I’m not sure if anyone outside of Minnesota knows how good outfielder Josh Willingham is. Last season he won the silver slugger award but somehow missed out on an All-Star bid even though he had a 30-plus and 100-plus season. What do you have to do in a Minnesota Twins uniform to get noticed by the league? Whatever the answer to that question, Willingham could play an even larger role for the Twins this season and could improve on his already stellar numbers.
The first spring game saw him go 2 for 2 with a two-run homer. He is already getting that swing down and is ready to go. It’s not even March yet and Willingham has already gotten at least one more person’s attention. Maybe by the middle of the first half of the season, when he has 15 homers and 30 runs batted in already, fans across Major League Baseball will actually take notice and give him a few votes for All-Star.
If indeed, since the Twins have a younger less experienced outfield this season, Willingham takes more of a leadership role it could boost his confidence and his numbers. I would not be surprised to see him threaten 35 to 40 big flies this season. Hopefully if he puts up the kind of year he is clearly capable of putting up, it won’t be spring of the next season before people outside of Twins fandom know how good he is.