No June swoon: Twins’ Escobar having breakout month

Eduardo Escobar is in the midst of a breakout season — but he’s really been on fire in June.

The Minnesota Twins third baseman/shortstop is batting .290/.340/.564 entering Friday — which would be career highs for him in batting average, on-base percentage and slugging percentage. In his seven previous seasons, Escobar’s highest OPS was .758, set last year. This year he’s at .904.

Escobar has 12 home runs — he’s previously reached double-digits twice; 12 in 2015 and 21 in 2017 — and has 26 doubles after combining to hit 30 over the last two seasons. He leads the Twins in slugging percentage and his 42 RBI are just one behind team leader Eddie Rosario.

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Sixteen of Escobar’s RBI have come in June — only Houston’s Evan Gattis (18) has more in MLB in the month. His 13 extra-base hits are the most in the majors during June.

In his last 15 games, Escobar is hitting .397/.426/.862 with 15 extra-base hits (eight doubles, two triples, five home runs) and 19 RBI. In that span, Escobar has nine multi-hit games.

Two of those home runs came against Cleveland on June 1. With the Twins visiting the Indians this weekend, Minnesota certainly hopes Escobar remains red-hot.

Other notes:

Joe Mauer might be returning at the right time to Minnesota’s lineup. He’s a career .326 hitter at Cleveland’s Progressive Field.

— Rosario and Cleveland’s Jose Ramirez are two of five MLB players with an OPS of 1.000 or higher and 30+ RBI since May 1. Rosario has a 1.028 OPS and 31 RBI over that span.

— Despite the recent trip in Detroit, Minnesota is 14-10 against AL Central opponents this season, averaging 4.71 runs per game with a 3.49 ERA.

Kyle Gibson has the second-biggest drop in ERA from 2017 to ’18 in the American League. Last year he had a 5.07 ERA and this year so far is at 3.45, a difference of 1.62. Only Houston’s Justin Verlander (-1.75) has been better.

Statistics courtesy STATS and baseball-reference