Odorizzi -- the No. 32 overall pick in the 2008 Draft -- will take the hill for his first career Major League start in Kansas City's series finale against Cleveland.
"I'm excited," the right-hander said. "The day keeps getting closer and the excitement keeps running. I really want to get out there and get underway."
Ranked as the team's No. 3 prospect by MLB.com, Odorizzi was acquired in the December 2010 trade that sent Zack Greinke to Milwaukee. He began this season with Double-A Northwest Arkansas but quickly ascended to Triple-A Omaha where he went 11-3 with a 2.93 ERA -- good enough to be named the squad's Pitcher of the Year.
He struggled earlier in the season with high pitch counts, but with the tutelage of Omaha pitching coach Doug Henry, Odorizzi did a better job of making good pitches early in at-bats. The 22-year old will likely have a spot in Kansas City's rotation next season regardless of how he fares before this year's end.
"I want to get him some experience, a start, maybe two, this year so next year coming in he's had at least some Major League experience," Royals manager Ned Yost said. "He knows a little bit about what to expect, starting a big league game."
Odorizzi will oppose 28-year-old David Huff, who will be making only his second start of the season after being recalled from Triple-A on Sept. 4. Huff owns a 2.61 ERA in 10 1/3 innings spanning three games, including his one start. He permitted three runs on seven hits by the Twins in 4 1/3 innings on Sept. 18.
Indians: Phelps and Neal get rare starts
Outfielder Thomas Neal and second baseman Cord Phelps each made their fifth start of the season for Cleveland on Saturday and hit eighth and ninth, respectively. Phelps played 35 games for the Indians last season but Jason Kipnis' performance at second base has seen Phelps' playing time dwindle this year.
Cleveland is still looking to see what they have in Neal, whom they acquired last season when trading Orlando Cabrera. He hit .314 in 117 games for Double-A Akron this season.
"Unfortunately, he hasn't gotten as many at-bats," manager Manny Acta said. "We're happy with the year he had and the way he's handled himself up here. He's been very attentive in every game and asks questions. He's handled himself as a professional here, and we like that. He has worked extremely hard. We wanted to take a look at him after the year he had and what he's done in the past."
Lonnie Chisenhall -- who played in his 11th game on Saturday since coming back from a broken right ulna -- is now available to play two or three consecutive games, Acta said. Chisenhall is hitting .222 (8-for-36) with two home runs and five RBIs since returning.
Royals: Visiting Joplin
Members of the Royals organization -- including injured pitcher Danny Duffy -- will make a goodwill trip to Joplin, Mo., on Monday to support the city's continued recovery and rebuilding effort following the devastating tornado that struck the town on May 22, 2011.
Players, including Duffy, Hall of Fame first baseman John Mayberry, and former infielders Willie Aikens and Greg Pryor, along with others, will work with Habitat for Humanity to help construct new homes for victims of the disaster. More than 30 Royals front office associates will also join in the volunteer effort.
The Indians own the American League's worst road winning percentage at .364 (28-49), though they won 16 of their first 27 road contests this season.
All seven of Cleveland's victories in the month of September have come by one run. The Indians' 22-10 record in one-run games is baseball's second-best behind only Baltimore (27-8).
Kansas City has played in 49 one-run games, tied with Seattle for the most in the American League.