Royals predictably aren't playing Kila Ka'aihue


When the Royals called up Kila Ka’aihue from Triple-A last week I wondered if they’d actually play him, guessing that the answer would be no because … well, they are the Royals after all.
Sure enough, Ka’aihue has started just once in five games since the call-up. Now, in fairness to the Royals they have Billy Butler at first base and Jose Guillen at designated hitter, so finding at-bats for Ka’aihue isn’t the easiest thing in the world.
However, in fairness to logic the Royals are 11-21 and have zero chance of even finishing .500 this season, so playing the 26-year-old Ka’aihue makes far more long-term sense than starting Guillen and Scott Podsednik every day. Unlike those two 34-year-olds, Ka’aihue might actually be part of the Royals’ next above-.500 team (assuming, of course, that such a team will eventually exist).
If any team is in position to give a 26-year-old career minor leaguer a chance to show whether he can hit big-league pitching it’s certainly the Royals and Ka’aihue has hit .283 with a .426 on-base percentage, .534 slugging percentage, and 35 percent more walks than strikeouts over the past three seasons at Double-A and Triple-A.

ALDS, Game 1: Rangers vs. Blue Jays lineups

Toronto Blue Jays' starting pitcher David Price works against the Baltimore Orioles during first inning of a baseball game in Toronto, Saturday, Sept. 5, 2015. (Darren Calabrese/The Canadian Press via AP) MANDATORY CREDIT

Here are the Rangers and Blue Jays lineups for Game 1 of the ALDS in Toronto:

CF Delino DeShields
RF Shin-Soo Choo
3B Adrian Beltre
DH Prince Fielder
1B Mike Napoli
LF Josh Hamilton
SS Elvis Andrus
2B Rougned Odor
C Robinson Chirinos

SP Yovani Gallardo

With left-hander David Price on the mound for Toronto the Rangers are going with Mike Napoli at first base over Mitch Moreland. Beyond that it’s a pretty standard lineup for Texas, or at least standard for what manager Jeff Banister used down the stretch once Josh Hamilton was healthy enough to play left field.

LF Ben Revere
3B Josh Donaldson
RF Jose Bautista
DH Edwin Encarnacion
SS Troy Tulowitzki
1B Justin Smoak
C Russell Martin
2B Ryan Goins
CF Kevin Pillar

SP David Price

After returning from the disabled list for the final weekend of the regular season Troy Tulowitzki is in the lineup and batting fifth. That allows Ryan Goins to play second base in place of the injured Devon Travis. Justin Smoak gets the nod over Chris Colabello at first base against a right-hander.

Astros leave Chad Qualls off playoff roster, add Preston Tucker

Chad Qualls Getty
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Houston made one unexpected change to the roster for the ALDS, leaving off veteran reliever Chad Qualls.

Qualls warmed up but never appeared in the Wild Card game win over the Yankees and during the regular season the 36-year-old right-hander logged 49 innings with a 4.38 ERA and 46/9 K/BB ratio. Qualls was on the Astros’ last playoff team in 2005.

Utility man Jonathan Villar has been bumped off the roster in favor of outfielder Preston Tucker, as the Astros opted for a good left-handed bat off the bench versus the Royals rather than Villar’s speed.