Baby Steps Forward with the Minnesota Twins


matt capps

It is imperative that individuals refine and rewrite their goals on a consistent basis.

For example, I don’t think that my modeling career is going to take off the way that I had hoped fifteen years ago. One month out from the All Star break, the Minnesota Twins also need to do this. At the beginning of this season, manager Ron Gardenhire and GM Bill Smith undoubtedly had postseason play in the cards and a possible run at the pennant. This is of course is unless they were matched up against the New York Yankees in the playoffs.

Well, now it makes sense for the club to modify their expectations to move forward.

Much like a basketball coach might implore his team to win the next five minutes of game play if they are overmatched, the coaching staff of the Twins could tell the players that playing .500 ball is a realistic and attainable goal at this juncture.

The roster is still beat up. Jason Kubel recently went on the fifteen day disabled list with Jim Thome. These two players were their most potent offensive weapons. The latter is expected to have a limited number of at bats at this point in his career, but the former is in his prime. The organization is sitting on pins and needles hoping that he recovers fully and quickly because the team may be looking to trade him prior to the deadline to a contender.

The Twins spent the weekend in one of the truly timeless and majestic ballparks in Kansas City. The Royals  are perennially young because high draft picks are in the mix due to their lackluster records in the last two decades. They have also decided to go with a limited payroll and attempt to develop this young talent so it can eventually pay dividends when it comes to fruition.

I realize that it is taboo throughout sports to make blockbuster deals within the division, but the Cleveland Indians might be a nice fit for Jason Kubel. He is a natural at the plate and is used to playing in cold weather conditions. The market size also wouldn’t be much of an adjustment for Kubel. As he enters free agency in the offseason, playing for a contender could provide the daily motivation for him to provide that extra effort to go above and beyond the call of duty.

The Twins bullpen has been one of the worst in baseball. Middle relief is a weakness for numerous clubs, but it is getting to where pitching coach Rick Anderson should be close to simply calling up some players from Rochester just to see what they can do. The loss of Matt Guerrier to the Dodgers and Jesse Crain to the Chicago White Sox were blips on the radar screen in the offseason, but their departures have seriously hurt. It hasn’t helped that Matt Capps and Joe Nathan haven’t been themselves either at the end of games. It would assist them get in a rhythm so the team provided for opportunities to obtain saves.

–Patrick Herbert

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