The Minnesota Twins and Cleveland Guardians square off on Monday with first pitch set for 7:10 p.m. ET. The game takes place at Progressive Field in Cleveland, Ohio and will only be available on local TV or through an MLB.tv subscription. Sonny Gray (3-1, 2.53 ERA) will get the starting nod for Minnesota while Cleveland counters with Triston McKenzie (4-5, 3.51 ERA).
The Twins (41-33) are coming off a series win against the Colorado Rockies and are atop the AL Central. Minnesota got a little bit of a surprise on Sunday as their pitching coach Wes Johnson said he was leaving the team this week to become the pitching coach at LSU. This is predominantly unheard of and makes you question what he knows about the Minnesota pitching staff that we don’t. Either way, Gray will be making his 10th start of the year and his third against Cleveland. His first start against the team was his best even though he only pitched 4.1 innings and gave up four hits and two earned runs while striking out eight on his way to a no-decision.
The Guardians (36-32) went into the weekend tied for the division lead but got swept by the Boston Red Sox. They also just played the Twins last week and won two of three but the final game sparked their current four-game losing streak. This will be McKenzie's 14th start of the year and he has faced the Twins twice already. In his most recent, he lasted 4.1 innings and gave up nine hits and six earned runs while striking out five although he didn’t factor into the decision.
Twins vs. Guardians
Pitchers: Sonny Gray vs. Triston McKenzie
First pitch: 7:10 p.m. ET
Twins local broadcast: Bally Sports North
Guardians local broadcast: Bally Sports Great Lakes
Live stream: MLB.tv (subscription)
Odds, picks & predictions
Run Line: Minnesota -1.5
Run total: 8
Moneyline odds: Minnesota -125, Cleveland +105
Moneyline pick: Minnesota -125
This will likely be another ugly series for these two teams. Neither pitcher has been playing very well and is going to have to rely on their lineup to pull off the win. Between the two, Gray will have a solid start, but it will likely be a bullpen day for Minnesota after an early pull. I think the Twins have the better chance to take this one with their lineup.
Player prop pick: Triston McKenzie under 5.5 strikeouts (-115)
McKenzie has under six strikeouts in two of his last four starts. When he faced the Twins earlier this season, he struck out four in his first start and five in his second. In his third round against Minnesota, he will strike out fewer than six batters.
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