The Minnesota Twins and Detroit Tigers combined for 23 runs and 32 hits on Saturday in a back-and-forth affair that went down to the final at-bat. The Twins will try to bounce back from a crushing defeat when they visit the Tigers in the rubber match of the three-game set on Sunday.
Minnesota held an 11-6 lead after six innings on Saturday but Detroit chipped away, drawing within one run on Jose Iglesias’ two-run homer in the eighth and walking off with the win on Justin Upton’s two-run blast in the ninth. The Twins, who are battling for the second American League wild card, traded away closer Brandon Kintzler at the deadline and watched the bullpen come undone while a six-game winning streak came to end with the loss. Trying to keep it out of the hands of that bullpen on Sunday will be All-Star right-hander Ervin Santana while Detroit counters with lefty Matthew Boyd. The Tigers are 2-6 in their last eight games but have yet to drop a series to Minnesota this season.
TV: 1:10 p.m. ET, FSN North (Minnesota), FSN Detroit
PITCHING MATCHUP: Twins RH Ervin Santana (12-7, 3.27 ERA) vs. Tigers LH Matthew Boyd (5-6, 5.64)
Santana kept his team in the game against Milwaukee on Monday but did not factor in the decision while allowing four runs - two earned - and six hits in six innings. The Dominican Republic native tossed a complete game at San Diego on Aug. 2 but is struggling a bit with the home run ball - yielding 25 in 151 1/3 total innings. Santana surrendered a pair of blasts against Detroit on July 21 and lasted just 3 1/3 innings while being charged with five runs in a loss.
Boyd failed to make it through five innings in either of his last two turns and was ripped for six runs - five earned - and nine hits in four innings to suffer a loss at Pittsburgh on Tuesday. The 26-year-old enjoyed a three-start winning streak coming out of the All-Star break before struggling in the last two outings. Boyd earned a win at Minnesota on July 23 while allowing three runs on four hits in six innings and striking out eight.
1. Tigers 2B Ian Kinsler (0-for-4) was the only starter in the game not to record at least one hit on Saturday.
2. Minnesota 1B Joe Mauer is 8-for-15 with eight RBIs in the last three games.
3. Detroit 1B Miguel Cabrera (lower back stiffness) left the game in the sixth inning on Saturday and is day-to-day.
PREDICTION: Twins 7, Tigers 4