In the last of a three-game series between the Cleveland Indians (75-56) and the Minnesota Twins (49-83) at Progressive Field, Corey Kluber (14-8, 3.07 ERA) and Pat Dean (1-4, 6.24 ERA) get the ball. The Twins lost the last game 5-4, extending a 12-game losing streak. The game starts at 7:10 p.m. ET on Wednesday, Aug. 31 and will air on STOh and FSN.
In his last start, Kluber pitched 6.0 innings, giving up one run, striking out seven and walking two in a 12-1 victory over the Rangers. Mike Napoli (.256, 79 Rs, 29 HRs, 88 RBIs, 4 SBs) went 1 for 3 yesterday. The Twins were unsuccessful against the Blue Jays 15-8 the last time Dean pitched. He went 3.0 innings, allowing six runs, striking out one and walking one. Brian Dozier (.270, 84 Rs, 31 HRs, 79 RBIs, 11 SBs) went 1 for 4 yesterday with one run, one home run, and one RBI.
Cleveland is a considerable -275 favorite in this game and the Over/Under (O/U) is set at eight runs. The Indians have a winning record of 59-39 when playing as the favorite and an overall money line of +377. They have impressive records of 27-15 as the favorite and 34-17 SU within their division. The Indians have one of the most prolific offenses in the entire AL, averaging 4.9 runs per game. The Indians rank third in the AL in hits with 9.1 per game. They have been a terror on the base paths, ranking fifth in all of baseball with 105 steals. Transitioning to the pitching staff, the Indians are the best in the AL in hits allowed, giving up just 8.2 per game. An area where the Indians are particularly strong is striking batters out, where they average 8.6 K's per game.
Moving on to the away team, the Twins come into this game with a weak win percentage of .366 when playing as the underdog (37-64) and an overall money line of -2,284. Recently, opponents have been able to handle Minnesota with ease. Over the past 10 matchups, they have not won a game and have a 0-9 record when they were an underdog to win. Within their division, Minnesota's offense has been struggling. Minnesota has averaged 3.8 runs per game, compared to 4.5 for the duration of the season. Minnesota's pitching staff has allowed an average of 7.5 runs per game during the last 10 games, higher than their season average of 5.5.
The Twins have gotten the better of the Indians in head-to-head matchups this season, going 8-7. The Indians will take on a left-hander (Dean) in this game. They have done very well against left-handed starting pitchers this season (27-15), especially at home where they have a 16-5 record. The right-handed Kluber will take the mound against the Twins. Against righty starters this season, they have an awful 34-63 record.
Predictions: SU Winner - CLE, O/U - Over
The Indians hold a 35-17 record against the AL Central Division this season, while the Twins have a 15-37 record against the division.
Minnesota has won 45% (27-33) of its games when leading after seven innings. However, Cleveland has won 53% (28-25) of its games when taking a late lead.
The Twins managed to give up eight walks in their last game. They'll have to pick it up against the Indians who are heading in with a 4-0 record against opponents who give up that many walks or more.
When they are outhit, the Twins are 8-67. The Indians have a 10-40 record when opponents outhit them.
Minnesota ranks in the bottom half of the league at 16th when it comes to home runs, hitting 153 this season. Cleveland ranks in the top half with 163.
Ranking seventh, Minnesota is in the top 10 of the league in hits, notching 8.87 per game. Cleveland ranks in the top five at third with 9.08.
Ranking 13th, Minnesota is in the top half of the league for its on-base plus slugging percentage (.744). Cleveland ranks in the top 10 at eighth with an OPS of .766.
The Twins are 35-68 in games where they allow one or more home runs. The Indians are 46-48 when they allow at least one homer.