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greebs

half way point observations and predictions

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Now that the season is nearly half done, what's everybody think? Who's been your biggest surpise player or disappointment?

It sure feels like they could be ten games above .500 right now given they way they've lost some of those games this year. Getting rid of Crain and Ayala has been a positive for the bullpen and Dickey and Guerrier's work out of the bp has been very welcome and somewhat surprising to me. Baker seems to have picked it up and hopefully Liriano will get things figured out to get the starting rotation looking strong from top to bottom again.

Brendan Harris has probably been the most pleasant surprise from an offensive standpoint along with Crede and Cuddyer staying relatively healthy for the most part. There's a good chance the team will have five guys with over 20 hr's at year end.

I predict that they are going to stay in contention in this weak division and pull it out in the end but with a very mediocre record and lose in the first round of the playoffs. They just don't seem like a team that is going to win against the top AL teams, especially if they have to beat them without home field advantage.

Oh yeah, one last thing; Mauer's final batting avg. will be in the .350's.

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For the twins I would say that Joe Maur was a suprise with his homers and BA after coming off the disabled list. There is not a player out there that can do that.

For the rest of the leugue I would say Ben Zobrist is a huge suprise I do not think anybody forecasted that one.

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Kubel has made a huge stride this year. Mauer and Morneau have been nothing short of awesome like usual.

Not really much else for me to say other than they play just like a .500 team. Hopefully some other players step up in the second half of the season to get that record climbing above .500 because we all know .500 isn't going to do it. We look like we would be a great national league team though, as we are 12-6 vs national league teams this year.

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We'll see what KC brings...the interleague has recently been thier springboard for the rest of the season.

Starters are coming around and the bench looks ok.

2nd base still is shakey.

The central division is weak, so we have a good chance.

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I think Kubel is one of the surprises of the year. A nice homerun total, hitting really good in the clutch, and consistent in the field. I can see him hitting 25-30 homers this year. Slowey and Blackie are almost lights out. Baker is coming around nicely. I think the Twinks will keep in the race, and come out on top(maybe by a game or two). Not sure how deep we can get in the playoffs, but if our pitching holds, we could go far.

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I've been disappointed with Casilla. Hopefully he can come back in the 2nd half and give us some spark.

The Twins haven't put it together yet, but they are still in the hunt. They've got the pieces that can win, they just need to perform to their ability.

Does anyone think we'll make a trade to improve the team by the deadline? Bullpen help?

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Well the Twins are in a position to make a push for the post season in the 2nd half. I have been staying positive thru the struggles this season as I know there is a lot of baseball left. The starting pitching is coming around and I think that will be the key to the Twins making the playoffs. The starters need to continue averging 6+ quality innings per start to keep the bullpen well rested. The Twins have cleaned out most of the garbage in the bullpen and it looks like the bullpen is setting up to have a nice second half.

I am happy to see Matt Gurrier settle into the set up man role and succeed after having a rough second half last season.

The biggest suprise to me has been the R.A. Dickey. He struggled early on this season and I wanted him released. He has proved me wrong and has been outstanding the last 2 months, even when he has pitched with the lead lately.

The biggest disapointments have been Casilla and Liriano.

I predict it to be a 3 team race between Minnesota, Chicago and Detroit. They will finish in the order stated above. Mauer will go 4 for 4 on the last game of the regular season to bring his batting average up to .401. Slowey wins 20 and finishes 2nd to Roy Halladay for the AL Cy Young. Playoffs...anything can happen...you just have to get there!

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There is another 2B in AAA besides Casilla that looks like he can hit the ball. I would like to see them give someone else a shot besides Tolbert, Casilla, or Punto. As for the observations, it is looking like the starting pitching is coming around. If Liriano can pitch more like he did yesterday and the other starters keep pitching late into games, they have a good shot at being a contender. Harris' hitting has improved a lot from last year, hopefully he can keep it going. Gomez hasn't looked too mentally challenged lately from what I've seen. It's nice to see Crede bounce back quickly from minor injuries. His defense has been solid, but the offense is lacking a little bit(not the HR's). The rest of the guys have pretty much been talked about.

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I predict they will win the division, do very good in the play-offs and possibly another world series win. For this to happen, 2 things must take place...1-Liriano and Baker continue to improve and 2-Twins must sign a right-handed power hitter. I think everything else is in place.

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My view of them is, they are a 500 team, with a couple good players. If they want to go anywhere this year, they need a strong second basemen, another starting picture, and some help in the pen. My prediction is we finish 3rd in our division, 6 games behind Detroit, 2 behind the Sox.

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Biggest Surprise: Harris

Biggest Disappointment: Tie between Casilla & Young (but I think I'm one of the few that's not ready to dump Young yet)

Prediction: Hate to say it, but I don't see us overtaking Detroit unless the Tigers really slip.

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maybe one of the pohlad boys has a hot little mistress that the twins can use as a rachel phelps booster. that or they could rub their bats on a blow up doll like the white sux did when they were slumping a couple years ago.

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To me the only thing pohlad could have done with this team is another middle guy. For the most part, Crede, Young, Gomez and the 2nd base position are struggling. I cant believe I just said that as I have been a big basher of pohlad.

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i'm a big Twins rube. That being said keep a few things in mind.

RA Dickey has only been pitched in one game where the Twins have less than a 4 run lead. How does that translate to a playoff game when the Twins are ahead by one run?

Morneau always slumps in September.

The Twins BA with RISP is close to 60 points less than last years unbelievable average. That is not a good trend.

Mauer isn't going to bat .400. .370 would be a stretch. .350 more likely... if he ends up at .350 he bats about .280 for the rest of the year.

Gardy isn't Tom Kelly and that is a bad thing.

Now the positives.

Nathan is lights out as the closer.

Cuddyer is healthy.

Kubel is having a career year.

Crede is mostly healthy and should end up with 30 HR's and 85 RBI's.

Gurrier is a solid eighth inning guy.

Harris is exceeding expectations.

My prediction: Twins win the Central by two and get dumped in the first round by the Red Sox.

Better than last year but they are not a World Series contender. I hope I am underestimating them

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He has the best .233 avreage in the biz, he has been clutch in a few of our wins. Solid at third and some pop, "as advertised".

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He has the best .233 avreage in the biz, he has been clutch in a few of our wins. Solid at third and some pop, "as advertised".

and has missed only 19 starts

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