In a game that has the potential for a lot of runs, Joe Kelly (1-3, 5.13 ERA) and the Boston Red Sox (21-23) are in Minnesota to square off against Ricky Nolasco (4-1, 6.00 ERA) and the Twins (25-18). This is the first of a three-game series at Target Field. Action begins at 2:10 p.m. ET on Monday, May. 25 and can be seen on NESN and FSN-N.
Nolasco is 2-2 with a 5.08 ERA, 0.92 WHIP, and 22 strikeouts against the Red Sox. Brian Dozier (.253, 34 Rs, 9 HRs, 24 RBIs, 3 SBs) had another good game yesterday, going 2 for 5 with two runs, two home runs, and four RBIs. Kelly went 7.0 innings, surrendering two runs, striking out seven and walking one in a 2-1 defeat to the Rangers in his most recent start. Hanley Ramirez (.263, 24 Rs, 10 HRs, 22 RBIs, 1 SB) went 1 for 4 yesterday with one run.
Boston is a narrow -113 favorite over Minnesota. According to the oddsmakers, the Over/Under (O/U) is currently eight runs. The Twins have an overall money line of +1,147 and a record as the underdog of 18-16. The Twins have no trouble scoring as they rank third in the AL in offense with 4.5 runs per game. The Twins are one of the best in the AL in terms of hits with an impressive 8.6 per game.
In games where it is the favorite, Boston has a 11-14 record and an overall money line of -689. Offensively, the Red Sox have really sputtered in the last 10 games. They have decreased their season average of 4.0 runs per game by averaging 2.8 during that stretch. Boston is excellent at not striking out with just 6.6 per game, ranking third in the AL. The Red Sox allow 4.8 runs per game, but have improved upon those numbers in the past 10 games, allowing 3.3 runs per game during that span.
The Twins have a 10-13 record against right-handed starting pitchers on the year, which is what they'll be facing when Kelly takes the mound. Nolasco (RHP) will be on the hill against the Red Sox, who have a 14-16 record against right-handed starting pitchers.
Predictions: SU Winner - MIN, O/U - Over
Boston has won 44% (8-10) of its games when leading after 7 innings. However, Minnesota has won 54% (7-6) of its games when taking a late lead.
The Twins are coming into this game after allowing zero walks during their last outing. The Red Sox have a 1-1 record when opponents give up that many walks.
When they are outhit, the Red Sox are 4-21. The Twins have a 5-17 record when opponents outhit them.
Ranking 23rd in home runs, Minnesota has hit 34 this season. Boston ranks ninth with 45 home runs.
Ranking 11th, Boston is in the top half of the league in hits, notching 8.14 per game. Minnesota ranks in the top five at fifth with 8.62.
Ranking 21st, Minnesota is near the bottom of the league for its on-base plus slugging percentage (.691). Boston ranks in the bottom half at 20th with an OPS of .692.
The Red Sox are 8-22 in games where they allow one or more home runs. The Twins are 14-13 when they allow at least one homer.