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Game Thread: Indians trying to win the series against the worst team in the division

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It would be nice if the Indians bats can find a divine spark or something today.

Jason Miller/Getty Images

Cleveland Indians vs. Minnesota Twins

Sunday, May 15, 2016. 1:10 p.m. ET. Progressive Field

TV: STO

Radio: WTAM

--

INT. BASEBALL SENATE HALL, DAY.

MATT ADDRESSES CROWD OF SENATORS BETWEEN TWO MARBLE COLUMNS.

MATT:
Will the Cleveland Indians be able to beat the Minnesota Twins today?
The Indians have alternated wins and losses for the last seven games.
Yesterday, the Indians lost.
Therefore, the Indians will win today.
QED.

takes seat to thunderous applause, when suddenly the GOD OF BASEBALL literally rides lightning onto the stage of the Senate Hall, which catches fire. Several senators immediately perish in flames, while the other obediently look on.

GOD OF BASEBALL:
Preposterous logic! You mean to pass such a spurious pattern as indisputable evidence of an inescapable trend?

MATT:
Well. Not quite. But the Indians are pretty much stuck in an endless dance where they're either one game above .500 or two games above .500. It's almost like some awful deity is keeping them locked in a struggle with their own mediocrity.

gasps echo throughout the hall, although some are simply because the gasper is on now on fire.

GOD OF BASEBALL:
I never interfere with the day-to-day outcomes of games. You yourself admit the team in question struggles to acquire sufficient talent to reach their goals.

MATT:
Sure, but isn't today a pretty straightforward game? The Twins, despite what we've seen in this series, aren't a very good team. Today they send Tyler Duffey to the mound, who represents this pretty well; despite allowing only five runs in three starts, he's 0-2. He's certainly pitched well, but his xFIP is nearly a full point higher than his ERA, and we can expect some regression. Why not today?

Fire on stage continues to spread.

GOD OF BASEBALL:
Oh yes, pitcher wins. What strong argument that is. The more relevant point one might make regards Trevor Bauer's merely adequate return the the Tribe's starting rotation. While he threw seven shutout innings in his last performance, he failed to notch a quality start in his first two. The Indians will need to provide serious run support to ensure that their pitching staff has a chance to succeed.

MATT:
Being hundreds of years old I would have figured you'd be in favor of things like pitcher wins, and here you are throwing Quality Starts out at me.

GOD OF BASEBALL:
Everyone always remembers OLD STATISTICS God. Just an awful being. Much more progressive now, you see.

MATT:
Right. Well, let's hope Bauer can limit the Twins inexperienced offense enough to let the Tribe's bats break through in the rubber match today. Another thing to watch for—

Fire on stage reaches oil lamps on side. Baseball Senate Hall explodes in a fireball.

FIN.

Today's Lineups

MINNESOTA TWINS CLEVELAND INDIANS
Joe Mauer - DH Carlos Santana - 1B
Eduardo Nunez - SS Jason Kipnis - 2B
Miguel Sano - 3B Francisco Lindor - SS
Byung-ho Park - 1B Mike Napoli - DH
Oswaldo Arcia - RF Jose Ramirez - LF
Jorge Polanco - 2B Juan Uribe - 3B
Eddie Rosario - LF Tyler Naquin - CF
Juan Centeno - C Chris Gimenez - C
Danny Santana - CF Michael Martinez - RF
Tyler Duffey - RHP Trevor Bauer - RHP