The second-place Minnesota Twins?
In late June?
Wasn't this team supposed to be eliminated from playoff contention by Mother's Day?
After two 90-plus loss seasons, a lot of people figured that's how the script would play out. But the Twins are stubbornly hanging around .500 (33-36), good for fourth place right now in the American League Central Division.
Tonight through Sunday, they face second-place Cleveland at Progressive Field. If they sweep the Indians as they did the Chicago White Sox at Target Field this week, Minnesota could improbably settle into second-place.
First things first, though -- and that's winning tonight's contest. Samuel Deduno (3-1, 3.26 ERA) starts for Minnesota against Cleveland left-hander Scott Kazmir (3.4, 5.89).
After Cleveland, the Twins head to Miami for a two-game set against the Marlins. After that, things get a bit tougher with an eight-game homestand against Kansas City and New York, with four game sets against both the Royals and Yankees.