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Interleague Preview from The Sports Network



Saturday, July 2nd (All times eastern)

Milwaukee Brewers (44-39) at Minnesota Twins (35-45), 7:10 p.m.

Probable Starting Pitchers: Milwaukee - Chris Narveson (5-5, 4.42) Minnesota - Carl Pavano (5-6, 4.24)

(Sports Network) - The Milwaukee Brewers try to avoid their fifth straight loss when they clash with the Minnesota Twins in the second of a three-game interleague set tonight at Target Field.

The Brewers, who lost seven in a row earlier this season, have been outscored by a combined 28-6 during this current slump after dropping a 6-2 decision last night on the road.

Joe Mauer tallied three hits and scored twice for the Twins, who won their third in a row following a six-game skid and are now back to .500 at home (17-17). Jim Thome contributed a three-run homer in the first inning for the hosts, the 594th of his career and his first since May 23 when he connected for a pair against the Seattle Mariners.

Minnesota, which has won three in a row, is still 10 games below .500 on the season and eight games out of contention in the American League Central. A big part of the problem is that the Twins have the largest negative run differential (minus-78) in the AL at this point in the season.

Milwaukee starter Francisco Liriano struck out seven batters, walked two and gave up just four hits and the two runs over the course of seven innings as he picked up his fifth win of the campaign.

Yovani Gallardo was charged with five hits and five runs -- three earned -- over the course of his seven innings. In picking up his fifth loss of the campaign, Gallardo also walked four batters.

"We're letting too many guys get on base," Brewers manager Ron Roenicke said. "Walks have hurt us. You can't walk people. It's better to give up the solo home run instead of walking guys. Thome is a good hitter. He tried to throw a curveball to him and left it up in the zone. He doesn't usually miss that pitch."

Ryan Braun singled in a run in the third inning for the Brewers to extend his career-best hitting streak to 21 games. Braun's hitting streak is fifth-best all-time in Brewers history but is still a distant 18 games behind Paul Molitor who holds the record with a 39-game streak from back in 1987.

Despite the current slide, Milwaukee is just one game off the pace set by the St. Louis Cardinals in the National League Central.

Now in his 13th major league season, Carl Pavano has been set as the starter for the Twins tonight. The right-hander actually just faced Milwaukee in his last outing on Saturday and looked good early before being hit hard.

Pavano, who is 2-4 in his career against the Brewers, was eventually tagged for five runs on eight hits, while walking one and striking out five over six innings of action in a 6-2 setback on the road. The loss was the first in five appearances for Pavano who had worked his way back to .500 (5-5) after closing out May with a 2-5 mark.

As for Milwaukee, Chris Narveson is slated to take the hill for the visitors this time around. The lefty was actually on the winning side of the matchup with Pavano last weekend and is now 2-0 in his career versus Minnesota after giving up just the two runs on five hits over 6 2/3 innings of work. Narveson walked two and struck out seven as the Brewers won for the fourth time in his last five appearances.

Prior to this season the Twins had lost three in a row at Milwaukee and seven of the last nine to the club dating back to last season. Both teams are still under .500 in interleague play this year, Minnesota now 7-9 and the Brewers 5-8.

07/02 10:33:09 ET

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