Back in May, I wrote about how the Minnesota Twins needed to make a move to establish themselves a top the American League Central Division. They did just that and entered June accomplishing what I had hoped, standing atop the division as the month draws to a close.
As June has continued on, the Twins certainly haven’t been playing horrible, but an 8-9 current mark has given Cleveland and Chicago the opportunity to creep back into the Division race. You can be certain neither are going to be fading away any time soon.
Cleveland is playing well and gaining confidence as they go. Chicago hasn’t been playing up to predictions, but the White Sox have won 5 of their last 7 and have the easier half of their schedule in their July and August dockets. As their big thumper bats come around, one would think wins would continue to follow as well.
Eight of the Minnesota Twins’ next eleven games as June ends are against those same Cleveland Guardians, along with 3 against the Colorado Rockies. If the Twins can tread water (most importantly against the Guardians) it would be considered a success and keep them atop the division. A record of 6-5 or better over this stretch with 4+ wins against Cleveland would be huge.
Anything worse than that likely will see Minnesota sliding down from the top of the Central perch with the dynamic changing heading into July. Now would be a good time for the Twins to continue some aggressive trade maneuvers to possibly add some arms to an unsteady starting rotation.
I’m skeptical the Twins rotation will continue to hold up as is as we begin to enter the midseason mark. I would like to see another quality arm or 2 to bolster the back end of the rotation, as it feels like a bit of a high wire act with the likes of Archer, Ober and Bundy.
How long can they continue without a huge slip? With the pitching staff limited to 13 players now, a pitcher that can go a consistent 6 innings would certainly be a boon. The team needs to wrap up June with a good stretch and some more help to set them up for July and August.