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Game 39: Twins at Tigers

They're .500 in their last four games! #Optimism

Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

First Pitch: 12:10 pm CST


Radio: Go 96.3 FM, TIBN

Know Thine Enemy: Bless You Boys

This game either will go well or it will be a train wreck. That sounds promising! Ricky Nolasco is starting for the Twins today and he's been struggling of late, though his main issue thus far has been a penchant for giving up the long ball. That in turn has hurt his ERA, which is too bad because his .249 batting average allowed is significantly below his career number of .270 and his walk rate is currently at a career best of 1.62 per 9 innings. As usual, Nolasco will need to mix up his two breaking balls in order to successfully navigate the Tigers lineup, but it would not surprise me if they also hit three homers off him and knock him out before the 6th inning.

Opposing him is former Tigers ace Justin Verlander, who is once again dealing with slightly diminished velocity from his heyday. Like Nolasco, Verlander has struggled with allowing a few too many home runs though he has seen his strikeout rate rebound after seeing a significant drop over the 2014 and 2015 seasons. The Twins will attack him with their standard righthanded-heavy lineup, which actually may be an advantage as righties have a slightly higher OPS against Verlander in his career.

Today's Lineups

Joe Mauer - DH Ian Kinsler - 2B
Eduardo Nunez - SS J.D. Martinez - RF
Miguel Sano - RF Miguel Cabrera - 1B
Byung-ho Park - 1B Nick Castellanos - 3B
Trevor Plouffe - 3B Justin Upton - LF
Brian Dozier - 2B Steven Moya - DH
Eddie Rosario - LF Cameron Maybin - CF
Kurt Suzuki - C Jarrod Saltalamacchia - C
Danny Santana - CF Jose Iglesias - SS
Ricky Nolasco - RHP Justin Verlander - RHP