The Blue Jays are a puzzle the Twins simply can't piece together.
Since 2007, Minnesota is 14-37 against Toronto. After dropping their second game to the Blue Jays, 11-2, on Saturday night, the Twins will try to avoid being swept for the sixth time at Target Field this year in the series finale on Sunday afternoon.
It will be the Twins' Andrew Albers' first career start against the only Major League club from his native Canada. But the 27-year-old rookie is coming off his worst start since he arrived in the big leagues, allowing nine hits and five runs over 1 2/3 innings against the Astros on Monday.
Minnesota's young southpaw (2-2, 3.96 ERA) opened his career in stunning fashion, throwing 8 1/3 scoreless innings in his Major League debut and following that up with a two-hit shutout. But he hasn't been as dominant since, giving up five runs in three of his last four starts.
Blue Jays right-hander Esmil Rogers (4-7, 4.76 ERA) will look for just his second win since June 18. After battling through a rough August, Rogers picked up his first win in more than 10 weeks when he tossed 6 1/3 shutout innings in a victory over the D-backs on Monday.
"I've been working a lot with getting my confidence back, and I got it today," Rogers said. "I was pounding the zone and attacking everybody. If you throw a first-pitch strike, you can do whatever you want. I didn't throw too many high pitches. I just tried to stay down in the zone, and if they swing at those, it's going to be on the ground."
Blue Jays: Lind back on track
Adam Lind proved his offensive tear isn't over by launching a pair of three-run homers in the Blue Jays' win on Saturday.
Lind was hitless in his last two games, but announced his presence early by plating Toronto's first three runs in the first inning. His second shot scored the Blue Jays' final three runs in the ninth. Lind has at least one hit in 15 of his last 20 games and is batting .333 in that stretch.
A first baseman who has also served as designated hitter, Lind has done much of his damage on the road. Lind is batting .320 with 27 extra-base hits away from the Rogers Centre, but only .238 with 17 extra-base hits at home.
Twins: Rookies seeing game action
Albers is far from the only rookie seeing regular playing time for the Twins, who sit 20 games back of the Tigers in their division and are trying to snap a streak of nine consecutive losses at Target Field.
That has opened the door for Ron Gardenhire to allow rookies like Chris Colabello, Oswaldo Arcia and Josmil Pinto -- who drove in the third run of his career on Saturday -- to learn on the job.
"This is what it's all about -- being in the big leagues," Gardenhire said. "It doesn't matter where you are in the standings. You gotta play. We have a lot of young kids on the field trying to prove themselves, and that's what it's all about.
"They're playing hard. They're getting after it and seeing what it's like. It's not going to be the prettiest thing all the time, but they're playing."
• Toronto hasn't swept a road series since it took four straight against the Rangers from June 13-16.
• Saturday marks Rogers' first career start against the Twins, although he has made six relief appearances against them.
• Albers was called up from Triple-A Rochester on Aug. 3 after he went 11-5 with a 2.86 ERA in 22 starts.
Ian McCue is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.