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Game CXXIII: Twins @ Royals

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The Twins face off against a still-hopeful Royals team, and their sexually cannibalistic insect.

Are these things just all over the place in Missouri?
Are these things just all over the place in Missouri?
Ed Zurga/Getty Images
Time: 6:15 (11:15 GMT) Vegas Line: -175 KC/ +160 MIN
Weather: 75 And Lower, Mostly Sunny
Opponent SB site: Royals Review
TV: FSN. Radio: Provus Used To Work With Bob Uecker

The Rally Mantis

On August 6th, Royals backup outfielder Billy Burns found a praying mantis in the clubhouse trash can. Being an oversized kid (as most baseball players are), he dug it out and started playing with it. The bug eventually made its way to Burns's hat:

http://mlb.mlb.com/images/5/2/2/194035522/080616_torkc_bug_on_hat_MED_y8zv8o2t.gif

Kansas City won that game, and has gone on a nice little hot streak since, 11-2 with two walk-off wins. So of course, Burns kept the mantis. Players catch other bugs for it to eat. Alas, death comes to us all, and the Grim Reaper of Insects visited the mantis last Saturday (when the Royals lost).

But never fear; they have a new one (with its own Twitter feed). Where you can see sights like ace pitcher Danny Duffy's tribute to the fallen original, and this visit to the Tigers dugout. Where it fascinated a Tigers pitcher who is something of a big kid himself:

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Ian Kennedy starts for the Royals today. He's having a typically solid if uninspiring year; maybe the Twins should have picked him up for Santana back in the day. He basically throws a four-seamer, two-seamer, and rather ineffective change; the breaking stuff is rare. Digits:

ERA H/9 K/9 BB/9 HR/9 OPS v L/R BAbip FIP
Kennedy 3.78
7.7
8.9
3.0
1.8
.738/.710
.256
4.96
Santiago 4.80
8.3
7.8
4.0
1.7
.710/.790
.272
5.17

Those stats on Hector Santiago are year-to-date; obviously, his numbers with the Twins have been abysmal in three games. Maybe pray for rain?

Lineups:

Loving Siblings Kill & Eat Mates
Brian Dozier, 2B
Paulo Orlando, CF
Jorge Polanco, SS
Cheslor "Earl Of" Cuthbert, 3B
Lil' Joe Mauer, DH Lorenzo Cain, RF
Trevor Plouffe, 1B
Eric Hosmer, 1B
Eddie Rosario, CF
Kendrys Morales, DH
Eduardo Escobar, 3B Salvador Perez, C
Gold Glove Rob, LF Alex Gordon, LF
Kurt Suzuki, C
Alcides Escobar, SS
Danny Santana, RF
Christian Colon, 2B