Minnesota (72-51) at Baltimore (55-69)

Partly Cloudy Currently: Baltimore, MD
Temp: 67° F
  • Game info: 7:05 pm EDT Tue Aug 22, 2006
Preview | Box Score | Recap

The Minnesota Twins have a chance to take over the AL wild-card lead Tuesday when they open a three-game series with the Baltimore Orioles at Camden Yards.

Minnesota was off Monday as it moved within one-half game of the wild card-leading Chicago White Sox, who lost 7-1 to the Detroit Tigers. That four-game series at Comerica Park continues Tuesday night.

The Twins (72-51) are opening a six-game road trip, which concludes with a three-game set against the White Sox this weekend. Minnesota is seven games back of first-place Detroit in the AL Central.

“We’ve never stopped thinking about the division, never have and never will until they say they’ve won the division,” Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said. “When you keep running off wins like this and winning series, you’ll have a chance to be there in the end.”

Minnesota has won five of seven after taking two of three games from the White Sox over the weekend. The Twins won the series finale 7-3 on Sunday.

“We control our own destiny right now,” Twins shortstop Jason Bartlett said.

Minnesota will start Carlos Silva (8-10, 6.30 ERA), who is having the worst season of his career but has settled down lately.

The right-hander gave up two runs and five hits in five innings, but did not factor in the decision in a 7-2 win over the Cleveland Indians on Wednesday. He has allowed three runs or less in five of his last seven starts.

“We have one of the best bullpens in the league,” Silva said. “I feel like I just have to keep the team in the game, especially with the way we’re playing lately.”

Silva lost to the Orioles on June 10, allowing five runs and 10 hits in six innings as Minnesota lost 9-7. He is 1-2 with a 3.25 ERA in four starts and six relief appearances against Baltimore.

Baltimore (55-69) will counter with rookie left-hander Adam Loewen (3-4, 6.12 ERA), who has earned all three of his wins in his last five starts.

The No. 4 overall pick in the 2002 draft, Loewen gave up two runs and four hits while striking out five in 5 2-3 innings to earn a win in a 3-2 victory over the New York Yankees on Wednesday. This will be Loewen’s first appearance against Minnesota.

“He’s taking steps to being a real good pitcher,” Orioles manager Sam Perlozzo said. “We’re happy about that.”

Baltimore had a season-high four-game winning streak snapped Sunday with a 9-2 loss to the Toronto Blue Jays.

Orioles shortstop Miguel Tejada hit his 22nd homer. He is 8-for-16 with two home runs, three doubles and six RBIs in his last four games, and is batting .462 (6-for-13) with four extra-base hits against Silva.

Baltimore scored 34 runs in its previous three games before being held to five hits Sunday. The Orioles are in the middle of a nine-game homestand.

Minnesota took two of three games at home against Baltimore from June 9-11.

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Starting Pitchers

C. Silva Bos vs. A. Loewen Phi
11-15 Record 6-6
5.94 ERA 5.37
70 K 98
32 BB 62
1.54 WHIP 1.54


Tuesday, Aug 22