The Twins have a long history of dominating interleague competition and they've generally looked very good when playing at Target Field this season. Unfortunately, they lost two of three at home against the Braves this weekend because neither of those trends could outweigh their recent silence with the bats.
After scoring 118 runs in April and 133 in May, the Twins are on pace to score just 99 in June. They briefly emerged from their recent offensive slump by beating up on the Royals throughout a three-game series last week, but outside of that series the Twins simply have not been putting many runs on the board over the past few weeks.
It's not difficult to find the culprit for the team's recent drop-off in run production. Their thin infield depth has been exposed by injuries to both Orlando Hudson and J.J. Hardy. Trevor Plouffe and Matt Tolbert, called up to help fill the big-league club's middle-infield void, have both struggled immensely on offense, and lamentably Ron Gardenhire's misguided lineup decisions have enabled those poor performances to cause increased negative impact at the top of the batting order. Brendan Harris, forced into duty by the various injuries around the infield, has stunningly continued to show no offensive pulse whatsoever. He has just five hits -- all singles -- in his last 53 at-bats.
Hudson is expected to return to the lineup on Tuesday, and the Twins need to hope he's healthy enough to pick up where he left off because they could sorely use a jolt at the top of the lineup. We'll still probably be looking at a regular left-side combination of Plouffe and Nick Punto, which will likely continue to be an offensive liability. Hudson will be most welcome, though, because he will keep Plouffe and Tolbert out of the second spot in the lineup.