ALCS, Game 2: Royals vs. Orioles lineups

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Here are the lineups for Game 2 of ALCS between the Royals and Orioles. Expected first pitch at Oriole Park at Camden Yards is 4:07 p.m. ET:

Royals:
SS Alcides Escobar
RF Norichika Aoki
CF Lorenzo Cain
1B Eric Hosmer
DH Billy Butler
LF Alex Gordon
C Salvador Perez
2B Omar Infante
3B Mike Moustakas

SP Yordano Ventura

This has been Ned Yost’s standard lineup through the playoffs. The Royals are 5-0 so far, so no need to mess with what’s working, right?

Orioles:
RF Nick Markakis
LF Alejandro De Aza
CF Adam Jones
DH Nelson Cruz
1B Steve Pearce
SS J.J. Hardy
3B Ryan Flaherty
C Caleb Joseph
2B Jonathan Schoop

SP Bud Norris

The only change here from Game 1 is that Caleb Joseph will start behind the plate instead of Nick Hundley. Hundley helped keep the Royals’ running game in check last night and made a nice play at the plate in the ninth, but Joseph is no slouch. He led the American League by throwing out 40.4 percent (23-for-57) of attempted basestealers during the regular season.

An interesting little note here from MASN Sports’ Roch Kubatko: The Orioles haven’t lost back-to-back games at home since June 28-29.

Royals, Alex Gordon close to contract agreement

Alex Gordon
Cody Glenn/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images
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MLB.com’s Jeffrey Flanagan reports that the Royals and outfielder Alex Gordon are “getting close” to an agreement on a one-year contract. Terms of the deal aren’t yet known, but the Royals could make it official within the next few days.

Gordon, who turns 36 years old next month, hit .266/.345/.396 with 13 home runs and 76 RBI over 633 plate appearances with the Royals this past season. His offense has waned, owning an adjusted OPS of 84 since 2016 (100 is average), but he still plays decent defense.

Gordon has spent all 13 years of his major league career with the Royals. With the club in a rebuilding phase, he will serve as the clubhouse leader and be a mentor to younger players on the roster.