Around the Horn: The Twins & Target Field
Last week we were in Cleveland. The next stop on our tour has us in the Twin Cities.
The Minnesota Twins saw their season-best five-game win streak come to an end in Tuesday's second contest of its double-header with the Marlins, an 8-5 setback in which I had the "over".
One player you'll want to keep your eyes on is Joe Mauer, as the five-time All-Star is hitting .444 with two home runs and eight RBIs over his last 11 games (that said, Mauer is hitting just .243 vs. his next opponent, going 5 for 30 over his last nine home games in this series).
2012 Park Factor (Park Factor compares the rate of stats at home vs. the rate of stats on the road. A rate below 1.000 favors the pitcher. Higher than 1.000 favors the hitter).
- Runs: 1.044
- HR: 1.031
- H: 1.030
- 2B: 0.989
- 3B: 1.905
- BB: 1.082
Interesting facts about Target Field: Is the Twins' sixth ballpark and third in Minnesota. After 28 seasons at the Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome, the team relocated to Target Field in 2010. An open-air park with over 39,000 occupancy (cost just over a half-billion dollars to construct). Was designed with the purpose of being a "neutral" park as far as favoring neither the pitcher nor the hitter. Built with local limestone, it features heated viewing areas and a heated field. There is no roof, but the top deck is covered in a canopy. The original flagpole from Metropolitan Stadium is located on the right-field plaza. The bullpens are "double-decker" style in left-center field. Home plate is the same that was used at the Metrodome. It has been selected to host the 2014 All-Star Game.
Has home field been an advantage for the Twins since Target Field opened?
- 2010: 94-68 overall. 53-28 at home. 41-40 on road.
- 2011: 63-99 overall. 33-48 at home. 30-51 on road.
- 2012: 66-96 overall. 31-50 at home. 35-46 on road.
(2013 as of writing: 9-8 overall. 5-4 at home. 4-4 on road.
Obviously over the last two seasons, home field has been anything but an advantage for the Twins. They had the big year in 2010, but have soiled the sheets the last two seasons.
In all of my other articles I've taken a look back over the previous five seasons, so to be fair, let's see what Minnesota did in 2008 and 2009:
- 2008: 88-75 overall. 53-28 at home. 35-47 on road.
- 2009: 87-76 overall. 49-33 at home. 38-43 on road.
The Twins' talent level in all phases of the game has dropped considerably overall since 2010, so I think it's safe to say that the book is still out on whether or not Target Field is an advantage for the Twins.
The Twins open a four game series with the Rangers on Thursday the 25th.
Minnesota was 2-8 vs. the Rangers last season, including 0-3 at Target Field.
- NY Mets
- April 18, 2014 - 7:10 PM
- Doc's Sports
- Offered at:
- pinnacle @ -101 NY Mets
Doc's Sports Friday MLB Free Play!
Friday MLB Free Play from Doc’s Sports Take #908 New York Mets over Atlanta Braves (7:10pm EST) All good things eventually come to an end, and in the case of Aaron Harang they will come crashing down hard. The 35-year old right-hander has turned in three outstanding starts since joining the Braves. He has a miniscule 0.96 ERA and 0.80 WHIP so far, but let’s put things in perspective before we get too excited. First off, Harang was 5-12 with a 5.40 ERA in pitcher-friendly Seattle last season. Yes it was an off year, but there have been warning signs of deterioration for years. So far in 2014, he has only pitched 18.2 innings. His BABIP (batting average on balls in play) in those starts is a ridiculously low .191, which isn’t even close to sustainable. His career BABIP is over 100 points higher at .303 over his 13 seasons of work. So needless to say, Harang is in for some major regression and the Mets could be the beneficiaries. New York is fifth in the NL in runs scored so far this season thanks to some timely hitting. Jon Niese gets the ball for the Mets and he’s in line for his best season yet at the age of 27. Niese has put together back-to-back strong seasons with ERAs at 3.40 and 3.71 in 2012 and 2013. So far in 2014 he’s looking good, especially in the control department. He’s only walked two batters in 13 innings of work while striking out nine. The Braves has been feast or famine at the plate this season, but the last two games were certainly the latter. They scored a combined one run over their last two games against the Phillies, so Niese could be catching them at the right time. Take the Mets to get the win here.