Matchup: Minnesota Twins at Kansas City Royals

Date/Time: August 26, 8:10 p.m. ET

TV: FOX Sports 1

MLB Betting Odds From 5Dimes Sportsbook

Probable Starters: MIN: Ricky Nolasco (5-9, 5.96) v. KC: Danny Duffy (8-11, 2.53)

Moneyline: Kansas City -173

Total: 8.5 105/-115

The Kansas City Royals lost out on an off day on Monday because of a June rainout and that proved to be costly because the Royals lost against the New York Yankees by a score of 8-1. With that defeat, the Royals lost a half-game on the idle Detroit Tigers and now lead by just 1.5 games. The Minnesota Twins are just 14-22 since the All-Star Break and will have a lot to do with what happens in the AL Central. The Twins have just these three games remaining against the Royals, but have seven games left with the Tigers.

Ricky Nolasco has not been what the Twins hoped he would be when they gave him a four-year, $49M contract in free agency last offseason. Nolasco has not finished a start with an ERA below 5.49 on the season. He also missed over a month from July 6 to August 15 with elbow discomfort. He has only made 20 starts on the season and opposing hitters have put up a .327/.365/.538 slash line against him. Since returning from the DL, Nolasco has allowed nine runs on 15 hits in 12.2 innings in starts against the Royals and Indians.

Danny Duffy was 1-1 with a 2.16 ERA before the Royals decided to put him in the starting rotation at the beginning of May. Since then, Duffy has been spectacular with a 2.56 ERA. He’s just 7-10 because the Royals don’t score for him. Among 105 pitchers with at least 120 innings pitched, Duffy has the 15th-worst run support. Duffy has allowed eight unearned runs in 119.2 innings as a starter, but opposing batters have a .204/.277/.322 slash line against him.

Nolasco’s four career starts against the Royals have all come this season. He’s 2-2 with a 4.20 ERA in those four outings covering 25.2 innings. In two of those starts, the two wins, he allowed just one run. In the two losses, he gave up five runs in each start. The Twins are 8-12 in Nolasco’s 20 starts for a loss of 1.92 units.

Duffy has five appearances against the Twins this season and three of them have been starts. He threw 4.1 scoreless relief innings in April and has allowed just four earned runs in three starts covering 16.2 innings. The Royals are 10-10 in Duffy’s 20 starts for a loss of just 0.16 units.

Free MLB Pick: Kansas City Royals

The Royals are playing very well and Duffy has pitched very well, despite the mediocre win-loss record. The Twins are going through a rough patch and Nolasco cannot be trusted right now. There could still be an underlying issue given how he’s pitching since returning from the disabled list and the Royals should take advantage for the second time this month.