National Sports

Royals and A’s kick things off

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KANSAS CITY (AP) — Baseball’s second-season, the playoffs, gets started tonight with the American League Wild Card game. This evening’s matchup has Oakland playing the Royals in Kansas City. For the A’s, this is their third straight trip to the post season while for the Royals, tonight’s game marks their first trip to the playoffs in 29 years. Record-wise the A’s finished the regular season with 88 wins and 74 defeats to finish second in the AL West, while the Royals were second to the Tigers in the AL Central with 89 wins and 73 defeats.

As you would expect, the pitching matchup is a good one with Jon Lester going for the visitors against James Shields. Lester was 16-11 with a 2.46 earned run average this season while Shields was 14-8 with a 3.21 ERA. Against the Royals, Lester is 9-3 lifetime with a 1.84 ERA.

The A’s and Royals met seven times during the season with the Royals coming out on top in five of the games.

The winner of tonight’s game faces the Los Angeles Angels in the AL Divisional playoffs.

Coming up tomorrow, the Giants will send 18-game winner Madison Bumgarner to the mound against Edinson Volquez and the Pirates in Pittsburgh. The winner of that NL Wild Card game will get the right to face the Washington Nationals in an NL Divisional Series.

Later this week, the Los Angeles Dodgers will take on St. Louis in an NL division series and Baltimore will play Detroit in an AL division series.


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