Yesterday the Minnesota Twins took a 2-0 win over the Detroit Tigers and have a chance to finish with a series split today in Game 4. While they’re only 29-40 on the year, the Tigers can pull to within five games of the AL Central leaders, the 36-35 Twins with a win today.
As Detroit goes for the series win they still have a question mark on the mound. Whoever does take the mound for the Tigers will be opposed by Louie Varland who is 3-2 with a 4.70 ERA for the Twins this season. The Twins are the favorites to take the final game of this four-game set at home.
Tigers vs. Twins odds, run line and total
Tigers vs. Twins prediction and pick
The Tigers are back to being a horrendous offensive team as they were last year. However, Minnesota allowed them to score 15 runs across the first two games of this series before getting shut out yesterday. The Tigers have scored 52 runs this month, actually two more than Minnesota and with Varland on the mound today Detroit could extend that lead.
Varland has been okay for Minnesota, but he’s allowed 51 hits in 51.2 innings of work with 50 strikeouts to 14 walks. His strikeout and walk rates are both solid, 49th percentile and 78th percentile respectively. However, he’s allowed 51 hits while having a BABIP of .277 which is below the league average. If that rises then to league average he could be in real trouble, giving up far too many hits to survive deep into outings.
Varland also relies on his slider to right handed hitters, but he’s allowing an expected slugging of .641 off that pitch with four home runs allowed. Javier Baez is having another bad season at the plate, but he hit a breaking pitch for a home run the other night and has three of his five homers off breaking pitchers. Baez could touch up that slider and Detroit could do some damage to Varland. In five of the Tigers’ last seven games there have been double-digit runs scored and in one of the two with under 10 runs scored, Detroit scored seven. I’ll take the over.
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