Phil Miller covered three seasons of Twins baseball, but that was at a different ballpark for a different newspaper. Now Miller returns to the baseball beat after joining the Star Tribune as the Gopher football writer in 2010, and he won't miss the dingy dome for a minute. In addition to the Twins and Gophers, Miller covered the Utah Jazz and the NBA for six years at The Salt Lake Tribune.

Pregame: Twins better on road than in Target Field

Posted by: Phil Miller under MLB, On the road Updated: September 4, 2013 - 12:24 PM

HOUSTON -- The Twins come home after this afternoon's game at Minute Maid Park, but you have to wonder why.

They're 4-1 on this trip so far, and yes, they probably wouldn't mind playing Houston a lot more often, but they spent the weekend in Arlington, too.

In fact, the Twins are 15-10 since the All-Star break away from Target Field, and just 7-13 in their home park. They've gone 4-3, 4-3, 3-3 and now 4-1 on their trips, so they haven't had a losing trip since early July.

Last season was the first time in this century that the Twins won more games on the road than at home, but they appear headed to a similar fate this year. They are 33-40 on the road heading into today's matinee finale (sorry, no TV), with one trip left to Chicago and Oakland, and 28-36 at home. They won 35 road games last season, and should improve on that this year.

Can't think of a reason why they've been better out of Target Field the past two seasons. Can you?

Ron Gardenhire can't, for the most part. "I've never been able to figure out those cycles of baseball," the manager said. "But guys get frustrated at Target Field. We hit a lot of long fly balls there. ... I just think right now, we're putting too much pressure on ourselves at home."

Here are the lineups, as the Twins try to sweep a season series for the first time since winning all seven games against Baltimore in 2007:

TWINS

Presley CF
Mastroianni LF
Dozier 2B
Doumit DH
Plouffe 3B
Arcia RF
Colabello 1B
Herrmann C
Florimon SS

Hendriks RHP

ASTROS

Villar SS
Altuve 2B
Crowe LF
Wallace 3B
Carter 1B
Krauss DH
Barnes CF
Hoes RF
Pagnozzi C

Lyles RHP

 

 

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