The loss of
When the Minnesota Twins signed
The Twins have won the AL Central five times in the last eight years. But for a long time, it was not because of their offense. Take a look at their first four division titles.
In 2009, though, the Twins finished fourth in the league in runs scored. And since, they have added
No team in the division -- and few teams in baseball -- can match a 3-4-5-6 of
Gardenhire has made it clear that nobody is going to win the closer job in spring training. They will go into the season with a plan, and as he says, "It will become clear in time." The best bet is that he will try to match up his best relief pitchers -- Matt Guerrier,
Then, there are many people intrigued with the idea of making Francisco Liriano the closer. At his best, before having Tommy John surgery after the 2006 season, Liriano looked to be unhittable. But there are many people in the Twins organization who still believe in Liriano as a starter, especially now that he's healthy. He looked dynamic in winter ball.
And Gardenhire did say that management has talked about other options as well.
It's hard to fathom how someone as good as Orlando Hudson -- Gold Glove second baseman, above average hitter, All-Star, non-stop chatterbox -- has been so overlooked. For the second straight year, he signed very late and for only a one-year deal. The Twins have loved Hudson's attitude and energy ... at least so far. Hudson was an All-Star just last year, though at the end of last season, Dodgers manager
So, things should be looking up again in 2010.