The Kansas City Royals concluded their road trip riding a winning streak, and they hope to build on that success in their return to Kauffman Stadium.
Looking to extend their three-game run, the Royals open a seven-game homestand - their last of the regular season - on Monday with a four-game set against the slumping Seattle Mariners.
Kansas City (65-84) wrapped up a 4-3 road swing with a 13-3 win in Cleveland on Sunday. The offense scored five times in losing the opener of that four-game series on Friday, but rolled to wins in the next three games by totaling 29 runs.
“Hopefully, it’s one of those things that we can keep going,” Royals manager Trey Hillman said.
To win four in a row for the first time since July 27-30, Kansas City will have to play better at Kauffman Stadium, where it is 33-41, including 11 losses in its last 17 games.
Things won’t get any easier, even with a matchup against last-place Seattle (57-91). The Royals are 13-25 versus the Mariners since the start of the 2004 season, losing 12 of 21 against them as hosts.
However, the Royals hold a 3-2 edge in the 2008 series after taking two of three in Kansas City from July 11-13.
They’ll try to improve that mark behind Guillen, who has batted .412 (21-for-51) with two homers and 12 RBIs during a 12-game hitting streak.
Seattle looks to rebound after opening its 11-game road trip with four straight losses to the AL West champion Los Angeles Angeles, including Sunday’s 4-3 defeat.
“We’ve played tough, and see progress being made, but it’s tough on everybody when you are not winning,” manager Jim Riggleman told the Mariners’ official Web site.
Riggleman’s team has 14 games remaining as it tries to avoid a fourth 100-loss season and the franchise’s first since 1983.
Carlos Silva (4-14, 6.53 ERA), who is 0-5 with an 8.40 ERA in nine outings since winning in San Diego on June 28, starts for Seattle.
The right-hander missed his start last Sunday because of back spasms, according to the Mariners’ site. He hasn’t pitched since Sept. 1, when he left without a decision after he was reached for six runs and 10 hits in 4 2-3 innings of a 12-6 win at Texas.
He is 3-1 with a 3.64 ERA in seven games at Kauffman Stadium. Pitching there on July 13, he held the Royals to two runs and eight hits over six innings of a 4-3 victory to improve to 5-3 with a 4.15 ERA in 13 career starts against them.
Silva was opposed by Kyle Davies (6-7, 4.70) in that outing, and the Royals starter didn’t factor into the decision after allowing three runs and six hits over seven innings in his first career appearance against the Mariners.
The right-hander is 1-5 with a 5.34 ERA in his last six games, and gave up four runs and eight hits over 5 2-3 innings of a 7-1 loss at Minnesota on Wednesday.