Rich Hill (1-1, 4.70 ERA) vs. Shane Bieber (2-2, 1.72 ERA)
The Minnesota Twins and Cleveland Indians will do it all over again on Tuesday following a battle between Kenta Maeda and Aaron Civale last night. Maeda, who was close to a no-hitter two games ago, started off much differently on Monday. Maeda gave up a quick run in the 1st inning to spoil a no-hit bid much earlier this time.
That said, Maeda settled in and went 5 innings with only that 1-run allowed. It was enough to make the Dodgers wonder again where was that Maeda when he was in Los Angeles. A chance of scenery does some pitchers well sometimes. Pitching in Los Angeles or New York, like Sonny Gray, isn’t for everyone.
The AL Central is a three-team race between the White Sox, Indians, and Twins. All three teams are within three games as we go into the halfway mark of the 2020 season. I know, it feels like the season just started, and given that baseball is a 162-game sport, it kind of did just start. However, in 2020, 30 games is what constitutes the halfway mark because of the shortened campaign.
You can look at that from two perspectives. One, it makes every game count that much more. However, two, baseball was meant to be a marathon and not a sprint to the finish. I was hoping for at least an 80-game schedule, but the owners weren’t going to let that happen with no fans in the seats. I don’t know if anything would change in the AL Central regardless of how many games there are on the sked.
The Twins, Indians, and White Sox would be the top-3 teams. We don’t have a full sample size of games this season, but I think the standings would look somewhat how they are now at the 100-game mark in a normal year. The AL Central is going to continue to be one of the more competitive divisions in baseball.
Last night the edge went to the Twins in a 3-2 win. Veteran Rich Hill will be in the saddle for the Twins against Shane Bieber and the Indians on Tuesday. Head below for our free Minnesota Twins vs. Cleveland Indians pick for August 24. 2020.
Minnesota Twins vs. Cleveland Indians MLB Betting Odds:
Minnesota Twins vs. Cleveland Indians Prediction:
Former Los Angeles Dodger, Rich Hill, keeps on powering on in the major leagues despite being 40 years of age. Hill isn’t the pitcher he once was, but he’s still decent enough as an option for depth in the rotation. He was effective with the Dodgers last season, though injuries cut his year short. For what feels like the duration of his career, Hill has dealt with recurring blister issues. It isn’t the most serious injury, but something that can derail a pitcher’s effectiveness and keep him on the IL for a while.
Hill recorded an ERA of 2.45 and 1.13 WHIP in 13 games last season. He’s had an ERA below 4.00 since 2014. After getting hammered as a reliever in 2013 with the Indians for a 6.28 ERA in 13 games, Hill reinvented himself into a different pitcher. Nobody beats feather time, though, and his motor is going to eventually die out.
Hill has been suspect on the hill with an ERA of 4.70 through two starts and 7.2 innings. He got touched up for 4 hits and 4 earned runs across 2.2 innings in his most recent outing against the Milwaukee Brewers. That’s where all of the damage was done against Hill. The Indians have had success with a .314 and .398 OBP versus Hill in 23 at-bats. I think Hill should be adequate on Tuesday, but the Twins have a monster challenge versus Cy Young favorite Shane Bieber.
Bieber has elevated his game considerably this season. He has been on fire with a 1.11 ERA and 0.76 WHIP through five games and 40.2 innings of work. Bieber has held the opposition to an average of .175 at the plate. Hill has already foiled the Twins once this season, with just 3 hits and no runs conceded on July 30. Expect Bieber to get the Indians back on track at Progressive Field on Tuesday against their divisional foe.