Kansas City fans will be “replaying” some fond memories as the Royals welcome Lorenzo Cain and the Milwaukee Brewers to town for the first game of a two-game series beginning Tuesday night.
The Brewers will send Brandon Woodruff (2-1, 1.64 ERA) to the mound. The Royals have not yet announced a starter.
Cain, who spent seven seasons with the Royals (2011-17), including both World Series teams in 2014 and 2015, will patrol familiar territory in Kauffman Stadium’s spacious center field. He’s hitting just .222 with three home runs and eight RBIs this season in 20 games, after missing time with a left quad strain.
The Brewers are coming off a 10-9 victory over Atlanta, a game in which the Brewers led 8-0 before almost squandering the lead late.
“Today was a great day, but we all know that’s just one game,” said Cain, who reached safely four times on three singles and a walk. His two-run single in the seventh stood as the game’s decisive hit.
“It starts with me. I have to keep rolling, keep getting on base for these guys,” Cain added. “We have to find ways to be consistent and keep being on base to give ourselves a chance day in and day out. Today was a great day of that. But we still have a long season to go.”
Woodruff has been stellar since a so-so outing on opening day. He’s pitched seven straight quality starts. Even in his loss, a 2-1 setback at Philadelphia on May 6, he allowed just one run on two hits in 6 2/3 innings.
“Everything is just a little bit better with him, I think,” Brewers manager Craig Counsell said after Woodruff’s no-decision vs. the St. Louis Cardinals on May 12. “He’s competing really well. And he’s got an incredible fastball, that he can pour in the strike zone (and) locate it.”
“Replay” might not be a word you want to use around Royals manager Mike Matheny right now. The Royals head into the Milwaukee series still stinging from the end of Sunday’s game in Chicago. The White Sox won when instant replay didn’t result in overturning a safe call at the plate on a walk-off wild pitch.
The Royals were convinced that catcher Cam Gallagher tagged Jose Abreu before Abreu’s hand touched home plate. After the game, Matheny was still visibly upset.
“I have to make a point that if we’re going to use video replay, there needs to be some accountability,” he said. “I just walked in here and had two different camera angles with this guy out. Tagged before he ever even touched the plate. I don’t know what they’re doing, if they’re backing each other up, whatever it is. It’s wrong.”
The play — and the loss — ended a promising turn-around for the Royals, who entered the four-game series with the White Sox on an 11-game losing streak. They ended up splitting the series, but it could have been so much better had they held onto a 3-2 lead in the ninth.
“Our replay coordinator signaled that we got him, and we were all ready to roll and move on to the next inning,” Gallagher said. “I guess there just wasn’t enough evidence to overturn.
“That one hurts a lot. But we’ll recover from it.”
–Field Level Media