Minnesota Twins Remain Below .500, Yet Have Encountered Positives

Kaleb SmithCorrespondent IApril 22, 2012

ST. PETERSBURG - APRIL 20:  Outfielder Denard Span #2 of the Minnesota Twins congratulates infielder Jamey Carroll #8 after he scored against the Tampa Bay Rays during the game at Tropicana Field on April 20, 2012 in St. Petersburg, Florida.  (Photo by J. Meric/Getty Images)
J. Meric/Getty Images

The Minnesota Twins have started off to a meager record of 5-10.  The Twins may be five games below the .500 mark, though there are three positives to come from the rough start. The team have seen a vast improvement from last season and the fans have a new player to cheer for during the opening.

Minnesota started the season against top teams in the American League such as the New York Yankees, Los Angeles Angels, Texas Rangers and the Tampa Bay Rays.  Luckily, the Twins managed to squeak out two victories in a four-game series against the New York Yankees.  Arguably, the club has faced off against several of the top American League teams and possibly a few of the strongest in all of the major leagues.

The other positive came in the form of new outfielder Josh Willingham and his much needed addition of power to the lineup.  Ron Gardenhire wedged the new player between Joe Mauer and Justin Morneau to break up lefties in the batting order.  Willingham, acquired during the offseason, continues to play cat-and-mouse in the AL’s home run leaders as he currently has five.

This leads us to the third positive the Minnesota Twins have encountered, good health in the form of Mauer and Morneau.  

This past season, first baseman Morneau battled concussions obtained during play, but seems to be back into full swing as he has managed to crank four home runs already.  Seeing Mauer in the lineup, even if it means playing first base and keeping Morneau in the batting order of designated hitter brings forth a nice touch.  

The team's success revolves around these two players, especially the offense if it wishes to survive the onslaught of the revamped AL Central.

Fortunately for the Minnesota Twins, there remains 147 games in the schedule.  With a long season ahead in and out of Target Field, the question revolves around whether Willingham can continue to be an added strength to the lineup and if Mauer and Morneau can stay healthy.  

These factors will determine the season for Minnesota.  If everything continues to progress forward, the Twins should be able to piece together a successful season.