Minnesota Twins: Five Burning Questions

6 of 6

Mandatory Credit: Bruce Kluckhohn-USA TODAY Sports

Can the starting rotation continue to perform at a high level?

The Twins starters have been much improved in 2015 and have combined for a 3.94 earned run average, 13 best in the major league. Twins pitching coach, Neil Allen deserves a round of applause.

But, they also rank 28th overall with just 295 strikeouts and could add a power arm at the deadline.

The Twins rotation will be getting a shot in the arm this weekend when Ervin Santana returns from his 80 game suspension. Getting Santana back this weekend will be like getting a veteran starter at the deadline.

Phil Hughes got off to a rocky start, but finished June with five straight quality starts. He is 7-6 on the season with a 4.10 earned run average. He finished June with a 3-2 record and is pitching like he was last season.

Trevor May has had and up and down rookie season. He is currently 4-6 with a 4.44 earned run average. He had a string of five straight starts in which he pitched six or more innings. In his last start he recorded just one and gave up five earned runs.

Kyle Gibson has been the Twins most consistent pitcher. He’s 5-6 with a 3.30 earned run average. He had a phenomenal month of May, going 3-1 with a 1.36 earned run average.

Tommy Milone has been lights out for the Twins since being recalled from Triple-A. He hasn’t given up more than two runs in his five starts since rejoining the rotation. He’s 4-1 on the season with a 3.19 earned run average.

Mike Pelfrey is 5-5 with a 3.81 earned run average, but he could be coming back down to earth. He went 2-0 with a 2.25 earned run average in April. He then went 2-1 with a 3.21 earned run average in May. Now he’s starting to struggle, he went 1-4 in June with a 5.35 earned run average. Pelfrey was originally slated to be pitching out of the bullpen before Santana’s suspension. He may find himself in that role with Santana returning this weekend.

Will the Twins trade any of their starters? Will prospect Jose Berrios join the rotation at some point during the second half of the season?

The success of any team hinges largely on the starting rotation and if the Twins starters can continue to find success they will be able to stay in the thick of the playoff race in the American League.

More from Puckett's Pond