Twins-Brewers Preview

Associated Press  |  Last updated May 26, 2013
The Minnesota Twins and Milwaukee Brewers both continue to struggle, worsening records that were already two of the worst in baseball. But each team's star - Joe Mauer and Ryan Braun - have done anything but struggle in recent meetings against each other's team. Each will look to get their respective clubs back on track Monday as Minnesota and Milwaukee meet in a four-game series, beginning with two contests at Miller Park. The Twins (19-28) enter having lost 11 of 12 while struggling on the mound and at the plate. Their pitchers own a 6.11 ERA during that stretch and the offense has scraped together only 2.7 runs per game while batting .214. Minnesota was limited to three hits and starter Mike Pelfrey was charged with five runs and five hits over 5 2-3 innings in a 6-1 loss at Detroit Sunday. Despite an 0-for-4 performance Sunday, Mauer will try to give Minnesota a lift as he often has against Milwaukee. A .359 career hitter versus the Brewers, he's batting .456 with six three-plus hit games over the last 16. The Brewers (19-29) lost for the ninth time in 12 games with a 5-4 defeat to Pittsburgh Sunday. They're also experiencing a severe run shortage of late, scoring 18 over their last seven contests. Manager Ron Roenicke met with general manager Doug Melvin for about an hour prior to Sunday's defeat, according to the team's official website. "Nobody's happy about how we're playing," Roenicke said. "We need to figure out what we can do to try to get it back on track again. There are no clear answers." Braun, who drove in three of Milwaukee's runs with a fifth-inning double, is 17 for 38 (.447) with five homers and 16 RBIs in his last nine versus Minnesota. The slugger hasn't always had a ton of success against Monday's Twins starter Kevin Correia, however, going 8 for 31, though he homered twice. Correia (4-4, 3.90 ERA) forged a solid start to the season with a 3-1 record and 2.23 ERA in his first five outings. The last four have been forgettable though as he's 1-3 with a 6.75 ERA. The most recent was his toughest yet, with Correia giving up five runs and eight hits over a season-low four innings in a 5-1 loss at Atlanta last Monday. "I didn't throw the ball real great tonight," Correia said. "As far as this season, I think that was the only start that I didn't feel like I had good command of something I could go with." Starting for Milwaukee will be Wily Peralta (3-5, 6.45), who has also been hit hard lately. He's lost three straight starts while surrendering 13 earned runs in 12 2-3 innings. The Brewers didn't back him up well defensively in those games, committing five errors. "I'm leaving too many pitches up, right down the middle, up in the zone," Peralta said. "Things are not happening my way." Correia is 4-6 lifetime versus the Brewers but went 2-0 with a 2.50 ERA against them last year in four games, including two starts.
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