As summer heats up, so does Twins' Rosario
Trying to get out of a slump? Sometimes all it takes is one game. Just ask Minnesota Twins outfielder Eddie Rosario.
Heading into a June 13 matchup with the Seattle Mariners, Rosario was in a funk. The left fielder had four hits, one walk and eight strikeouts in his last nine games and 29 plate appearances. His on-base percentage slumped to .283 – not far off from his career average (since he doesn’t walk much … more on that later) but significantly down from where he was in mid-May.
Then the Mariners came to Target Field.
Hitting ninth in the batting order, Rosario punished three balls over the wall to become the seventh Twins player to hit a trio of homers in one game.
And he’s been hot ever since, hitting .358/.398/.602 with 18 extra-base hits in his last 33 starts.
Rosario has 13 multi-hit games since June 13, including six games with three hits or more, increasing his average to .293 to lead the Twins. Rosario ranks second on the team in slugging percentage (.476), and he currently has a career-best oWAR (1.2).
Not known to have much patience at the plate, Rosario has already set a career high in walks, with 18. He had 12 bases-on-balls in 354 plate appearances last year after walking 15 times in 2015, his rookie season.
Rosario has traded in homers for doubles in July, a month that has seen him hit for a .347/.377/.528 slash line. His 10 two-baggers in July are second in the American League, just behind Royals utility man Whit Merrifield, who has 11.
Look for Rosario to keep his bat going against the A’s, who host Minnesota in a three-game series beginning Friday. In three games against Oakland this year, Rosario is 5 of 10 with two RBI, one double, one homer, and a walk.
-- Miguel Sano and Brian Dozier have combined for eight of the Twins’ 15 homers in July. The other seven home runs have been hit by seven different players.
-- The A’s don’t have a qualified batter hitting for a better average than Jed Lowrie’s rather underwhelming .265 mark.
-- Since June 14, Oakland pitcher Daniel Gossett allows 2.28 home runs per nine innings, fifth most in MLB.
-- Rookie Zack Granite already has a substantial hitting streak to his young MLB career. He’s hit in seven straight games, batting .400 (10-for-25) with one extra-base hit.
-- Minnesota has won four out of the past five matchups with Oakland, dating back to July 5, 2016.
Statistics courtesy STATS and baseball-reference.com