Despite Injury Purge, is the Twins Season Looking Up?
When it comes to appearing extremely intoxicated, the last couple weeks of the Twins’ season deserve a
gold silver medal.
Cinco de Mayo & The Kentucky Derby on the same day…this is the greatest day ever for drunk frat bros.
— Andy Ruther (@AndyRuther) May 5, 2018
With that attempt to lighten the mood complete (things might get a little dark here), let’s talk baseball:
After starting off the season 8-5, the Twins played the next 13 games to the tune of a 2-11 record.
As disturbing as that graphic is, Saturday’s victory actually marked the team’s second win in a row and third of their last four. They’ll enter Sunday just a half game back of Ron Gardenhire’s Detroit Tigers for second place in the AL Central. While that accomplishment is certainly nothing to write home about,
beggars Minnesotans can’t be choosers.
So, hopefully Minnesota’s very recent on-the-field play, unlike Miguel Sano’s weight goals, are moving back in the right direction. Unfortunately, that’s not the case away from the big league diamond:
.@Twins place catcher Jason Castro (right knee meniscus tear) on 10-day DL; select catcher Bobby Wilson from Triple-A Rochester; transfer RHP Ervin Santana to 60-day DL.
— MLBRosterMoves (@MLBRosterMoves) May 5, 2018
Jason Castro’s 10-day DL designation means Mitch Garver will take on the majority of reps at Joe Mauer’s old position. Who’s for the new catcher on the Twins’ roster? Bobby Wilson was acquired via a FA minor-league deal in November of 2017.
Over the course of eight different MLB seasons (324 games), the 35 year-old has a career batting average of .214 (.268 OBP). With all due respect to Wilson, barring some sort of out-of-body experience, I hope he reaches the 330 career contest plateau as part of a different organization.
Unless you’re hosing runners down at second like Yadier Molina, Bobby Boy’s one home run every 47 at-bats coupled with his barely-above .200 batting average isn’t going to cut it:
Sidebar: Indications are that Castro’s slow start at the plate is attributed to this meniscus issue.
Speaking of not going to cut it, Minnesota’s current team ERA of 5.02 ranks 26th in the majors. For comparison purposes, Ervin Santana’s 2017 ERA closed at an impressive 3.28.
Although the 2x All-Star’s transfer to the 60-Day Disabled List may appear daunting, the headline’s bark significantly outperforms its bite.
The two month hiatus is retroactive to the beginning of the season. Due to that extremely important wrinkle, Santana will be permitted to return from this lingering finger issue on May 28th.
Despite the May eligibility date, according to Paul Molitor, the 35 year-old pitcher’s need for live batting practice sessions prior to his (brief) Minor League assignment, “leaves the first week of June as a more likely landing spot for Santana’s return.”
While that would equate to (basically) another month’s time without the reliable right-hander, a certain call-up last week may ease our pain slightly.
The way I see it, despite all of the Twins’ recent pain (literally and figuratively), things easily could have been much more excruciating. First of all, Cleveland’s recent struggles leave them sitting only one game above .500. In addition to that, it’s not like Minnesota still has one of their starting pitching eggs in Phil Hughes’ basket.
I don’t care if it was a ball, the life on this 98mph fastball from Fernando Romero blew my mind.
— Pitcher List (@PitcherList) May 2, 2018