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Twins fans suffer another year

July 26, 2013
Chris Bieri - Tribune Editor , Pierce County Tribune

Only the most optimistic Minnesota Twins fans had the team finishing above .500 this year.

Those who predicted the Twins to make the playoffs were few, and likely mentally unstable.

It's been another long season for those of us who cheer for the nine from the state to our immediate east.

It hasn't been a surprise, but it hasn't made it any less painful for fans to watch. The Twins barely made an effort to improve their starting pitching, which could be conservatively described as hideous in 2012.

Predictably, they brought in a couple of has-beens and a never-was and stayed away from spending real money on pitching.

The results that followed have been just as predictable as the moves the team made.

Mike Pelfrey has been pretty decent after a horrible start, and Kevin Correia has been horrible after a decent start.

Last year's "ace," Scott Diamond hasn't even pitched like a Class AAA ace after returning from injury.

The team's big trade acquisition, Vance Worley, was sent down to the minors after a poor start.

The only bright spots on the team's starting staff is two players who were in the system last season.

Samuel Deduno turned 30 this month so it's safe to say he's had plenty of chances to blossom.

But this may be his year. The righthander has nasty stuff and has finally started to corral his control, something that held him back in past years.

He pitched well for the Dominican Republic in the World Baseball Classic this spring and after recovering from an injury, has thrown great for the Twins.

It's easy to say he might not be in the future for the Twins, but I'd point to former Twin R.A. Dickey, who's pushing 40 and is the reigning NL Cy Young winner as an example of what a pitcher can do late in his career.

Kyle Gibson is the other pitcher who gives the Twins some promise. He has a wicked sinkerball and is much younger than Deduno, which means we'll probably be seeing him progress in years to come.

The hitting hasn't been much better. Joe Mauer has had a Mauer-like season, but is obviously never going to become the power hitter that he projected to be in his early seasons with the team.

The Twins lost a chance to get a good prospect by trading Josh Willingham. He had a career season in 2012 and is now hurt in the second year of a very team-friendly contract.

Oswaldo Arcia has been erratic at times, but has given fans a glimpse of the prospect bats that the Twins minor league system is packed with.

The other player who has looked like he might stick around is second baseman Brian Dozier. Dozier has shown power and speed on offense and has been better than serviceable in the field.

Fortunately for Twins fans, the team has one of the best minor league systems in baseball. Unfortunately, we'll have to suffer through the rest of the summer until they arrive in 2014.

 
 

 

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