3 Bold Twins Predictions for 2021
Image courtesy of © Michael McLoone-USA TODAY SportsByron Buxton Finishes in the Top-3 for AL MVP
Buxton only has two years remaining until free agency, so there is an incentive for him to stay on the field and produce at a high level. There have been glimpses of his potential at the big-league level, but he hasn’t been able to put it all together over the course of 162-games.
Even if he plays 140-150 games, he should accumulate enough WAR to be in the MVP discussion. Last season, he finished eighth highest WAR among AL position players, and he played fewer than 40 games. His defense is always going to provide value, so he will need to put up offensive numbers that match. Can he hit 30+ home runs? Score 120+ runs? Steal 30 bases? It’s fun to consider the possibilities.
Twins Players Win Four Gold Gloves
The Twins might have the best defense in team history and this can result in a record amount of Gold Gloves. No team has ever won five Gold Gloves in one season and that might not be out of the realm of possibility. Looking around field and there are potential Gold Glove winners at nearly every position. Byron Buxon and Andrelton Simmons are two of the best defenders over the last decade. If healthy, they are both front-runners for the award at their position.
Max Kepler has been one of the best defensive right fielders for years and just hasn’t been awarded the top defensive honor. On the mound, Kenta Maeda and Jose Berrios are two of the best pitchers at fielding their position. Add in Jorge Polanco and his switch to a less demanding defensive position and the Twins have six-seven candidates around the diamond.
Minnesota Wins the AL Central by 10 Games or More
The White Sox are getting a lot of love as the season starts and they look like a team that will be a thorn in the side of the Twins for years to come. It just isn’t going to be this season. Eloy Jimenez and his recent injury showcases their lack of depth around the diamond. Chicago is also relying on some of their young players putting it all together and there is no guarantee that happens.
Minnesota will take care of business against the bottom teams in the AL Central and fare better than expected against Chicago and Cleveland. This can give the Twins an opportunity to be the number one seed heading into the AL playoffs and the road to the World Series will come through Target Field. It will be up to the club make sure some winning baseball happens in October.
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