Minnesota Twins vs. Tampa Bay Rays series preview

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ST. PETERSBURG, FL - MAY 31: Jose Berrios #17 of the Minnesota Twins throws in the second inning of a baseball game against the Tampa Bay Rays at Tropicana Field on May 31, 2019 in St. Petersburg, Florida. (Photo by Mike Carlson/Getty Images)
ST. PETERSBURG, FL - MAY 31: Jose Berrios #17 of the Minnesota Twins throws in the second inning of a baseball game against the Tampa Bay Rays at Tropicana Field on May 31, 2019 in St. Petersburg, Florida. (Photo by Mike Carlson/Getty Images) /
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DETROIT, MI – JUNE 8: Miguel Sano #22 of the Minnesota Twins walks to the dugout after striking out against the Detroit Tigers during the sixth inning at Comerica Park on June 8, 2019 in Detroit, Michigan. The Tigers defeated the Twins 9-3. (Photo by Duane Burleson/Getty Images)
DETROIT, MI – JUNE 8: Miguel Sano #22 of the Minnesota Twins walks to the dugout after striking out against the Detroit Tigers during the sixth inning at Comerica Park on June 8, 2019 in Detroit, Michigan. The Tigers defeated the Twins 9-3. (Photo by Duane Burleson/Getty Images) /

About the Twins

Things aren’t feeling too great after the Twins endured their first losing week of the season, but they still are in great shape in the American League Central and own the best record in the American League. Still, with the paranoia that the wheels are going to fall off at any moment, last week didn’t do much to console the fears of their fan base.

One of the biggest reasons for last week’s struggle was a rough turn through the starting rotation. With the exception of two dominant starts by Jose Berrios, the Twins couldn’t get much going as Kyle Gibson, Jake Odorizzi, Michael Pineda and Martin Perez all struggled on the mound.

The struggles also continued at the plate as the Twins couldn’t come through in the clutch. An especially concerning development was the struggles of Miguel Sano, who has struck out 29 times in his last 55 at-bats dating back to June 4.

The good news is there may be something to pinpoint the Twins recent issues at the plate. Minnesota had a rash of injuries last week and should be healthier once Byron Buxton returns to the lineup. The Twins also seem to be making strong contact, which means that things should progress back to the mean in the near future.

Much like the Rays, the Twins received an off day at the perfect time to recharge the batteries and clear their heads. Minnesota’s struggles have been bad, but they could be worse, like the seven-game losing streak the Houston Astros snapped on Sunday. If they can get right, they should be the dominant team they’ve been all season.

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