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Article: Twins Playing Over Their Heads, But That's OK

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#1 Nick Nelson

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Posted 27 May 2014 - 11:25 PM

You can view the page at http://www.twinsdail...s-But-That-s-OK

#2 Carneal&Gordon

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Posted 28 May 2014 - 01:18 AM

I cringe every night I watch Carlos Gomez dominate for the Brewers. I hope I don't have to watch Hicks do this on another team in 5 years.

#3 The Wise One

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Posted 28 May 2014 - 01:42 AM

Perhaps in large part the starting pitching staff has a high ERA becuase they have an extremely high BABIP. The Indians starters have a K/9 of 8.8. They also have an ERA of 4.79. Not Twins Territory, but way above league average.

#4 TheLeviathan

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Posted 28 May 2014 - 06:05 AM

It's nice to see them have good fortune and get an undeserved win last night. But I really see them making a run at their Pythagorean record.

#5 mike wants wins

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Posted 28 May 2014 - 07:05 AM

The pitching can't be worse than last year......I admit to being surprised at just how bad it has been.

#6 halfchest

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Posted 28 May 2014 - 07:35 AM

Wins, losses, bad pitching, bad hitting, etc. It's still there but for some reason I'm much more interested in watching this team. Maybe it's some of the young guys like Pinto, Arcia, Escobar, Dozier that have either established themselves or seem to be on the cusp of establishing themselves. Maybe it's Phil Hughes, I don't know, but I like watching this team so much more than past teams. It also probably has something to do with decent guys at the lower levels ready to come up. If only Buxton and Sano would have stayed healthy we really could be on the cusp of seeing them come up midway to make an impact.

Either way, this is a much more fun team to watch and I'm hoping management is ready to pull the trigger as needed on demotions/promotions.

#7 kdrupp09

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Posted 28 May 2014 - 07:48 AM

Not saying the Twins are going to make a run at the playoffs but remember the first year the Orioles returned to relevance, they played way above their Pythagorean record. So hopefully the Twins will continue to play above their Pythagorean record.

#8 Brandon

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Posted 28 May 2014 - 07:51 AM

Its been interesting that someone different has contributed at different times. At the beginning of the season it was Colabello and Kubel, then Dozier and Suzuki, then Santana had moments and Escobar has come out of no where and been hitting. Fuld was great for about a week. and now it time for Arcia and Willingham to join in. That's a lot of hitters who stepped up at various times when needed throughout the season so far. And we've had some clutch pitching performances especially from the bullpen. and lastly we won a lot of one run games so far. So we win the exciting games and loose in blow out fashion so its not as big of a let down = recipe for enjoyable baseball.

#9 kdrupp09

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Posted 28 May 2014 - 07:58 AM

So we win the exciting games and loose in blow out fashion so its not as big of a let down = recipe for enjoyable baseball.


Really this year, enjoyable baseball was my main hope, however a continued run at .500 would certainly be nice too.

#10 tobi0040

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Posted 28 May 2014 - 08:20 AM

Really this year, enjoyable baseball was my main hope, however a continued run at .500 would certainly be nice too.


I could see 75-77 wins. Nolasco will be better, Correa will turn into a 6-9 pitcher that throws 98. May might replace Gibson if he doesn't improve. Hughes may regress a bit but not enough to make up for the things above.

Our offense is 10th in the AL in runs. That is probably where we end up. You can argue we have an above average hitter at 2B and 3B and at least average at C and 1B. Arcia should prove about average. Escobar may prove to be an average hitting SS (I don't see .350 at the end of the year).

#11 Nick Nelson

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Posted 28 May 2014 - 08:27 AM

Perhaps in large part the starting pitching staff has a high ERA becuase they have an extremely high BABIP. The Indians starters have a K/9 of 8.8. They also have an ERA of 4.79. Not Twins Territory, but way above league average.


Strikeouts are not a guarantee of success. NOT striking out anyone is pretty much a guarantee of NOT having success. Even with a good defense (questionable in this case), if you're letting everyone hit the ball around the yard you're just not going to be effective at limiting runs. (Also, the Twins staff's BABIP is .303, which is not "extremely high" by any means.)

#12 jokin

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Posted 28 May 2014 - 08:30 AM

Escobar may prove to be an average hitting SS (I don't see .350 at the end of the year).


That's all right, tobi.....obviously, the guy who should know best, Gardy, didn't forsee Esco hitting .350 at any point this year.:cry:

#13 TheLeviathan

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Posted 28 May 2014 - 08:38 AM

Are people finding these games entertaining? I am entertained when Hughes is on the mound and Deduno as well....but the rest of the time I keep feeling like I'm watching the same bad baseball as last year, but that everyone has a 4 leaf clover around their necks.

