The Minnesota Twins and Cleveland Indians kick off the second half of the 2019 MLB season with an important AL Central tilt and Jason Feinman provides free picks on the match.
MLB – Minnesota Twins at Cleveland Indians 7/12/2019 7:10 PM Minnesota Twins at Cleveland Indians
Minnesota Twins +125
Cleveland Indians -144
Minnesota Twins at Cleveland Indians Preview
The Minnesota Twins have had a surprising good year, and are currently leading the AL Central division by 5.5 games. They have gotten great starting pitching from Jake Odorizzi and timely hitting from shortstop Jorge Polanco, both named to the All-Star team. Jose Berrios has been a solid number two starter, giving the Twins a solid 1-2 punch in their rotation.
The Cleveland Indians need to chip away at the Twins division lead and will look to do so back home at Progressive Field, behind their resurgent All-Star starting first baseman Carlos Santana and reserve All-Star shortstop Francisco Lindor.
The pitching matchup is key and will pit Twins starter Kyle Gibson (8-4, 4.09 ERA) versus the Indians’ Mike Clevinger (2-2, 4.44 ERA, 0.99 WHIP, 40Ks in 24 1/3 innings).
Minnesota Twins at Cleveland Indians Key Stats
The Minnesota Twins are Major League Baseball’s team leader in home runs with 161. Cleveland ranks 22nd with 106.
Max Kepler has already surpassed his home run total from 2018 with 21. . Jake Odorizzi and Jose Berrios are in the top 10 among AL pitchers in both Wins, ERA and almost WHIP (Odorizzi’s 1.12 is 11)
. Carlos Santana has done it all for the Indians, leading them in batting average, home runs and runs batted in.
. Cleveland has a 25-18 home record at Progressive Field while the Twins have been very successful on the road with a 28-18 mark.
Hot vs. Cold Matchups
The Twins have not hit Mike Clevinger that well overall, but its a small sample size.
Eddie Rosario is 4 for 12 (.333) with a home run, Miguel Sano is 3 for 14 with a homer and two doubles and Ehire Adrianza is 2 for 4 with a double and a homer off Clevinger.
Max Kepler is 2 for 17 (.118) with one home run and Jorge Polanco is 1 for 8 (.125) against the righty Clevinger.
The Indians hit Kyle Gibson hard, to the tune of .329 overall with 5 homers and 19 runs batted in. Jason Kipnis (14 for 33, 1 home run) and Francisco Lindor (13 for 34, .382), own Gibson. Jose Ramirez (10 for 30) also hits Gibson well, while Carlos Santana is feast or famine against Gibson, only hitting 5 for 30 (.167) but 3 of those 5 hits are homers.
Minnesota Twins at Cleveland Indians Prediction
The Indians at home, combined with their overall dominance against Kyle Gibson, should prove too much for the Twins. I see this game putting up a total of 11 runs, with a final score of Cleveland Indians 7, the Minnesota Twins 4. While Mike Clevinger can give up runs, he handles the Twins pretty well and if he gets early run support, he should have a solid outing to get the win.