As of Saturday (May 22) morning, the Minnesota Twins have the worst record in the American League, only behind the Colorado Rockies for the worst in all of baseball. On paper that looks bad. For Twins fans, and what they have seen this year, the 16-28 record feels accurate, and yes, looks bad.
How can this team turn it around? They can, and I think they will.
I’m not just saying this because the Twins’ bats were alive in Cleveland Friday night. The Indians laid an egg, and the final was 10-0 good guys. I’m saying this because our bullpen, whose poor performances in the beginning of the season gave zero confidence to anyone else, is turning things around. Also with this offense, how is this even happening?
I’m a golfer, and 90% of that game is mental. When you have no confidence that you can clear a pond or make a putt, you probably won’t be successful. If you can’t trust your bullpen after you give them the lead time and time again, morale is non-existent.
So let’s take a look at the last five games (ed note: again, before yesterday) for my 1-2-3 punch for this 2021 Minnesota Twins team.
Alex Colomé | 0 ER | 3 K | 1 2⁄3 IP |
Taylor Rogers | 0 ER | 5 K | 2 IP | *struck out side 1 time
Hansel Robles | 0 ER | 5 K | 2 IP | *struck out side 1 time
How about that? NO EARNED RUNS!
These games were so crucial to get some confidence back for this bullpen.
Pitching. Pitching. Pitching.
It’s been an ongoing saga for this team over the past decade. This offseason I was very optimistic with the Colome, Happ, Robles and Shoemaker signings. And here we are. If this pitching staff can just turn things around even slightly, this ball club can be back where it should be, vying for the AL Central lead.
If you look at where the Twins sit in some critical MLB categories, it’s true.
This pitching staff has given up the most home runs in all of baseball, 65, and is #25 in ERA at 4.72. The Twins offense is a different story. The team is in the top 10 (#7) for most home runs in all of baseball, 60. In every hitting category, the Twins are in the top half of all MLB teams.
#12 in Batting Average, #6 in Slugging, #9 in OPS, #12 in Hits, #13 in Runs, #17 in SO
If our pitching staff can just turn things around a little bit, this team can be right back on track.
To finish out the month of May, Minnesota has four games against Baltimore, three of those are at Target Field. They have a home series against Kansas City over Memorial Day and two left against Cleveland this weekend.
A strong finish is critical.
Lose two of the upcoming nine games, and they finish out the first two months 23-30.
Kirilloff is back. I was in St. Paul watching him this week, and he crushed two home runs in the two games he played.
Buxton is on the mend and could be playing for the Saints this weekend.
Injuries and COVID-19 plagued this team early. We need to get back to some consistency. Having the same guys on the field day after day.
Maybe you have lost faith, but I haven’t. How can you with this crew on your roster?
Nelson Cruz, Miguel Sano, Byron Buxton, Josh Donaldson, Jorge Polanco, Max Kepler, Luis Arraez...
It will turn around.