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Series Preview: Minnesota Twins @ Milwaukee Brewers

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The Brewers host the Twins as they try to find a winning streak and put a poor month of June behind them

MLB: Milwaukee Brewers at Minnesota Twins Jeffrey Becker-USA TODAY Sports

Both the Brewers and Twins come into this series after pretty disappointing weekends -- the Brewers getting pummeled in their final two games in Cincinnati after taking the first two games of the series, and Twins pitching getting pummeled in all three games they played against the Cubs this weekend. Because of the Twins’ complete lack of help, the Brewers now hold just a half-game lead over the Cubs in the NL Central.

The Brewers have a chance to get some revenge for that this week. The last time we saw the Twins, they were under .500 but still within striking distance in the AL Central. That’s not really the case anymore, as they’re now 10 games under .500 and Cleveland has opened up a sizeable lead on the worst division in baseball.

Eddie Rosario is playing like an All-Star, leading Minnesota in just about every category imaginable while hitting .315/.355/.574 with 18 home runs and 23 doubles. Eduardo Escobar is hitting .277/.333/.527 with 12 home runs and 33 doubles already, but outside of those two it’s been a pretty brutal offensive year for the Twins, and the pitching hasn’t been a whole lot better, ranking in the bottom 10 in ERA, WHIP and batting average against.

This is a team the Brewers should be able to let out some frustrations on, but as we know, these series with the Twins always seem to end up more competitive than they have any business being.

Probable Pitchers

Monday - 7:10 p.m. CDT
Kyle Gibson vs. Brent Suter

Tuesday - 3:10 p.m. CDT
Jake Odorizi vs. Junior Guerra

Wednesday - 3:10 p.m. CDT
Jose Berrios vs. Chase Anderson

After a couple years of disappointment, Gibson is pitching like a guy who was a three-time Top 100 prospect -- it just took him until he was 30 to do so. He comes into this series with a 3.48 ERA in his first 16 starts, which would be a career-best. He’s found a way to strike more batters out this year, punching out 93 batters in 95.2 innings -- an 8.7 K/9 rate -- after averaging 6.5 K/9 during the rest of his career. The Brewers were able to get to him the last time the Brewers saw the Twins, though, tagging him for 5 runs on 8 hits and 4 walks on May 18th.

For awhile this year, Odorizzi was a guy some Brewers fans may have looked at longingly after the Twins were able to trade for the former Brewers farmhand, basically for free. Odorizzi’s great start to the season included a 10-strikeout performance agains the Brewers, lowering his ERA to 3.17, but his success pretty much ended there. In his next 6 starts, he allowed 25 runs in 25.2 innings and allowing a .333/.417/.565 batting line. He was able to turn things around in his last starting, throwing 6 scoreless innings and striking out 8, but that was against the Chicago White Sox and should maybe be taken with a grain of salt.

Berrios has been electric for much of the year, striking out 111 batters in 107.1 innings and having 2 complete games to his name -- including a complete game shutout of the Orioles in his first start of the year. He’s racked up 4 10-strikeout games already in his first 17 starts, including a season-high 12 against Texas on June 24th. Berrios has done all that while also only walking 24 on the year, but it’s possible he may be throwing too many strikes -- he’s also already given up 14 home runs this season after giving up 15 all of last year. He’s coming off of a rough outing in which he gave up 6 runs in 4.1 innings against the Cubs.

Statistics courtesy of Baseball-Reference