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Game 57: Tigers at Twins

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The division title is in reach, plus Kenta Maeda’s final tune-up

MLB: Detroit Tigers at Minnesota Twins
Max Kepler drove in both the game-tying and game-winning runs on Tuesday night.
Jesse Johnson-USA TODAY Sports

First Pitch: 6:40 pm Central
Television: FOX Sports North
Radio (English): WCCO 830 AM, Treasure Island Baseball Network, KMBN 102.9 FM “The Wolf”
Radio (Spanish):
Know Thine Enemy: Bless You Boys

With only four contests to play, the Minnesota Twins are only a half-game behind the hated Chicago White Sox for first-place in the A.L. Central.

While the Whities get Cleveland once again, the Twins take on Detroit. Chicago’s game gets under way 90 minutes prior to first pitch at Target Field, so we can all enjoy a bit o’ scoreboard watching once again this evening.

Less than 24 hours after a 10-inning, walk-off win, the Twins will send Kenta Maeda to the hill in his final tune-up prior to the postseason. One would assume that manager Rocco Baldelli is lining things up to start Maeda in Game 1 next Tuesday on five days rest. Jose Berrios, will likely start Friday against Cincinnati and then come back in Game 2 next Wednesday on a regular four days of rest.

Less than 48 hours ago it appeared far more likely than not that the Twins would match-up against the New York Yankees in the Wild Card Series next week, but now, both Cleveland and Houston are realistic options. At this stage, it still feels like anything could happen and my brain hurts from trying to figure out the most likely matchup.

At any rate ... back to tonight. The Tigers will counter Maeda with Tigers pitching prospect Casey Mize. He’s already faced the Twins twice in his first six big-league starts. Combined between the two appearances, Mize has allowed five earned runs in seven innings pitched with seven strikeouts and four walks.

The Twins will get Jorge Polanco back in the lineup but still no Nelson Cruz, who last played on Friday in Chicago. Minnesota is off again on Thursday, allowing the Twins a chance to give Cruz nearly a full week of rest before he likely accrues a handful of at-bats in the weekend series against the Reds.

Also of note: the top three in the lineup is Buxton-Kepler-Donaldson, which is definitely the first time we’ve seen that trio in that order.

Enjoy the game!

Today's Lineups

Victor Reyes - CF Byron Buxton - CF
Willi Castro - SS Max Kepler - RF
Miguel Cabrera - DH Josh Donaldson - 3B
Jeimer Candelario - 1B Eddie Rosario - DH
Niko Goodrum - 2B Miguel Sano - 1B
Harold Castro - LF Jake Cave - LF
Eric Haase - C Jorge Polanco - SS
Daz Cameron - RF Marwin Gonzalez - 2B
Isaac Paredes - 3B Ryan Jeffers - C
Casey Mize - RHP Kenta Maeda - RHP