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Game 98: Detroit Tigers (51-46) @ Minnesota Twins (46-51)

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First Pitch: 7:10pm CDT
TV: FSN
Radio: Twins Radio Network
Know Thine Enemy: Bless You Boys

After salvaging a series split by taking the last two games from the Indians, the Twins will try to get the offense and pitching on the same page as they take on the first-place Tigers. Minnesota is currently 5-3 on their homestand, so taking three of four from Detroit would close the gap between these two clubs to just three games. That's the target, although the optimist in me certainly says there's nothing wrong with a four-game sweep.

Standing in their way tonight, naturally, is the best pitcher in the American League. Pitchers and lineups after the jump.


W-L G GS CG SHO SV BS IP H R ER HR BB K ERA WHIP
2011 - Carl Pavano 6-6 19 19 2 0 0 0 130.0 141 66 59 12 25 56 4.08 1.28

Pavano's been working his ERA down over his last ten starts, posting an ERA of 2.54 in June and 3.32 so far in July. In terms of man to man he has the toughest assignment this series, as he goes up against Justin Verlander. Pavano will have to be extraordinarily sharp, and some help from the bats wouldn't go amiss, either.


W-L G GS CG SHO SV BS IP H R ER HR BB K ERA WHIP
2011 - Justin Verlander 12-5 21 21 4 2 0 0 157.0 108 44 40 12 33 153 2.29 .90

Verlander. Good. Verlander very, very, VERY good. In his last ten starts his ERA is 1.15. Damn.

Tigers

Jackson, CF
Boesch, LF
Ordonez, RF
Cabrera, 1B
Martinez, DH
Peralta, SS
Guillen, 2B
Avila, C
Betemit, 3B

Twins

Revere, CF
Casilla, 2B
Mauer, 1B
Cuddyer, RF
Thome, DH
Valencia, 3B
Young, LF
Nishioka, SS
Butera, C