It's another pivotal divisional series when the Minnesota Twins meet the Chicago White Sox for a weekend series on the southside.
The race in the AL Central is as tightly packed as it's been all season. The Twins are just one game out of first, and the White Sox are not far behind, four games out.
The Twins come into this one off of a series win against the Red Sox, while the White Sox also come into today off a series win against the Kansas City Royals.
Who will grab the first game of the series? Find out in our MLB picks and predictions for Friday, September 2, 2022.
Twins vs White Sox odds
This odds widget represents the best odds available for each betting market from regulated sportsbooks.
The Twins opened up as -120 favorites for this matchup. Since then, they have taken more money and dropped to around -135, with the White Sox returning at +115.
Twins vs White Sox predictions
Picks made on 9/2/2022 at 4:00 p.m. ET.
Click on each pick to jump to the full analysis.
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Twins vs White Sox game info
• Location: Guaranteed Rate Field, Chicago, IL
• Date: Friday, September 2, 2022
• First pitch: 8:10 p.m. ET
• TV: Bally Sports North, NBC Sports Chicago
Twins vs White Sox betting preview
Sonny Gray (7-4, 3.04 ERA): Gray’s xERA sets right in line with his actual ERA, signaling he should be able to finish the season with quality starts. What's hampered him from time to time is the hard-hit ball. His hard-hit rate is below league average and his exit velocity. However, he's been able to overcome most of the issues this season because of an elite fastball and K rate.
Davis Martin (2-4, 4.62 ERA): It's been a rocky season for Martin. He's posted an xERA over just over five, and things could be a bit worse, given some of his advanced metrics. His hard-hit rate, exit velocity, and expected batting average rank among qualified pitchers at the bottom of baseball.
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Betting trend to know
The Twins have scored five or more runs in four of their last five games. Find more MLB betting trends for Twins vs. White Sox
Twins vs White Sox picks and predictions
Our side and total predictions are based upon our analysis of the line and total in this game. Our best bet is our favorite pick across all markets.
I've tried to find multiple ways to get behind the White Sox here. The spot seems nice, given that they are home and hanging on by a thread to their playoff hopes. I'm a fan of backing teams with their backs against the wall. With that being said, I can't get there, given this pitching matchup.
Martin has been targeted this season by teams with formidable hard-hit rates. Most concerning for him is that many of these hard-hit balls have come on his breaking balls, where he's posted negative run values. They haven't resulted from high-velocity pitches and a batting barreling them up. Instead, they've been too many pitches in bad spots.
The Twins are a pretty rough matchup for Martin. They have the fifth-highest hard-hit rate in baseball. The last time Martin saw a team ranking in the Top 5 of hard-hit rate, it got ugly. He faced the Blue Jays, who currently rank third in that category, and couldn't even make it out of the first inning. It's easy to see this one following a similar path.
There's not a ton to say about Gray here. He doesn't have a ton of overwhelming dominating traits or weaknesses. I detailed some of the hard-hit issues above, but that's more a product of being a heavy fastball pitcher than anything. I expect him to take advantage of the White Sox's high swing rate and to have some reasonable success striking batters out. Unfortunately, he had one of his worst starts of the season against the White Sox in his first look against them this season.
I'm willing to throw that one out to a little bad luck more than anything because the numbers simply don't back it up.
Prediction: Twins moneyline (-135 at DraftKings)
The theme of this one is to fade Martin. I'm going to do that any way I can, and one of those ways is backing the Over on the Twins’ team total.
We've discussed Martin's issues with hard-hit balls, but it bears reiterating. His numbers in his last two starts are particularly alarming. The Diamondbacks aren't a solid hitting team, and they just posted some of their best numbers of the season against him in his start.
That makes it near impossible for me not to back an Over of a team that I've felt has been undervalued all season.
Our model projections are aligned with this handicap as well. They project that the Twins go Over this number about 60% of the time. That gives us around a 10% edge vs. this price.
It helps that the Twins' offense has been hot, as well. They've gone Over this total in three of their last four games, including twice in their previous season against the Red Sox.
Back this hot offense that seems primed for a postseason run.
Prediction: Twins team total Over 4.5 (+100 at FanDuel)
It seems pretty clear that I'm very high on the Twins tonight. The pitching mismatch is just a massive one.
I believe you're getting a discounted price on the Twins here because of what Gray did in his last outing against them. It's challenging for me to see that happening again.
Minnesota remains my pick to win the AL Central. The numbers that make up our Power Rankings have consistently signaled that, and I'm following them.
However, to do that, this series becomes immensely important — back Minnesota.
Pick: Twins moneyline (-135 at DraftKings)
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