MINNEAPOLIS — It’ll be a tough opening series for the Twins. The visiting Cleveland Indians, the defending American League Central champs are the team most have tabbed as the team to beat again in the division.
After a pretty good spring though, the Minnesota Twins have some reason for optimism this 2019 season. For one, they’ve got a new manager who has injected a renewed enthusiasm and fresh approach to the day to day operations of this team. Rocco Baldelli, still in his 30’s is not far removed from his playing days with the Tampa Bay Rays.
Gone from the lineup are familiar faces like Joe Mauer, Brian Dozier and Eduardo Escobar. Now the core centers around an exciting young outfield. Eddie Rosario, Max Kepler, and Byron Buxton all appear to be on the upswing of their star potential and could all break out in big ways this season.
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Off-season acquisitions like slugger Nelson Cruz, first baseman C.J. Cron and second baseman Jonathan Schoop, have all had proven success in this league and are excited for a fresh start with the Twins.
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All in all, the offense looks poised to score runs. Potentially a lot of runs. But when looking at whether or not this team will be pretenders or contenders, it hinges on pitching. Most notably the starting rotation.
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Jose Berrios and Kyle Gibson, both coming off impressive 2018 seasons, anchor this staff. It’s the rest of the rotation that remains to be seen. Michael Pineda a towering righthander is back from injury and ready to potentially make a big impact.
From there though, there are a lot of question marks, from depth to the configuration of the bullpen. But for now at least, high expectations or at least hope, would be warranted for Twins territory.
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