Series Preview: Minnesota Twins (36-46, 4th AL Central) vs Toronto Blue Jays (41-44, 5th AL East)


Jun 24, 2013; St. Petersburg, FL, USA; Toronto Blue Jays catcher J.P. Arencibia (9) works out prior to the game against the Tampa Bay Rays at Tropicana Field. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports
It seems to finally have caught up to the Blue Jays. You can only patchwork a rotation for so long before it begins to fray and fall apart. Todd Redmond in not the saviour as Esmil Rogers ultimately isn’t as Chien Ming Wang ultimately isn’t. That Tigers lineup was fearsome and exposed the rotation for what it really is. Some down sided veterans mixed in with quick grabs at lightning in a bottle with others. There are reports that we are looking at Chase Utley. 2nd base may be a problem but it isn’t the root of that problem. Unless the Jays want to defy tradition and just keep bringing pitchers up and down there will never be a solution. So here’s hoping the offense picks up some of the slack until J.A. Happ and hopefully a rejuvenated Brandon Morrow return after the All-Star break.

Luckily for now we get to beat up on a few supposed bottom feeder teams starting with the Twins. In the days of Frank Viola to Brad Radke to Joe Nathan and on and on the team was known for great pitching and solid hitting. Well their offence is less than average and their pitchers are 14th in the AL in ERA. They are a blowout loss away from being the worst. It is transition time in Minneapolis-St. Paul so enjoy them for the Joe Mauer‘s and Justin Morneau‘s of the world.

I have finally become a little tired of the usual statistical analysis of the Jays. It is the same story over and over. Keep an eye on what I say after the probables. It is just how I feel. I have tried to hold back but I can’t anymore. There is a dangerous situation brewing in the clubhouse and it needs to be nipped immediately.

Probable Starting Pitchers

Game 1: Kevin Correia (6-5, 4.08 ERA) vs Mark Buehrle (4-5, 4.81 ERA)
Game 2: Mike Pelfrey (3-6, 6.11 ERA) vs R.A. Dickey (8-8, 4.59 ERA)
Game 3: Scott Diamond (5-7, 5.18 ERA) vs Todd Redmond (0-1, 3.52 ERA)

Probable Starting Lineups

Minnesota Twins

1. 2B: Brian Dozier
2. DH: Joe Mauer
3. C: Ryan Doumit
4. 1B: Justin Morneau
5. 2B: Trevor Plouffe
6. LF: Oswaldo Arcia
7. RF: Chris Parmelee
8. CF: Aaron Hicks
9. SS: Pedro Florimon

Toronto Blue Jays

1. SS: Jose Reyes
2. RF: Jose Bautista
3. DH: Edwin Encarnacion
4. 1B: Adam Lind
5. CF: Colby Rasmus
6. LF: Rajai Davis
7. 3B: Maicer Izturis
8. C: J.P. Arencibia
9. 2B: Munenori Kawasaki

Let’s make this brief people. I am making my stand here against the Arencibia bandwagon. I have not met a seen a player so acutely unaware of his shortcomings in my many years watching this great game. I know Arencibia has all the stuff you need of a leader: vocal, teammates like him, he is a media darling (well was) and a great quote. I think J.P. needs to realize something else. Most leaders lead by example. When statistically you are amongst the worst on offense AND defense at your position…hell at all positions you need to keep your mouth shut and just try to get better.

It is pitching that has sunk us and saved us and the promotion of Thole is further proof that the team is wary of him. I wouldn’t be surprised to see him shipped out of town and Thole given the full time job. A couple days ago I wouldn’t have said this but his comments about Dirk Hayhurst and Gregg Zaun were completely inappropriate and may have sealed his ticket out of town.

Maybe the team needs the distraction. They have spun their wheels again after the 11 game streak and are on the verge of making it for nothing. Best we can do at this point is to finish strong before the All-Star game. This Twins team is ripe for the picking. Filling out the probables I can honestly say I have barely heard of half their team. This is definitely a team on the downswing…perhaps the biggest one the Twins have had in a decade. So aside from a possible take down of Richmond over Redmond this should be a great litmus test. It’s time to shut up about potential and win. Simple as that.