If this is to be Justin Morneau‘s final season with the Minnesota Twins, he’s sure doing in style early in 2013.
The 31-year old first baseman is off to a hot start, having recorded hits in all but one of his first six games, and has been on base in every single contest.
He’s having quite the weekend to remember too, first coming up with the go-ahead RBI to break a ninth-inning tie against the Baltimore Orioles on Saturday, and was once again a factor in helping the team move to a 4-2 winning record on Sunday afternoon.
No, he didn’t quite come up with the heroics this time, but Morneau’s big two-run double in the third inning off Jason Hammel did cut what was a 3-0 Orioles lead down to one, and was just the spark that the Twins needed to stay in the game (and to eventually come back and win it).
His 1-for-4 day moved his average to .364 to start the year, and is reminiscent of his torrid start in 2010, where he’d posted a .381/.519/.714 triple-slash after the first week en route to what looked like a potential MVP-type season before it was unfortunately ended by a concussion.
Morneau has been trying to regain his form ever since, and considering that there are two years worth of sub-par performances from the former All-Star, even a start like this isn’t going to totally make any potential concerns about his rest-of-season performance to rest yet — not this early, anyway.
What it does do, however, is that is shows Morneau, at 31, does have a fair share left to give in his bat yet, and can still be relied on for a little bit of heroism once in a while.
That’s who he was for team Canada during their short run at the World Baseball Classic, and at least through the opening week for the season, Morneau is showing that he could that guy for the Twins as well.
Contract year? Maybe. Then again, if that little bit of monetary motivation helps him get back to the player he used to be, I’d imagine Minnesota will be happy to take it, even if it means that they will have a much tougher call to make personnel-wise before the end of the season.