The Twins open a three-game series in Kansas City, where the heat index is supposed to reach 100 degrees. Ah, Missouri in July.
|2010 - Zack Greinke||6-9||20||20||2||0||0||0||133.0||126||64||53||13||26||113||3.59||1.14|
The surprising thing about Greinke: He hasn't been the lights-out Cy Young winner he was last year. He's not striking out as many batters, he's giving up more home runs, more hits, and leaving fewer hitters on base. That said, he's still tenth among AL starters in FIP, so it's not like the Twins are dealing with Nick Blackburn here; he's still an ace.
|2010 - Francisco Liriano||8-7||19||19||0||0||0||0||122.0||119||48||48||2||36||133||3.54||1.27|
Speaking of aces: Francisco Liriano! The 8-7 record doesn't show it, but he may have the best pure numbers in the AL. First among starters in home runs allowed, third in strikeouts per nine innings - the only reason his ERA doesn't look better is that his BABIP against is the highest in the league.
And now that I've said all of this, as one ace faces another, this game will probably finish 14-13 and both starters will be in the showers by 8:00.
I admit that I'm tempted to omit the lineup tonight. After all, yesterday we all wanted to burn things after seeing a lineup that included, in the 8-9-1-2 spots, Nick Punto-Drew Butera-Jason Repko-Alexi Casilla. Those four combined yesterday: nine hits, two doubles, a triple, a homer, two walks, four runs, 3 RBI. Yes, this is more a testament to Baltimore's terrible pitching than anything, but still.
07/26/10 8:10 PM EDT
|Minnesota Twins||Kansas City Royals|
|Jason Repko - CF||Scott Podsednik - DH|
|Alexi Casilla - 2B||Jason Kendall - C|
|Joe Mauer - C||Billy Butler - 1B|
|Delmon Young - LF||Jose Guillen - RF|
|Jim Thome - DH||Wilson Betemit - 3B|
|Michael Cuddyer - 1B||Mike Aviles - 2B|
|Jason Kubel - RF||Alex Gordon - LF|
|Danny Valencia - 3B||Willie Bloomquist - CF|
|J.J. Hardy - SS||Yuniesky Betancourt - SS|