The pitching match ups over the weekend are Chris Archer (8-7 3.3.19 ERA) vs Kevin Correia (9-11, 4.30 ERA) on Friday at 8:10 p.m., Matt Moore (15-3, 3.18 ERA) vs left hander Andrew Albers (2-2, 3.35 ERA) Saturday at 7:10 p.m., and David Price (8-8, 3.45 ERA) vs left hander Pedro Hernandez (3-1, 5.25 ERA) on Sunday at 2:10 p.m.
Since the Rays are in the middle of a playoff push and both the Rays and their fans will be scoreboard watching let's take a look at who is playing where this weekend.
The Rays trail the Texas Rangers by 2 games for the top wild card spot and the Rangers will host the Oakland A's for a weekend series.
The Cleveland Indians trail the Rays by 1.5 games and will be in Chicago to finish their 4-game set.
The Baltimore Orioles trail the Rays by 1.5 games and will be north of the border taking on the Blue Jays.
The Twins offense has struggled in 2013. They rank 13th in the American League with a 3.91 runs per game average. They have a 91 OPS+ and a 92 wRC+ and rank below league average in average, on-base percentage, and slugging percentage.
Joe Mauer has a lifetime average of .374 (64 for 203) against the Rays with a slash line of .374/.1468/.515). He used to tag team with Justin Morneau who had a career slash line of .299/.344/.545 against the Rays but Morneau has been traded to the Pittsburgh Pirates.
The table below represent the Twins hitters in the second half (Fangraphs.com):
The Twins bullpen has been a source of pride for the struggling team all year. They own the 4th lowest ERA in the American League at 3.33 (3.45 FIP). Former starter Brian Duensing seems to have found a home in the pen and has thrived. Glen Perkins remains as the Twins closer. The table below represents Twins relievers the 2nd half of the season (Fangraphs.com):
Correia is your typical on or off starter. Over his last 5 games he has posted a 1-3 record with an ERA of 3.18. He has worked 34 innings and has allowed 36 hits striking out 17 and walking 7.
He faced the Rays at Tropicana Field on July 10th and took a no decision in a 4-3 Rays victory. He worked 5.1 innings allowing 3R/ER on 5 hits striking out 6 and walking 5.
Correia struggles against left handed batters. They post a slash line against him of .302/.350/.478.
The Left Handed Albers has been a nice story for the Twins in 2013. He was signed as a minor league free agent prior to the 2011 season. He spent most of this season with the Rochester Red Wings posting a record of 11-5 with a 2.86 ERA with a strike out rate of 7.9 K/9 and a walk rate of 2.2 BB/9.
He has made 7 starts for the Twins since being called up and has posted a record of 2-2 with a 3.35 ERA. Three of his 7 starts have been scoreless outings.
Over his last 5 starts he 0-2 with a 5.40 ERA and has only worked 28.1 innings but in his last start he held the Toronto Blue Jays scoreless over 7 innings on 4 hits striking out 5 and walking 0.
The left handed Hernandez was one of the players acquired from the Chicago White Sox last year. He made 10 starts between the Double A New Britain Rock Cats and the Triple A Rochester Red Wings posting a 3-3 record with a 3.66 ERA.
Over his last 5 starts he has posted a record of 2-1 with a 4.62 ERA. He has worked 25.1 innings allowing 32 hits striking out 14 and walking 8.
He seems to throw a lot of pitches in a short amount of time. His longest outing of the year is only 6 innings and his season high pitch count is 107.