Twins vs. Indians: News and Notes

USA TODAY Sports

It's a three-game set at Target Field, one of only two July series left at home for Minnesota.

Probables (all games FSN)

Indians Notes

  • Cleveland went 51-44 prior to the All-Star Break, and are the only team that will challenge Detroit for the AL Central crown (barring Kansas City finally getting itself together). The Indians are also only three games out in the Wild Card race, albeit with four teams ahead of them.
  • The star of the first half for Cleveland has been second baseman Jason Kipnis, who made the All-Star team after a breakout first half. The 26-year-old showed plenty of promise in his first season and a half in the majors, but this year hit .301 / .383 / .514 in the first half, leading the Indians in basically every offensive category except home runs, where his 14 are just one behind Mark Reynolds. Kipnis trails only Robinson Cano among American League second basemen in OPS, though it's worth mentioning that the stats show his defense is fairly bad.
  • On the mound, Sunday starter Justin Masterson has been the staff workhorse this year. He's thrown 135 innings this year (third in the AL), and has three shutouts, which is ridiculous given that only two other AL pitchers have more than one. He's struck out 137 hitters, good for fourth in the league, and if he wasn't also third in walks we might be talking about him in the Cy Young discussion.
  • The Cleveland Plain Dealer thinks that the Indians' problem has been inconsistency, and when they lay out the case - yeah, that makes sense.

Twins Notes

  • Minnesota is 39-53 at this year's break. Last year, they were 36-49; two years ago, they were 41-48. (And in 2010 they were 46-42, but let's forget about that, as they went 48-26 after the break.) Anyway, 24 wins to go for the magic 63.
  • Chris Colabello is officially back with the team, which is not particularly exciting from a baseball perspective, but certainly is, from a, "Hey, good for that guy" point of view.
  • Here's your All-Star Break injury report:
    • Darin Mastroianni has been sent to the spring training complex to continue rehabbing there. I wouldn't count on seeing him soon.
    • Wilkin Ramirez's brain injury has not improved at all. This has now passed on beyond "I wonder when he'll be back?" to "Boy, I hope he's going to be okay, these brain injuries really can screw up your life, never mind baseball."
    • Josh Willingham has "started light exercises," which I think means drinking beer in a pool.
    • Tim Wood has fallen off the face of the earth.
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