With about a month and a half left in the season and sub .500 record in the midst, the Minnesota Twins have seemingly found their offense during a stretch where their pitching has taken a turn for the worse.
Aside from Ervin Santana, the Minnesota Twins have seen a serious unfortunate drop off between their No. 1 starter and everyone else.
Santana has posted a 3.62 ERA throughout the season while the next best average belongs to Kyle Gibson whose 5.09 is far from impressive and worthy of a No. 2 guy.
Santiago has allowed 15 earned runs over his last three starts and has failed to go more than 5 1/3 innings over that same span of time.
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So the real question is, what’s the issue here?
Well, one of the issues seems to be one that has plagued the Minnesota Twins for quite some time, which is lack of strikeout pitchers.
Santana and Tyler Duffey currently lead the Twins in strikeouts with 93 and 90, respectively.
Still, they’re not quite missing enough bats to be truly dominant. And it seems whenever a pitcher puts together a truly strong performance, the offense just can’t back it up and vice versa.
The defense has not helped matters either as they currently rank second to last in the majors in fielding with 87 errors.
This has accounted for 52 unearned runs as a whole.
It will be interesting to see what happens next season as the Minnesota Twins try to put together their staff.
Will guys like Phil Hughes, Tommy Milone, Gibson and Santiago (if retained) be put on short leashes? How about the young guy? Will Jose Berrios and Duffey be able to take the next step and be a true compliment to Santana?
Will the Minnesota Twins search internally for another starter or look at the free agent market?
I can’t imagine the Twins are a very sexy destination for free agents right now but the team has got to try something different as there are a lot of questions about their starting staff right now that lacks answers.
The Twins already did a smart thing by cutting ties with Nolasco and if Hughes can’t find that spark that made 2014 such a strong year, he may share the same fate.
Adalberto Mejia and Stephen Gonsalves are expected to make an impact in some capacity sooner rather than later. This means the Twins should have some help with the struggling staff soon.
In a perfect world, that is.
Until then, the starting staff will remain the team’s biggest question until further notice.