The Royals try to extend their winning streak to four Tuesday night when they open a three-game interleague series with the struggling Diamondbacks.
Kansas City (28-34) beat Cincinnati 7-1 on Sunday to complete its first three-game series sweep since Sept. 22-24. The club swept consecutive two-game sets from the Chicago White Sox and Seattle last month.
Those victories were part of a season-high six-game winning streak, which the Royals followed up by going 7-23 before beating the Reds 4-1 on Friday.
“A lot of us have brooms we haven’t pulled out in a while,” said Royals right fielder Mark Teahen(notes), who went 5 for 11 with a homer and two RBIs in the weekend series. “It’s nice to get those out and use them a little bit. We’re getting it going in the right direction. We didn’t play the way we wanted to in May.”
Gill Meche (3-5, 3.70) will try to help Kansas City get off to a strong start in this series while building on one of his best performances of the season.
The veteran right-hander equaled his career high with 11 strikeouts while yielding four hits in seven innings of a 9-0 win at Cleveland on Wednesday. That performance snapped a stretch of seven starts without a win, during which he went 0-3 with a 4.02 ERA.
“I felt absolutely horrible warming up in the bullpen,” Meche said of Wednesday’s outing. “It’s weird. I just went out and tried to attack the (strike) zone and things fell in place.”
Meche is 0-3 with a 5.93 ERA in six starts at Kauffman Stadium this season, but 2-0 with a 2.95 ERA in three career starts against Arizona.
The Royals have split 12 all-time meetings with the Diamondbacks but have taken four of the last five, winning two of three in the most recent matchup June 13-15, 2008. The teams haven’t met at Kansas City since 2003.
The Diamondbacks (27-37), last in the NL West, are coming off a 2-4 homestand that was capped by Sunday’s 8-3 loss to Houston. Arizona is 0-4-2 in six series since taking two of three at Oakland from May 22-24.
“It’s good we’re playing hard and working our tails off to turn this around but the wins haven’t come as well as they should have,” manager A.J. Hinch said. “We have to find a way to get wins. It’s mentally grueling. But I’ve said it before and I’m sorry for saying the same thing over again. The rest of the league doesn’t care. It doesn’t feel sorry for us.”
The left-hander gave up five runs, seven hits and three walks in four innings of Wednesday’s 6-4 loss to San Francisco. That was a far cry from his outing five days earlier, when he yielded three hits in six innings of an 8-0 win at San Diego.
Davis is 2-2 with a 5.01 ERA in eight starts against the Royals and 0-1 with a 9.77 ERA in four games at Kansas City.