The splits against Rays lefthander Drew Smyly aren't that extreme. Lefthanders are batting .200 against him while righthanders are batting .235 against him. But it was enough for Twins manager Paul Molitor to shape his lineup accordingly.

Eddie Rosario is not in the starting lineup tonight in favor of Shane Robinson. Robinson played fairly well on Wednesday during the Twins' 5-3 victory over Tampa Bay. He's probably getting a boost from playing in front of hometown friends and family.

Fans already are wondering how Aaron Hicks will be worked back in the lineup once he recovers from his strained left hamstring. Well, he would be a lock to start alongside Byron Buxton and Torii Hunter against lefthanded starters. Hicks has progressed very well and might be sent out on a rehabilitation assignment early next week so he can be ready to step into the lineup Sept. 4 when he is due off the disabled list.

The Rays have placed outfielder Desmond Jennings on the 15-day disabled list due to a bruised left knee. Joey Butler has been called up from Class AAA Durham to take his place on the roster.

Twins go for their first sweep here since May 6-8, 2005. If would be their seventh straight win on the road, their longest since an eight-game streak on June 11-21, 2011.

UPDATEGlen Perkins threw in the bullpen to test his sore back and said the session went well. He said there was a chance he could pitch tonight after missing the last two games because of back spasms, but also admitted that it might be wiser to wait until Friday. If that happens, Trevor May could get the nod to close out tonight's game if needed. Kevin Jepsen needs a night off. He has appeared in five straight games, separated by Monday's offday.


Byron Buton CF
Brian Dozier, 2B
Joe Mauer DH
Miguel Sano 3B
Trevor Plouffe, 1B
Torii Hunter, RF
Eduardo Escobar, SS
Kurt Suzuki, C
Shane Robinson, LF

Tommy Milone, LHP


Brandon Guyer, RF
Daniel Nava, 1B
Evan Longoria, 3B
Logan Forsythe, 2B
Asdrubal Cabrera, SS
Joey Butler, LF
Tim Beckham, DH
Kevin Kiermaier, CF
J.P. Arencibia, C

LHP Drew Smyly

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Schedule might favor Twins playoff prospects

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Postgame: Thoughts on the Twins rotation, Buxton and Sano