He’ll try to get back on track Wednesday while helping the Royals record their first sweep of the Oakland Athletics in three years.
Chen (10-6, 4.11 ERA) won a career-best five consecutive starts last month while posting a 2.81 ERA, but gave up five runs and eight hits over six innings during a 5-4 defeat to Cleveland on Friday.
“I felt like I made good pitches. (The Indians) just had a real good approach,” Chen said. “I battled and I went six innings. I tried to give my team a chance to win, and we almost caught up to them.”
The left-hander hasn’t faced the A’s (64-78) since a 6-3 win in Kansas City last September and is 2-2 with a 4.08 ERA in six starts. He will make his first start in Oakland since a win for Baltimore on Aug. 16, 2005, and is probably hoping he’ll get another strong effort at the plate from his teammates.
The Royals (60-83) have a combined 18 runs and 27 hits during the first two games of the series. Jeff Francoeur(notes) and Eric Hosmer(notes) homered during a four-run second inning that led to a 7-4 victory Tuesday.
Francoeur finished with three hits and became the first player in the majors with at least 40 doubles and 20 stolen bases.
“That’s very encouraging, to see the offense the way that it’s producing now,” manager Ned Yost said. “We come to the park every night thinking that we’re going to score some runs, and that’s a good feeling.”
Francoeur is batting .435 with eight RBIs in his five games this month, and Hosmer is hitting .410 with six homers and 13 RBIs in his last 15 games.
In his first start against Kansas City, the right-hander will try to build off a strong effort in a 9-2 win over Seattle on Friday. He gave up two runs over seven innings and retired the final 16 batters he faced after getting tagged for a career-worst eight runs during his previous outing in Boston on Aug. 27.
“He got better as the night went on,” manager Bob Melvin said.
Moscoso is 5-2 with a 2.62 ERA at home this season and will try to prevent the Royals from recording their first series sweep against his club since Sept. 2-4, 2008.
That same season also featured Kansas City’s previous sweep in Oakland from July 28-30.