Most of us here are pretty aware of how streaky the Twins have been in 2011, but also how much they've been winning since June 1. When we woke up that beautiful June morning, the Twins were 17-36 (.321), leading the Astros for the worst team in the Majors by three whole games. Since then the team is 23-11 (.676) and they've put themselves in a position where they can actually entertain notions of the post-season.
Pretty far fetched, I admit. Part of me is torn, too. If the Twins don't sell or, even worse, go out and buy big (which they probably won't do, but still), it's not doing this team any favors for the future. And unless everyone gets healthy and starts performing like their best versions of themselves (aside from Cuddyer and Baker and Perkins, who already are), I doubt this team has what it takes to reek some serious havoc in October.
Of course I'd love to be proven wrong. A look at the numbers to see what it would take to win the division, after the jump.
After picking up two games on first place Cleveland in the last ten games (and three games on both Detroit and Chicago), I've got my eye on the prize.
|To take over 1st place by||the Twins must pick up 7 games in||which means picking up an average of|
|August 1||3 weeks, 1 day||1 game every 3 days|
|September 1||7 weeks, 4 days||1 game per week|
|Season's end||11 weeks, 4 days||1 game every 11 days|
This, of course, is competletely doable. There's no context here for how many games the Twins have to win though, and while in this scenario it's technically possible for the Twins to win the division by winning three games a week, we know that won't happen.
So here's a different look.
|To win||the Twins' record the rest of the year must be||which is a winning percentage of|
|85 games||45 - 30||.600|
|90 games||50 - 25||.667|
In some sense this might bring us back to reality. Only the Phillies and Red Sox have played better than .600 ball this year, and no team is winning two of every three.
But here's my silver lining, because it's a Saturday: the Twins don't need to play .600 ball all season, just from now to September 28. And while 85 and 90 wins are probably good arbitrary win totals to choose in term of "How many wins will it likely take to win the division this year", the more important chart to keep handy is the first one. It doesn't matter how many wins the Twins have at the end of the season, as long as they have more than the other teams in the AL Central.
It doesn't seem likely that the Indians will totally lose it down the stretch. I also don't buy the Tigers or White Sox completely fading away either, but right now we just need to focus on first place. No matter who that is, if we keep track of first place by the first chart and can make up that kind of pace, we'll be in the money. Or at least in the playoffs.
Enjoy your Saturday!