Minnesota (39-31) at Boston (40-30)

Partly Cloudy Currently: Boston, MA
Temp: 40° F
  • Game info: 1:05 pm EDT Thu Jun 24, 2004
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After pitching brilliantly for a month without getting a victory, Brad Radke finally broke downn in his last start.

He hopes to recover from his worst outing since mid-May when the Minnesota Twins close out a three-game series with the Boston Red Sox at Fenway Park.

Radke, whose last win came in the Twins’ 9-1 victory over the Chicago White Sox on May 22, yielded just one run in three of his next four starts without earning a victory as Minnesota scored a combined six runs in those outings.

On Saturday, Radke appeared to be at his best again, tossing six scoreless innings in Milwaukee as the Twins carried a 5-0 lead into the seventh. But the veteran right-hander was reached for five runs—only two earned—while retiring two batters in the seventh. He did not receive a decision as Minnesota went on to lose 7-6, leaving Radke winless in five outings.

“You have got to tip your hat to their guys. They didn’t hang their heads after they were down five,” said Radke, who has not permitted more than three earned runs since May 17. “I didn’t do my job, that’s for sure.”

Radke has pitched effectively away from the Metrodome this season, going 2-0 with a 3.03 ERA. However, he is 1-3 with a 6.02 ERA in eight career starts at Fenway.

The Twins bounced back from Tuesday’s series-opening 9-2 loss in Boston by beating the Red Sox 4-2 on Wednesday. Torii Hunter homered and drove in three runs for the AL Central-leading.

Making matters worse, the Red Sox added second baseman Pokey Reese to their long injury list. Reese severely sprained his left thumb diving for Luis Rivas’ ground-ball single in the second inning. Reese left the game and X-rays taken at Fenway Park were negative.

Third baseman Bill Mueller, last year’s AL batting champion, is on the disabled list. During the past two weeks two other key players were activated for the first time this season—shortstop Nomar Garciaparra, who missed the first 57 games with Achilles’ tendinitis, and right fielder Trot Nixon, sidelined for the first 63 games with back and thigh problems.

Nixon homered Wednesday for the Red Sox, who have lost three of four.

The Twins dropped three of four before Wednesday’s win.

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Starting Pitchers

B. Radke Min vs. T. Wakefield Bos
11-8 Record 12-10
3.48 ERA 4.87
143 K 116
26 BB 63
1.16 WHIP 1.38