The Minnesota Twins have crossed the half-way mark of the season and we check on what will happen going forward.
“Wooaaaaah, we’re half way there,
Wo-oah! Livin’ on a prayer!”
Much like the infamous Bon Jovi song, the Minnesota Twins are sending up a World Series prayer at the half way mark of the season. The Twins had an exceptional first half of the season and things are looking encouraging as they turn the corner. All fans have to be encouraged and excited as we look forward.
The Minnesota Twins are currently sitting solidly in 1st place with a 2.5 game lead. It would take a major down fall for them to not make the play-offs, but it will also probably take 40 wins to take the division. Chicago and Cleveland are playing very good baseball and are hot on the Twins’ tail.
The assured total still remains at 34 wins to make the play-offs, though it’s likely you may see a team fall in at the 8th seed at 32 or 33 wins. That win total almost looks like a certainty for Minnesota.
As it sits now, the Minnesota Twins are currently tied for the 1st seed and would play a wild card team in the 1st round. The wild cards are currently the Houston Astros (16 wins) and the Chicago White Sox (17 wins), but the Toronto Blue Jays and Baltimore Orioles (14 wins each) are fighting to stay in the hunt for the 8th spot.
If the Twins are going to continue on or fall off this pace, here’s what will need to happen:
The Twins Will Surge in the 2nd Half if:
- Miguel Sano, Eddie Rosario, Max Kepler can stay consistent at the plate and Josh Donaldson joins them when he comes off the IL.
- Jose Berrios continues to round into form as expected, while Michael Pineda comes back and is (at minimum) an adequate starter (Homer Bailey may have a 1 game career for the Twins).
- The offense as a whole puts it together. It’s encouraging to think of the upside potential of this line-up, as they still haven’t really been firing on all cylinders.
The Twins Will Falter in the 2nd Half if:
- Jake Odorizzi and Rich Hill can’t get back on track and the starting pitching doesn’t stabilize into a full rotation.
- The bullpen collapses from continued overuse. I have some Taylor Rogers concerns, but there’s more to worry about on top of that.
- The streaky offense slows even further and fails to put up consistent run support.
The next 13 games are a huge opportunity for the Twins to gain distance from the pack. They have 8 games against Detroit, 3 versus the White Sox, and 2 against Cleveland. An 8-5 record or better would put the Twins in great position for the home stretch. Now is the time to keep the pedal to the metal and not let off the gas to keep that World Series dream alive!