June 8, 2023

No team in the AL Central has a winning record

The Twins have been playing like a .500 baseball team and now it’s official, the club falling to 31-31 on Wednesday after a heart-breaking walk-off loss to the Tampa Bay Rays, 2-1.

Two solo home runs were the difference. The first was allowed by starter Pablo Lopez, who otherwise pitched well and made another quality start, while the second was served up by the hard-throwing reliever Jhoan Duran in the bottom of the ninth inning to give the Rays the win and series win.

In case you haven’t heard, the Twins are not hitting, they’re not scoring runs and they continue to lead the majors in strikeouts, averaging about 10 per game. Wednesday was no different as the Twins had a grand total of three hits. They finally clawed their way to a run in the top of the ninth inning to tie the game, then watched it all go bye-bye.

Bailey Ober gets the ball on Thursday.

-The Twins are 31-31, but they still lead the Cleveland Guardians in the sad-sack AL Central by 2.5 games.

-The Twins have lost four straight games, their longest losing streak of the season.

-The much maligned Max Kepler had a hit and made a nice play in Wednesday’s game, but it’s going to take a lot more than that to win back the fans.

-Ex-Twin Luis Arraez had two more hits on Wednesday. He’s now hitting .403.

-The Twins were 1-0 in March, 16-12 in April, 12-15 in May and 2-4 to start June.

-Hall of Famer Rod Carew was interviewed by Twins TV guys Dick Bremer and Justin Morneau the other day, and Carew explained how he used to practice bunting for an hour, putting markers on the ground to make sure he hit his spots.

That prompted Morneau to mention that slugger Jim Thome, who hit his 600th home run as a member of the Twins, also used to practice bunting but for a different reason, wanting to make sure he was seeing and tracking the ball correctly.

That struck me as worthwhile training, so I suggest the Twins embark on something similar. It couldn’t possibly make the Twins’ hitting woes any worse.

COMMENTS

Hi, I’m Rolf Boone, Twins fan.

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.