Daily Archives: May 31, 2012
Thursday May 31st, 2012
Bernie Olshansky: The Twins are sitting at the very bottom of the American League standings with a winning percentage (.360). For those of you without a calculator, that is .248 points less than the leading Rangers (.608). It’s obviously time to do something to turn the Twins around… but what? The Twins shouldn’t be playing this badly, as they have two former MVPs in Joe Mauer (2009) and Justin Morneau (2006) in their lineup. Granted, Mauer won the MVP three years ago and has had a few injuries since, and it’s been six years since Morneau won his MVP, and he’s suffered from a nasty concussion he received when sliding two years ago in Toronto. If these two stars could play to their potential at the same time for a full season, the Twins might be achieving bigger things. The unfortunate truth, however, is that this most likely will not happen.
On paper, the Twins aren’t awful. Carl Pavano anchors the pitching staff followed by an on-and-off Francisco Liriano (who had a rough start to this year), Nick Blackburn, and Scott Diamond. Jason Marquis threw 34 innings this season posting an embarrassing 8.47 ERA while going 2-4 before being released. Just recently the Twins announced the return of Liriano to the starting rotation after a brief time in the bullpen. We’ve seen some flashes of brilliance in the recent past from both Liriano and Pavano. Pavano went 18-8 with a 3.00 ERA with the Marlins in 2004 and more recently went 17-11 with a respectable 3.75 ERA in 2010. Liriano in 2010 had a solid 14-10 record with a 3.62 ERA and last year threw a no-hitter. 2010 was the last good year for the Twins as they finished first in the Central but ended up losing to the Yankees in the Division Series. The team has fallen on extreme hard times since. Read the rest of this entry