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  1. Things obviously weren’t supposed to be this bad for the 2021 Twins. Can the team improve moving forward just by accident or will they continue to be cellar dwellers? The Twins roster isn’t this bad. Heck, the team entered play on Monday half of a game ahead of the Detroit Tigers in the AL Central standings. Yes, this is the same Tigers squad that has lost 98 or more games in each of the last three full seasons. Detroit is trotting out plenty of replacement level players and prospects as a club that is clearly rebuilding. Yet, the Twins find themselves playing catch up in the division wi
  2. The Twins roster isn’t this bad. Heck, the team entered play on Monday half of a game ahead of the Detroit Tigers in the AL Central standings. Yes, this is the same Tigers squad that has lost 98 or more games in each of the last three full seasons. Detroit is trotting out plenty of replacement level players and prospects as a club that is clearly rebuilding. Yet, the Twins find themselves playing catch up in the division with nearly half the season finished. Minnesota’s failings have been well documented at Twins Daily. So far, the pitching staff has been arguably the worst in team histor
  3. With a third of the 2021 season in the rearview mirror, the Twins struggles have been well documented. However, these four players have stood out in various Statcast categories as the calendar turns to June. Mitch Garver: .497 xwOBAcon What makes Garver’s injury tough to swallow is how well he had been hitting at the plate. His Statcast numbers point to this improvement even after his slow start to the season. For those unfamiliar, xOBAcon uses three variables: exit velocity (EV), launch angle (LA), and sprint speed. Garver’s exit velocity and launch angle have allowed him to spray
  4. Mitch Garver: .497 xwOBAcon What makes Garver’s injury tough to swallow is how well he had been hitting at the plate. His Statcast numbers point to this improvement even after his slow start to the season. For those unfamiliar, xOBAcon uses three variables: exit velocity (EV), launch angle (LA), and sprint speed. Garver’s exit velocity and launch angle have allowed him to spray the ball all over the field. He currently ranks in the top 6% of the league in xwOBAcon so the hope is he can return sooner rather than later. As Rocco Baldelli alluded to after Tuesday’s game, it’s hard to imagine
  5. It was a winning week for the Minnesota Twins, but not a particularly impressive one. Once again, a step forward was immediately followed by a regressive stumble, with the weekend's deflating series loss against Kansas City erasing positive vibes and progress from a sweep over Baltimore. At this point, it's hard to escape the conclusion that the perpetually underperforming Twins are what their record says they are. Weekly Snapshot: Mon, 5/24 through Sun, 5/30 *** Record Last Week: 4-2 (Overall: 21-31) Run Differential Last Week: +2 (Overall: -22) Standing: 5th Place in AL Ce
  6. Weekly Snapshot: Mon, 5/24 through Sun, 5/30 *** Record Last Week: 4-2 (Overall: 21-31) Run Differential Last Week: +2 (Overall: -22) Standing: 5th Place in AL Central (11.0 GB) Last Week's Game Recaps: Game 47 | MIN 8, BAL 3: Rare Late-game Surge Pushes Twins Past O's Game 48 | MIN 7, BAL 4: Lineup Comes Through Again with Seven Runs Game 49 | MIN 3, BAL 2: Michael and Miguel Lead Minnesota to First Sweep Game 50 | KC 8, MIN 3: Royals Cool Off Twins in Deflating Loss Game 51 | MIN 6, KC 5: Twins Fend Off KC Rally and Hold On Game 52 | KC 6, MIN 3: Fading Twins Drop
  7. It always had to be this way. This was the only plausible outcome. As the Twins look towards a resurgence, the talent had to rise to the occasion. For a pair of Minnesota mashers, it’s starting to happen. Coming into the 2021 season Rocco Baldelli’s club had won two straight AL Central division titles while also having heightened expectations for the year ahead. There wasn’t supposed to be a slide, and the roster as constructed should’ve been among the best in baseball. The results haven’t followed that narrative, but there’s never been a doubt when it comes to what this team is capable o
  8. Coming into the 2021 Major League Baseball season this Minnesota Twins club was expected to battle with the Chicago White Sox for the AL Central Division title. Someone apparently forgot to tell them that. We’re now over 30 games into the season and Rocco Baldelli’s club is nearly double-digit games out of first place in the division. The story this offseason was one of winning a playoff game, but at this point getting there looks like a herculean feat. A week ago, I wrote about where blame should fall for this debacle. Taking that a step further, which players have regressed the most, a
