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Twins Trot Out Another Depleted Lineup In Baltimore

Looking for Joe Mauer in tonight’s game against the Orioles? Too bad. He’s still on the DL of course.

How about Justin Morneau? For tonight, you’re out of luck unless he comes off the bench.

Maybe you were looking for Delmon Young? Wrong. He has the same flu bug that has sidelined the M&M boys.

We here at SB Nation Minnesota try to remain positive—after all, it’s the only thing that keeps us from committing violent crimes given the current state of Minnesota sports—so we’ll be polite about tonight’s Twins lineup. Let’s just say that nobody will confuse them with the 1927 Yankees any time soon.

How bad has it been for the Twins with injuries, illnesses, and under-performance? Here are some facts about the batting order Ron Gardenhire drew up for tonight’s game:

  • The cleanup hitter (Michael Cuddyer) has 0 RBI in 65 plate appearances this year.
  • The #2 hitter (Jason Repko) has a whopping seven at-bats in 2011. (But he does have an RBI!)
  • The starting lineup has two players currently hitting .300 or better (Denard Span, Jason Kubel), but four players hitting .220 or worse (Jim Thome, Luke Hughes, Danny Valencia, Matt Tolbert).
  • We’re only 17 games into the season, yet only two players (Kubel and Valencia) have played every game for the Twins.

Baltimore rookie phenom Zach Britton will be charged with trying to shut down this “powerhouse” lineup at Camden Yards. The young lefty is making his fourth Major League start. He pitched very well in his first two starts, earning the victory in each game. However, he was roughed up by Cleveland in his last outing, giving up 5 runs off 8 hits in the loss.

Taking the mound for the Twins tonight will be Nick Blackburn (1-2). Like Britton, Blackburn was knocked around in his most recent start after pitching fairly well his first two times out.

While things have looked rather bleak for the Twins lately, we’ll leave you with two positive, SB Nation Minnesota-worthy thoughts:

  • The Twins are 24-13 against the Orioles and 12-5 in Baltimore since the 2006 season.
  • It can’t get any worse than last night’s game.

Photographs by Micah Taylor, clairity, and Fibonacci Blue used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.