(Sports Network) - The Minnesota Twins and Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim will
both try to shake off lopsided losses when the teams kick off a three-game
series Monday evening at Angel Stadium.
The Twins had won four in a row before getting slammed by a 7-1 score against
Cleveland on Sunday. The Angels, meanwhile, had a two-game win streak halted
in Sunday's 6-0 setback to the Oakland Athletics.
Minnesota tied its longest winning streak of the season with a 3-2 victory
against the visiting Indians on Saturday, but couldn't solve Justin Masterson
on Sunday. Masterson spun seven innings of one-hit ball to help Cleveland
salvage the finale of the three-game series at Target Field.
Masterson carried a no-hitter into the seventh inning and gave up just one run
and struck out eight without walking a batter.
Brian Dozier had two hits and scored the lone run for the Twins, who also won
four in a row from May 27-30. Scott Diamond (5-9) allowed six runs -- five
earned -- on seven hits and three walks over 4 2/3 innings in the loss.
"My stuff was really bad," Diamond told Minnesota's official web site.
The Twins hope Samuel Deduno can get them back on track on Monday. The
Dominican right-hander last pitched on July 13 against the New York Yankees
and earned the victory after yielding only one run on six hits over seven
innings of work.
The 30-year-old Deduno has never faced the Angels.
Los Angeles, which was shut out by Bartolo Colon in Sunday's setback, sends
the struggling Joe Blanton to the hill in the opener against Minnesota.
Blanton is 2-12 with a 5.53 earned run average this season and is just 1-5
over his last nine trips to the mound. The veteran righty last pitched in
Seattle on July 14 and went only four innings after surrendering four runs and
five hits. Over his last three starts, Blanton is 0-2 with an 8.58 ERA.
Blanton has faced Minnesota once this season and was handed a loss after
yielding four runs and nine hits in 4 2/3 innings during the 8-2 loss at
Target Field on April 15.
He is 5-5 with a 4.21 ERA in 10 career outings against the Twins.
The Angels managed only four hits Sunday against Colon, who tossed his third
shutout of the season to help Oakland avoid a three-game sweep.
Jerome Williams (5-6) gave up six runs -- four earned -- on eight hits over
five-plus innings to absorb the loss.
"I think Jerome threw the ball well, but didn't have a lot of luck. Bartolo
has a gift of command. He threw some good two-seamers. He's becoming more of a
pitcher," said Angels manager Mike Scioscia.
Mike Trout picked up a hit for the Angels to extend his hitting streak to 13
The Twins won both meetings against L.A. earlier this season, posting an 8-2
decision on April 15 before notching an 8-6 victory the following day. The
finale of that three-game series in St. Paul was postponed and is scheduled to
be made up on Sept. 9.
The Sports Network