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The Boston Red Sox travel to Minnesota to face the Twins in the second game of a three-game series. The Red Sox came into the Twins series having won 5 straight games to improve to 39-34. The Twins are 47-23 and in first place in the AL Central. The match up pits Boston left-hander David Price (4-2) against Twins right-hander Michael Pineda (4-3). Game time is 8:10 p.m. ET at Target Field in Minneapolis.
Red Sox on a roll
Fans have been hoping the Red Sox would catch fire and start looking like they did in 2018, but it’s been a season filled with fits and starts. But now that they’ve won 5 straight, there’s hope that maybe, just maybe, they have turned the corner. Granted, they beat up on teams like Texas and Baltimore, but a win is a win. But now they come into a series with one of the best teams in baseball. It’s here where they need to step up and show the rest of the league they are indeed a force to be reckoned with. I’m not going to get too excited about the Sox sweeping the O’s, but winning this series against Minnesota is a different story.
Rafael Devers since the start of May
.310 AVG, 35 R, 10 HR, 36 RBI (174 ABs) pic.twitter.com/f7qAqHbD0X
— Red Sox Dynasty (@RedSoxDynasty_) June 17, 2019
The Red Sox offense has really heated up. They now average 5.3 runs per game, which is 5th in the majors. They have a team batting average of .262, which is 5th in the league, and a team slugging percentage of .450, which is 9th. They are 11th in home runs. Rookie Michael Chavis has continued to hit well, batting .260 with 12 HRs and 34 RBIs. offense. Rafael Devers is batting .306 with 11 HRs and 45 RBIs, while JD Martinez is hitting .3298 with 16 HRs and 39 RBIs. Mookie Betts is hitting .266 with 11 HRs and 33 RBIs, while Andrew Benintendi is hitting .266 with 7 HRs and 32 RBIs. Xander Bogaerts is batting .294 with 14 HRs and 47 RBIs. Mitch Moreland is batting .225 with 13 HRs and 34 RBIs but he is on the IL. Benintendi is also questionable for Tuesday.
Red Sox pitching has been pretty inconsistent, especially the bullpen. They have a team ERA of 4.34, which is 14th in the league, and a team WHIP of 1.28, which is 9th. David Price takes the hill for Boston Tuesday. The left-hander is 4-2 with a 3.52 ERA. He has been their most consistent starter this year.
Twins stumble versus Royals
The Minnesota Twins come into this important series with the defending World Series champion Red Sox with a record of 47-23. They had won 3 of their last 4, but stumbled a bit on Sunday in losing to the lowly Royals 8-6. Twins starter Martin Perez had one of his worst outings of the year allowing 5 runs in 6.2 innings of work. Max Kepler went 4 for 6 with 2 RBIs while Nelson Cruz had 2 hits, including a home run, and 3 RBIs. Eddie Rosario and Miguel Sano also had 2 hits apiece. Sano had a home run and an RBI. The Twins hold a 10 game lead over the Indians in the division.
The Twins are the best hitting team in the majors. They average 5.9 runs per game, which is 1st in the Majors. They hit .275 as a team, which is also first, and they have a slugging percentage of .515, which, yes, is first. Oh yeah, they are first in home runs, too. Jorge Polanco leads the Twins hitting .332 with 10 HRs and 37 RBIs. He’s 6th in the majors in batting. Eddie Rosario is batting .262 with 19 HRs and 52 RBIs, both of which are in the top 10 in the league. Max Kepler is batting .276 with 17 HRs and 46 RBIs, CJ Cron is batting .271 with 15 HRs and 46 RBIs, while Nelson Cruz is batting .281 with 13 HRs and 34 RBIs. Also, Jonathan Schoop is hitting .257 with 12 HRs and 33 RBIs while Mitch Garver is batting .310 with 11 HRs and 28 RBIs.
The Twins pitching has been solid. They have a team ERA of 3.95, which is 7th in the league. They have a team WHIP of 1.26, which is 6th. Michael Pineda gets the start for Minnesota on Tuesday. The right-hander is 4-3 with a 5.04 ERA. He pitched well last time out allowing 1 run in 5.2 innings.
- Twins are 1-4 in Pineda’s last 5 home starts.
- Twins are 0-4 in Pineda’s last 4 starts vs. a team with a winning record.
- Red Sox are 5-0 in their last 5 overall.
- Red Sox are 4-0 in their last 4 games vs. a right-handed starter.
- Red Sox are 5-0 in their last 5 games on grass.
- Red Sox are 7-2 in their last 9 vs. American League Central.
- Red Sox are 19-7 in their last 26 road games.
- Red Sox are 4-1 in Price’s last 5 road starts vs. a team with a winning record.
- Red Sox are 4-1 in Price’s last 5 Tuesday starts.
- Red Sox are 21-7 in Price’s last 28 starts vs. a team with a winning record.
- Red Sox are 9-4 in Price’s last 13 starts with 4 days of rest.
The Bottom Line What to bet on this game.
Full-Game Side Bet
Take the Red Sox. The Sox have beat up on the dregs of the AL on their way to 5 straight wins but they have some momentum heading into this critical series. The Sox have their best pitcher going in Price and a favorable match up against Pineda. Plus, they have been very good on the road this year. I like the Sox to take this one. They are 4-1 in the last 5 meetings against Minnesota.
Prediction: Boston -113
Full-Game Total Pick
Take the over. These are two of the best hitting teams in the majors who average almost 6 runs per game each. While Price has been very good, the Sox bullpen has not, so the Twins will score 4 to 5 runs but the Red Sox have enough firepower to get it done against Pineda. The over is 3-0-1 in Red Sox last 4 road games and 7-1 in their last 8 vs. American League Central. Also, the over is 4-1-1 in Twins last 6 home games and 5-1 in Pinedas last 6 starts with 4 days of rest.