Minnesota Twins: Is Lance Lynn turning things around?

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MINNEAPOLIS, MN - JUNE 08: Lance Lynn #31 of the Minnesota Twins delivers a pitch against the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim during the first inning of the game on June 8, 2018 at Target Field in Minneapolis, Minnesota. (Photo by Hannah Foslien/Getty Images)
MINNEAPOLIS, MN - JUNE 08: Lance Lynn #31 of the Minnesota Twins delivers a pitch against the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim during the first inning of the game on June 8, 2018 at Target Field in Minneapolis, Minnesota. (Photo by Hannah Foslien/Getty Images) /
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The Minnesota Twins are currently only five games behind the Cleveland Indians in the AL Central. For this team to make a playoff push down the stretch, they will need everybody in the clubhouse to step up their game.

One player who has stepped up over the last month of baseball is starting pitcher Lance Lynn. The Minnesota Twins signed Lynn in hopes of solidifying their starting rotation. However, things did not go smoothly for Lynn to start the 2018 season.

Lynn didn’t sign with the Twins until early March, therefore he had an abbreviated Spring Training. That clearly contributed to the struggles Lynn experienced early on this season.

Things were rough for Lynn as he limped out of the gate with a 7.34 ERA through his first seven starts. It gets worse when you look at some of his other numbers. He amassed only 36 strikeouts with a whopping 25 walks through 34 1/3 innings pitched during that span.

Lynn also allowed six home runs with a .312 batting average against and a staggering .936 on-base plus slugging percentage. Luck definitely came into play during this span as batters had an unsustainable .381 batting average on balls in play(BAbip). However, as the weather continues to get warmer, Lynn continues to improve in every area.

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Reason for hope

Over his last five starts, Lynn has looked like the pitcher who dominated in the National League during the last few seasons. Lynn has a stellar 2.82 ERA with 27 2/3 innings pitched since May 16th. However, it gets better when you look at his numbers this time.

Remember that .381 BAbip from earlier? Well, that number has dropped all the way down to .280 during this span. He has also allowed zero home runs and only two extra-base hits total. Lynn has also cut down on his walks, albeit only slightly, with to go along with 26 strikeouts.

It looks like Lynn actually remembers how to pitch again and it’s happening at a perfect time for the Minnesota Twins. All this team needs is to go on a little winning streak and that starts with the starting rotation.

José Berríos has been spectacular this season and Fernando Romero has emerged as a force in the rotation. Lynn pitching up to his abilities will make this rotation a true strength for the Twins. And we haven’t even talked about Kyle Gibson and Jake Odorizzi, who have both pitched well this year, or the still rehabbing Ervin Santana.

Next: A deep look into Miguel Sano's struggles with the slider

One way or another this rotation depth will pay huge dividends for the Twins. That depth could carry them back into playoff contention. However, if Minnesota falters they will have some trade chips to dangle at the Trade Deadline.

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