The Twins swept the sad-sack Baltimore Orioles, moved five games above .500 and have a one-game lead on the Cleveland Indians after the Tribe were blown out by the Atlanta Braves on Sunday.
The timing couldn’t be better for the Twins because now they’re going to get their first real test of the season when they travel to Houston for the first game of a three-game set. Over those three games, the Twins will face Brad Peacock, Wade Miley and Justin Verlander, who already is 3-0 on the young season.
The Twins will counter with Jake Odorizzi and Michael Pineda; the third starter has yet to be announced. Odorizzi is coming off a 4-1 defeat of the Toronto Blue Jays and is 3-1 with a 2.12 ERA in five career starts against the Astros, according to AP.
Odorizzi won his first game last week and Kyle Gibson did the same on Sunday, defeating the Orioles, 4-3. Gibson struck out six over six innings, allowing five hits and two runs, both earned.
After the Twins smashed 11 home runs on Saturday, there were no long balls hit on Sunday. The Twins scored four runs on nine hits, getting extra-base hits from Willians Astudillo, Byron Buxton and Jorge Polanco.
-If it all goes badly for the Twins in Houston, at least they have this to look forward to: the Orioles come to Target Field Friday.