We'd never heard of Carlos Carrasco until earlier today, when we found out Cleveland was sending him out tonight against Detroit stalward Justin Verlander. Carrasco, it turns, out, was part of the Cliff Lee trade with the Phillies. In three starts this season, he has posted a 2.29 ... WHIP. Oh my. That has led to zero ... wins ... or ... quality starts.

This might also be the time to point out that Cleveland is now in last place, having lost 10 in a row -- or, if you prefer, 14 of its last 15 since taking two of three against the Twins in Cleveland. Ouch.

The difference, though, between the Twins going into the weekend two games back or three games back is huge. Two games back means only holding serve in Kansas City (a hot team, with Cy Greinke going Sunday) while Detroit plays the nothing-to-play-for, beaten-down-by-Ozzie Sox, in order to have a chance to square things with the Tigers by taking three of four in Detroit. For some reason, our entire perception of the race could hinge on whether Detroit can handle an inferior pitcher while it puts its ace out there tonight.

So come on, Fasolamatt. Get the boys fired up for one game. The Twins are 23-11 in their last 34. They might just have 10 more good ones in them, against the odds. But we'd like it a lot more if it was two down instead of three down. And it would help a lot if we didn't squint at "Carrasco" and see "Gabino."

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Some Vikings/Packers, MNF, Oct. 5 symmetry

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Friday (All-time opposing Metrodome team) edition: Wha' Happened?