Saturday, March 1, 2008

Spring Training and 2008

The Twins started spring training yesterday. They lost 6-1 to the Reds, but hey it is just spring training. Francisco Liriano finally arrived to camp on Wednesday as well. It makes one wonder how the Twins would have done in 2007 (and for the playoffs in 2006) with a healthy Liriano. Boy am I excited to watch him this year. He is my current favorite athlete, right in front of Deron Williams. The Twins had a very disappointing season last year, especially considering how they had the Cy Young winner, the MVP, the batting champ, the best closer in the game, one of the best center fielders in the game. But other than that they didn’t have a lot. And the stars all had down years except for Hunter. So there is reason to believe that they will be better in 2008 than in 2007, despite the losses of Santana, Hunter, and Silva. Here are five players that will have a better year than last.

Jason Kubel - he will finally have his breakout season. He was once regarded about as high of a prospect as Mauer and Morneau. He should cement himself as the Twins DH for the long term.

Joe Mauer - he wasn’t at full strength last year, look for him to improve power numbers to 15-20 HR and be in the thick of the batting title race.

Boof Bonser - was great towards the end of 2006. He then put on a lot of weight and had a lot of problems in 2007. He dropped 25 pounds in the offseason and he should be better in 2008.

Justin Morneau - the 2006 AL MVP had a great first half of 2007. He slumped big time in the second half, after having a few injuries. Look for him to put up numbers similar to his 2006 season.

Dennys Reyes - The dude was unhittable in 2006 but had a terrible 2007. For some reason he is great one year, terrible the next, great the next, then terrible. 2008 lands on the good year of his crazy cycle of success.

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