Originally posted on Grab Some Bench  |  Last updated 2/15/13
In 2012 the White Sox had the Twins number, going 14-4 against them on the season. I wish we could erase the 19-8 loss in September (you know, the game where Hawk just left the broadcast) and call it 14-3, but alas, we cannot. Considering the Twins finished in the AL cellar (for the second year in a row) and lost 96-games, the fact that we lost to them at all is baffling … but hey, no one is perfect. It is ironic that one of the team’s worst starting pitchers, Francisco Liriano (3-10, 5.31 ERA) wound up on Chicago’s south side and did much better. Either way, Liriano (now with the Pirates) or not, Minnesota did not have what we would call a solid pitching core in 2012. The issue the Twins had last season was lacking. As in, they lacked pitching, offense and defense. It will be interesting to see if and how they rebound in 2013. If the offseason is any indication of their luck, things are not looking good. Carl Pavano ruptured his spleen shoveling snow. I repeat – shoveling snow. He only pitched 11 games last season and is so injury prone that he may as well not be a factor at all. However, the team did acquire Vince Worley from Philadelphia, who last season posted a 6-9 record and 4.20 ERA. If there is anything the Sox taught me in 2012, it was that a pitcher’s record can be deceiving (see: Peavy, Jake). The team also adds Kevin Correia and Mike Pelfrey to its pitching rotation, so if they can produce and Scott Diamond can have another solid year with some bullpen support and offense, the situation might not be as dire as it has been the past two seasons. The strongest hitter the team had was their catcher, Joe Mauer. Mauer will always be solid, regardless of whether or not he is distracted by doing crappy shampoo commercials. But he can’t carry the team. When I went to Sox Fest at the beginning of 2011, I went to a Q & A panel with AJ Pierzynski, Mark Buehrle Buerhle and Paul Konerko. The majority of fans asked, “Hey, how come you guys can’t beat the Twins?” And the majority of the answers were, “we don’t know.” Then, Minnesota proceeded to finish dead last in the AL Central in both 2011 & 2012. Hell, they lost 99 games in 2011. It stands to reason that the 2013 AL Central threat will continue to be the Tigers. While the Twins have made some pitching additions, it will take much more than that to be contenders – let alone win the division, as the Sox found out the hard way in 2012.
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