The Cleveland Indians arrive in Minnesota on a high note for Friday’s opener of a three-game series against the Twins. Cleveland rallied to beat Detroit Tigers ace Justin Verlander on Thursday to move 3 1/2 games behind the first-place Chicago White Sox in the American League Central. The Indians are 22-9 in series openers this season and face a Minnesota squad has lost six of eight after being swept in a three-game series by the White Sox.
The Minnesota Twins were outscored 26-10 by the White Sox and have the worst record in the AL. Minnesota is beginning a six-game homestand but success has been hard to come by at Target Field. The Twins are just 19-30 at home – only the Kansas City Royals (17) have fewer home victories in the majors. Cleveland has won its last five games in Minnesota and is beginning a nine-game road trip that includes stops in Kansas City and Chicago. Indians second baseman Jason Kipnis is batting .319 on the road and has five two-hit games since the All Star break.
Indians Twins Betting
When: 8:10 PM ET, Friday, July 27, 2012
Where: Target Field, Minneapolis, Minnesota
TV: 8:10 p.m. ET, Sports Time Ohio (Cleveland), Fox Sports North (Minnesota)
PITCHING MATCHUP: Indians RH Josh Tomlin (5-7, 5.34 ERA) vs. Twins LH Scott Diamond (8-4, 3.16)
Tomlin has lost back-to-back starts since the All Star break. He pitched well against the Baltimore Orioles in his last outing when he gave up two runs in eight innings. Tomlin lost to the Twins on June 2 when he allowed five runs and 10 hits in six innings. He is 1-2 with a 5.92 ERA in four career starts against Minnesota.
Diamond won three straight decisions before losing to the Kansas City Royals in his last start. He gave up four runs and a season-high 10 hits in six innings while losing for the first time since June 19. Diamond defeated Cleveland on June 3 when he allowed three unearned runs and seven hits in seven innings. He is 1-1 with a 3.38 ERA in three career starts against the Indians.
1. The Twins are still hoping 3B Trevor Plouffe (thumb) can avoid a stint on the disabled list. He hasn’t played since July 20.
2. Indians DH Travis Hafner is batting .364 with a homer and 10 RBIs in 14 career games at Target Field.
3. Minnesota 1B Justin Morneau has just one home run in his last 37 games.