MLB Odds: Take White Sox & Sale vs. Royals This Sunday

Matthew Jordan

Sunday, May 29, 2016 12:00 PM UTC

Sunday, May. 29, 2016 12:00 PM UTC

The Royals were supposed to face White Sox ace Chris Sale in Sunday, but a rainout Thursday was to benefit the Royals. Then it didn't. So the White Sox are -140 favorites on MLB odds.

What You Need To Know
It's extremely difficult to repeat in Major League Baseball these days, which is somewhat surprising because it's the only of the four major American sports leagues without a salary cap. Just two teams since 1980 have repeated as World Series champions: the Blue Jays and Yankees.

And I don't think the Kansas City Royals have much of a chance of joining that group this season. In fact, I don't see them making the playoffs without a big trade or two. That's because the Royals aren't a very good offensive team and now have lost All-Star third baseman Mike Moustakas for the season to a torn ACL.

Last Sunday in Chicago, in just his second game since returning from the disabled list with an unrelated injury, Moustakas collided with left fielder Alex Gordon while chasing a pop fly. The Royals learned that Gordon, another All-Star had suffered a broken bone in his hand and would miss 3-4 weeks. But they thought Moustakas only had a sprained knee. Alas, an ACL tear was revealed a few days later.

“To lose two All-Stars on one play,” Royals manager Ned Yost said in an understatement to the local media, “it’s kind of tough.”

Moustakas was hitting .240 with seven homers and 13 RBIs. He got off to a good start before suffering a thumb injury that hampered him and eventually landed him on the DL the first time.  Last year, Moustakas hit .284 with 22 homers and 82 RBIs. Moustakas was worth 3.8 wins above replacement, the second highest on the team behind center fielder Lorenzo Cain.

Cheslor Cuthbert, the team's second-round pick in 2010, will take over as the third baseman for now but I'd imagine the Royals will be looking at possible trades. In addition, Kansas City DH Kendrys Morales is dealing with  a sprained right middle finger and could miss this series. At least it's not major like the Gordon and Moustakas injuries.

The Royals are now +2500 on MLB odds to win the World Series. I'm not seeing it.


Probable Pitchers
Thursday's opener of this series was rained out and won't be made up until later this season. The White Sox had Sale scheduled to pitch this game on normal rest. But instead of keeping things that way and skipping the No. 4 or No. 5 guy in the rotation, the Sox planned to give Sale an extra day of rest. Then, oddly, the team changed its mind and decided to pitch him Sunday. Sale (9-1, 2.26) comes off one of the worst starts of his career, allowing six runs and seven hits in 3.1 innings a loss to Cleveland on Tuesday. So you could understand if perhaps the Sox wanted to give him extra rest. But the team is struggling so it needs a win in the worst way. The White Sox are 10-1 on MLB Odds in Sale's past 11 starts.

Here was Manager Robin Ventura's explanation to the Chicago Tribune for the flip-flop:

"He didn't throw very much (Tuesday). We have a division team. A lot of things go into it. Just keep it on schedule. Keep him pitching. It's that simple. It didn't seem like that big a deal to me that we have him go Sunday."

Sale hasn't faced the Royals this season. He was 0-1 against them last year with a 4.05 ERA in two starts. Cain hits .349 off him career with three homers and seven RBIS in 43 at-bats. Eric Hosmer is 10-for-33 with eight  strikeouts.

The Royals did decide to skip a pitcher in the wake of Thursday's rainout and that was Ian Kennedy. So it's veteran right-hander Edinson Volquez (5-4, 3.67) here. Volquez beat the Twins on Tuesday, allowing four runs (two earned) and six hits over 6.2 innings. He has alternated quality starts and those with four or more earned runs allowed in his past six outings. The 'under' is 5-0-1 on MLB Picks in Volquez's past six at home.

Volquez hasn't faced the White Sox this season. Last year, he was 2-2 with a 1.64 ERA in five starts against them. He allowed six earned runs and 30 hits in 33 innings, striking out 22, walking eight and not allowing a home run. Chicago's Melky Cabrera is 9-for-28 career off him with two doubles, a homer and three RBIs. Jose Abreu is 3-for-14 with two doubles and two RBIs. Adam Eaton is 4-for-22 with two RBIs. Todd Frazier is 3-for-17 with four strikeouts. Jimmy Rollins is 1-for-14.

White Sox and 'under.' I doubt Sale has a second straight bad start. Chicago has won his past five on the road. The Royals are 1-4 in their past five against a lefty. The 'under' is 12-3 in Sale's past 15 vs. Kansas City.

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Free MLB Pick:  White Sox -143 & Under 7½
Best Line Offered:  at BetOnline & Pinnacle

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