Rangers come to town (Game 62)

After winning back-to-back series for the first time this year and six of their last seven games, the Twins are finally playing they were expected to this season.

But they have a big test awaiting them at Target Field, as the Rangers come to town for a four-game series. The Rangers, who represented the American League in the World Series last year, are off to another good start this season, leading the AL West by 2 1/2 games entering Thursday.

Twins manager Ron Gardenhire wasn’t shy when asked by a reporter whether Texas is the best team in the AL this year.

“I think so,” Gardenhire said. “I think Texas has the package deal. Their pitching is unbelievable. And they’ve got power arms in the bullpen. They can run and hit for power. They have a little bit of everything. And they have a unique bench that allows them to do a lot of different things. So they’re a really solid baseball team.”

Lineups for Thursday’s 7:10 CT start at Target Field:

Rangers (35-28)

1. Elvis Andrus, SS
2. David Murphy, DH
3. Josh Hamilton, LF
4. Michael Young, 2B
5. Adrian Beltre, 3B
6. Nelson Cruz, RF
7. Mitch Moreland, 1B
8. Yorvit Torrealba, C
9. Endy Chavez, CF

LHP Derek Holland (5-1, 4.36 ERA, 4.01 FIP, 2.14 K/BB)

Twins (23-38)

1. Ben Revere, CF
2. Alexi Casilla, SS
3. Michael Cuddyer, RF
4. Justin Morneau, DH
5. Delmon Young, LF
6. Danny Valencia, 3B
7. Luke Hughes, 1B
8. Rene Rivera, C
9. Matt Tolbert, 2B

RHP Nick Blackburn (5-4, 3.57 ERA, 4.51 FIP, 1.82 K/BB)

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