History will not be kind to the 2019 Minnesota Twins. Not after going out like they did.
The evil empire did it again with the world watching—10-4, 8-2, 5-1, a three-game sweep by the New York Yankees of the American League Divisional Playoff. This continues a Minnesota post-season tradition of getting embarrassed by New York. The Twins’ demise is this month’s version of the recently released movie “Joker.”
Sixteen straight post-season losses for the Twins is the worst such streak in MLB playoff history, 13 of these straight to the Yankees, who smashed the Twins like a semi-truck running over an empty can. The Twins are the first 100-win team in the history of baseball to get swept in the playoffs.
Yes, after winning 101 games and doing nothing in the playoffs, the Twins’ spectacular regular season is now a distant memory. To set the MLB all-time record for most home runs (307), to score 939 runs (second in MLB), to be the first team ever with five players hitting 30 home runs or more, and then get dominated like this?
The Twins have never won a playoff game at Target Field. 41,121 fans with red hankies saw the Yankees out-play their heroes in the pressure cooker spotlight. The Twins have not won a playoff game at home since the Metro Dome in 2002 over the Anaheim Angels 2-1. The Twins have now lost 11 straight playoff games at home (Target Field) on Minnesota soil.
The Twins have played the Yankees 18 times in the playoffs since 1961 and are 2-16. For the first time in MLB history, four teams won 100 games or more in 2019: Houston 107, Los Angeles 106, Yankees 103, and the Twins 101. History will focus on the fact that, also for the first time, four teams lost 100 games or more. Two of those teams, Detroit and Kansas City, were in the AL Central, the Division (ouch) the Twins won.
The Twins did not win a game in October and finished with a four-game losing streak. That’s all, folks. That’s the painful reality of the playoffs — win or go home. The second-best team in Twins franchise history, the second to win 100 games in a season (since 1965), again had nothing in the playoffs for the Yankees.
After losing 5-4 to Kansas City in game 162 in Kansas City, the Twins came home to rain and cold temperatures and could not get outside to work out Tuesday or Wednesday. When they got to New York it was raining. The Twins were not sharp at all. They did not pitch well. They were dominated and out-scouted.
Hopefully, the organization can learn from this. It’s no easy fix.
The playoffs have to mean something. The Yankees, the 27-time World Series Champions, are the first 100-win team to sweep another 100-win team in the Division series. The Kansas City Royals swept the Yankees in the American League Championship Series in 1980.
Why does this hurt so bad for the Twins? Because a team winning 100 games has won the last three World Series: Chicago, Houston and Boston.