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Game 50: Twins (24-25) at Tigers (21-28)

On Saturday night, the Detroit Lions beat the Minnesota Vikings 19-3.

Well, that's what everyone had to be thinking as the Tigers hung a football-like score on the Twins last night.

After being MIA Friday, the offense picked where it had left off, pounding Twins pitching for 17 hits, led by Magglio Ordonez, with 3 hits, 4 runs, 2 home runs and 6 RBI. Ordonez is white hot at the plate, hitting 365 with 28 RBIs in his last 30 games, raising his average to .330 in the process.

Joining Ordonez in the hit parade is the suddenly resuscitated Gary Sheffield (2 hits, 2 runs, 3 RBI). In the last 4 games, Sheffield is hitting .368, raising his anemic average 25 points to .208. This is about the same time Sheffield began to carry the offense in 2007, so if he has finally found his comfort zone at the plate, it only portends good things for the Tigers offense.

Speaking of the offense, Tigers have scored nine runs or more in four of their last five games, going 4-1. Let's hope the trend continues, and the Tigers win their second consecutive series.

Today, in the rubber game of the 3 game set, the Tigers send Justin Verlander (2-7, 5.61 ERA) to the mound. The Tigers supposed ace snapped a 4 game losing streak when he beat the Mariners Tuesday, in what was his best performance of the season. Let's hope Verlander can carry that momentum into today's game.

Left hander Glenn Perkins (1-1, 3.44), who began the season at Triple-A Rochester, will pitch for the Twins. In three career relief appearances against Detroit, Perkins has not received a decision, posting a 3.38 ERA. As a starter this season, he's pitched well for the Twins, going 3 for 3 in quality starts.

Today's lineups:

Minnesota Twins

C. Gomez

A. Casilla 2b

J. Mauer c

J. Morneau 1b

M. Cuddyer rf

J. Kubel dh

D. Young lf

M. Lamb 3b

B. Harris ss

Detroit Tigers:

R. Raburn cf

P. Polanco 2b

G. Sheffield dh

M. Ordonez rf

M. Cabrera 1b

C. Guillen 3b

M. Thames lf

E. Renteria ss

B. Inge c