Taking on Verlander: Twins at Tigers 4/27

By: Kelly Thesier/MLB.com

DETROIT — After a day off yesterday, the Twins are getting ready to kick off a three-game series with the Tigers in what will be their first meeting since that epic Game 163 last year.

For me, it’s a chance to return to my hometown (really, I’m from the outer suburbs) and there’s nothing like a nice night at home with a homecooked meal like I had on Monday to start off a road series. And it certainly doesn’t hurt to be in Detroit when the Red Wings are playing a Game 7 against the Phoenix Coyotes, although I’m hoping just to catch the end of that since the games will likely overlap.

As for the news today, Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said there is no real update on Nick Punto. He’s scheduled to see a hip specialist in the Twin Cities this week and get his right hip checked out as a precautionary measure.

While a lot of guys have strong numbers against Verlander, Gardenhire chose to leave Delmon Young on the bench with Jim Thome as the DH and Jason Kubel in left field. He said that lefties were hitting better off Verlander than righties (.354 BA vs. .200 BA ) and Thome’s 7 homers also stuck out.

Here are the splits for the three vs. Verlander:
Kubel  .360 BA (9-for-25), 0 HR, 7 RBIs, 4 walks
Thome .244 BA (10-for-41), 7 HR, 11 RBIs, 10 walks
Young  .278 (5-for-18), 0 HR, 1 RBI, 2 walks

And
now, here are the lineups:

Twins

(13-6)
Denard Span, CF
Orlando
Hudson, 2B
Joe Mauer, C
Justin Morneau, 1B
Michael Cuddyer,

RF
Jason Kubel, LF
Jim Thome, DH
J.J. Hardy, SS
Brendan
Harris, 3B
Pitching: LHP Francisco Liriano (2-0, 1.29 ERA)

Tigers (11-9)
Austin Jackson, CF
Johnny Damon, DH
Magglio Ordonez, RF
Miguel Cabrera, 1B
Brandon Inge, 3B
Ryan Raburn, LF
Gerald Laird, C
Scott Sizemore, 2B
Ramon Santiago, SS
Pitching: RHP Justin Verlander (1-1, 6.95 ERA)

A reminder
you
can follow me on Twitter  @kellythesier 

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