It was only a matter of time until the Minnesota Twins winning record was no more. Last night (April 18th) the Twins lost to the Cleveland Indians 11-4, putting the teams record at .500. With a 7 and 7 mark. The Twins have lost 6 of the last 8 games. So much for the hot start.
I believe their is bigger problems ahead for the club. Right now the only players on the team that pose a threat to opposing pitchers are, Dozier, Sano and Kepler. The other players on the team don’t have the type of home run hitting ability to make opposing pitchers afraid. It gets worse those three account for only 7 home runs hit this season. The rest of the team accounts for a sad 4 adding up to only 11 homers in 14 games.
The problems for the team continue, the Twins manager Paul Molitor has to go through the headache of filling out the batting order game in and game out. With only three players that have the ability of launching the ball over the fence Moliter has a very difficult job to do. The obvious idea would be putting Sano in cleanup spot in the order, but with Mauer off to a very disappointing season. He provides no protection at the 3rd spot for Sano. Thus, having to find a new cleanup hitter. Molitor has experimineted with Jorge Polanco in that cleanup roll. However Jorge is a player who will hit 10 to 15 homers a season at best, provides no threat in the 4 hole.
The other problem is the DH position, Robbie Grossman has been the DH for the majority of the season and has a done a nice job drawing walks and reaching base with a .333 batting average. As mentioned before he provides no threat to hit the ball out of the ball park on a consistent bases. The 4 hitter and the DH need to hit home runs that’s just the era of baseball we are in. Just take a look around the league at teams that have power at the 4 and DH spot. Teams that have players like Jose Bautista, Victor Martinez and Albert Pujols. All who have potential to get 40 plus home runs this season. Those players pose a threat to hit homers regularly as well as a threat in the AL.
Paul Molitor is not to blame for the lack of wins, the front office is the one’s to blame. Molitor can only put a lineup on the field of players that he has access to. The Minnesota Twins don’t have a very talented roster when it comes to power and a change is needed. Whether that’s a trade or bringing up Kenny Vargas and Byung Ho Park from the minors to give the team more power in the lineup. It would be nice to be able to put the same lineup and batting order out in the field day in and day out that gives team consistency. Molitor is constantly looking for the right solution to figure out how to produce runs. With the lineup we have now it will be very tough to do so.