I have been preaching patience with the Twins, and insisting that they would be able to reclaim their lead and put some distance between themselves and Cleveland. Well, now is the time that it needs to happen.
The Twins got done with a tough series with a Brewers team that is roughly in the same spot as Minnesota: Pressing, and working hard to top strong divisional rivals. They split the series on the road, which in a vacuum, is a good result, but the way their second game went, it’s hard to feel as enthusiastic. At the same time, Cleveland dropped 2 of 3 to Boston at home. And that’s where we sit.
But now, each team is in the midst of a four game set against teams moving in opposite directions. The Rangers are slipping downhill, while the Yankees, the Cleveland opponent, are perhaps even hotter than Cleveland, and they get the Indians at home.
After two games, the Twins have added to their lead over the Indians by one game. They have a game tonight against Ariel Jurado which looks to be more winnable than their game against Lance Lynn, who has been lights out this season for Texas. Up 2-0 in the series already, the Twins need to clinch it tonight.
Much has been made of the Twins’ pedestrian schedule the rest of the way, but there aren’t many opportunities for the Twins to win while Cleveland is playing a difficult team at the same time. This is when leads expand, and especially after falling behind last weekend, momentum can be regained this week, setting the Twins up for the home stretch. If they can’t get more than a couple of games up by the end of the weekend, then they will have failed to seize the moment, and the road will be much tougher the rest of the way.