MLB Baseball

Final 1 2 3   4 5 6   7 8 9   R H E
Minnesota1 0 2 0 3 0 0 0 0 680
Boston0 0 0 0 4 0 0 1 0 560
  W: L. Thorpe (2-1)   L: R. Porcello (12-11)   S: T. Rogers (23)
4:10 PM PT5:10 PM MT6:10 PM CT7:10 PM ET19:10 ET23:10 GMT7:10 4:10 PM MST6:10 PM EST6:40 PM VEN3:10 UAE (+1)6:10 PM CT, September 3, 2019
Fenway Park, Boston, Massachusetts  Attendance: 35,129

Red Sox enter challenging road ahead vs. Twins

According to STATS
According to STATS

Minnesota Twins at Boston Red Sox

  1. The Red Sox took two of three at Minnesota in June, and have won five of six in the series. Since the start of the 2014 season, the Red Sox are 13-6 against the Twins in Boston, limiting Minnesota hitters to 2.9 runs per game and a .205 batting average.
  2. The Twins arrive in Boston having gone 13-4 since August 15, tied with the Braves for the best record in the majors. Since August 15, Minnesota is averaging 7.47 runs -- second only to Washington's 7.56 runs per game for the highest in MLB -- and is leading the majors with a .303 batting average.
  3. Jorge Polanco has reeled off six straight multi-hit games, matching Roy Smalley from 1979 for the longest consecutive multi-hit game streak by a shortstop in Twins club history. Polanco hit his 20th homer of the season Saturday, the most by a Minnesota shortstop since Smalley also had 20 in 1986.
  4. Nelson Cruz, 39, has recorded five consecutive multi-hit games -- the longest by a batter at least 39 years old in a single season since 39-year-old Torii Hunter had a six-game streak in 2014. Since the All-Star break, Cruz is batting .407 with six home runs and 18 RBI in 16 road games.
  5. The Red Sox have won 11 of 15 with an AL-best 3.54 ERA since August 13. This immediately follows a 4-12 stretch in which Boston pitchers had a 6.06 ERA.
  6. J.D. Martinez has reached base safely in 13 straight games, slashing .404/.492/.872 with six home runs and 21 RBI -- most in the majors since August 16. Since 2017, Martinez has a .344/.420/.706 slash line with 46 home runs and 124 RBI in 128 games from August until the end of the regular season.
Notes Applicable For Series Dates: 9/3/2019 thru 9/5/2019

Entering their final extended homestand of the year, the Boston Red Sox know reaching the postseason remains a tall task.

Manager Alex Cora still believes his group is up for the challenge.

"For us, nothing is impossible in this game," Cora said. "We're very talented. That's the same group that won a World Series. Obviously, it hasn't happened the way we wanted, but I've been saying it all along: There's different ways to get to the World Series. We took the difficult route, and we're ready for it."

Difficult is the best way to describe what the Red Sox have ahead for them as they welcome a pair of division leaders over the next seven days. It begins Tuesday, as the Minnesota Twins visit for the start of a three-game series.

Right-hander Rick Porcello (12-10, 5.42 ERA) will kick off the pivotal stretch on the mound for Boston. Minnesota will counter with right-hander Randy Dobnak (0-0, 0.00), who will make his first major league start.

The American League Central-leading Twins enter red-hot, having won eight of their last nine. After Minnesota, the Red Sox will welcome the AL East-leading New York Yankees for four games -- their last series against their rivals this season.

While Boston was off Monday, Minnesota edged the Detroit Tigers 4-3 in a Labor Day matinee. Max Kepler hit a go-ahead, two-run single in the eighth inning to key the comeback victory.

Earlier in the contest, Ehire Adrianza hit a two-run home run, extending the Twins' major league record total as a club this year to 269.

"Not every game is going to come with home runs and with margins of victory and things like that," Twins manager Rocco Baldelli said following the narrow victory. "The fact that our guys just kept playing hard -- we're well into a road trip right now, and our guys found a way to get it done. We got it done."

Minnesota has gone 6-1 on its 10-game trip that ends in Boston before the Twins return home to face the Cleveland Indians, who are second in the AL Central.

The Red Sox, meanwhile, trail the Oakland Athletics, Indians and Tampa Bay Rays in the wild-card race. They are five games behind the Indians, who hold the second wild card. Boston's remaining slate includes what could be a season-defining four-game set at Tampa Bay from Sept. 20-22.

The Red Sox and Twins met in June, with Boston winning two of three at Minnesota.

In that series, Porcello enjoyed one of his best starts of the year, shutting the Twins out over seven innings and striking out eight. Against Minnesota, Porcello is 13-10 with a 3.69 ERA over 32 career starts.

Entering the final month of the worst season of his career, Porcello is coming off an August in which he showed improvement at 3-2 with a 4.00 ERA over 27 innings.

Dobnak, 24, gets his first starting nod after three scoreless appearances out of the bullpen to begin his big league career. He isn't expected to pitch deep into the game after throwing 70 pitches across his last two outings, both coming since Aug. 29.

Dobnak will pitch in place of ace right-hander Jose Berrios, whose start was pushed back a day to Wednesday.

-Field Level Media

Updated September 2, 2019

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