Baseball is back in Minnesota

Travis Johnson

The Minnesota Twins have started yet another season, and it has been a rough start for the hometown team. The Twins started their season with a 3-5 loss to the Chicago White Sox. The Twins next game was another one in Chicago, where they fell 6-7 to the White Sox, losing the game on a wild pitch in the bottom of the ninth.

The Twins refused to be swept in Chicago, and they won their last game of the series 10-9. They then proceeded to go 6-5 in their next 11 games. They currently sit at 6-7 and are fourth in the division, through April 15.

“I wasn’t really expecting a good team right out of the gate,” said junior Hunter Novak. “After their terrible season last year you can’t really expect much.”

The Twins lost 96 games last year, and only won 66. After some offseason moves and changing some players around, they are hoping to shake things up and get the team back on the right track. One of the major things the Twins did this offseason was decide to move Joe Mauer to first base.

“I think moving Mauer to first was smart because he will be able to play a lot longer than if he caught his whole life,” explained Novak.

Being a catcher is hard on a baseball player, especially on their knees. Catchers are the ones who retire the soonest, because their body is tired from catching their entire career. With Mauer being the best player on the Twins, they hope to keep him around for a long time, and moving him to first base was the best way to do that.

“Switching Mauer to a first baseman will increase his career length substantially,” said junior Sam Keran. “If we are going to pay a player as much as we pay Mauer, we can’t afford him if he has two bad knees and isn’t producing.”

Manager Ron Gardenhire has been with the Twins organization for 13 years, and is looking to turn this around this season after posting a losing record the last three seasons. The last time Gardenhire and the Twins had a winning record was in 2010.

“I think Gardenhire knows what he’s doing. He’s a really smart guy who has baseball experience,” explained Keran.

Gardenhire’s overall record in 13 years managing the Twins is 1007-956. Some would consider that impressive, while others would consider that mediocre.

“I was kind of hoping we would get rid of Gardenhire, not keep him around for another two years,” said Novak.

With the Twins currently sitting right around five-hundred, they look to veteran Joe Mauer and some of the young guns on the team to get them back on the right track.