Sunday, July 02, 2006

Stewart's Back With A Bang

He doesn't hit for power. He doesn't run well anymore. He doesn't draw walks. He is a defensive liability. These are all legitimate criticisms when it comes to Shannon Stewart, but you have to at least give him this much: the man can flat-out hit. In his return from the disabled list last night, Stewart was an offensive force, collecting four hits (all singles, of course) and walking in the game-tying run in the eighth inning. There were other great performances in the Twins' 10-7 victory, like seven total bases from Michael Cuddyer, three RBI for Jason Kubel, two more hits from Joe Mauer and 4.2 scoreless innings from the bullpen, but to me, the story of the night was the triumphant return of Stewart in the DH spot.

Is Stewart being payed too much for a guy who can hit a ton of singles but can't do much else? No question. But that's not to say he doesn't have value. He is a solid veteran presence in the lineup and he is certainly this team's best option at DH right now.

The Twins have won nine straight and today they send out Francisco Liriano, who has been nearly unbeatable as a starter. Things are looking pretty good for the Twinkies, even if the top spot in the division is still 10 games away after a Detroit loss on Sunday.

9 comments:

TheBentKangaroo said...

It'll be interesting to see how things shake out when the AL has to play one another again. The nice thing is that we swept the Sox before the minor league intermission.

We do control our own destiny. We have to pick either the Tigers or the White Sox and simply annihilate one of them for the rest of the season. If we do that, we can probably pass NY, BOS, and TOR for the wild card.

p2 said...

I am just hoping the Twins continue to play well when they return to AL only games. At least, the Twins have the opportunity to take advantage of some poor teams going into the break (KC and Texas) and coming out of the break (Cleveland and Tampa Bay).

SocialLiberalFiscalConservative said...

I've been saying for some time that Stewart should DH and Kubel should play LF.

Nick N. said...

I am still not of the mind that the Twins have much of a chance at getting a playoff spot, but if they finish with 95 wins and miss the playoffs, it would be comforting to know that they did everything they could and had a great year regardless of the season ending in September.

some peter said...

Right now Liriano beat Santana as ERA leader in the AL. 8 K's and he worked himself out of an early jam in the first. It is a great year 'regardless of the season ending in September'.

some peter part two said...

Sorry, missed a couple of innings.. Liriano has to pitch 7 innings for that.

Nick N. said...

Liriano leads the majors in ERA at 1.99 and is one game off the AL lead for wins despite having only started nine games. And yet he's not an All Star while Mark Redman (he of the 5-4 record and 5.59 ERA with a 30 K/30 BB) is. The All Star game is a complete joke.

TheBentKangaroo said...

you would think since the game "counts", managers wouldn't be forced to take a rep from every team

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