Game 3 Recap: Twins 1, Tigers 7

Small sample sizes.

Baseball fans always make way too much out of the start of the season.  Every year, some .260 hitter hits .400 for the first few weeks and we hear about how he's changed his approach or altered his stance or shortened his swing or done something which is why he's now such a good hitter.  By the end of the year he's hitting .260 again.  Every year, some mediocre pitcher goes 4-0 and we hear about how he's changed his delivery or developed a new pitch or picked up his pace or done something which is why he's now such a good pitcher.  By the end of the year he's mediocre again.  Remember how great Chris Colabello was for the first few weeks last year?  By the end of May he was in Rochester.  Stuff like that happens every year.

Through three games, the Twins have, as Charles Barkley would say,  been turrible.  There's no other way to say it.  Their pitching has been turrible.  Their batting has been turrible.  Their fielding has been turrible.  But here's the thing:  they won't be turrible all year.  Or maybe they will, but not this turrible.  They're not going to give up 7.3 runs per game while scoring 0.3 runs per game.  No, they're not likely to contend for the championship, but we knew that going in.  The point is that things will get better.  In fact, they may even go on a hot streak sometime during the season.  And then we'll here about this or that or the other that caused them to start playing better.  But the truth is that it's a long season, and a lot of stuff happens, and we shouldn't make too much of a few games, good or bad.

And remember, too, that with any luck at all, the team we're seeing now won't be the team we see in August.  By then, it its to be hoped that at least a few of the young players, Buxton, Sano, Rosario, Berrios, Meyer, May, Pinto, Polanco, etc., will be in Minnesota.  Things will get better.  We just have to get through some stuff first.

There's no point in going through the details of yesterday's game.  There's one thing that puzzled me, though.  Why did Oswaldo Arcia not play against a right-handed starter?  Arcia hits much better against righties than lefties, especially in the power department.  And it's not like Shane Greene has some sort of freaky reverse split that would justify it--lefties hit significantly better against him than righties do.  It's not even like we gained something on defense--Arcia's not much in the outfield, but neither is Eduardo Escobar.  Granted that Arcia didn't do much in the first two games, but it's only two games, and nobody else did much, either.

I don't want to start hammering Paul Molitor three games into his managing career, but I don't get it.  Was Arcia sick?  Does he have an injury that I missed?  Did anyone hear an explanation?  I want to think there was a good reason Arcia wasn't in the lineup, but I have no idea what it might have been.

Anyway, we move on to Chicago.  My suggestion is that we pretend the Detroit series never happened and that this afternoon is opening day.  Tommy Milone goes for the Twins, and while I don't expect him to be Clayton Kershaw, I'm hopeful that we'll see a much better Tommy Milone this year than we saw last year.  The White Sox counter with Hector Noesi, who isn't the worst pitcher in the league, but is significantly worse than the pitchers we saw in Detroit.  We broke the scoring ice yesterday.  Today we break the winning ice.  Today we start our season-ending winning streak.  We'll just have to settle for 159-3!

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