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Picks, predictions for Twins vs. Blue Jays on Friday, June 9

Henry Palattella shares their top picks on DraftKings Sportsbook for Twins-Blue Jays on Friday, June 9.

Carlos Correa of the Minnesota Twins celebrates with Trevor Larnach after hitting a home run in the fourth inning against the Tampa Bay Rays at Tropicana Field on June 08, 2023 in St Petersburg, Florida. Photo by Julio Aguilar/Getty Images

Friday’s series opener between the Twins and Blue Jays features two teams going in different directions: Toronto has won three games in a row to tread water in the loaded AL East, while Minnesota has now dropped five straight to watch their lead in the lowly AL Central fall to just 1.5 games. The Twins will turn to Sonny Gray (4-1, 2.15 ERA) to try and snap the skid on Friday night against Blue Jays lefty Yusei Kikuchi (6-2, 4.40 ERA). First pitch from Rogers Centre is set for 7:07 p.m. ET.

Toronto is a -120 moneyline favorite at DraftKings Sportsbook, while Minnesota is a narrow +100 underdog. The run total is set at 8.5.

Twins-Blue Jays picks: Friday, June 9

Injury report


Day to day: 2B Jorge Polanco (left hamstring tightness)
Out: DH Byron Buxton (left rib contusion), RP Cole Sands (right shoulder impingement), OF/1B Joey Gallo (left hamstring strain), SP Kenta Maeda (right triceps strain), RP Jorge Alcala (right radial stress fracture)

Blue Jays

Day to day: OF Kevin Kiermaier (left wrist contusion)
Out: C Danny Jansen (left groin strain), RP Zach Pop (right hamstring)

Starting pitchers

Sonny Gray vs. Yusei Kikuchi

Gray is coming off his first loss of the season, allowing three runs in 6.2 innings against the Guardians. Still, the righty has been excellent this season, going at least five innings in all of his starts and not allowing more than three earned runs in any of them. Gray throws six pitches, and is holding batters to a .200 batting average against with his sinker and cutter.

After going 4-0 with a 3.00 ERA in his five April outings, Kukuchi has struggled over the past month and change, as he has a 5.50 ERA in the seven starts he’s made in May and June. The lefty is coming off a five-inning start against the Mets where he allowed two earned runs while striking out eight. He ranks in the 5th percentile in average exit velocity, the 8th percentile in hard-hit rate and the 7th percentile in expected slugging.

Over/Under pick

While the Blue Jays are among the league’s best offenses, I’m backing the under here. Toronto hit the under in all three games in their series against the Astros (and have only hit this over in two of the games they’ve played in June), while the Twins have only hit this over in one of their games since the calendar flipped.

Pick: Under 8.5

Moneyline pick

While Gray lost his last start, he’s clearly the better starter going tonight. His best pitches are the ones that he primarily throws to right-handed batters, which could make a big difference tonight against the Blue Jays right-handed heavy lineup.

Pick: Twins