As much of a disaster as that last road trip was, coming away with a split and an overall season series win over the Dodgers despite all the roster setbacks still found a way to thaw my cold cynical heart. The bats finally broke out, and we’ll see if that continues or if things sputter yet again over the next two series against much lesser teams.
The Twins were a surprise playoff team last year, winning 85 games in a relatively lackluster AL. This year things aren’t quite so rosy – they are seven games under .500 in one of the worst divisions in recent baseball history. A big part of that has been the absence of Byron Buxton, who has only had 94 plate appearances this year due to a broken toe suffered while on a rehab stint for migrane issues back in April. They’ve also given 200+ PAs each to two more sub replacement level guys in Logan Morrison and Robbie Grossman, and free agent signing Lance Lynn has posted both a 4.81 ERA and 5+ BB/9 on the season. Their arguably best pitcher, Ervin Santana, is still coming back from surgery on his middle finger from an injury suffered in the spring. So when we complain about the Cubs it’s good to remember that it could be worse.
- OBP: Kris Bryant (.383)
- ISO: Javier Baez (.279)
- HR: Baez (16)
- R+RBI: Baez (103)
- wRC+: Bryant (143)
- BSR: Baez (3.7)
- DRS: Addison Russell (12)
- SP K/9: Yu Darvish (11.03)
- SP BB/9: Mike Montgomery (2.27)
- SP FIP: Monty (3.63)
- RP K/9: Carl Edwards Jr (14.40)
- RP BB/9: Anthony Bass (0.00)
- RP FIP: Bass (1.46)
- WAR: Bryant (2.3)
- OBP: Joe Mauer (.365)
- ISO: Eduardo Escobar (.263)
- HR: Eddie Rosario (17)
- R+RBI: Rosario (104)
- wRC+: Rosario (146)
- BSR: Rosario (3.7)
- DRS: Rosario (6)
- SP K/9: Jose Berrios (9.52)
- SP BB/9: Berrios (1.75)
- SP FIP: Berrios (3.25)
- RP K/9: Ryan Pressly (13.38)
- RP BB/9: Matt McGill (1.29)
- RP FIP: Taylor Rogers (2.51)
- WAR: Rosario (3.2)
Injuries, transactions, vengeance pacts, etc.
Kris Bryant is on the DL with shoulder soreness and will miss all of this series. Carl Edwards should be starting a rehab outing tomorrow/Friday, and Yu Darvish felt some more triceps pain after a bullpen session preceding the Dodgers finale so who knows when he will be back.
For the Twins, Byron Buxton has been on a rehab assignment for the past week or so after reinjuring his broken toe. He was rushed back to the bigs last time, they’re taking their time this time around. He could be back at some point this series. Ervin Santana and Michael Pineda are both working their way back from surgeries and will also not appear in this series.
ERA, FIP, xFIP, projected ERA listed for each pitcher
Friday: Jose Berrios, RHP (3.15, 3.25, 3.37, 3.85) vs Mike Montgomery, LHP (3.39, 3.89, 4.26, 4.07), 4:05 PM CT
Berrios was really good last year, and has been even better this year. Monty got off to a shaky start to the year but has been great since moving into the rotation. His strikeout rate is way down but he’s also issuing fewer free passes.
Saturday: Adalberto Mejia, LHP (4.59 projected ERA) vs Tyler Chatwood, RHP (3.95, 4.93, 5.31, 4.46), 1:20 PM CT
This is Mejia’s 2018 debut for the Twins, but he did make 21 forgettable starts last year for them.
Can Tyler Chatwood’s wife go into labor again this weekend?
Sunday: Lance Lynn, RHP (4.81, 4.14, 4.16, 4.08) vs Jon Lester, LHP (2.18. 4.06, 4.46, 3.73), 1:20 PM CT
Lynn has been a disaster sign so far for the Twins, though his numbers have improved over the past few weeks. Lester has been beating the crap out of his peripherals, hopefully he doesn’t stop now.