  9. We’re now over 30 games into the season and Rocco Baldelli’s club is nearly double-digit games out of first place in the division. The story this offseason was one of winning a playoff game, but at this point getting there looks like a herculean feat. A week ago, I wrote about where blame should fall for this debacle. Taking that a step further, which players have regressed the most, and should we have seen it coming? Max Kepler Back in 2019 the Twins inked Kepler to a five-year contract extension. They had a corner outfielder that had done just enough but was looking to breakthrough
  10. Over the course of 2021 the Minnesota Twins have found more ways to lose in 32 games than most teams can accomplish over the course of a full season. If going into the year it was assumed this club would be good, a complete 180 this early doesn’t seem fair. The problem? Are these players actually good? Here’s the deal, Rocco Baldelli’s bullpen has been bad. It’s among the worst in baseball across more than a handful of categories. He’s dealing with a group that the front office banked more on development than production, and regression has hit everyone not named Taylor Rogers. Desp
  11. Offensive Down Across Baseball During the season’s first month, batters as a whole hit .232, which would be the worst total in a season ever. Back in 1968, the Year of the Pitcher, batters were able to bat .237 for the season. If you don’t know about that season, just look up Bob Gibson’s numbers from that year. According to the Athletic, on-base percentage (.309) was the lowest since 1968, OPS (.698) was the lowest since 1989, and hits per game (7.63) were the lowest of all-time. Some of the best pitching performances in baseball history also happened in the season’s first month and Minneso
  12. The Twins woes with runners in scoring position did them in again tonight, as they game themselves plenty of scoring chances, but went 0-for-9 with RISP and failed to cash in on any of them and fell to the Texas Rangers by a score of 3-1.Box Score Thorpe: 5 IP, 5 H, 3 ER, 1 BB, 2 K Home Runs: Garver (6) Bottom 3 WPA: Polanco -.188, Kepler -.174, Simmons -.130 Win Probability Chart (via FanGraphs): Download attachment: Screen Shot 2021-05-05 at 10.20.39 PM.png Garver goes deep Mitch Garver got the scoring started with one out in the bottom of second when he blasted an 88-mph fastball into
  13. Box Score Thorpe: 5 IP, 5 H, 3 ER, 1 BB, 2 K Home Runs: Garver (6) Bottom 3 WPA: Polanco -.188, Kepler -.174, Simmons -.130 Win Probability Chart (via FanGraphs): Garver goes deep Mitch Garver got the scoring started with one out in the bottom of second when he blasted an 88-mph fastball into the second deck in left-center field. After hitting just two home runs in 23 games in 2020, Garver is back on his 2019 home run pace, as this was already his sixth so far this season. https://twitter.com/BallySportsNOR/status/1390103662530375686 Twins blow great scoring chance in the 4th After
  14. Byron Buxton had a career day as part of the Twins offensive explosion. After some offensive woes, the Twins gave us a glimpse of the 2019 Twins offense. The question is, will this game be the launchpad for the season, or is it just a random one game explosion?Box Score Happ: 7 IP, 4 H, 2 ER, 1 BB, 3 K Home Runs: Buxton (8), Donaldson (2), Polanco (1), Astudillo (2), Garver 2 (4) Top 3 WPA: Buxton .137, Polanco .095, Happ .089 Win Probability Chart (via FanGraphs): Download attachment: chart.png The Twins home run derby Entering Wednesday’s ballgame, the Twins lineup had produced just 10 fi
  15. Box Score Happ: 7 IP, 4 H, 2 ER, 1 BB, 3 K Home Runs: Buxton (8), Donaldson (2), Polanco (1), Astudillo (2), Garver 2 (4) Top 3 WPA: Buxton .137, Polanco .095, Happ .089 Win Probability Chart (via FanGraphs): The Twins home run derby Entering Wednesday’s ballgame, the Twins lineup had produced just 10 first inning runs in 22 ballgames, which was tied for 21st in Major League Baseball. That trend of first inning futility did not carry over into this game, as the Twins had already scored four runs just four batters into the ballgame. It all got started with this Byron Buxton opposite field ho
  16. I have been a big proponent of retiring anything to do with the Bomba Squad moniker from 2019. Let seasons evolve on their own. The 2021 team was supposed to be good, they are on paper, but will it take shape? We are not yet through the month of April and I keep harping on the runway left for the 2021 season. Minnesota has played just over 12% of their games, and they are chasing a White Sox team that is just 4.5 games clear of them right now. That’s all to outline the current positioning isn’t dire. The problem is that the production just hasn’t been there. Rocco Baldelli has gotten less
