4 thoughts on “Objects In Mirror Are Closer Than They Appear

  1. I don’t know about “fast!” After splitting a home series with a team that supposedly isn’t a factor in this race, the Twins now have made up a half-game on the Tigers (and 1.5 games on the irrelevant Toons) since June 21.

    But this should be interesting. Hopefully, it won’t turn out like the recent Mariners series with the Angels and Rangers, where a mostly fun and intriguing first half was just crumpled up and thrown aside in 8 games, like their rivals just got tired of letting them hang around anymore. (I didn’t really think the M’s were going to win the West, but 85 wins and a solid 2nd seemed possible, before the crash.) If the Twins can win 3/4 here… hey, hey! I might even become a believer, then. :)

  2. Sure, we can pick any date from which to measure “fast” and it’s all relative. In the last two days, the Twins have gained 2 games on the Toons and 2 games on the Sox, along with 1 game on the Tigers. That seems to be gaining some quick ground, too. If you go back to June 1, I think anyone would say that gaining 11.5, 7.5, and 6.5 games on those three teams, respectively, in just over 7 weeks is a pretty good pace.

    By the way, if the Twins can find a way to beat Justin Verlander tonight, they’ll pull in to a tie for 3rd place with the idle BitchSox. I’m not 100% sure, but I don’t believe they’ve been in 3rd place in this division since the second day of the season when they were 0-2 and tied for 3rd (and also last) place with Cleveland and Detroit, who also lost their first two games.

    Kubel is 5 for 15 with 1 HR in his Rochester rehab. Span will be the next one ready to return. If Baker is really OK now, those are some pretty big “July additions” to the current roster and there’s still a pretty good chance you see Morneau back in August.

    I can’t imagine any of the other division teams improving their rosters more than that via trade deadline deals.

    It would be nice to take 3 of 4 from the Tigers, but it’s not necessary. There’s a lot of baseball left and these two teams will meet, I believe, in three more series over the next couple of months.

    If it takes more than what this team has done to convince you to “believe”, that’s unfortunate. This group of Twins have made being a fan fun again since June 1 and I think they deserve to have all of us believing!

  3. OK, if you start tracking from the Twins’ rock-bottom low point, of course it’s been a remarkable climb from 16.5 out to even having an outside chance at winning the division (before today’s loss, BP had their odds at 7.6%). But it’s also fair to point out that nearly all of that ground was made up when the Twins were incredibly hot in the first 3 weeks of June, and that things have settled down since then. In the past month, the Twins initially dropped a few steps back, then surged a few steps forward, and now have settled into a position between 5-7 games off the lead for awhile.

    Now, I don’t mean to say that I’m rooting against the Twins, or that I’m not glad to see them doing better. I don’t want fans in Twins Territory to be tortured by bad baseball all summer. I want the team to do well. I’m just still skeptical about them being 7 games better than Detroit (and maybe Cleveland, but particularly Detroit) over the next 64 games. When comparing lineups and pitching, Detroit seems just as good to me, and probably a little better, than Minnesota. And the fact that Detroit has won the last 10 head-to-head meetings, posting a 6-0 mark while outscoring the Twins 43-25 so far this season, also dampens my optimism. But, we’ll see.

    If the Twins don’t win the 3 remaining games in this series, of course it won’t be the end of all hope (although losing the next 3 would hurt an awful lot). But I think these games are particularly important because they’re at home, the outcomes may shape what Bill Smith chooses to do in the following week, and it’s a chance to gain a boost in confidence and momentum as the team heads into a long, tough stretch of the schedule. Heading off to Texas, if the Twins could be coming off 3 victories over Detroit, and just 3 games off the Tigers’ pace (rather than 5 or 7 or, gulp, 9!), it could have a huge impact on the team.

    But I’m just hoping to see the Twins within 3 games on September 11, when they finish with the Tigers. If they’re that close at that point, I think the remaining schedule gives them a good shot at nipping Detroit at the finish. But I don’t think that’s going to be an easy thing. Like I said, it’s a tough road ahead. I don’t really expect the Twins to catch fire over the next 7 weeks, I just hope they can hang in there. Kudos to them if they can do it.