Cleveland Indians at Kansas City Royals, July 31, 2012: Fan Preview

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The Cleveland Indians have put fans in a position where they don't know what to expect. Last week the team proved they could complete playing solid baseball against the Detroit Tigers only to get swept by the struggling Minnesota Twins in the very next series.

As the trade deadline approaches the team went from being just a player or two away from serious contention to the mindset that the window of opportunity for the club is quickly closing and assets need to be sold off in order to maximize value. All the while the team has been standing pat through this point.

There was a time a three-game series against the Kansas City Royals would be a welcome break in the schedule, good for at least two of three games. At this point it is anyone's guess. On Tuesday, Derek Lowe will take the mound for Cleveland to try to get the team back on the path of winning. For a team that has won just three of their last 10, something needs to change.

The matchup:

The Cleveland Indians will take on the Kansas City Royals at Kauffman Stadium located in Kansas City, Missouri on Tuesday, July 31, 2012 at 8:10 p.m. EDT.

Derek Lowe (8-9, 5.09 ERA) will take the mound for the Indians facing off against the Royals' Luke Hochevar (6-9, 5.26 ERA).

The standings:

Cleveland enters the game with a 50-52 record and in third place in the American League Central. They are 23-27 when playing on the road and have won three of their last 10 games.

Kansas City comes into the matchup with a 41-60 record and in fifth place in the American League Central. They are 17-30 when playing at home and have won two of their last 10 games.

The series:

The season series is currently stands at 5-4 in favor of the Indians.

Where to watch or listen:

In Cleveland: Television- STO, Radio- WTAM, Indians Radio Network.

Nationwide: Television and Radio via MLB.TV (Television blackouts apply in Cleveland market).

The batting statistic leaders:

Cleveland: Shin-Soo Choo- .291 batting average, Shin-Soo Choo/Asdrubal Cabrera- 12 home runs, Jason Kipnis- 56 runs batted in.

Kansas City: Billy Butler- .307 batting average, Billy Butler- 20 home runs, Billy Butler- 64 runs batted in.

More Cleveland Indians Commentary from Paul Rados:

Fan's Take: Do Cleveland Indians' fans see the reality of baseball as a business?

Cleveland Indians at Minnesota Twins, July 29, 2012: Fan Preview

Cleveland Indians begin to disappoint on the field and off: A fan's take

Cleveland Indians at Minnesota Twins, July 28, 2012: Fan Preview

Cleveland Indians at Minnesota Twins, July 27, 2012: Fan Preview

Sources:

All statistics provided by MLB.com

Paul Rados is an avid Cleveland Indians fan and a Featured Contributor for the Yahoo! Contributor Network. Follow him on Twitter @PSRados or leave him a message on Facebook.

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