Twins aim for second straight win over Blue Jays (Jul 24, 2018)
They will try to make it two in a row Tuesday in the second contest of a three-game series at the Rogers Centre after being swept in a three-game series against the Kansas City Royals as play resumed after the break.
The Twins will start right-hander Jose Berríos (9-7, 3.68 ERA) against the Blue Jays, who have done things in reverse since the break.
The Blue Jays had won their first three games since the All-Star break by sweeping the Baltimore Orioles. They will try to resume winning Tuesday behind left-handed starter Ryan Borucki (0-1, 3.52).
Berrios will be making his 21st start of the season in his first outing since July 14, when he allowed six runs, six hits and three walks while striking out five over six innings in taking the loss to the Tampa Bay Rays.
This will be his second career start against the Blue Jays. He did not factor in the decision July 14, 2017, when he allowed one run on five hits and four walks in 5 2/3 innings.
Berrios pitched a runless inning in the All-Star Game last Tuesday.
Borucki will be making his fifth career big-league start and the first against the Twins. In his first three starts, he pitched six innings once and seven innings twice. In the left-hander's final start before the break, however, he lasted only three innings and allowed eight hits and seven runs to the Boston Red Sox. He did not factor in the decision as the Blue Jays went on to win 13-7.
During the All-Star break, Borucki was optioned to the minors where he put in two side sessions.
Borucki will help the Blue Jays return to a normal pitching alignment Tuesday. With Marco Estrada (strained glute) not yet ready to return from the disabled list, the Blue Jays went with the bullpen Monday, starting with Luis Santos, who allowed one run in two innings to take the loss. But Tim Mayza allowed four runs in 1 1/3 innings,
"It didn't work too well," Blue Jays manager John Gibbons said. "At the big-league level, you never want to have to do it but sometimes you have to, considering the circumstances."
Estrada was supposed to start for Double-A New Hampshire in a rehabilitation start Monday. That has been changed to Tuesday when he will pitch for Triple-A Buffalo.
Borucki and infielder Lourdes Gurriel Jr. are among the young players who have given the Blue Jays hope for the future.
Gurriel went 2-for-4 with a home run and a walk Monday. It was his sixth straight multi-hit game. "He's always been a guy that puts the good part of the barrel to the ball consistently," Gibbons said. "He can hit breaking balls, he can foul off good breaking balls, stay alive. I think he's got a chance to be a really good player."
Both teams are the subject of trade rumors as the July 31 deadline for deals without waivers approaches.
There was some attention paid late in Monday's game when the Twins removed third baseman Eduardo Escobar in the seventh inning and second baseman Brian Dozier in the eighth. Both have been mentioned in rumors.
Twins manager Paul Molitor said there was no significance to the moves, other than giving the players a break in a one-sided game.
"Just looking for guys to get a little bit of a blow," Molitor said. "After the three games down in Kansas City and a travel day, just trying to give some guys a couple innings off there. I thought it was probably a good time to do that."
Molitor said he had no idea if there had been a trade completed. "I'm the last to know because I haven't heard a thing," he said.