What’s Worse: The Twins Losing 9 of 10 or Sano and Buxton Battling Injuries AGAIN?
It’s difficult to believe that it has only been ten days since the Twins had an 8-5 record and were sitting atop the AL Central. As they say, time crawls when you’re getting your ass kicked.
I don’t want to seem like the “get off my lawn” guy, but Paul Molitor’s club is going to have to pick up the pace. The winning percentage of .100, during this brutal stretch isn’t, going to cut it. On a fortunate note, it’s not as if we’re sitting here talking about the Vikings losing nine of their last ten. This is baseball, baby.
With the Twins’ schedule showing 139 games remaining, it seems important to take the Meek Mill approach:
In an initial attempt to calm some nerves, let’s take a look at Minnesota’s two most important starting pitchers:
Berríos started out this 2018 campaign by only allowing five earned runs over his first four starts (27.2 innings). After that Johan Santana mid 2000-esque dominance, the Puerto Rico native has struggled over his last two appearances:
As scary as Sunday’s zero strikeout performance may have been, the 23 year-old didn’t seem concerned:
Berríos also said (through a translator) “everything works off the fastball and that he “couldn’t control it today.”
That’s understandable, right? Some days, for whatever reason, your “A-Game” is nowhere to be found. When it comes to José Orlando Berríos, I don’t expect his top-notch stuff to be lost for very long.
With May right around the corner (it’s already here if you’re late to reading this), Ervin Santana is yet to make his 2018 inaugural appearance. For now, he will remain in Florida and continue to rehab from the calcium deposit removal surgery. Although there is no specific return date anticipated, the Twins’ 2017 best pitcher is “nearing his first bullpen session.”
In the event Ervin was already around, you’d assume Phil Hughes and Tyler Duffey would have seen little to no innings. Unless you’re a member of the Hughes or Duffey family, that hypothetical switcheroo is like moving from 2008 to 2018 in the cell phone market. Time for an upgrade.
Moving onto the next proverbial Xanax, this odd situation could have been a lot worse:
Byron Buxton the only player ever to fracture his toe while on the DL for migraines
— Seth Klein (@SethDaSportsMan) April 28, 2018
While the hairline fracture is frustrating, at least the deviant foul ball decided to stop it’s bodily harm short of a full-fledged busting of that big toe. In the event that occurred, Byron Buxton probably would have been out 4-6 weeks. According Minnesota’s manager, he is hopeful “it becomes tolerable in a more reasonable timeframe.”
Despite that dose of positivity, Sunday’s Twins-related reports did appear to have one BIG issue. It surrounds our All-Star third baseman:
Sano out while battling hamstring tightness: Twins slugger Miguel Sano will miss his second… https://t.co/yyKfOMHO9n
— New Sports Updates (@newsprtsupdates) April 29, 2018
Per Jim Souhan of the Star Tribune, Molitor “did not sound optimistic” about Miguel Sano returning to action on Monday.
Speaking of not sounding optimistic, how about Souhan’s take on the hefty 24 year-old:
Okay, Okay. Damnit. That’s not a good sign.
It’s especially not a good sign when you parlay the weight gain with Justin Gard’s Tweets from 2017:
Molitor on Sano weight issue: “His heart, mind, soul are in the right places. He just hasn’t figured out the best way to get to his goals.”
— Justin Gaard (@jgkfan) October 10, 2017
More Molitor on Sano: “He can do better…I don’t know how big is too big for Miggy…he’s a big guy. We can do better.”
— Justin Gaard (@jgkfan) October 10, 2017
Contrary to popular belief, I’m not a doctor. While hamstring injuries are apparently “often preventable,” was this one? At the end of the day, if Sano can stay healthy and play baseball at a high-level, who cares if he’s pushing four bills?
However, I don’t think the man who wound up as AL Manager of the Year was referring to Miguel packing on 5-10 more pounds. Despite Molitor saying they “can do better,” indications are the situation may have gotten a little worse:
Miguel Sano running through a stop sign at 3rd pic.twitter.com/PLBmcEoxbT
— Brian (@hrbekroenick) April 5, 2018
Johnny Minnesota (@TheJohnnyMN)