The Twins dropped two of three in Chicago this weekend, and aside from the win on Friday night in which they broke out for 12 runs, the offense really hasn't looked good so far in this young season. The Twins have been held to one or zero runs in four of the seven games they've played up to this point, and unsurprisingly have gone 0-4 in those contests. They'll need to get on track if they hope to succeed in their four-gamer against the 5-2 Blue Jays, who've averaged 6.6 runs per game.
Here are a few observations on the series against the Sox, and the rest of season up to this point...
* Francisco Liriano really struggled with his command on Saturday, issuing four walks -- two forcing in runs with the bases loaded -- while lasting just 4 2/3 innings in a blowout loss. Through two starts, Liriano is 0-2 with a 6.94 ERA and has had trouble hitting his spots in both starts. Let's not forget, though, that Liriano also experienced command struggles at the beginning of last season before bouncing back splendidly in Rochester and carrying those improvements forward to become one the American League's better second-half pitchers.
Watching Liriano has been a bit frustrating up to this point, but I don't think there's a ton of reason to worry yet.
* Joe Crede has started all seven games up to this point, and his back appears to be in fine shape. Defensively, Crede has looked very solid, flashing his range on a few impressive plays and handling almost everything sent his way. Offensively, he's looked like just the player I expected; he hasn't gotten many hits -- just four in 25 at-bats -- but when he has hit he's been able to do so with some power, as two of those hits have gone for extra bases.
Crede has looked fine thus far, but I would like to see Brian Buscher get a chance to start against a right-hander. He may get that opportunity tonight when the Twins face Jesse Litsch.
* For all the talking about his efforts to improve his plate discipline during the offseason in spring, Gomez has struck out nine times while drawing one walk in his first 23 plate appearances.
* The Twins' offensive struggles are understandable to some extent given that they've been playing without one of their best hitters in Joe Mauer, but the rest of the hitters in this lineup simply aren't pulling their weight right now. Gomez, Crede, Mike Redmond and Delmon Young are all hitting below .200 thus far. Michael Cuddyer is hitting .231 and Justin Morneau is hitting .259. The only Twins regular with a batting average over .300 thus far is Nick Punto. Go figure.