Will Triston McKenzie Record More or Less than 5.5 Strikeouts?
Triston McKenzie and the Cleveland Guardians will travel to Kauffman Stadium to face off against Mike Minor and the Kansas City Royals. Both of the starters have struggled throughout the season with Minor possessing slightly better advanced stats while McKenzie’s flashed more arm talent at times. Cleveland’s offense is the hottest on the slate over the last 14 days, although their bullpens struggled over the last month. Kansas City has a big edge in bullpen xFIP over that span, although their offense is struggling at the moment.
The odds represent the differences in this game, as Cleveland is a small -115 favorite at the moment. The Guardians are currently in second in the AL Central, although they’re still relatively far from playoffs at this point. The Royals haven’t been as successful, ranking fourth in the AL Central. They’re currently 18 games out of first.
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Triston McKenzie and Cleveland opened as a -120 road favorite against Mike Minor and Kansas City. The odds have shifted slightly towards the Royals, as the Guardians are now -115 favorites. The game total opened at 8.5 runs but hasn’t moved thus far. As you can see on our Trends page, the Royals own an implied team total of 4.4 runs tonight.
McKenzie’s found plenty of strikeout success throughout his short MLB career. His strikeout total is set at 5.5 tonight. The best odds (+120) on the over can be found on DraftKings or PointsBet tonight.
McKenzie’s been a dominant strikeout option in 2021. He boasts 28.5% strikeout and 12.8% swinging-strike rates this season. He’s recorded a 10.5 K/9 thus far, and all of his metrics suggest he can continue this success
McKenzie’s posted 107 strikeouts over 91.1 innings through 19 games (18 starts). He’s taken a big step forward in his last 2 starts, recording 19 strikeouts over 15 innings. Overall, McKenzie owns 6+ strikeouts in 9 of his 18 starts this season.
He owns similar splits regardless of the situation. McKenzie boasts a 27.4% strikeout rate on the road, which is only slightly lower than his 29.9% strikeout rate at home. He also owns 27.5% and 29.7% strikeout rates against right- and left-handed batters, respectively. The bigger concern is his xFIP jumped to 4.85 on the road, suggesting he could struggle a bit in this game tonight.
With that being said, McKenzie gets an interesting matchup against Kansas City tonight. They’ve struggled as an offense over the last 14 days, recording a .305 team wOBA. They’re only striking out at a 20.5% rate over that span, though.
McKenzie’s thrown against Kansas City in 3 games (2 starts) this season. He’s recorded 19 strikeouts over 15.2 innings. In their latest matchup, he posted 9 strikeouts over 7 shutout innings.
The question for this matchup will be whether McKenzie has the ability to create his own strikeouts. He has electric stuff, though, and he’s proven in the past that he can. I don’t expect the Royals to find much offensive success in this game, giving McKenzie ample opportunities to hit the over.
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