I guess I haven't found the brand of baseball this year all that compelling. (Though Dozier is fun to watch and Arcia is a welcome relief to see as well)

#14 Dantes929

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Posted 28 May 2014 - 08:49 AM

"NOT striking out anyone is pretty much a guarantee of NOT having success." Mark Buehrle is 9-1 with a 2.33 ERA and 5.2 strike outs per 9. Hughes strikeout rate is lower than his career average but having his best year. Its not just the lack of walks though that is huge. Its that he uses both sides of the plate and has command of where he is throwing it. Pitching to contact isn't bad. Doing it badly is bad.

#15 TheLeviathan

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Posted 28 May 2014 - 08:53 AM

Doing it badly is bad.


The problem is the margin of error makes "doing it badly" far more likely than doing it well.

#16 jokin

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Posted 28 May 2014 - 08:54 AM

Are people finding these games entertaining? I am entertained when Hughes is on the mound and Deduno as well....but the rest of the time I keep feeling like I'm watching the same bad baseball as last year, but that everyone has a 4 leaf clover around their necks.

I guess I haven't found the brand of baseball this year all that compelling. (Though Dozier is fun to watch and Arcia is a welcome relief to see as well)


I don't know about all of "these games"....but.....How could you not be entertained and compelled by last night's game?

Scott Baker off the scrap heap and back in Target Field, somehow fooling the Twins for 7 innings with little more stuff than magic dust.

Hughes was busy being Hughes, what a refreshing signing he's turned out to be.

Hicks gets himself turned around the wrong way, twice on his route, and still has time to recover and make the ESPN top Web Gem of the night.

A bunch of great defensive infield plays by the Twins all night long.

Mauer finally deciding to go against his innate instincts and actually pull one of those Baker meatballs for an RBI double.

More entertaining misadventures in the OF, what with Parmelee/Escobar and Santana insistent on yet again, making things interesting and challenging for Twins pitchers.

Oswaldo Arcia staking a strong claim to wanting the "Leader" mantel on his nameplate (or at least "Co-Leader" along with Dozier). And then be called "scary" and "crazy" by Danny Santana at game-end.

And finally culminating in Gardy going out on the high-wire and giving up Pinto as his security blanket, and especially pinch-hitting a RH hitter (Nunez) against a RHP, actually looking up the history and playing the odds, and then having it somehow work out a couple innings later, with a timely hit and heads-up baserunning by Nunez, coupled with boneheaded plays by the opponent's Gold Glove 3rd baseman and Deadly closer.

I don't know about you, but to me....That's Entertainment.

Edited by jokin, 28 May 2014 - 12:22 PM.


#17 TheLeviathan

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Posted 28 May 2014 - 08:55 AM

I was entertained...but Hughes was on the mound and Arcia was back. The next time Correia pitches? Not appointment television.

Maybe I'm just sour after really trying to invest in watching last weekend's series. I'm probably not being fair.

Edited by TheLeviathan, 28 May 2014 - 09:00 AM.


#18 jokin

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Posted 28 May 2014 - 09:04 AM

I was entertained...but Hughes was on the mound and Arcia was back. The next time Correia pitches? Not appointment television.


That will be Saturday...against the Yankees...with Tanaka on the mound...in Yankee Stadium. While I'm not expecting much from Correia, or even a win, I fully expect that it will contain entertaining elements.

#19 MileHighTwinsFan

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Posted 28 May 2014 - 09:20 AM

Entertaining. Yes, I chuckled out loud when Soria fumbled Santana's nubber, but that was preceded by me seething at Santana's play in center that should have resulted in an insurance run for the Rangers. Clearly the Rangers lost last night's game, the Twins did not win it.

Having said that, when you have a starting pitcher and a bull pen that keeps you close, these types of wins happen. To me the priority has to be getting May, Meyer, Johnson and Darnell their shots. I have to believe that at least one of them will end up being a significant improvement over Correia and possibly Gibson. Second, we need to find a capable backup/replacement for Hicks. Hopefully Fuld will return soon (what's up with him anyway).

I would be surprised if they don't give Hicks every opportunity to succeed this season, he is too valuable in the outfield to be sent down. His catch last night was equal to him hitting home run.

#20 jokin

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Posted 28 May 2014 - 09:23 AM

I was entertained...but Hughes was on the mound and Arcia was back. The next time Correia pitches? Not appointment television.

Maybe I'm just sour after really trying to invest in watching last weekend's series. I'm probably not being fair.


No doubt....the Giants pitching staff...and the Panda....were buzzsaws and buzzkills.

