Smoke signals

Smoke signals

• The Indians entered Wednesday with a 9-6 record against the Royals, but Kansas City has proven to be a tough opponent this season. Twelve of the teams' 15 games had been decided by three or fewer runs, with six of the contests being decided by one run.

"They've got a lot of fight," Indians third baseman Lonnie Chisenhall said. "They never give up. We've had a hard time with them this year. We've played good games. We know what we're getting when they come into town."

• Entering Wednesday, Indians center fielder and leadoff man Michael Bourn has posted a .216/.277/.290 slash line over his past 60 games (241 at-bats), dating back to June 29. In the 55 games he played before that (228 at-bats), Bourn hit .303/.348/.390 for the Tribe. Since Aug. 24, he had a .172 average over 16 games.

• The Indians wrapped up their series with a noon ET contest against the Royals on Wednesday. Heading into the contest, Cleveland boasted a 29-19 (.604 winning percentage) ledger in day games, marking the third-best record in the American League and the fifth-best day-game record in the Majors.

Jordan Bastian is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Major League Bastian, and follow him on Twitter @MLBastian. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.