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Game CXXXVI: White Sox @ Twins

Hector Santiago looks to make it two good starts in a row.

If you say "Wonder Twin powers, activate!" enough, it could work.
If you say "Wonder Twin powers, activate!" enough, it could work.
Scott Cunningham/Getty Images
Time: 6:10 (23:10 GMT) Vegas Line: -125 MIN / +115 TOR
Weather: Mostly Clear, Start Temp 74°
Opponent SB site: South Side Sox
TV: FSN. Radio: Only 337 More Days Until Sturgis, Gladden

At 34, James Shields is having the worst season of his career. As Jeff Sullivan of FanGraphs observes, this has been going on since June of last year. Is it an injury? Is he just getting old? In any case, his fastball is slower than normal (it was never all that fast) and he's got less control over his curve and change. Digits:

ERA H/9 K/9 BB/9 HR/9 OPS v L/R BAbip FIP
Santiago 4.93
Shields 5.86 10.6

In other "is he / ain't he" pitcher news, Hector Santiago apparently dinged up his thumb a month before the Twins got him, although the Twins believe he's all better now. FYI, in the six "bad thumb" games before coming to Minnesota, he was really good; as you know, in his first games as a Twin he was really bad. His last start versus Cleveland was fine, so maybe he's fixed forever.

Isn't not knowing what the Twins might have for next year just, like, super fun? Adds suspense. Speaking of suspense, guess who gets a third baseman's glove today? Lineups:

The Jungle Main Street
Adam Eaton, CF
Brian Dozier, 2B
Tim Anderson, SS
Jorge Polanco, SS
Melky Cabrera, LF
Mini Mauer, 1B
Jose Abreu, 1B
Trevor Plouffe, DH
Todd Frazier, 3B
Max von Kepler, RF
Avisail Garcia, RF Miguel Sano, E-5
Kevan Smith, DH Eddie Rosario, LF
"Axl" Alex Avila, C
Juan 50 Centeno, C
Carlos Sanchez, 2B
"Bats" Buxton, CF

Plus, it's the return of Assassin John Ryan Murphy! To the bench, at least.