Oakland Athletics’ Cole Irvin against the Toronto Blue Jays during a baseball game in Oakland, Calif., Tuesday, May 4, 2021. (AP Photo/Jeff Chiu)
- The Minnesota Twins are -136 home favorites against the Oakland Athletics on Saturday at Target Field in Minneapolis
- Jose Berrios (3-2, 3.49 ERA) will start for the Twins against left-hander Cole Irvin (3-4, 3.29)
- A look at the Athletics-Twins matchup with a prediction can be found below
The reeling Minnesota Twins will try to get back on track when they host the Oakland Athletics at 4:05pm ET Saturday at Target Field in Minneapolis.
Jose Berrios (3-2, 3.49) will start for the Twins, who have lost five games in a row and eight of their last nine. At 12-24, Minnesota is last in the American League Central after winning the division the previous two seasons.
The Athletics (24-16) will counter with left-hander Cole Irvin (3-4, 3.29). Oakland has won three of its last four games and five of seven but is the underdog in this matchup.
Athletics vs Twins Odds
|Team||Moneyline at DraftKings||Runline||Total|
|Oakland Athletics||+115||+1.5 (-177)||Over 8.5 (-117)|
|Minnesota Twins||-136||-1.5 (-148)||Under 8.5 (-105)|
Odds as of May 15th.
Irvin Revelation for Oakland
Irvin has been a revelation for the Athletics, who acquired him from the Philadelphia Phillies in a cash transaction Jan. 30.
Irvin is 3-2 with a 2.01 ERA in his last five starts after losing his first two times out this year. He also has not walked more than one batter in any of his seven outings this season and has issued a total of just six walks in 41 innings.
What an outing by Cole Irvin 👏 pic.twitter.com/gaSKTUyMTa
— A’s on NBCS (@NBCSAthletics) May 5, 2021
Last Sunday, Irvin lost to the Tampa Bay Rays at home as he gave up four runs (three earned) and four hits in six innings with three strikeouts and one walk. It was the first time he surrendered more than two runs since April 8.
Irvin was 2-2 with a 6.75 ERA in 19 games, including three starts, for the Phillies in the past two seasons.
He is facing the Twins for the first time in his career.
Twins Career Stats vs Irvin
The Twins have been held to three runs or less in seven of their past nine games and are averaging 3.4 a game during that time.
Look for Willians Astudillo to again start at first base for Miguel Sano. The Tortuga has hit in eight straight games, going 11-for-30 (.367), and plays the game with a bit of flair.
Willians Astudillo may have broken every single one of baseball’s unwritten rules on one home run 🤣 pic.twitter.com/LD6e73C1Eh
— ESPN (@espn) January 9, 2019
Meanwhile, in five games since being activated from the injured list with a strained right hamstring, Sano is 3-for-21 with 11 strikeouts.
Outfielder Jake Cave has a stress reaction in his back and could be headed to the IL.
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Athletics Have Berrios’ Number
There was good and bad in Berrios’ previous start last Saturday, a no-decision against the Tigers at Detroit.
He allowed just two runs in six innings while throwing a season-high 104 pitches. However, he also allowed five walks and six hits while recording only one strikeout.
Berrios has shown flashes of brilliance this season, though.
In case you haven’t heard yet, Jose Berrios was pretty good tonight. 🔥
6 IP 0 H 12 Ks (8 by Curveball – both tie career high)
Here’s all 8 of them ⬇#MNTwins pic.twitter.com/CrzMY4HQpj
— Inside Edge (@IE_MLB) April 4, 2021
Berrios has gone six innings in each of his last two games. However, he is 1-2 with a 4.33 ERA in his last five outings after winning his first two starts of the season.
In five career starts against the Athletics, Berrios is winless with a 0-3 record and a 4.10 ERA. He had a tough-luck loss against them in Oakland on April 20, when he gave up only one run in five innings.
Athletics Career Stats vs Berrios
The Athletics have scored four runs or fewer in eight of their last game 10, averaging 3.7 in that span. Designated hitter Mitch Moreland is on a five-game hitting streak in which he is 6-for-18 (.333).
Home Run Barrage
The Athletics took the opener of the series 6-1 on Friday night behind home runs by Ramon Laureano, Sean Murphy, Stephen Piscotty and Mark Canha.
STRAIGHT INTO ORBIT 🚀 pic.twitter.com/o5ZpfifmDA
— Oakland A’s (@Athletics) May 15, 2021
Frankie Montas allowed one run in four hits in six innings to get the win. Losing pitcher Matt Shoemaker gave up three of the home runs.
Josh Donaldson homered for the Twins.
The Athletics have won all four meetings between the teams this season and are 13-5 against the Twins since the start of the 2018 season. Look for that trend to continue with the surprising Irvin on the mound.
The Pick: Athletics (+115)
John Perrotto has been covering and writing about sports for various outlets for over 40 years. His work has appeared in the likes of USA TODAY, ESPN.com, SI.com, Forbes.com, The Associated Press, Baseball Digest, and more. John is based out of Beaver Falls, PA.