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Brewers (5-6) and Twins (3-9) home and away series preview

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Age old rivals battle once again! Okay, maybe that's a bit much. But these games against the Twins are always fun.

Benny Sieu-USA TODAY Sports

I'm going to be honest with you all. I haven't been following the Twins very closely over the last several years. A lot of people including them in the Astros/Cubs discussion on rebuilding teams. But I'm not really sure if they've truly been rebuilding with a plan in action, or have just been really bad and continuously drafting high.

You see the Cubs and Astros did other things besides suck. They signed major league players in order to trade them later. And they brought on rehabilitation projects like Jake Arrieta. I can't remember the Twins ever really doing stuff like that. Instead they'd go out and sign Ricky Nolasco to an awful contract. Or sign Ervin Santana to an awful contract. Or sign Phill Hughes to an awful contract. That's not a plan in action. That's a team just scrapping the barrel to fill out a rotation.

And sure, they do have a pretty good farm system headlined by names like Byron Buxton, Jose Berrios, and Max Kepler. But again, that doesn't seem to be part of the plan. It's just the outcome of their sucking. And so far this year they've continued that sucking.

They're 3-9 on the season. What surprises me so far is their rotation logging a 3.75 ERA. That's much better than I would expect them to do the rest of the season. The bullpen has looked really good too: 2.87 ERA, 3.21 FIP. I doubt they keep it up either, but it might not be a disaster.

The offense has really scuffled early on. As a team they rank 23rd with an 83 wRC+ (which is actually better than the 25th place Brewers' 77 wRC+). They're being propped up by Joe Mauer (182 wRC+) and Trevor Plouffe (149 wRC+). The only other above average offensive players have been part time contributors Eduardo Nunez (299 wRC+) and Oswaldo Arcia (146 wRC+). Obviously these guys won't keep up this pace, but some of the other hitters (Miguel Sano, Byron Buxton, Byung Ho Park) should start doing better. But right now, this is a pretty dismal Twins team facing off against a Brewers team that's scuffled just as much.

Starting Lineup

C - Kurt Suzuki
1B - Joe Mauer
2B - Brian Dozier
3B - Trevor Plouffe
SS - Eduardo Escobar
LF - Eddie Rosario
CF - Byron Buxton
RF - Miguel Sano

Rotation

Ervin Santana
Kyle Gibson
Phil Hughes
Tommy Milone
Ricky Nolasco

High Leverage Relievers

Kyle Jepsen (CL)
Trevor May
Casey Fien

Game Start Times

Monday, April 18 7:10 pm CT - Brewers @ Twins: Chase Anderson vs Phil Hughes
Tuesday, April 19 12:10 pm CT - Brewers @ Twins: Wily Peralta vs Ervin Santana
Wednesday, April 20 7:10 pm CT - Brewers vs Twins: Jimmy Nelson vs Tommy Milone
Thursday, April 21 12:40 pm CT - Brewers vs Twins: Taylor Jungmann vs Ricky Nolasco

Statistics courtesy of FanGraphs

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