Highs and lows of the Twins’ 2022 season

October 11, 2022

This story was excerpted from Do-Hyoung Park’s Twins Beat publication. To learn the complete publication, click on right here. And subscribe to get it usually in your inbox.

The Twins shocked the baseball world by signing Carlos Correa. They led the American League Central for the overwhelming majority of the season. They have been among the many most aggressive groups in baseball on the Commerce Deadline.

And nonetheless, an injury-decimated roster collapsed down the stretch and limped to the end line, turning a Sept. 4 tie atop the division right into a 14-game deficit by the point the curtain dropped on a second straight dropping marketing campaign.

“I am pissed off. I am dissatisfied,” president of baseball operations Derek Falvey stated. “You need to enter Labor Day and September taking part in significant video games, and you have a shot to get there in order that the following three to 4 weeks are satisfying, and also you get there. We did not try this.”

Defining second: Shedding 4 of 5 in Cleveland in September
The Twins nonetheless had one remaining likelihood to swing the narrative of their season in mid-September, once they carried a four-game deficit right into a five-game sequence towards the division-leading Guardians.

As an alternative, the bullpen collapsed once more within the opener — and the Twins’ destiny was all however sealed in an ensuing doubleheader sweep that culminated in a heartbreaking loss on a walk-off error within the fifteenth inning. The aggressive portion of the Twins’ season ended with a place participant on the mound to cede a blowout loss within the finale.

What we discovered: The entrance workplace could be fairly lively
Keep in mind that flurry of exercise throughout Spring Coaching when the entrance workplace went into overdrive in trades with the Rangers, Yankees, Reds and Padres to drastically change the make-up of the roster? Don’t neglect that every one that wheeling and dealing additionally encompassed — oh, proper — an settlement with Correa, and that’s to not point out the 4 gamers the Twins introduced in on the Commerce Deadline.

It’s honest to criticize the standard of the offers, notably on the harm entrance, however Minnesota actually tried to reap the benefits of a possibility as a substitute of sitting idle.

Finest improvement: Pitching depth
If there’s any silver lining to be gleaned from all of the accidents, it’s that a number of younger pitchers received invaluable expertise on the huge league stage, giving the Twins the type of depth that they often need to fill out on the free-agent market.

Along with Kenta Maeda, Sonny Grey, Tyler Mahle, Joe Ryan and Bailey Ober, the Twins can even have Josh Winder, Louie Varland, Simeon Woods Richardson, Ronny Henriquez and Cole Sands within the combine for rotation or size roles coming into 2023.

Space for enchancment: Accidents
A few of this was out of the Twins’ management, however nonetheless, the group parted methods with head athletic coach Michael Salazar following a season wherein it was second in MLB with 2,363 player-days misplaced to the injured record. Put it this manner: The Twins’ outfield on Opening Day consisted of Alex Kirilloff, Byron Buxton and Max Kepler. Throughout that essential Cleveland sequence in September, that outfield was Jake Cave, Gilberto Celestino and Matt Wallner.

On the rise: Again finish of the bullpen
Jhoan Duran surpassed all expectations in his first huge league season (and first within the bullpen), contributing one of many biggest seasons from a rookie reliever in crew historical past and setting him as much as be top-of-the-line relievers in baseball for years to come back. The Twins hope that Griffin Jax, Caleb Thielbar, Jovani Moran, Jorge Alcala and Jorge López can even assist type one of many higher bullpen teams within the crew’s latest historical past.

Crew MVP: Correa
Correa proved each bit definitely worth the $35.1 million he was paid for his companies in what might be his solely season within the Twin Cities, posting a team-leading 5.4 WAR, per Baseball Reference, along with his greatest common (.291) and on-base share (.366) since 2017 to go along with his unimaginable clubhouse presence that was the focus of a younger, creating group. Can the Twins convey him again on a long-term extension?

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