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Detroit Tigers (42-41) at Minnesota Twins (45-39)
Saturday, July 11 - 4:05 PM EST
Target Field, Minneapolis, Minnesota
The Minnesota Twins look to pick up where they left off when they host the Detroit Tigers for the third contest of their four-game series on Saturday. The Twins scored seven times in the ninth inning on Friday to complete a stretch of eight unanswered runs for an 8-6 victory - their third in 11 meetings with the Tigers this season.
It was the fourth win in five games for the Twins, and Brian Dozier has ended two of them with walk-off home runs. The second baseman smacked a three-run shot to cap Friday's comeback after hitting a two-run blast in the 10th inning of Monday's 4-2 win over Baltimore. The Twins will try to continue their hot hitting against the struggling Alfredo Simon, who opposes Minnesota's Phil Hughes. Yoenis Cespedes continues to hurt the Twins, going 3-for-5 with a homer and three RBIs on Friday, and is 6-for-12 with five extra-base hits versus Hughes.
TV: 4:05 p.m. ET, FS1
PITCHING MATCHUP: Tigers RH Alfredo Simon (8-5, 4.18 ERA) vs. Twins RH Phil Hughes (7-6, 4.19)
Simon has been tagged for five or more runs in each of his last four starts, compiling a 10.18 ERA over that span while allowing opponents to hit .381. The 34-year-old was fortunate to have a 12-run outburst behind him in his last outing, giving him his first win since June 14 despite yielding five runs in 5 2/3 innings. One of Simon's best starts of the season came against the Twins on May 12, when he limited them to one run over 7 2/3 frames in a no-decision.
Hughes has turned his season around, capturing three straight decisions as the Twins have won the last five times he has started. The 29-year-old didn't get a decision last time out but held Baltimore to two runs over 6 1/3 innings for his fifth quality start in six outings. Hughes faced Detroit twice in April, going 0-1 while allowing seven runs in 11 frames.
1. Cespedes is a .373 career hitter in 26 games against the Twins and is batting .458 in 14 contests at Target Field.
2. Minnesota DH/3B Miguel Sano went 2-for-3 with a double Friday and is batting .414 through nine major-league games.
3. Detroit CF Anthony Gose is riding an nine-game hitting streak and Cespedes has hit safely in eight straight, while Minnesota 1B/DH Joe Mauer has a seven-game streak.
PREDICTION: Twins 6, Tigers 4