Baseball has gone to the long ball and it looks like the Minnesota Twins might be on the outside looking in at the hot trend.
The World Series has been bonkers with home runs all over the place. This follows the 2017 season that saw a record for the most home runs in a season. This has brought up the theory that the balls might be juices in the game and it’s hard to argue that. No matter the case for the increase in home runs, it looks like the trend is here to stay. It brings up the question, though: do the Minnesota Twins have enough power to match the rest of the league?
Looking at the team overall numbers, the Twins finished 16th in the league overall in home runs which just puts the club in the lower half of the league. That’s not bad, but it’s not great either. To make the obvious even more obvious, it’s very middle-of-the-road.
The Twins do have some powerful bats, though. The Twins had one player finish in the top 20 in home runs this past season and that was slugging second baseman Brian Dozier with 34 bombs. Miguel Sano cracked the top 50 with a 28 home run season and that is only in a little over half of a season of play. Eddie Rosario finished 52nd on the list with 27 home runs. Eduardo Escobar hit 21 home runs this season with Max Kepler just behind with 19 home runs. Oh and don’t look now but Byron Buxton hit 16 home runs.
It’s an awkward situation the Twins find themselves in on the home run chase. Dozier is a slugging second baseman which isn’t a prototypical power position. Sano was hurt most of the season, so as much as you want to believe the home runs numbers will increase for him, there’s no way to know that for sure going into the offseason. Rosario, Kepler and Buxton are your everyday outfielders and it’s not out of the ordinary to find power in those positions. One of the odd things is that the fourth man on the home run totem pole for the Twins this season is likely a utility man if he is in his optimal role. A role you love to have power in, but it says more about the homers from the rest of the team.
You’d really hope a designated hitter would break that list. Kennys Vargas looks to have some power, but hasn’t shown major league consistency enough to count on that. Even if you play starting lineup roulette and move Sano into the DH slot, you have to make up for those home runs somewhere else.
More from Sporting Sota
- Minnesota Twins bullpen will be their downfall
- Top 5 Minnesota Twins Pitching Prospects
- Kyle Rudolph signing gives stability to Minnesota Vikings offense
- Jake Odorizzi’s emergence fueling Twins starting staff
- Former Minnesota Twins player David Ortiz shot
It gets complicated fast. Sure, small ball was a hot trend for a while and the Twins darn near perfected it, but the home run is now a hot trend now and the Twins need to try to perfect that, too. That is much easier said than done.
Let’s go back to the question: do the Twins have enough power to match the rest of the league? I’d say not quite. Minnesota finished the regular season with six home runs less than the Cleveland Indians, 15 less than the Los Angeles Dodgers, 32 less than the Houston Astros and 35 less than the league leading New York Yankees.
The Twins need to find another 20 home runs from somewhere to really be a force in the American League. If you are a slugging designated hitter type, please send your resume to Derek Falvey at 1 Twins Way.
The home run may not be the course the Twins have typically gone with but the times they are a-changing. The Dodgers and Astros are proving that night in and night out during an epic World Series clash.