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Twins vs. Astros: News and Notes

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If Bud Selig really wants to act in the best interests of baseball, he would cancel this series.

Joy R. Absalon-USA TODAY Sports

Probables (all games FSN)

  • Friday, 7:10pm: Samuel Deduno vs. Jarred Cosart
  • Saturday, 6:10pm: Kyle Gibson vs. Erik Bedard
  • Sunday, 1:10pm: Mike Pelfrey vs. Dallas Keuchel

Astros Notes

  • Houston, at 36-71, needs five more wins to finish ahead of the Mets' modern record for futility (40-120 in 1962), and just eight more to beat the hapless 2003 Tigers (43-119). So that's something.
  • The Astros' best player, Bud Norris, was traded to the Orioles before the trade deadline. He won his first game with the O's by beating, you guessed it, Houston, striking out eight in six innings of work.
  • Jose Altuve, Houston's new best player, sat out Thursday with a strained quad, and could miss tonight's game as well.
  • Houston broke the major-league record by amassing its 1000th strikeout in only its 107th game of the season. The previous record-holders, the 2010 Diamondbacks, needed 109 games to fan a thousand times in a season.
  • The Astros haven't won consecutive games since a four-game winning streak that ended June 16.
  • According to FanGraphs, the Astros as a team have a 1.0 WAR. The Twins are at 5.7, which means the two franchises put together are about as valuable as Mike Trout.

Twins Notes

  • As Mike Rand pointed out this morning, Joe Mauer is the only Twin who can hit, even a little bit. And if you'd like to feel bad about yourself and your fellow Twins fans, I invite you to read the comments on that article. My favorite so far: "There is NO way that Mauer should even be worth the number you are saying he could have gotten on the open market---guys like Pujols have barely garnered that number and they hit HR's and drive in Runs---things Mauer cannot and will not do."
  • According to the Twins website and the Star Tribune, it's a big day for rehab assignments. Darin Mastroianni is going to Fort Myers, Wilkin Ramirez will play in New Britain, and Josh Willingham is joining up with Rochester. Catcher Josmil Pinto is also going to Rochester, to replace Drew Butera.
  • There's no word yet on who will replace Butera on the 40-man roster, nor on who will take Scott Diamond's spot in the rotation.