StaTuesday: Predictions around the web for Twins in 2020
Coming off a 101-win season and their first American League Central division title since 2010, the Minnesota Twins head into the 2020 season with big expectations. We’re talking World Series aspirations.
So, where are the experts (and non-experts) projecting the Twins to finish? FOX Sports North takes a quick look around the web.
Baseball Prospectus put together their annual PECOTA standings predictions and have the Twins reclaiming the division crown with a 93-69 record, beating out Cleveland for the title by seven games. Minnesota is the heavy favorite percentage-wise to win the division with at 77.4%. Cleveland is second with a 16.7% mark.
The site gives Minnesota an 89.2% chance to make the postseason, which is the third-highest mark in the American League and fourth in the big leagues behind the Los Angeles Dodgers (99.9%), New York Yankees (97.5%) and Houston Astros (96.9%).
Despite Chicago’s big offseason, Baseball Prospectus slots the White Sox in third place in the AL Central with an 11.5% chance to make the playoffs.
|TEAM||W||L||Div %||Playoff %|
|Chicago White Sox||82.5||79.5||5.9%||18.1%|
|Kansas City Royals||67.8||94.2||0.1%||0.0%|
USA Today’s predictions are … just about the same. The newspaper has the Twins winning the division with a 94-68 record, Cleveland in second place at 86-76, then Chicago (83-79), Kansas City (65-97) and Detroit (54-108).
Clay Davenport, who co-founded Baseball Prospectus in 1996, isn’t as high as others on the Twins. He still has Minnesota as AL Central champions but winning 89 games, which would be the fourth-best record in the AL in his projections. Davenport also predicted the Twins would score the fourth-most runs in the big leagues with 831, or 5.1 per game.
Fangraphs released its player projections for each team, and you might be a bit surprised with the results. Many think Nelson Cruz is due for a dip in production after bursting out for 41 homers and 108 RBI at age 39 last season, but not Fangraphs. The site projects Cruz to lead the team with 40 dingers, which ranks ninth among all MLB batters in the predictions. For what it’s worth, Yankees slugger Giancarlo Stanton is first with 48.
The Twins broke a league record with five different players mashing 30+ homers in 2019, and Fangraphs has them doing it again with Cruz, Miguel Sano (37), Josh Donaldson (36), Max Kepler (30) and Eddie Rosario (30).
The site also has Byron Buxton producing big numbers with a .262/.317/.461 slash line, 20 home runs and 73 RBI. All of those numbers would be career highs for Buck over a full season.
But it’s not all fun and games. Catcher Mitch Garver, who mashed 31 taters in just 311 at-bats last year, is projected to hit just 16 home runs and 52 RBI in 2020.