against the Giants, he showcased a marked improvement by limiting them to just one earned run on five hits and three walks over 6.0 innings. This victory marked his third consecutive quality start, hinting at a potential turnaround in his form.

Cleveland’s offensive struggles have been a recurring theme this season, ranking a dismal 27th overall in runs scored, totaling 614. These runs have been generated by a middling team batting average of .250, and their OPS ranks 27th at .694. In terms of individual contributions, Jose Ramirez has been the driving force, leading the team in average (.278), OBP (.352), and home runs (24). Josh Naylor has been their top-run producer, tallying a team-leading 91 RBI.

Guardians Stats and Insights


  • Quantrill and his team are 6-10-0 ATS this season when he starts.
  • The right-hander last pitched on Wednesday, when he gave up one earned run and allowed five hits in six innings against the San Francisco Giants.
  • Quantrill has three starts in a row of five innings or more.
  • He has three appearances with no earned runs allowed in 16 chances this season.
  • Quantrill’s team has a record of 2-4 this season when he starts and they are the favorite on the money line.
  • In games Quantrill has started, his team is 8-8.
  • Games Quantrill has started this season hit over five times in 16 chances.


  • The Guardians have racked up two or more home runs in 29 games this season, and are 21-8 in those contests.
  • Cleveland is 20-6 in games this season when it has put up five or more extra-base hits.
  • The team is 49-43 in the games this season it has racked up eight or more hits.
  • Cleveland is 42-14 in games this season when it scored at least five runs.
  • The Guardians are 20-17 over the 37 games this season when they have drawn at least five walks.

Royals Notes

I’m uncertain about the direction the Kansas City baseball team is taking in the near future. It appears they are currently in a state of uncertainty like they’re stuck in a baseball limbo. The team’s bright spot seems to be Bobby Witt Jr., their upcoming star player. However, apart from him, the Royals’ lineup lacks depth. The pitching performance has also been subpar, with Kansas City ranking 28th in ERA (5.22) and 24th in WHIP (1.41). As of Monday, the Royals have a record of 48-102, which is the second-worst in the league, only better than the Oakland A’s who have a record of 46-102.

On Monday afternoon, Brady Singer will be taking the mound for his 29th start of the season. Singer currently holds a record of 8-11 with a 5.51 ERA and a 1.44 WHIP. In his last two starts against the White Sox, he struggled, giving up 12 earned runs on 18 hits and three walks over just 10.1 innings. Despite his 0-1 record in those two starts, the Royals managed to secure one win out of those two games.

The offense hasn’t provided much support this season, as the Royals are ranked 26th in runs scored with 616. Their runs have come from a team batting average that ranks 28th in the league at .243, and they have the 26th-best OPS at .697. Bobby Witt Jr. leads the team in average (.278), home runs (29), and RBI (90). Maikel Garcia leads in OBP with a .324.

Royals Stats and Insights


  • Singer (8-11) gets the starting nod for the Royals in his 29th start of the season. He has a 5.51 ERA in 153 2/3 innings pitched, with 129 strikeouts.
  • In his last time out on Tuesday, the right-hander went 5 1/3 innings against the Chicago White Sox, allowing six earned runs while surrendering nine hits.
  • Singer will look to last five or more innings for his third straight start. He’s averaging 5.5 frames per outing.
  • He has had three appearances this season in which he kept his opponents to zero earned runs.
  • The Royals are 9-11 in Singer’s 20 starts this season they were the underdog on the money line.
  • Singer’s team has compiled a 13-15 record in his 28 starts.
  • Singer’s starts with a set total this season have gone over the run total in 18 of 28 contests.


  • They have won 20 of the 38 games this season in which they hit two or more home runs.
  • Kansas City has gone 17-17 this season when collecting five or more extra-base hits as a team.
  • In 84 games this season with eight or more hits, they have a record of 37-47.
  • Kansas City has won 33 of its 50 games this season in which it scored more than four runs.
  • They have a 7-13 record this season when drawing five or more walks in a game.

Final Thoughts/Pick

There’s a possibility that this game holds little significance in the larger context, but the Guardians still cling to a slim chance of making the playoffs, so they’ll undoubtedly give their utmost effort in the upcoming matches. Given that Cleveland has Cal Quantrill as their starting pitcher, I’m inclined to bet on them winning this game.

Although Quantrill’s overall statistics for the year haven’t been impressive (5.40 ERA and 1.45 WHIP), his recent performance has been outstanding, particularly in his last three starts. During this month, he has maintained a remarkable 1.50 ERA and 1.00 WHIP over 18.0 innings of work. Additionally, he has a track record of success against the Royals, with the current Kansas City lineup managing only a .245/.260/.388 slash line against him in 29 at-bats.

Furthermore, it’s worth mentioning that star catcher Salvador Perez missed Sunday’s game due to a head injury and might not be available for this matchup. All factors considered, it appears that the Guardians are the favorable choice in this situation.

Our Pick: Take Guardians and the Money Line

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