Minnesota Twins: Three Silver Linings in Recent Weeks

Nelson Cruz of the Minnesota Twins bats and hits a home run. (Photo by Brace Hemmelgarn/Minnesota Twins/Getty Images)
Nelson Cruz of the Minnesota Twins bats and hits a home run. (Photo by Brace Hemmelgarn/Minnesota Twins/Getty Images) /
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It’s no secret that the Minnesota Twins aren’t exactly having the season that they had hoped for. At 15-28, the Twins currently possess the worst record in all of baseball. In this disastrous start, it seems that everything has been working against the team, with some things worse than others.

However, that doesn’t mean that it’s all been negative. Yes, it has been overwhelmingly negative when it comes to the Twins this season, but there are still some positives worth highlighting. Even though we’re just looking for blue sky mixed amongst the dark clouds of 2021, it’s not all bad.

Hopefully these positives are enough to partially save the mental state of Twins fans everywhere, so with that being said, here are a few promising takeaways from recent days, starting with Miguel Sanó.

Minnesota Twins
Minnesota Twins first baseman Miguel Sano reacts after hitting a grand slam home run against the Los Angeles Angels. Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports /

Minnesota Twins: Miguel Sanó Starting to Hit

Miguel Sanó is a very talented hitter, with raw gifts that rival anyone in baseball. He’s also a notoriously slow starter, and he once again got off to a dreadful start to the season, batting just .111 with a .555 OPS through April 20th.

After that game, Sanó was placed on the IL with a hamstring issue, and didn’t see action again until May 5. Since that date, his hitting has been much more productive. Since Sanó’s return from the IL, he is slashing .225/.295/.525, with an .820 OPS entering Thursday.

In that 11-game span, he hit 4 home runs. He hit just 2 homers in the 15 games before his injury. To top it all off, Sanó had a double, a walk, a run, and a grand slam (his fifth homer in thirteen games) in seven plate appearances yesterday. He’s finding his stroke.

Sanó is also striking out less since his return, albeit not by a major difference. However, for a guy who has struck out in 36.3% of his plate appearances this year, any small improvement is notable. His improved walk rate is an added bonus.

Now, it’s not necessarily as if there was long-term concern over Sanó, but when a team is struggling as bad as the Twins have been, a key bat like Sanó slumping tends to weigh a little extra.

The struggles of Sanó’s powerful bat have been well-documented, but it appears that he’s starting to find himself at the plate in recent days. After a monster game consisting of 3 home runs and a Twins victory on Tuesday, manager Rocco Baldelli had this to say of Sanó:

“There’s not many people that have had a type of ballgame like this. Coming on the heels of some of the games that he’s had, we know that this is part of who he is and what he’s capable of on a regular basis.”

If that game was any indication, Sanó is ready to do even more damage as the year rolls on.