Now that’s what you call a winning streak! Three wins in a row for the Twins is a big deal, as it comes on the heels of a 9-game losing streak. It appeared that the Twins had hit rock bottom this after losing eight straight at home, nonetheless. There were rumblings from the clubhouse that players were getting frustrated and angry, which they should have been, and it seemed like things were about to get even worse after they got shut down my rookie phenom Michael Pineda. But, instead, Francisco Liriano took the hill and outdueled Felix Hernandez. And the bats came to life in Oakland to help give the Twins a season high 3-game winning streak.
Justin Morneau hit a home run today, just his second, while racking up a three-hit game. He seems to be hitting well of late and if he is turning the corner this Twins club could be doing so as well. The season pretty much hinges upon Justin Morneau’s abilty to hit and Francisco Liriano’s abilty to pitch. If those guys can come back to where they should be the season can still be salvaged. Liriano racked up nine strikeouts in his seven inning outing against Seattle and he only walked one batter, which is huge since he has been racking up walks like crazy so far this season…but then again so has the entire staff. With Liriano it is always “what have you done lately” because he has been so inconsistent thus far, but if he can put together another good start I will start to believe he has found himself. And that will be a huge shot in the arm for this club.
Morneau finding his stroke is another huge boost. If he can start finding some power he could start carrying this struggling offense. Even Michael Cuddyer is starting to hit. He had three hits today and two against King Felix, to go with two RBIs that night as well. Delmon Young came off the DL and looked DREADFUL, but he appeared pretty fired up after scoring the game-winning run Wednesday and hopefully that will carry over to more success. He did drive in a run today against Oakland.
Right now, on May 19th, the Twins are 12 games behind Cleveland. After playing some of the worst baseball in over a decade the Twins are only 12 back. I don’t see that number as being insurmountable. They would really need to get HOTTT, but if guys start hitting I would not count this team out. I am not sold yet on Cleveland, even though it has been almost two months. Maybe I should buy into them? I don’t know. I do know that I think the Twins can turn this ship around. There is too much talent on this roster to be this bad. Each day guys are getting healthier and the bats look to be warming up. You heard it here…this club will come around. I can’t decide how long it will take for them to get out of the cellar, but we should find out very soon if it can be done. The first week of June the Twins will face Detroit, Kansas City and Cleveland, all teams they are chasing. If they can do some damage over that 10-game stretch then they could be in very good shape. Should they falter…well, then I guess I was wrong about this club.