2018 Game 62: Heavenly Host vs. Two Guys Named Ed

Because baseball breaks your heart, because baseball is designed to break your heart, the Twins' current season of mediocrity in the wake of great expectations shouldn't come as a surprise to anyone. But that realization doesn't make it any easier to watch. It's supremely frustrating, after years of waiting semi-patiently, to finally have a pretty solid starting rotation only to see it, more often than not, let down by the bullpen or the offense or both. Injuries are part of every season for every team, but the Twins luck in that regard this year has been worse than most. Ervin Santana remains hobbled on the DL, his rehab halted for a week by discomfort in his middle finger, and there's no firm timetable for his return. Sano was out for more than a month, long enough to forget how to lay off a slider, apparently. He's hitting just slightly north of Mendoza and striking out like he has food waiting in the dugout. Castro, never a great stick but at times able to deliver a clutch knock, is gone for the season and our current backstops are hitting .216 and .174. Joe Mauer, after a heartening resurgence last year, remains on the DL with concussion-type issues. Byron Buxton, back on the DL with the same bad toe that landed him there in May, has an OPS+ of 6. Not 60, just the single digit, six. To date, Logan Morrison continues to be a bust of an acquisition sporting a .192 BA and slugging just .341, and Robby Grossman is performing only a few points better up and down the slash line. Brian Dozier, who got actual MVP votes last year, has dropped nearly 130 OPS points under last season's mark. Add in Polanco's 80-game suspension that's forced Adrianza and his banjo into the daily lineup and you have a batting order with more holes than a golf course. It's unequivocal that Eddie Rosario and Eduardo Escobar have been carrying this team offensively for some time now, but they can't do enough between them to make up for the weak hitting and below par production in the rest of the lineup. We have a pretty good record in games where we score four runs or more. That has to be the daily benchmark for the offense going forward if the Twins are going to amount to more than a hummock of legumes this year. Rookie phenom Romero takes the mound for the Twins today, his last few starts after a stellar debut in his first few have seen a steady regression toward the mean and indicate that scouting has more or less caught up to him now. Tropeono toes the rubber for the Halos. Play ball!

37 thoughts on “2018 Game 62: Heavenly Host vs. Two Guys Named Ed”

  1. Gladden applauding Morrison for being willing to swing at the first pitch. When hitting the first pitch this year (17 at-bats), he is batting .235/.350/.294 going into today's game. Granted it's a small sample size, and granted the average and OBP are better than his season numbers, but it's hard to make an argument that it's helping him much.

  2. Glad Molitor left Romero out there to pitch the fifth. He's not going to improve if you pull him out every time he runs into trouble. The only way he'll get better is to keep pitching.

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