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Thread: Twins v. the AL East

  1. #1
    Senior Member Big-Leaguer J-Dog Dungan's Avatar
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    Twins v. the AL East

    It is hard to believe, but from 2003-2007, we took it to the AL East to the clip of 94-75. Proof that we have and can beat the AL East in the regular season, we just need to learn how to do so in the postseason.

  2. #2
    Owner All-Star John Bonnes's Avatar
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    During that stretch, the AL East had three pretty crummy teams. But I'll say this: when Twins fans are talking about the AL East, they're really talking about the Yankees. The Twins have done pretty well, if memory serves against the Red Sox, and the recent struggles against some of the other teams are recent. It's been the Yankees that have frustrated Twins fans, obviously for the last decade, but it goes back a lot longer than that. Even old-timers attribute that 1965 season to one-hit: Harmon's game winning home run the day before the all-star break against the Yankees. It really is unfortunate that of all the teams to struggle against, Gardy has the Yankees, because Minnesotan's are really insecure about that damn team.

  3. #3
    We need a couple power arms in our rotation to be able to beat teams like the Yankees in the postseason. I'm sorry, but you can only have so many pitch to contact guys in your rotation against those guys. The Twins have been awfully unlucky at times against the Yankees in the postseason, but that is what happens when you rely on batted balls for 90% of your outs. The last time we had the Yankees on the ropes was when we could throw Santana at them twice in a series. Sure, guys have put together 4-5 decent innings against the Yankees a couple years back, but eventually LUCK runs out.

  4. #4
    I'll bite on this one -
    During the time you mention (03-07) The Twins actually took care of business in the AL East pretty well as a group (.556 winning percentage). As John notes, the Yankees have given the Twins the trouble (.313 winning percentage). The only other team the good guys had a losing record against was the Blue Jays (.486) - and they have not sniffed the post season since '93 when they won it all.

    I agree - it is quite frustrating that our beloved team finds a way to lose against the Yankees - be it mediocre pitching or fundamental errors (base running!).

    I would disagree with John, I don't think Minnesotans are insecure, I think that most of us are pretty frustrated with the team's performance when there have been times when the Twins were legitimately doing better than the Yankees yet they still found a way to be on the bottom of the series.

  5. #5
    Senior Member Triple-A Steve Lein's Avatar
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    The Twins have also struggled recently against Toronto. Not really sure why they don't have the same issues with Boston, maybe because they have seen so much of them over the years with having their Spring Training home in the same city that they don't have the same effect.
    Scouting Report: Tools - Power: 30, Hitting: 50, Arm: 60, Defense: 40, Speed: 40. "Line drive swing and shows good contact and on-base abilities. Double's power at his peak. Strong arm from 2B or the OF, stiff hands. Not a fast runner, but above average instincts on the bases. Skinny body doesn't look the part, but can sneak up on you. ACL surgery sapped much of his athleticism." (Probably)
    Spring Training Regular since 2011.

  6. #6
    Senior Member All-Star
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steve Lein View Post
    The Twins have also struggled recently against Toronto. Not really sure why they don't have the same issues with Boston, maybe because they have seen so much of them over the years with having their Spring Training home in the same city that they don't have the same effect.
    My theory on Boston was that they had a lot of solid hitters (Millar, Varitek, Damon) who were much better when they got ahead of the count. Our pitchers rarely fell behind so their patience wasn't as great an asset for them. And Boston really used to struggle at the Dome and that might have gotten in their heads some.

  7. #7
    Senior Member All-Star JB_Iowa's Avatar
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    For some reason I started a spreadsheet on this last July so I just went back and updated the 2011 wins/losses. In the Gardenhire era, the Twins are 38-33 against the Orioles, 30-32 against the Red Sox, 18-51 against the Yankees, 42-30 against Tampa Bay and 29-41 against the Blue Jays. 157-175 against the A.L. East overall. (Totals came from baseballreference). (I think these are only regular season games).

    As I look at it now, one of the things that strikes me as a discrepancy is that the Twins have played the Red Sox far fewer times than the other teams (62 vs. 69-71 for the others).

    I just now split the totals into 2 5-year segments (2002-2006) and (2007-2011). Their winning % against Baltimore improved slightly from the 1st 5 years to the second (19-18 improved to 19-11). Their winning % against Boston took a nosedive (18-12 down to 12-20). The Twins were 8-23 against the Yankees in the earlier period and then 10-28 in the later period. Their record against the Rays also took a nosedive in the more recent period (27-8 down to 15-22). And again took a nose dive against Toronto (19-13 down to 10-28).

    Their winning % against the East was 53% in the first 5 years and 41% in the latter 5 years.

    I'm not sure what to conclude from this (and would like to take a look at how some of the other Central teams fared). Overall, has the Eastern Division just gotten that much stronger while the Twins (and the Central in general I would guess) have stagnated? Can all of this be attributed to a lack of power pitching? (I doubt it).

    One conclusion I can draw is that while their record against the Yankees has been pretty abysmal over the entire 10 years, their "winning percentage" against them hasn't changed much. But the Twins' performance against Boston, Tampa and Toronto is taking a very unwelcome slide into Yankee territory.

  8. #8
    On Vacation All-Star
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    Quote Originally Posted by JB_Iowa View Post
    I'm not sure what to conclude from this (and would like to take a look at how some of the other Central teams fared). Overall, has the Eastern Division just gotten that much stronger while the Twins (and the Central in general I would guess) have stagnated? Can all of this be attributed to a lack of power pitching? (I doubt it).
    .
    The AL East changed a lot the last decade. The Rays went from bottom feeders to contenders (and that is reflected in what you see). Baltimore has been getting worse and worse by the season. The Yankees stayed pretty much the same, the Red Sox improved slightly and the Jays have been close to .500 for a decade.

    I think that a more interesting and telling comparison would be the Twins' record against teams (all divisions and leagues) which had records >.500 if you exclude the games they played against the Twins.

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