Betsy Helfand / St. Paul Pioneer Press
CLEVELAND — Trevor May is annoyed. He said so about nine times in five minutes while chatting with the media Sunday afternoon. The Twins reliever is heavily active on social media. He hears what people are saying. He sees it. “The lead’s been cut in half. I’m very into social media and I hear those things a lot. A lot of people thinking they’re saying encouraging words to you, but there’s a little bit of a, ‘Don’t blow it,’ in their tone. And that’s annoying,” May said. “As a competitor, I’m annoyed. And that’s a good thing. It adds a little bit of fuel.
CLEVELAND — The collective eyes of the baseball world have been trained on Cleveland, Ohio, for the past couple of days. Players started arriving in town Sunday night after wrapping the first half of their seasons. From there, it’s been a nonstop stream of media responsibilities, mingling with teammates, workouts and other festivities.
CLEVELAND — Colorful banners line the fences at Play Ball Park in downtown Cleveland, a central hub for major league baseball’s All-Star Week festivities. Printed on those banners, there are photos of all-stars from varying teams. On the Minnesota Twins’ poster? A close-up of Eddie Rosario’s face next to a shot of Jose Berrios in action. The posters were likely printed well in advance of the week, and Rosario many expected, would be spending his week in Cleveland.
OAKLAND, Calif. -- The Twins entered Thursday, July 4, with the most road wins in the major leagues, nearly making it all the way to the all-star break without suffering a losing road trip. They could have staved that off Thursday and headed back to Minneapolis .500 on their six-game swing through Chicago and Oakland. Instead, they fell flat against the Athletics, losing 7-2 in the series finale at the Oakland Coliseum in a game that was closer than the final score reflects. The loss dropped them to 2-4 on the road trip.
CHICAGO -- Jorge Polanco was excited for his All-Star selection Thursday. He was also excited to see which teammates would be joining him in Cleveland. “I’m waiting for a couple of them to come,” Polanco said Thursday, June 27,. “All my teammates, they’re All-Stars. They’re playing like All-Stars. I’m just waiting for the (other) guys that are going to represent the Minnesota Twins, too.”
CHICAGO -- The Twins officially crossed into the second half of the season on Saturday, playing their 82nd game of the season on a clear, breezy day on the South Side of Chicago. And the beginning of the second half played out like so many games in the first half did, with the Twins putting on a power display of five home runs as they ran away for a 10-3 win over the White Sox at Guaranteed Rate Field.
MINNEAPOLIS -- Nelson Cruz couldn’t believe it. Cruz had waved at an 0-2 pitch. He thought he had checked his swing. First-base umpire Jordan Baker thought otherwise, ringing him up. The Twins’ designated hitter was incredulous as the strikeout ended the game with the tying run on base. Leaving runners on base was a theme for the Twins in an 8-6 loss to the Royals in a series finale at Target Field on Sunday.
CLEVELAND -- Rocco Baldelli projected almost no concern. His leadoff hitter was in an 0-for-21 slump, still searching for his first hit of the road trip, but, asked about it pre-game Thursday night, the manager was confident he would pull out of it. “Just like we’ve talked about other guys in our lineup that had a couple of patches where they didn’t get any hits … we end up talking about it, and then they get out of it, and that’s generally how it goes,” Baldelli said.
ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. — Shortly after he beat them in arbitration in February 2018, the Rays shipped Jake Odorizzi to the Twins for a minor league shortstop. That same day, the Rays acquired a power-hitting first baseman from Anaheim. His name? C.J. Cron. After one season in Tampa Bay, Cron, who hit 30 home runs for the Rays last year, was designated for assignment. He was quickly scooped up by the Twins.
ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. -- Kyle Gibson’s day ended with a long fly ball. A fly ball that went 351 feet out to right, but stayed in the park. It appeared, briefly, like it could have been trouble. But like the rest of the outing, whenever Gibson was in a jam, he managed to get out of it. Gibson, though he battled against the Rays’ lineup all day, only gave up one unearned run in the Twins’ 6-2 win over Tampa Bay at Tropicana Field on Saturday afternoon, June 1.