Miami (32-36) at Kansas City (27-41)

Partly Cloudy Currently: Kansas City, MO
Temp: 81° F
  • Game info: 7:10 pm EDT Sat Jun 16, 2007
  • TV: FSFL, RTN
Preview | Box Score | Recap

The Kansas City Royals may wish to add a few more interleague games to the schedule.

They look to continue their solid play against the NL when they play the middle game of their three-game home set with the Florida Marlins on Saturday.

Kansas City (27-41) has the second-worst record in the AL, but it doesn’t show in interleague games.

While the Royals are just 20-38 within their own league, they have won seven of 10 against the NL, outscoring their opponents 78-44 in those games.

They won Friday’s series opener 6-2, their sixth victory in nine games overall. Kansas City is also trying to win three straight games for the first time since May 20-23.

“I think everyone is clicking,” rookie third baseman Alex Gordon told the Royals’ official Web site. “We are doing everything well, offensively, defensively and pitching.”

Mike Sweeney delivered a three-run double in the seventh inning Friday after the Marlins deliberately loaded the bases to pitch to him. Sweeney is batting .348 in seven games against the NL, but only .237 against AL opponents.

David DeJesus, who went 3-for-5 on Friday, is batting .310 (13-for-42) in 10 interleague games, compared to a .258 average in his 57 other contests.

Kansas City starter Jorge De La Rosa (4-6, 4.73 ERA) looks to rebound from his shortest outing of the season and tries for his first win in a month when he takes the hill on Saturday.

Since beating the Chicago White Sox on May 13, De La Rosa is 0-3 with a 6.75 ERA in five starts.

The left-hander needed 93 pitches to go just 3 2-3 innings on Sunday, allowing three runs, five hits and four walks in a 17-5 win over Philadelphia.

De La Rosa got off to a great start to the season at Kauffman Stadium, but has not any success there lately. He opened 3-0 with a 0.82 ERA in his first three home starts, but is 0-3 with a 11.42 ERA in his last four outings at Kauffman.

He is 0-1 with a 7.71 ERA in two career games against the Marlins, including one start.

Florida (32-36) is trying to avoid its third losing streak of at least four games this season.

Rookie Rick Vanden Hurk (1-2, 8.61) tries to bounce back from a rough outing when he starts for the Marlins.

After throwing six shutout innings over Atlanta to earn his first major league win on June 5, Vanden Hurk was tagged for five runs and six hits in five innings of a 9-4 loss to Tampa Bay on Sunday.

He matched a career high with six strikeouts against the Devil Rays, though, and has 25 strikeouts in 23 innings this season.

“I’ve just got to make sure I keep pounding the strike zone,” Vanden Hurk told the Marlins’ official Web site.

The Marlins are just 1-4 in the 22-year-old right-hander’s starts.

On the bright side for Florida, catcher Miguel Olivo went 3-for-4 with a homer and two RBIs Friday, and is 8-for-19 (.421) with two homers and seven RBIs in his last five games.

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Starting Pitchers

R. van den Hurk Pit vs. J. De La Rosa Col
4-6 Record 8-12
6.83 ERA 5.82
82 K 82
48 BB 53
1.74 WHIP 1.64

Scoreboard

Saturday, Jun 16