Twins-Tampa Bay series preview

  • Updated: July 4, 2011 - 1:20 AM

A THREE-GAME SERIES AT TARGET FIELD

Today, 1:10 p.m. • FSN, 1500ESPN

LHP Brian Duensing (5-7, 4.69 ERA) vs. LHP David Price (8-6, 3.43)

Tuesday, 7:10 p.m. • FSN, 1500ESPN

RHP Scott Baker (6-5, 3.15) vs. RHP James Shields (8-5, 2.45)

Wednesday, 12:10 p.m. • FSN, 1500ESPN

LHP Francisco Liriano (5-7, 4.76) vs. RHP Wade Davis (7-6, 4.20)

ABOUT THE TWINS

The Twins reversed their early-season woes with a 17-9 June but have yet to figure out the Rays, who are 6-1 against them this season. Tampa Bay allowed just six runs in a three-game sweep against Minnesota at Target Field in late April, two weeks after the Twins dropped three out of four to the Rays by an aggregate five runs. ... Michael Cuddyer was 5-for-11 in three games against the Brewers with a home run, four RBI and four runs. ... The Twins return to facing AL opponents after an 8-7 stretch in interleague play and will head to Chicago on Thursday for a three-game series with the White Sox before the All-Star break. ... Duensing is 1-0 with a 3.07 ERA in five appearances and 14 2/3 innings against the Rays in his career.

ABOUT THE RAYS

After losing star outfielder Carl Crawford to the Red Sox in free agency, the Rays have spent much of 2010-11 in third place in the AL East behind Boston and New York. They are 14-10 against the AL Central this season and 26-16 on the road but have lost three of their past six. ... Price, an All-Star, has not faced the Twins this season but is 1-1 with a 1.69 ERA against them in his career. ... Fellow All-Star Matt Joyce, meanwhile, has owned the Twins. He's hitting .522 with a 1.21 OPS, four RBI and three doubles in seven games against them this season. ... B.J. Upton has a team-high 12 home runs and 43 RBI. ... Ben Zobrist is part of the five-man Final Vote competition for the last AL All-Star spot.

ALEX PREWITT

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