Twins can create separation in the Wild Card race by beating up on the last place White Sox and Blue Jays

11 straight against the last place White Sox and Blue Jays should help the Twins.

Back in the April, the only people who thought the Twins would be within reach of a playoff spot on Aug. 21, much less in control of one of two wild cards, were probably blackout drunk. 

But the Twins have eclipsed expectations and are tied with the Angels for the second Wild Card in the jam-packed Wild Card standings. 

And now the Twins have a chance to bury some of the teams behind them thanks to an incredibly soft schedule with 11 consecutive games against two last-place teams: Chicago and Toronto. 

The White Sox have lost 25 of 34 since the All-Star break and the Blue Jays are now five games behind Minnesota. If the Twins can just win seven of these next 11 games – eight against the White Sox, three in Toronto – they'll reach Vegas' over/under win total more than a month left to play. 

Other Wild Card contenders

The Angels have won 15 of 21 entering a nine-game homestand against the Rangers, Astros and Athletics.

The Royals will be tested the next week and change with series against the Rockies, Indians, Rays and Twins.

The Mariners are starting an east coast road trip with series against the Braves, Yankees and Orioles.

The Rangers have 10 straight on the road against the Angels, Athletic's and Astros.

An big factor in how the Wild Card standings unfold will be determined by a bunch of head-to-head action between the Angels, Mariners and Rangers. The Twins and Royals play each other seven more times but won't meet the Angels, Mariners or Rangers again this season. 

Even with Miguel Sano on the disabled list, the Twins should mop up over the next 11 games. 

Game 1 of Monday's doubleheader could be the toughest for the Twins. Minnesota is starting Tim Melville against a red-hot Carlos Rodon. In 9 innings this season, Melville has allowed 11 earned runs on 16 hits (5 of them homers) and 9 walks. 

Then Twins will hit against seven guys whom the average fan has never heard of, and the best of those seven - Marco Estrada - could be traded through waivers by the time he's scheduled to take the mound on Saturday. 

  • Monday: Tim Melville (Twins) vs. Carlos Rodon (White Sox)
  • Monday: Dillon Gee (Twins) vs. Carson Fulmer (White Sox)
  • Tuesday: Kyle Gibson (Twins) vs. Lucas Giolito (White Sox)
  • Wednesday: Ervin Santana (Twins) vs. James Shields (White Sox)
  • Thursday: Jose Berrios (Twins) vs. Derek Holland (White Sox)
  • Friday: Bartolo Colon (Twins) vs. Nick Tepesch (Blue Jays)
  • Saturday: Dillon Gee (Twins ) vs. Marco Estrada (Blue Jays)
  • Sunday: Kyle Gibson (Twins) vs. Chris Rowley (Blue Jays)

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