Minnesota Twins: Eddie Rosario providing a spark during win streak
By Nate Palmer
The Minnesota Twins had quite the rough stretch through April. Now in May, Eddie Rosario has helped to fuel a Twins winning streak and optimism once again.
The Minnesota Twins looked toast after losing the first game of a series with the Chicago White Sox this past Thursday. Since that loss, the Twins have gone on to rattle off five straight wins, three against the White Sox and another two against the St. Louis Cardinals. At the center have been some key offensive performances one of which being Twins outfielder Eddie Rosario.
So far in 2018 Rosario has a stat line of .291/.313/.551 with seven home runs, 23 runs scored, and 25 RBIs. That slash line has improved in large increments ever since the calendar turned to May. After the first 24 games of the season, Rosario was slashing .231/.263/.396 and three home runs.
Since the beginning of May Rosario is hitting .444/.444/.1.389 with four home runs and six doubles. Rosario has also scored 11 runs and logged 13 RBIs. He also hit an extra-base for seven games to start May, sitting tied with 10 others for the third longest streak in Twins history of that variety.
Rosario has even gotten in on the action with his glove as well. Something that was on display in great ways during Monday night’s win against the Cardinals as he robbed Dexter Fowler of a home run at the left field fence.
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The real question is what has changed? Dan Hayes of the Atheltic did some digging to find out what exactly did. After returning to Minnesota at the end of April, Rosario and assistant hitting coach Rudy Hernandez worked on Rosario regaining an opposite field approach.
Now if you were at all like me that sounds a lot like that “Twins way” hitting approach that alienated way too many former hitters than we want to remember. Before you close this window out, this is much different. Hernandez deems Rosario’s hands as being “too quick.” In other words, if he doesn’t think opposite field with his approach he will pull everything. This approach allows Rosario to slow down just enough to put the ball in play. Seems to be working.
More than it seems to be working, it also makes a lot of sense. When Rosario is not executing it always seems he is swinging through balls with such violence that he is trying to drill the ball towards right field. That was honestly how he looked for much of the Puerto Rico series in his at-bats. Great job by Hernandez for identifying and walking Rosario through these adjustments.
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Now thanks in part to Rosario’s hot start to May the Twins are sitting right back at the top of the American League Central. After just last week many were ready to write the season off. Now the playoffs are near once again. Next up, Rosario and the Twins will be tested by the Los Angeles Angels. A test that will show just how far this team has come in five games.