With the first month of Major League Baseball in the past, let’s take a look at how the Minnesota Twins fared in the month of April.
Minnesota Twins Opening Day. The greatest words in the English language.
Teams everywhere open the season with eyes on fall baseball. Fans stream into stadiums full of optimism and excitement after a long off season. For some fan bases, that excitement is short lived. Especially relevant, Minnesota Twins’ fans have been one of those fan bases. But this season started out differently.
The team was 4-0 for the first time since that magical 1987 season. They started by sweeping the Royals in the opening series of the season; the pitching staff was unhittable, the offense was off to a hot start, and all looked good in the Twin Cities.
Then it stopped. The Twins lost 10 of 14 games including being swept by the division leading Indians.
April was definitely a tale of 2 halves for the Twins. After that scorching 4-0 start, they ended the month with a 12-11 record in 3rd place in the AL Central, only 1 game back from first place.
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Although the month certainly didn’t end as well as it began, there is still plenty to be excited about. Miguel Sano had a fantastic April. He ended with AL Player of the Week honors, a .316 batting average, 7 home runs and 25 RBI which leads the AL. His .443 OBP is good enough to tie him for 2nd in the AL. Sano ended the month by going 3 for 5 on Sunday with a 3 run home run and 5 RBI’s in a Twins victory over the Royals.
Robbie Grossman has been solid at the plate as well, finishing April ranked 4th in the AL in OBP at .413. Brian Dozier, batting lead off, has not enjoyed the successes of 2016 but enters May with 5 stolen bases, which leads the franchise, a .242 batting average, 2 home runs and 8 RBI.
The Pitching Staff
Furthermore, the most obvious bright spot for the Twins in this young season has been the pitching staff. Ervin Santana has been almost perfect so far with an outstanding 0.77 ERA, a 4-0 record and 26 strikeouts.
On the other side of the bullpen, Brandon Kintzler has recorded 7 saves with an ERA of only 0.79. The staff collectively ranks 10th in the MLB with 4.2 Opp RPG and 7th with .704 Opp OPS. This is definitely a nice turnaround compared to last season. Hence the Twins’ staff finishing near the bottom of the league in nearly every statistical category.
In conclusion, April was a roller coaster month for the Twins. From the hot start to the mid month slump to the 2 game sweep of the Royals to end the month, it was definitely a mix of emotions.