Brewers-Twins Preview

The Milwaukee Brewers’ road struggles seem to be even worse in

interleague play.

After another lackluster offensive performance, Milwaukee will

try to bounce back and snap a five-game skid away from home when it

continues its series against the Minnesota Twins on Saturday.

The Brewers (44-39) have the worst road record in the NL at

15-28, and those struggles have been more pronounced in interleague

play. They are 1-6 in AL ballparks this year, averaging 2.4 runs

and hitting .214.

After totaling four runs over three games while being swept on

the road by the New York Yankees earlier this week, their offensive

misery continued Friday as they lost 6-2 to Minnesota (35-45),

managing four hits against Francisco Liriano and two relievers.

Milwaukee has lost 11 of 17 overall, dropping one game behind

St. Louis in the NL Central.

“We’re back to just not playing that well,” manager Ron

Roenicke said. “Defensively, we haven’t played that well the last

few days. Offensively, we’re not swinging it.”

Prince Fielder, who went 0 for 4 with three strikeouts in the

series finale against the Yankees, went 0 for 4 with a pair of

strikeouts Friday.

One Brewer seemingly unaffected by the road struggles is Ryan

Braun, who extended his hitting streak to 21 games with a single in

the third inning Friday. His hitting streak is the franchise’s

longest since Corey Hart’s 22-game run in 2007.

While Milwaukee is trying to get its offense going, visitors are

finding it a lot harder to hit at Target Field than earlier this

season.

The Twins, who have won three straight overall, improved to

17-17 at home with Friday’s win. They’ve won 10 of their last 11 at

Target Field, giving up two runs or fewer in seven of those

games.

“It’s a sign of life anyway,” reliever Joe Nathan said. “We’d

like to build on this and continue to progress and get

better.”

While Minnesota remains eight games out of first in the AL

Central, the Twins are showing progress as they continue to deal

with a myriad of injuries. Two players that have struggled to stay

healthy came up big Friday. Jim Thome hit a three-run homer, the

594th of his career, and Joe Mauer had his first three-hit game of

the season.

Mauer is hitting .244 in 13 games since returning from the

disabled list.

For the second time in less than a week, Chris Narveson (5-5,

4.42 ERA) and Carl Pavano (5-6, 4.24) will face off. They opposed

each other Sunday, when Narveson and the Brewers prevailed 6-2.

Narveson gave up two runs and struck out seven over 6 2-3

innings while Pavano allowed five runs in six innings.

Narveson has won three of his last four starts, but is just 1-3

in eight road starts – six of them Milwaukee losses. Pavano,

meanwhile, is 3-1 with a 2.64 ERA at home.

Braun is 4 for 10 off Pavano with two home runs and a triple.

One of the homers came Sunday.