Hi there friends! Happy June!
You know who this June is not happy for? Fans of the Twins opening day roster. Also a horrible June for Mitch Garver’s manly bits.... Or for Rob Refsnyder’s face. Basically June is already a nightmare for the Twins.
I was at my daughter’s softball game last night and one of the parents asked me “hey, what’s up with your Twins?” My reply? “Which part? How they’re miraculously turning it around a bit these days or the fact that they’re doing that with basically 90% replacement guys and duct tape?” I got the sense the guy was just asking so he could lament on how crappy they are this season (he’s not wrong) but I wasn’t going to get into that conversation with him. Oh, and this conversation happened before Garver broke his nethers, which would have just cemented how godawful the Twins luck has been all year.
I’ve already told you a few times that I’m not going to care about the way this team is playing for a bit. I went to the game last Friday against Kansas City and honestly didn’t care about if the Twins won or lost. I was there pretty much to kick off my Memorial Day weekend with my family at Target Field on a beautiful May evening. We even left early because my kid was freezing and we were losing and we wanted to beat the rush out of there. I’ve become that fan this year. THIS IS NOT NORMAL FOR ME YOU GUYS.
Rob Refsnyder basically singlehandedly saved the Twins in May, and with his smash into the wall on Monday night, his last minute scratch from Tuesday’s lineup has me worried that he’ll be out for a few days. On April 1, did any of us think we’d be in this dystopian world in which our starting outfield would consist of Alex Kirilloff, Tortuga, and Kyle Garlick? And that said outfield lineup would be like our third string of outfielders? Granted, we all assumed that Buxton would probably be out with some sort of injury, but Kepler and <checks notes on who should have been out there because I honestly can’t even remember anymore.. oh, it was Garlick in left> Cave/Rooker/whomever also down for the count? At this point we could probably just throw Shoemaker out in left for good measure. He might even do better out there, who knows?
It’s not just the Twins outfield that’s on life support these days, either. Our infield is either injured or struggling (or both). Sano either strikes out or homers, and he’s probably on pace to win a world record for striking out the most times in a season. He’s hitting .158 - and at some point we have to wonder how many chances we are willing to give the guy. I know in my heart of hearts that as soon as we cut him loose, he’ll turn into Papi Jr. by pulling a David Ortiz and going to the east coast and hitting homers all up and down the eastern seaboard. My son has taken to calling Josh Donaldson “The Bringer of Pain” (he thought himself to be pretty clever on that one) because ol’ Joshy has brought nary a sprinkle, let alone the rain. The corners of the infield are defensively somewhere between ugh and decent, but they’re offensively offensive. They’re leaving so many runners on base that you have to wonder if they’re in some sort of contest to see who can collect the most un-scored men. (Least RBI? Whatever.)
Our catchers... well.. we’ve already covered poor Garv Sauce’s smashed up groin. Jeffers got demoted to St. Paul, Tortuga is now an outfielder (or infielder.. or pitcher.. Jesus help us what is going on?). So does this mean Rortvedt and his 5-30, .167 average are going to be starting every day behind the plate while Garver’s icing his balls for a while?
I can’t even begin to break down the break down of the pitching staff. Maeda is hurt. Shoemaker is awful. Dobnak is great in St. Paul but has struggled across the river at Target Field (to be fair, though, he’s actually pretty good despite what his ERA is telling us.) Our bullpen needs a healthy cushion of a lead for me to not be scared when they come in. We haven’t found a lights-out closer. I long for the days of Joe “Stand up and shout” Nathan.
You know the worst part? I’m going to be super upset when the Twins ultimately end up having a fire-sale in July. All of these guys that are hurt and/or blowing the games are also so near and dear to my heart that it will be a gut punch to see them anywhere else. They might be awful, but they’re ours.
I don’t even know what to say anymore. Twins, I love you, and I’ll always love you. But this year? Oof. It’s so hard to love you.