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American League Preview from The Sports Network



Sunday, August 31 (All times Eastern)

Minnesota Twins (59-76) at Baltimore Orioles (78-56), 1:35 p.m.

Probable Starting Pitchers: Minnesota - Ricky Nolasco (5-9, 5.62) Baltimore - Wei-Yin Chen (13-4, 3.76)

(SportsNetwork.com) - Minnesota right-hander Ricky Nolasco tries to follow up his best start of the season on Sunday when the Minnesota Twins continue a four-game series with the Baltimore Orioles at Camden Yards.

Not much has gone right for Nolasco since he signed a 4-year, $49 million contract with the Twins this past winter, as he is just 5-9 with a 5.62 ERA. However, he was brilliant on Tuesday in Kansas City, scattering three hits over seven scoreless innings, but did not factor in the decision of his team's 2-1 loss.

Nolasco, who had allowed 15 runs in his previous three starts, was also battling the flu.

"He was ready to take himself out of the game, he said he was fighting the flu bug like everybody else around here and he said he sweated through three shirts and was feeling terrible," Twins skipper Ron Gardenhire said.

Nolasco has split four starts against the O's and has pitched to a 3.00 ERA in those contests.

Getting the call for Baltimore on Sunday will be lefty Wei-Yin Chen, who is 13-4 on the year with a 3.76 ERA. Chen did not get a decision on Tuesday against Tampa Bay and was not sharp, surrendering two runs and seven hits with three walks in just 4 2/3 innings of a 4-2 win.

"There are quite a few times that I face this type of situation at the beginning of the game, but somehow I can make the adjustment and work my way back," Chen said through his interpreter. "But today I tried a lot of things, tried to work my way back, but I couldn't.

Chen has faced the Twins three times and is 2-1 with a 2.65 ERA.

Baltimore continued to roll on Saturday, as Jimmy Paredes homered and drove in two runs to propel the O's to a 3-2 win.

Paredes made his Orioles debut on Friday, when he replaced an injured Steve Pearce at third base and finished with a hit and run scored in the 9-1 rout. Pearce was unable to go on Saturday with a right abdominal strain, so Paredes got the nod.

Acquired from the Royals earlier this season and stashed in the minor leagues until this week, Paredes finished 2-for-3 and helped the O's to their fifth win in six games. Chris Davis scored and drove in the other run for the hosts.

Both starters put up nearly identical lines, though neither factored in the final decision. Kyle Gibson of the Twins and Baltimore's Chris Tillman each gave up a run with six strikeouts and three walks, while Tillman allowed six hits in five innings and Gibson yielded four hits over five.

"We have a lot of baseball left," said Tillman. "That's the way I look at it. We gotta keep going. We got a long way to go."

Minnesota took two of three from the O's earlier in the year.

08/31 10:21:02 ET