Biggest Surprise Is Still 2016

The Twins had everything going for them in the 2015 season. They were a young team that did unexpectedly well, and a team that most thought would just get better, then 2016 happened. The team in 2016 was basically the same team they fielded in 2015 minus the leadership of Torii Hunter. Their key addition in 2016, Byung Ho Park, could knock baseballs into the next county, but he was playing with a hurt wrist and that injury appeared to have been mismanaged pretty badly. The Miguel Sano project in right field was never going to work out, but all of this being said, they still should not have taken such a miserable tumble last season. Their defense, particularly Robbie Grossman, and Miguel Sano the right fielder was weak, their pitching staff was mostly the same, and their lineup was similar to the 2015 lineup. The team simply struggled a lot more than they should have. Fast forward to 2017, and the only thing that is even remotely surprising is how well Miguel Sano has adjusted after the move back to third. He's all but looked like a gold glover at the hot corner, and his bat speaks for itself. The outfield defense should come as a surprise to no one because when you have three guys as fast and smart as the Twins have got out there, not much will be landing be landing between them. Another element of the Twins' game that appears massively improved is their starting pitching. This is also not surprising because the Twins used their off-season to find two good pitch framing and game managing catchers in Castro and Gimenez to help lessen the burden on the pitchers. It also helps the starting pitchers when the outfielders have the motto 'nothing falls but raindrops' and follow up with their promises. Byron Buxton has started hitting, which was expected to happen at some point, and just recently Joe Mauer has turned it on a bit himself. To this point in the season, it seems as though the fruits of many years of bad Twins baseball are starting to ripen and it should be fun to watch in the future.