July 8, 2018

If only the Twins played Baltimore every game

After a 1-8 road trip, the Twins suddenly have a three-game winning streak at home, courtesy of the Baltimore Orioles, baseball’s worst team at 24-64. The Twins won again Saturday and will now shoot for the four-game sweep on Sunday.

Starter Kyle Gibson got into trouble early in Saturday’s game, but finally settled down to strike out nine over seven innings. Reliever Trevor Hildenberger held the line and Fernando Rodney closed out the 5-4 win with his 19th save of the season.

Once again, the bottom of the order came up big after catcher Bobby Wilson had two hits, including a double, and drove in three runs. Robbie Grossman, Eduardo Escobar and Brian Dozier also hit doubles, while Max Kepler hit his 10th home run.

Jake Odorizzi gets the ball Sunday.

-After Saturday’s win, the Twins are back to 10 games under .500 at 38-48. That’s good enough for second place in the incredibly weak AL Central, 10.5 games back of the Cleveland Indians.

-How does the rest of July look? Kansas City and Tampa come to Target Field before the all-star break. After the break, the Twins hit the road to play the Blue Jays and Red Sox before returning home to play Cleveland. I like the team’s chances in July, except for Toronto and Boston, two teams likely to give the Twins a hard time.

-August, though, might be the month the Twins make their move. Twenty-one of 28 games in August are against AL Central teams.

COMMENTS

Hi, I’m Rolf Boone and I love the Twins.

I became a fan of the Minnesota Twins after a friendly wager in the early 1980s. I survived Ron Davis, the meltdown in Cleveland, Phil Bradley at the Kingdome and then marveled at a rising generation of stars and two World Series wins in 1987 and 1991. Brad Radke made the 1990s bearable, while Kirby Puckett’s eye injury, exit from the game and eventual death made it almost too much to bear. The new century ushered in more talent — Joe Mauer, Johan Santana, Joe Nathan, Torii Hunter, Justin Morneau — and consecutive seasons of playoff baseball, followed by consecutive seasons of losing baseball. A winning season returned in 2015. So here we are. Go Twins.