MLB Predictions: Twins vs. Rangers Betting Odds and Picks
by Nicholas Tolomeo - 8/25/2010
Potential first-round playoff opponents get an extended look at each other during this four-game series in late August. The AL Central leading Twins and the AL West leading Rangers square off for Game 3 of their series at 8:05 p.m. ET in Arlington, Texas.
The Rangers took Game 1 of the series, 4-0, and Game 2, 4-3. Minnesota swept an earlier series between the two teams back in May, outscoring the Rangers 16-7. The Twins at 72-54 own a slightly better record than the Rangers (71-54), but this series definitely means more to Minnesota, who has Chicago only 3.5 games back while the Rangers have enjoyed at least an eight-game cushion in the AL West for the better part of the summer.
Texas has the third-best home record this season in the American League, but the Twins are one of only three teams in the AL without a losing road record.
MLB Predictions: Pitching Matchup
Brian Duensing (LHP, 7-1, 1.92 ERA) vs. C.J. Wilson (LHP, 12-5, 3.02 ERA)
The newest addition to the Minnesota staff has been nearly untouchable since rejoining the lineup. Duensing replacing Nick Blackburn in the rotation could be what has put Minnesota over the top in the AL Central. He is 5-0 in his last five decisions and 4-0 with a 2.18 ERA in six starts for the Twins.
He has dominated the opposition although it has come against the weaker teams in the American League including the Angels, Athletics, Indians, Royals and Orioles. Against teams with a winning record the Twins are 1-1 when Duensing stars and he has a 3.60 ERA. That seems to be nitpicking with the 27-year old former Nebraska standout who has very few flaws in his game.
Texas will counter with a hot hand of its own in Wilson who has not been beaten in seven starts and neither has his team. In his last three outings Wilson has shutdown the Yankees, Red Sox and Orioles. Against Baltimore he retired 18 of his final 19 batters.
Minnesota was able to tag Wilson for five earned runs in six innings in an 8-3 Minnesota win earlier this season. Wilson is 0-2 with a 3.41 ERA vs. Minnesota. Duensing pitched only one inning in relief this year against Texas, but last season he was superb against Texas in one of his few starts of the season. Overall Duensing is 1-1 with a 1.74 ERA vs. Texas over the last two seasons.
Twins vs. Rangers Betting Odds
The home-standing Rangers are -145 favorites against the Twins who are +125. The total is 8.5. Odds are courtesy of Sportsbook.com
Twins vs. Rangers Betting Trends
Twins are 5-1 in their last six road games vs. a left-handed starter
Twins are 4-1 in Duensing’s last five starts
Rangers are 0-4 in their last four games vs. a left-handed starter
Rangers are 12-2 in Wilson’s last 14 home starts
Twins are 4-1 in the last five meetings against the Rangers
Twins vs. Rangers Betting Picks and Predictions
As the hype has continued to grow around Duensing so have the lines. The young pitcher has been favored in his last three starts, but this game represents an opportunity to get Duensing as a dog. Texas has won the first two games of this series, but they have not exactly been dominant. Carl Pavano went the distance in the loss Tuesday night so the Minnesota bullpen is well rested while Texas had to use its top three relievers, Darren Oliver, Darren O’Day and Neftali Feliz to secure the win Tuesday night. Down 2-0 in this series already, this is a great spot to have Minnesota especially with Duensing on the mound.
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