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Game 15: Twins at Royals

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The Twins look to reverse a losing streak with the help of their All-Star starter.

Minnesota Twins Spring Training Workout Photo by Brace Hemmelgarn/Minnesota Twins/Getty Images



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With both batters and pitchers heading to the injured list, Jake Odorizzi’s return comes at the perfect time.

While the Twins have been buoyed this season by their impeccable relief, a lack of healthy starting pitching has been an early gap in the system. Homer Bailey and Rich Hill were deactivated on back-to-back days, necessitating bullpen games and over-reliance on arms like Devin Smeltzer and his 8.00 ERA.

Jake Odorizzi should be a welcome change of pace. It’s been nearly a full year since Odo has had the opportunity to take a major-league mound; the postponed season led directly into a brief IL stint for Jake, who was suffering from recurring back symptoms in late July.

A first-time All-Star in 2019, Odorizzi was a cornerstone of the Twins rotation, and enjoyed career highs in several categories, including a 12.7% swinging strike rate. He dialed up the use of his cutter, which made his slider — which moves in a very similar fashion — harder to read. A hittable curveball was balanced out by a tricky split-change, a pitch dubbed “the thing” during its development in the Tampa Bay organization.

He’ll face Danny Duffy, a longtime Royal, who’s been hit-and-miss through three starts over the last to weeks. Oddly, despite varying results, Duffy has given up exactly three hits in each of his outings to this point. He had eight strikeouts against the Tigers on July 29th, and allowed just one run in his previous 103-pitch outing (although he did issue four walks.)

Today's Lineups

Mitch Garver - C Whit Merrifield - RF
Max Kepler - RF Jorge Soler - DH
Nelson Cruz - DH Salvador Perez - C
Miguel Sano - 1B Ryan O'Hearn - 1B
Eddie Rosario - LF Adalberto Mondesi - SS
Marwin Gonzalez - 3B Alex Gordon - LF
Luis Arraez - 2B Maikel Franco - 3B
Byron Buxton - CF Nicky Lopez - 2B
Ehire Adrianza - SS Brett Phillips - CF
Jake Odorizzi - RHP Danny Duffy - LHP

No Polanco tonight; otherwise, the lineup is chock-full of the (healthy) regulars. Arraez is in the lineup amidst recent reports of “very minor leg soreness.”