#21 Beezer07

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Posted 28 May 2014 - 09:26 AM

It is almost June, and I am still excited when I'm home and have the time to watch the Twins (and I'm not blacked out). Pretty remarkable considering how bad they were last year and how bad they were expected (by many) to be this year. I'll take "playing over their heads" if it means a win about 1/2 the time. And I'll have continuing reasons to watch as Arcia gets back/healthy, Dozier continues Doziering, Hicks goes to RH-only, Gibson continues getting better (hopefully), Santana gets more time in the majors, Meyer/May get to come up and pitch, and Kubel/Parmelee/Guerrier get removed from the team.

#22 twinsnorth49

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Posted 28 May 2014 - 10:49 AM

Entertaining? Not so sure, they've been interesting though.

Arcia is one great breath of fresh air, you can't help but get excited when he's doing what he did last night.

#23 Circus Boy

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Posted 28 May 2014 - 11:05 AM

This is a fun team to watch. And they look like they're having fun themselves. Just on the cusp of being good, kind of like the group that surprised everyone in what? 2000? when MLB wanted to close them down. I've got a feeling we won't have the total collapse as has been the case the last three years.

#24 Brock Beauchamp

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Posted 28 May 2014 - 11:21 AM

I've got a feeling we won't have the total collapse as has been the case the last three years.


Complete collapses are a lot less likely when you have two pitchers in the rotation that are above average. IMO, that's the big difference between this year and the last two seasons.

#25 TheDean

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Posted 28 May 2014 - 11:22 AM

If memory serves, this time last year, Dozier was hitting worse than Hicks is now, Hicks was hitting worse than Hicks is now, and Florimon was playing every day. Morneau was in some kind of powerless blackhole, and Doumit was getting ABs, oftentimes in the OF over Arcia and Parms. 1 starter had an ERA under 5 in the month of May last year: PJ Walters (This year isn't much better, only Hughes and Deduno meet that metric).

My personal bar for entertainment is improvement. I hate seeing my team get worse. If they're getting better, I'm entertained, though I admit "improvement" is a very subjective term.

Still, given that background, yes I'm entertained. The bar is low, but we've seen the Twins fail to clear low bars before. Maybe that's just because I have feelings for the 2011-2013 Twins that amount to whatever the opposite of nostalgia is.

#26 jharaldson

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Posted 28 May 2014 - 11:30 AM

[COLOR=#333333][FONT=Arial]“It grabbed,” Mauer said. “Every sneeze, every movement, right away, it grabbed. I’d be trying to get ready for the game, and every time my heel hit the ground, it was shooting pain. I had to calm it down. I was hoping I could get back in the lineup a little sooner, but I was able to get back in there after a couple of days, and I haven’t had any problems since.”[/FONT][/COLOR]


Mauer stated in the article that after a couple of days the back issue went away. I think we have to take him at his word on this and can't project an injury on him to explain away his performance.

#27 kdrupp09

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Posted 28 May 2014 - 11:45 AM

I think the fact that we can turn on essentially any game, and have a reasonable hope for a win is entertainment enough. Unlike last year when there were numerous days when I avoided checking the score because I knew it was going to be ugly.

#28 Shane Wahl

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Posted 28 May 2014 - 11:51 AM

Romero instead of Kubel would be a very welcome improvement. Romero has stuck with the organization and is ready to contribute. And that RH bat is needed given Colabello's collapse and departure, and Willingham's continued decline.

#29 Riverbrian

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Posted 28 May 2014 - 11:55 AM

Compared to last year... I've been much more entertained. It got pretty frustrating last year watching the team lay down and I think they layed down in 2013.

Station to station baserunning... Average effort pursuit of baseballs. I really felt nobody was getting their money's worth.

This year... It's been better... I'm seeing Plouffe get dirty... Dozier of course being a gamer... I'm seeing Mauer effort at first. I'm seeing some clutch hits... More contact and putting the ball in play.

It ain't perfect yet... We still have OF defensive issues... And the base running is still more careful then I personally like... But it's getting better.

In 2013... I didn't think they gave full value for the price of a ticket. So far in 2014... I'd say they are exactly the value of a price of a ticket.

Ummm Upper Deck Ticket.

#30 Brock Beauchamp

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Posted 28 May 2014 - 11:59 AM

Romero instead of Kubel would be a very welcome improvement. Romero has stuck with the organization and is ready to contribute. And that RH bat is needed given Colabello's collapse and departure, and Willingham's continued decline.


In a perfect world, we see Gardy start rotating Pinto into the catching spot 40+% of the time as Suzuki wears down... Then, some time around the ASG, we see Vargas get the call if he keeps raking.

OF of Willingham, Arcia, Parmelee, and Hicks (Fuld?) with Pinto/Vargas rotating through the DH and catcher spots. Maybe Vargas occasionally spells Mauer at first.