In the first of a three-game series between the Tampa Bay Rays (62-62) and the Minnesota Twins (63-61) at Tropicana Field, Nathan Karns (7-5, 3.44 ERA) and Ervin Santana (2-4, 5.53 ERA) take the mound. The game starts at 7:10 p.m. ET on Tuesday, Aug. 25 and will air on SUN, FSN and MLBN.
In his most recent outing, Karns pitched 6.0 innings, allowing one run, striking out eight and walking one in a 3-2 loss to the Astros. Steven Souza Jr. (.214, 47 Rs, 15 HRs, 34 RBIs, 10 SBs) went 1 for 2 Sunday with two runs. The Twins were unsuccessful to the Yankees 4-3 the last time Santana pitched. He went 7.2 innings, giving up four runs, striking out six and walking two. Trevor Plouffe (.251, 59 Rs, 18 HRs, 69 RBIs, 2 SBs) has been doing well, going 2 for 4 Sunday with one RBI.
The odds are even for this game and the Over/Under (O/U) is presently unavailable. The Rays don't allow many hitters to get on base, ranking fifth in the league with a 1.20 WHIP. The have been extremely effective at striking opposing batters out at Tropicana Field, leading the AL with 8.9 strikeouts per home game.
They also allow just 2.5 walks per game, good for tops in the AL.
The Twins are 2-1 against the Rays this season. This game will feature Santana (RHP) on the mound against the Rays, who have a 41-48 record when they take on a right-handed starter. Taking the hill against the Twins will be the right-hander Karns. They sport a 41-41 record against righties.
Predictions: SU Winner - TB
In their last game, the Twins won by a margin of one run. The Rays are 21-22 in one-run games. The Twins have a 19-17 record in close games.
When leading after 7 innings, Tampa Bay is 25-25, while Minnesota is 19-22.
The Twins are coming off of a hot pitching game where they recorded 10 strikeouts. The Rays have a record of 16-21 when they are struck out that many times or more.
When they outhit their opponents, the Rays are 43-17. The Twins have a 44-6 record when outhitting opponents.
Ranking 29th, Tampa Bay is near the bottom of the league in runs, scoring 460 this season. Minnesota ranks in the top 10 at 10th with 533.
Ranking 24th, Minnesota is near the bottom of the league in walks, notching 308 this season. Tampa Bay ranks in the bottom half at 20th with 332.
When the Rays hit at least one home run, they are 45-32. When the Twins hit at least one homer, they have a 47-27 record.