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HomeSportsBaseballMLB News: Twins in 'great spot' after comeback win against Rays

MLB News: Twins in ‘great spot’ after comeback win against Rays

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Carlos Santana speaks from experience when he says the Minnesota Twins have a tight-knit clubhouse and a determined work ethic.

Santana, 38, has played for seven teams during his 15-year career. This is his first season with the Twins, who will go for seven wins in a row when they play the Tampa Bay Rays on Wednesday evening in Minneapolis in the second contest of a three-game series.

“The energy is great,” Santana said. “We play hard every day. I can see everybody preparing every day. Right now, we’re playing for wins. We know it’s a long season, the thing is up and down, but right now we’re in a great spot.”

Santana is the Twins’ latest hero after providing a two-out, walk-off RBI single in the bottom of the ninth inning Tuesday to lift the Twins to a 7-6 win over the Rays in the series opener. Minnesota erased a 4-0 deficit to rally for the victory.

The Rays will try to bounce back as they look to avoid their second series loss in a row.

Tampa Bay could be without right-hander Pete Fairbanks out of the bullpen. Fairbanks left Tuesday’s game with two outs in the ninth inning after he was hit in the hand by a comebacker off the bat of the Twins’ Carlos Correa that went for a hit.

The Rays said X-rays were negative on Fairbanks, who sustained a bruised right thumb.

“I think Pete will be OK,” Rays manager Kevin Cash said.

Twins right-hander Joe Ryan (5-5, 3.24 ERA) is set to make his 15th start of the season. He has recorded back-to-back quality starts against the Pittsburgh Pirates and Oakland Athletics in his most recent efforts, allowing two runs in seven innings each time.

This will be Ryan’s second career start against the Rays. He earned a no-decision in his first matchup as he allowed two runs on five hits in 4 2/3 innings for a 3.86 ERA in a Twins win last September.

The Rays will counter with right-hander Taj Bradley (2-4, 4.23), who is slated to make his eighth start of 2024. The 23-year-old has 50 strikeouts in 38 1/3 innings.

Bradley earned a win in his most recent outing. He held the Cubs to two unearned runs on three hits in seven innings, and he walked two while striking out a season-high 11.

Last season, Bradley made one start against the Twins. He gave up four runs on four hits in 4 2/3 innings for a 7.71 ERA but escaped with a no-decision in his team’s 5-4 win.

Randy Arozarena will look to maintain his success against the Twins. The Rays outfielder hit a three-run homer on Tuesday night, and he is hitting .353 (24-for-68) with five homers and 15 RBIs in 19 career games against Minnesota.

Rays infielder Jose Caballero should be available once again after returning to the lineup for the series opener. Caballero had not played since Friday because of an illness as well as tightness in his left calf.

Minnesota is 23-14 at home. The Twins have gone 21-8 in their past 29 home games after starting out 2-6 at Target Field.

The Rays are 15-16 on the road.

–Field Level Media

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