First place! Twins sweep Red Sox, improve to 10 games above .500

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Coming off four straight 90-loss seasons the Twins were projected to finish in last place by nearly everyone, myself included, but instead they have the second-best record in the American League at 28-18 after finishing off a three-game sweep of the Red Sox today.

Since a brutal opening week of the season in which they went 1-6 and were outscored by 33 runs the Twins are 27-12 with a run differential of plus-54 and they’ve won 23 of their last 32 games. And first-year manager Paul Molitor has them tied for first place in the American League Central, which seems almost impossible to believe after watching the past four seasons.

I wrote a lengthy article on my Twins-centric personal blog about how they’ve been winning so far, but the short version is great hitting with runners in scoring position, Glen Perkins being perfect in the closer role, and the starting rotation going from historically inept to merely sort of bad. If you want the long version, there are 1,200 more words here. As a lifelong Twins fan I have no idea how long it’ll continue, but whatever. Beats the hell out of looking ahead to next year’s draft already, no matter what.

Brewers sign Freddy Peralta to a multi-year deal

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Ken Rosenthal reports that the Milwaukee Brewers have agreed to a five-year $15.5 million deal with pitcher Freddy Peralta. There are two club options as well, which would nearly double the overall value of the contract if exercised.

Peralta, who turns 24 in June, has amazing stuff. He has struggled so far, having posted a 4.79 ERA in 163.1 major league innings across two seasons, but people who follow him closely believe that he’s primed for a breakthrough. For now he’s a reliever — he’ll likely be a multi-inning fireman for the 2020 season — but he has was mostly a starter in his rookie year before assuming swingman duties last season. He could become one again if things break right in his development. Sort of a Brandon Woodruff track.

If that happens the Brewers will, quite obviously, have a bargain on their hands. If not, at least Peralta has some security on his.