American League Preview from The Sports Network|
Friday, July 27th
(All times Eastern)
Cleveland Indians (50-49) at Minnesota Twins (40-58), 8:10 p.m.
Probable Starting Pitchers: Cleveland - Josh Tomlin (5-7, 5.34)
Minnesota - Scott Diamond (8-4, 3.16)
(Sports Network) - Lefty Scott Diamond can give himself an early birthday
present when his Minnesota Twins host the Cleveland Indians to open up a
three-game weekend series tonight at Target Field.
The Canadian-born pitcher makes his final start as a 25-year-old in his fourth
career meeting with the Indians, three days before he turns 26 on Monday.
He last faced Cleveland on June 3 at Progressive Field and was a 6-3 winner
after allowing three unearned runs on seven hits in seven innings.
Diamond has won four of seven decisions since and now has nine victories in 21
major-league appearances since debuting with the Twins against the Indians on
July 18 of last year. In 130 combined innings in the big leagues, he's allowed
a .292 opposition batting average while walking 32 batters and striking out
Diamond is opposed by Indians righty Josh Tomlin, who aims to end a two-start
skid since the All-Star break.
The Texas-born 27-year-old got to 5-5 on the season with a 3-1 defeat of the
Tampa Bay Rays in his final pre-break start on July 5, allowing a run on two
hits with three strikeouts in seven innings.
He's since been beaten by the Rays and Baltimore on July 17 and 22,
respectively, while giving up 15 hits and six runs in 11 2/3 innings.
Tomlin was a 7-4 loser to the Twins in a June 2 game in Cleveland, where he
surrendered 10 hits and five runs in six innings.
The Indians come in off a big home win on Thursday, when Carlos Santana and
Travis Hafner hit back-to-back homers in a four-run seventh inning and
Asdrubal Cabrera singled home the go-ahead run to lead Cleveland to a 5-3
victory over Detroit in the rubber match of a three-game set at Progressive
Jason Kipnis had two hits and drove in two runs for the Indians, who have won
three of four overall and seven of nine from Detroit this year.
That season-series success with the Tigers is what's kept Cleveland alive in
the American League Central race, and now the Indians trail first-place
Chicago by 3 1/2 games instead of Detroit by five if the Tigers would have won
Zach McAllister lasted 6 1/3 innings for Cleveland, allowing two earned runs
on nine hits and two walks while fanning seven. The vaunted three-headed
bullpen monster of Joe Smith (7-2), Vinnie Pestano and Chris Perez allowed no
runs the rest of the way, with Perez picking up his 29th save.
The Twins return home after being swept in three games by the White Sox in
Chicago. In Wednesday's finale, Dayan Viciedo went 3-for-4 with a two-run home
run and four RBI as the White Sox came through with an 8-2 victory at U.S.
Nick Blackburn (4-6) was tagged with the loss for Minnesota after giving up
eight runs on 10 hits with a walk and a strikeout over 4 1/3 frames.
Denard Span scored a run on a double-play groundout and Justin Morneau added
an RBI double for the Twins, who fell for the fourth time in five tries.
This is the third series between the teams this season. Cleveland swept a two-
game set at Minnesota in May and the Twins won two of three in Cleveland in
The Indians won the season series in 2011, 11 games to seven.
07/27 10:43:21 ET