The Minnesota Twins have been the best story in baseball so far this season, but they have struggled this week in Cleveland. The Cleveland Indians have won the first two games of this three-game series and will be looking for the sweep on Thursday. Minnesota still has a huge lead in the AL Central, but the Indians are starting to chip away.
Minnesota brings a 40-20 record into this game after losing the first two against their divisional rivals. The Twins still lead the Central Division by 9.5 games, but there is still plenty of the season to go. Cleveland has its record back above the .500 mark at 31-30, and they are no strangers to being near the top of the division. The Indians were preseason favorites by many, but they have some work to do. The Cleveland Indians are -107 over the Minnesota Twins in the series finale.
Twins Keep Launching Homers
The Minnesota Twins have been hitting home runs at an alarming rate, and it is the biggest reason that they are in first place. Minnesota has belted 111 long balls already this season and have hit at least five homers in five different games. Eddie Rosario has provided the most power for the Twins, leading the team with 18 home runs and 50 runs batted in. The Twins might not have a ton of stars in their lineup, but this team can hit.
Jose Berrios will make the start for the Twins on Thursday and will be looking to stop this brief losing streak. The Twins’ ace comes in with a record of 7-2 this season and has pitched to an earned run average of just 3.27. Berrios has given up just two hits and no runs in 7.2 innings against the Cleveland Indians this season. He is the right man on the mound to get the Twins back in the win column.
Bauer Takes Ball For Indians
Cleveland will counter with a talented right-hander of its own in Trevor Bauer. Bauer hasn’t been as dominant this season as he was a season ago but is still one of the better pitchers in the game. The veteran is 4-5 with a 3.76 earned run average so far this season and is looking for his first win in his last four starts. Bauer knows how to keep the ball in the ballpark, and that is a must against the Twins.
Offense has been an issue for the Indians at times this season, but they have swung it well in this series. The Indians are hitting just .227 as a team coming into this game and have hit just 65 home runs. First baseman Carlos Santana leads the team with 11 homers, 37 runs batted in and a .286 batting average. Cleveland is going to have to get more production from the rest of the lineup if they are going to catch Minnesota.
Cleveland Completes Sweep
Minnesota is a much better team than the Indians this season, but Cleveland isn’t willing to give up the crown without a fight. The Indians are starting to hit the ball a little bit better, and Bauer on the mound gives them a great chance. Minnesota will recover soon, but they are going to get swept. Bet the Cleveland Indians -107 over the Minnesota Twins.