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Punto vs Nunez

Minnesota Twins Talk Today, 10:30 PM
Punto was just released by the A's.  Should the Twins continue their welcome back tour and bring Punto back as the 2nd back up middl...
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Article: Twins Non-Roster Spring Training Invites

Minnesota Twins Talk Today, 10:30 PM
On Friday afternoon, the Twins announced that they have invited 18 non-roster players to major league spring training. Among others, top...
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Doug Mientkiewicz Named Lookouts Manager

Twins Minor League Talk Today, 08:15 PM
The Chattanooga Lookouts have announced that Doug Mientkiewicz will be their manager in 2015.   Chad Allen will remain the Twins AA...
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Article: Can Aaron Hicks Be Fixed?

Minnesota Twins Talk Today, 07:06 PM
One of the more critical openings the Minnesota Twins will have this year is in center field. If all goes well, that job will be Aaron Hi...
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And so it begins .... Arcia Injury

Minnesota Twins Talk Today, 05:31 PM
Why do I feel the Twins get stuck in these endless cycles?  I know this isn't unusual -- just grumbling.   http://blogs.twincit...
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Recent Blogs


Proving Grounds

Attached Image: lirianosmile.jpg This week's series against the first-place White Sox will serve as a tough test for this Twins team. They've rebounded after a lousy start to go 13-10 over their last 23 games, remaining on the periphery of an AL Central race that no club seems poised to run away with. In three days, the Twins could conceivably be within 5.5 games of first place. They could also find themselves out of it by double digits.

Perhaps no one will be under a bigger microscope in this crucial showdown than Francisco Liriano.[PRBREAK][/PRBREAK] He's been great since returning to the rotation at the end of May, posting a 2.67 ERA and 35-to-12 strikeout-to-walk ratio in 30 1/3 innings while allowing only one home run, but his opponents in those five starts have been the Athletics, Royals, Cubs, Brewers and Pirates. Those teams rank 28th, 19th, 25th, 10th and 29th in the majors in OPS, respectively.

Liriano has been feasting on weak competition, for the most part, and on Monday he'll be matching up against a first-place team with a starter in Jake Peavy who has been flat-out excellent all year.

It would be a stretch to say the Twins are even on the fringes of contention at this point, but they're not out of it. Climbing back into the mix would require a continued transformation from the rotation, and Liriano will need to be one of the guys leading that charge.

Both he and the team will have a chance to make a statement at Target Field on Monday night.


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