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Twins start homestand Tuesday against Mariners

Royals, Red Sox, and Mauer jersey retirement on the sked

June 11, 2019 - 5:29 am

The weather is warm. The team is winning. And it's easier to get into and out of Target Field.

Three reasons to believe the Twins' homestand will bring large crowds to downtown Minneapolis.

In fact, the Twins have already announced sellouts of more than 39,000 for games Saturday and Sunday against the Kansas City Royals.

The Saturday game features a pregame ceremony to formally retire Joe Mauer's uniform number 7.

Sunday is Father's Day, traditionally a solid draw in any season.

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This season is becoming something to see in person.

The Twins have been in first place in the AL Central since the middle of April, and are now 10 1/2 games clear of the field.

They're doing it with a power-hitting lineup that's on pace to shatter baseball's all-time home run record for one team, spawning the nickname "BombaSquad."

And they have gotten solid pitching from their starters, with relievers managing to get the job done.

Baseball fans across America are taking notice of the Twins, with Jorge Polanco the leader at shortstop in the early voting for the All-Star Game.

The homestand starts with three games against the Seattle Mariners, followed by the Royals over the weekend.

Next Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday night is the only visit of the regular season by the defending World Champion Boston Red Sox.

Here are the pitching matchups for the series against the Mariners:

  • Tuesday: Martín Pérez (7-2, 3.72) vs. Mike Leake (5-6, 4.30), 7:10 p.m.
  • Wednesday: José Berríos (8-2, 3.14) vs. Tommie Malone (1-1, 3.10), 7:10 p.m.
  • Thursday: Michael Pineda (4-3, 5.34) vs. TBA, 12:10 p.m.

The Twins are debuting improvements at Target Field entrance gates that they say will allow fans to get into the ballpark without waiting in long lines.

This is the first home stand where fans are allowed to keep their wallets, keys and cell phones in their pockets while going through security in an effort to get inside quicker.