The Twins lost to the Cleveland Indians on Thursday, mustering all of six hits in the 4-1 loss at Target Field. After the 10-7 loss on Tuesday to the Reds, it amounted to two straight losses and a feeling that the Twins really aren’t ready for prime time.
But they won 8-7 on Friday and 8-2 on Sunday to take the rain-shortened series from the Indians. Saturday’s rainout will be made up as a September doubleheader.
The Twins are once again 10 games under .500 and have a two-game winning streak. So what does it all mean? Are they ready to turn the corner or not?
Their upcoming schedule suggests that if they want to make a move in the division, this would be the time to do it because most of July will be spent battling the AL Central. And they get a quick tune up with a three-game road series at Chicago to end June. The White Sox are 3-7 in their last 10 games while the Twins are 7-3.
Kenta Maeda gets the ball Monday.
-The Twins made it look easy on Sunday, scoring six of their eight runs via the long ball. Andrelton Simmons hit a two-run shot, Josh Donaldson added a solo blast and Nelson Cruz teed off for a three-run home run, his 17th.
-Perhaps more impressive was J.A. Happ, who made a quality start to improve to 4-3 and trimmed his ERA to 5.83 from 6.09. He allowed two runs over six innings with seven strikeouts. Relievers Tyler Duffey and Caleb Thielbar pitched three scoreless innings.
-Sunday’s win was marred by an ugly incident in the Cleveland outfield after Josh Naylor, running in to catch a fly ball, collided with the second baseman and reportedly fractured a leg.
-The Game 1 dud wasn’t Jose Berrios’ fault. Berrios allowed one run over six-plus innings and struck out nine in the no-decision start.
-Friday’s 8-7 win was paced by Luis Arraez at the top of the order, who went 3-for-4, including two triples, and drove in three runs.
-How about old friend Kyle Gibson of the Texas Rangers? Gibson remains undefeated this season and improved to 6-0 after he shut out the Royals on two hits over seven innings with 10 strikeouts on Saturday. A check of Baseball-Reference.com shows that 80 percent of Gibson’s starts this season have been quality starts.