44 of the Orioles losses last year were in the division
So, 28-44 in the Al East....7-11 in inter-league. That's 35-55
Their record against Al West and Al Central: 34-38. They aren't as bad as people think...but people look at the win-loss records and say MAN they stink. They look at the ERA and say MAN that pitching is bad...forgetting how any times that pitching has to face NYY, Boston and Toronto offenses...and all in pitcher's parks too
In the first year at TF, Morneau's batting line was .316/.427/.487Mauer's was: .315/.406/.406.
Those are when they were playing healthy...and those numbers don't seem so bad for such a 'pitcher's park' we keep being told TF is
Although I COMPLETELY disagree with the OP's assessment of the Twins, their potential, and the opponent on this first weekend, I will say this: The starting pitching wasn't as bad as I expected. The O's do have a few offensive weapons, and although a couple did savage the pitchers, I thought they did a credible job keeping the score down.
Perceptive readers will note that I did not say "Keeping them in the game." That's because, like Walter Johnson's pre-Twin Senators of about a hundred years ago, this Twins team is only in the game if the opposing team scores 0 runs.
You know, more than the losses (which i expect to come and come in droves this season; the team isnt really good enough.) I'm concerned about the WAY we're losing.
It's like some break happens to go against us and instead of buckling down and saying "hey lots of game to go, lets work together, and make something happen." its more of a "God not again" thing. I just get the sense that they get afraid of failing. "What if i strikeout, what if i hit into a double play" instead of reaching down inside and saying "you know what, what if i do well? What if i'm excellent in this scenario? well i've been an athlete my entire life and i know that i'm at this level because i can succeed, and i'm going to go up there swinging to hit the ball hard somewhere." STaying within themselves but at the same time, going about their business in a determined and confident measure consistently.. Like what the yankees do. That's what separates the twins from the yankees. It's not the payroll. There's a talent gap but even in 2010 when the twins were playing DEAD EVEN with the yankees all season, and 2009 too. The twins would get up and they'd start wondering how they'd lose the game. The yankees just went to work on teh task of getting the lead back. The yankees are predators. The twins are prey. The twins dont prey on mistake pitches. When they get a pitch up, they'll swing and maybe something good will happen but all too often, they are content to sit there, or content to not go after the pitch and swing hard. The yankees go for the jugular on the mound, the twins nitpick to death. The twins try to make the yankees get themselves out. Well they're being paid all that money because they dont do that. You have to ATTACK. You attack the baseball when you're hitting, you attack the baseball in the field, you attack the baseball on the mound. You go AT your opponents. you dont bring them to you. you bring YOU to them. Twins are too timid. If they start attacking opponents, we've all seen it. 2006, 2008 late, 2009, they are super tough to beat.
One bad thing happens to them and they just totally shrivel up. Like Liriano. He gave up a total FLUKE homer to Adam Jones (not that he's a bad hitter, just that was a good pitch and it shouldnt have gone where it did) and instead of buckling down he got all panicked and started throwing balls to the next guy. Mauer calme dhim down but then the next inning he got a runner on again and all heck broke loose. And that's what happens to the team too. One bad break and they go into their shells. One error. Errors happen. One rough luck double play, one ball that is scorched but at someone. One strike three that's called ball 2 and then the next pitch is a single and then NOTHING goes right for them for a week or more. and when something like that happens for them, then they start attacking again. and they'll get on a roll for a week or so. ... then an error happens and it comes crashing down again and instead of shaking it off after one game, they sit on it. or they dont get urgent about it and fix the issue, they just panic. This series it was Markakis going opposite field off pavano early. That was IT, twins shriveled up, quit and went home aside from Morneau and willingham..
Mental midgets and they're not going to win much until that gets fixed.
<<<This Willingham is no slouch.>>>
He sure slouches in the field, from what I've seen.
Did anybody else see any of these games in person? I was there on Saturday....saw Morneau rocket a double and a deep fly ball that ended up caught. That's encouraging.
I also saw three pea-shooters back-to-back-to-back. Only way to fix that is playing Plouffe regularly, either in the Outfield or at Second.
The pitching wasn't good Saturday. Liriano looked sharp when he was in control of the count, but if he let a runner on, it was like he just couldn't make his pitch. Bullpen was fine, though, which was my biggest worry given last year. Perkins should get the lion's share of bullpen innings (like, 80+).
Give it time. Season's not over after 3 games. and believe it or not, these guys *are* better than the Tosonis, Buteras, and Tolberts of the world that we saw last year...