Both the Minnesota Twins and Baltimore Orioles were off yesterday before kicking off their three-game weekend series in Baltimore on Friday night.
The Twins come into this series after getting swept by the Braves and sit at 40-42. The Orioles dropped two of three to the Reds this week and are 48-31.
Pablo Lopez will look to ensure that the losses don’t keep mounting for Minnesota. He will make his 17th start of the season and is 3-5 with a 4.41 ERA so far.
It will be a tough task for Lopez against the Baltimore offense and against 8-3 Dean Kremer who is making his 17th start as well. Kremer has a 4.50 ERA.
The Twins have fallen out of first place in the AL Central and they’re underdogs against the second place Orioles in Game 1.
Twins vs Orioles odds, run line and total
Twins vs. Orioles prediction and odds
In the month of June the Minnesota Twins have not been good at the plate. They are 24th in team OPS at .674 and lead the league in strikeouts both this month and this season.
There has been a lot of turnover in their lineup this season and in fact Carlos Correa who is hitting just .212 is their qualified leader in batting average. He and Byron Buxton are the only qualified hitters on this team.
I don’t expect Minnesota to turn this into a slugfest because it simply doesn't have a good lineup. I do, however, expect them to keep it close because of Pablo Lopez.
His ERA isn’t pretty, but everything else is. Lopez has a FIP of 3.29 and an expected ERA of 3.12 with a career high 30% strikeout rate which is in the top 15% of all pitchers. Lopez is a great pitcher and while three pitchers in the Twins rotation have a better ERA, Lopez is likely the best.
In the past week the Orioles are top 10 in runs scored, but 19th in OPS which isn’t a good sign for their lineup.
They only have six home runs over that stretch and three have come off the bat of Anthony Santander who continues to carry the rest of the batting order. I like the O’s to win this one because they’re just the better team, but Lopez is a stud on the mound and because of him I’ll take the under.
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