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Game 39: Twins at Blue Jays

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First Pitch: 11:37 am CDT
TV: MLB.tv
Radio: Twins Radio Network
Know Thine Enemy: Bluebird Banter

It's an early start this afternoon (in Toronto), morning in Minnesota, as the Twins (24-14) take on the Blue Jays (23-17) in the final game of a short two game series in Toronto. Last night, Kevin Slowey and the bullpen managed to hold the AL league leading home run hitting team to a single 2-run shot by Jose Bautista. Today, Carl Pavano looks to make it two for two against the Jays. Unfortunately for Twins fans, it does not appear this game is televised on FSN North, so radio, MLB.tv or MLB Extra Innings will have to do.

Lineups and starting pitchers after the jump


Carl Pavano

#48 / Pitcher / Minnesota Twins

6-5

250

R

R

Jan 08, 1976



W-L G GS CG SHO SV BS IP H R ER HR BB K ERA WHIP
2010 - Carl Pavano 4-3 7 7 1 0 0 0 46.1 44 18 17 3 7 34 3.30 1.10

Pavano has been very good so far this year, pitching 6 quality starts in 7 games. And they have been true quality starts, going 7 innings or more and giving up 2 ER or fewer in all but one of the starts. Last time out, Pavano shut down the Chicago White Sox, giving up 2 runs on 6 hits and 1 walk over 7 innings. Tonight, Pavano looks to shut down the AL league leading home run hitting Blue Jays. So far this season, Carl has kept the ball in the park, giving up only 3 HR in 46.1 IP. I expect this number will eventually regress, as his 6.0 HR/FB% is far below his career average 10.0%. Hopefully we won't see the regression today though. Other than a possible regression in HR/FB, Pavano's other peripherals are very good. 34 strikeouts against only 7 walks, a .298 BABIP is expected given the improved team defense, and 71.1% runners left on base is just a tad above his career 69.6% average. So other than HR/FB, Pavano's peripherals suggest he could keep this up as long as he remains healthy.


Shaun Marcum

#28 / Pitcher / Toronto Blue Jays

6-0

195

R

R

Dec 14, 1981



W-L G GS CG SHO SV BS IP H R ER HR BB K ERA WHIP
2010 - Shaun Marcum 2-1 8 8 0 0 0 0 55.0 41 17 17 5 12 42 2.78 .96


Shaun Marcum has been the Toronto Blue Jays ace so far in 2010. After promising 2007 and 2008 seasons, Marcum missed the entire 2009 season after undergoing Tommy John surgery in late 2008. Unlike most pitchers returning from TJ, Marcum hasn't shown any signs of rust. On opening day, Marcum no-hit the Texas Rangers for six innings before giving up a Nelson Cruz home run, and he hasn't been hit hard ever since. Marcum comes off his best start of the season, pitching seven scoreless innings at Boston, giving up 2 hits and a walk, striking out six. But Marcum's peripherals suggest he may be due for a regression. His strikeout to walk ratio (42-12) is very good, but his BABIP is a minuscule .241, which means his 0.96 WHIP will probably rise a few tenths, especially considering that he's given up line drives at a 19.1% clip this year. But with the solid SO/BB ratio and a 1.15 GB/FB ratio, I wouldn't expect Marcum's ERA to rise too much, likely to the mid to upper 3's by the end of the season. Hopefully the rise begins this afternoon.


Lineup

Minnesota Twins @ Toronto Blue Jays

05/18/10 12:37 PM EDT

Minnesota Twins Toronto Blue Jays
Denard Span - CF Fred Lewis - LF
Orlando Hudson - 2B Aaron Hill - 2B
Joe Mauer - C Adam Lind - DH
Justin Morneau - DH Vernon Wells - CF
Michael Cuddyer - 1B Lyle Overbay - 1B
Jason Kubel - RF Alex Gonzalez - SS
Delmon Young - LF Jose Bautista - RF
Brendan Harris - SS Edwin Encarnacion - 3B
Nick Punto - 3B Jose Molina - C