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vs. Twins 4-20 ...... ZACH IS BACK


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Brian Roberts - 2B

Nick Markakis - RF

Derek Lee - 1B

Vladimir Guerrero - 1B

Luke Scott - LF

Adam Jones - CF

Mark Reynolds - 3B

Matt Wieters - C

Robert Andino - SS

Zach Britton - P (2-1, 2.75 ERA)


Denard Span - CF

Jason Repko - LF

Jason Kubel - RF

Michael Cuddyer - 1B

Jim Thome - DH

Danny Valencia - 3B

Luke Hughes - 2B

Steve Holm - C

Matt Tolbert - SS

Nick Blackburn - P (1-2, 3.06 ERA)


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The Minnesota Twins have been without their two biggest bats in the last few games and it has certainly showed, highlighted by an embarrassing 11-0 loss to the Baltimore Orioles on Tuesday. They hope to get one of those bats, Justin Morneau, back in the lineup on Wednesday for the series finale in Baltimore. Morneau has been sufering from flu like symptoms, and even needed to have IV treatment on Monday, according to Jeff Seidel at MLB.com.

Manager Ron Gardenhire said that the weather had something to do with the decision to keep Morneau out of the game as well, according to La Velle E. Neal III of the Star Tribune.

"Weather conditions," said Gardenhire, referring to the afternoon rain in Baltimore. "Plus he's not feeling great. No chance to put him out there. I'm don't know exactly what he could do to help us [Tuesday], if anything. Probably not too much. We'll see [Wednesday]."

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Zach Britton tries to bounce back from the worst start of his career this evening when the Baltimore Orioles resume their four-game series with the Minnesota Twins at Camden Yards. (Sports Network) - Zach Britton tries to bounce back from the worst start of his career this evening when the Baltimore Orioles resume their four-game series with the Minnesota Twins at Camden Yards.

After allowing just one run in winning his first two starts, the 23-year-old left-hander was banged around by the Cleveland Indians, who reached him for five runs and eight hits in six innings. Still, he is pitching to a 2.75 earned run average and has nearly as many strikeouts (14) as hits allowed (15) through his first three starts.

"I was a little disappointed ... I tried to make pitches, but they weren't good enough," Britton said after his poor outing.

The young hurler may not have to deal with Minnesota first baseman Justin Morneau, who is day-to-day with the flu. Morneau missed Tuesday's contest, as Baltimore snapped an eight-game losing streak with an 11-0 rout.


Michael Cuddyer collected two hits for the Twins, who won the first matchup of the four-game series. Carl Pavano (1-2) was touched for eight runs -- seven earned -- on eight hits while walking three in 4 2/3 innings.

"You have to be able to finish off innings," Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said. "We didn't get it done tonight."

Tonight, Minnesota turns to right-hander Nick Blackburn, who has lost his last two starts. After allowing one earned run in his first two starts, Blackburn was hit hard his last time out and absorbed the loss on Friday against Tampa Bay, as he gave up five runs and 10 hits in six innings, dropping him to 1-2, while ballooning his ERA to 3.06.

Blackburn has faced the Orioles four times (three starts) and is 1-2 with a 5.79 ERA.


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The Baltimore Orioles and Minnesota Twins meet on Wednesday for game three of their series in Baltimore.

The Baltimore Orioles took out all of their frustrations of their seven game losing streak as they stopped the losing and got the win against Minnesota on Tuesday. Valdimir Guerrero had a home run that was part of a two hit and three RBI night, while Robert Andino had three hits and Brian Roberts, Derek Lee, Adam Jones, and Matt Weiters all had two hits in the route. Jake Arrieta allowed four hits and struck out four in six scoreless innings while the Baltimore bullpen kept the Twins bats silent to preserve the shutout. For Wednesday's game Baltimore sends Zachary Britton to the mound for his fourth start of the year. Thus far this season Britton has allowed 15 hits and six runs while striking out 14 in 19.2 innings of work.

The Minnesota Twins just couldn't put anything together on Tuesday as they were shut out and battered in Baltimore. Michael Cuddyer had two hits and Denard Span, Matt Tolbert, Jason Kubel, and Luke Hughes all had hits but no Twins were able to cross the plate. On the mound Carl Pavano allowed eight hits and eight runs, seven of them earned, in 4.2 innings of work to take his second loss of the year. Minnesota looks to rebound as they send Nick Blackburn to the hill for his fourth start of the year. Thus far Blackburn has allowed 22 hits and six earned runs while striking out 10 in 17.2 innings of work.

Baltimore is 6-1 in their last seven games against a right handed starter, 1-4 in their last five against the AL Central, and 1-8 in their last nine overall. Minnesota is 4-1 in their last five games against a left handed starter, 5-14 in their last 19 road games, and 1-4 in Blackburn's last five starts. Minnesota is 6-2 in the last eight meetings of these two.

While Baltimore's overall play of late hasn't been good, the Twins are struggling without Mauer and on the road it just isn't a good place for my money to be.

Mitch’s Pick: Baltimore -123

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I wondered what happened to Zach last time. I was fishing and missed the game.

He forgot the laughter.

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