  17. Aaron and John talk about the Twins digging an even bigger hole, Alex Kirilloff's arrival, why the team needs Andrelton Simmons back, the math behind Byron Buxton's signature moments, why Nick Gordon came up to sit on the bench, Alexander Colome vs. Ron Davis, and Mitch Garver vs. Ryan Jeffers. You can listen by downloading us from iTunes, Spotify, Stitcher, iHeartRadio or find it at GleemanAndTheGeek.com. Or just click this link. Listen Here Now Click here to view the article
  18. It was a beautiful Easter Sunday in Milwaukee for the Minnesota Twins as they pounded out eight runs against the Brewers. One notable takeaway was what backstop Mitch Garver did in sending a ball over the fence. A season ago the Twins got just 23 games from their catcher that posted a .995 OPS a season prior. Garver dealt with an intercostal strain most of the year and he simply was not the same hitter. Typically pulverizing opposing fastballs, he saw 217 of them in 2020, and it resulted in little success. Of those offerings, he swung 86 times, whiffing 29 times, or nearly 34% of the time th
  19. Projected Starter: Mitch Garver Likely Backup: Ryan Jeffers Depth: Willians Astudillo, Tomás Telis Prospects: Ben Rortvedt THE GOOD Few teams have a starting catcher as good as Mitch Garver. No teams have a backup catcher as good as Ryan Jeffers – to the extent you'd call him a "backup" given this appears to be a straight 50/50 timeshare. The Twins are in a pretty optimal situation with two starting-caliber catchers on hand. Although questions marks surround both Garver and Jeffers to some extent, each backstop has proven his mettle in the majors after stepping in with big expectation
  20. With spring training officially underway and a new season rapidly approaching, it's time to kick off my annual position-by-position analysis of the Minnesota Twins roster. Today, we break down the team's very strong outlook behind the plate.Projected Starter: Mitch Garver Likely Backup: Ryan Jeffers Depth: Willians Astudillo, Tomás Telis Prospects: Ben Rortvedt THE GOOD Few teams have a starting catcher as good as Mitch Garver. No teams have a backup catcher as good as Ryan Jeffers – to the extent you'd call him a "backup" given this appears to be a straight 50/50 timeshare. The Twins
  21. The Incumbent: Max Kepler Last season, Kepler batted leadoff in 34 of the team’s 60 games and he was used there for over 100 games back in 2019. There’s a good chance he is the leader in the clubhouse to be the team’s primary leadoff hitter unless his performance struggles significantly. He hit .281/.324/.625 last year in his at-bats as the first batter in the game. That’s quite the punch for opposing pitchers to have to endure out of the gate. The Contenders: Jorge Polanco, Byron Buxton, Luis Arraez, Mitch Garver Buxton’s raw speed makes him a natural contender to be at the top of the line-
  22. Position: C Age: 23 (DOB: 6-3-1997) 2020 Stats (MLB): 62 PA, .273/.355/.436, 3 HR, 7 RBI ETA: 2021 2020 Ranking: 5 2019 Ranking: 13 National Top 100 Rankings BA: 60 |MLB: NR | ATH: NR |BP: NR What’s To Like Defense is the name of the game for any prospect that plays an up-the-middle defensive position and Jeffers showed his tremendous defensive value last season. He only caught 162 big-league innings, but he ranked seventh in baseball when it comes to strike rate, which puts him into elite company. According to Baseball Savant, he ranked in the 90th percentile when it came to framing pit
  23. Max Kepler, Right Field MLB Network Rank: NR Right field includes some of baseball’s most notable names like Mookie Betts, Aaron Judge, and Bryce Harper along with young studs like Juan Soto and Ronald Acuna Jr. Since the beginning of 2018, Kepler ranks as one of the best right fielders in all of baseball. According to FanGraphs, Kepler has the eighth highest WAR among right fielders over the last three seasons. This puts him ahead of players on MLB’s list including Mike Yastrzemski, Jorge Soler, Joey Gallo, and Charlie Blackmon. Kepler’s defense helps to separate him from the other players
  24. With the Super Bowl now in the rearview mirror it is officially baseball season. This is the last week without the Minnesota Twins in action for the next eight months. Before the Spring Training action gets underway however, I’ll take a first stab at how Rocco Baldelli will utilize his 26 roster spots. The Twins had a very strong offseason, and the front office did a great job once again allowing the market to play into their strategy. Key pieces were brought back, and new faces were added to the mix. Looking to go for a third straight AL Central division title, here is how I see the Twins b
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