March 30, 2024

Twins win, but at what cost?

Want to know what a pyrrhic victory is? A Twins win over anybody that results in the loss of a key player.

That’s what the Twins are facing after their 4-1 takedown of the Kansas City Royals on Thursday. Royce Lewis, who seems built for big moments, homered on opening day and also singled, but all we really remember is that he pulled up lame coming around second base and had to leave the game with an apparent quad injury.

The good news is that he did not injure a knee, as he has done twice before; the bad news is we don’t know the extent of the injury and how much time he might miss.

Still, the Twins won. Pablo Lopez allowed one run on four hits with seven whiffs over seven innings, and Carlos Correa had a very encouraging three-hit day and drove in two runs.

But if the Twins are going to lose Lewis for any significant time, I’d rather see them lose than lose him. Whether the bases are loaded or it’s the offseason or opening day, Lewis just seems to rise to the occasion.

Joe Ryan gets the ball on Saturday.

Extra innings…

-Max Kepler also exited Thursday’s game early after he fouled a ball off his right knee. Not that I want to see Max get hurt, but he is not the clutch hitter that Lewis has become.

Here’s how some ex-Twins performed on opening day:

-Miguel Sano, who spent eight seasons with the Twins and later earned a spot in the Los Angeles Angels lineup, struck out twice in two at bats in an 11-3 loss to the Orioles. The O’s look scary-good.

-Pitcher Jose Berrios allowed only two runs on six hits with a walk and six strikeouts to help the Blue Jays beat the Tampa Bay Rays 8-2.

-Luis Arraez, the defending batting champion in the National League, had a very un-Arraez like day in a 6-5 loss in extra innings to the Pirates. He had no hits in six trips to the plate and also struck out once.

-Former Twins catcher Mitch Garver, who hit 31 homers as a member of the Bomba Squad in 2019, had an extra-base hit in the M’s 6-4 loss to the Red Sox.

-And Spencer Steer, a former Twins prospect who was traded to the Reds in the unfortunate deal to get Tyler Mahle, had a 2-for-3 day with two runs scored and 2 RBI in an 8-2 win over the Nationals.

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.