The prevailing sentiment through the offseason and spring training for the Twins was this: they should be somewhat improved this season because it's hard to be much worse than they were from 2011-13. That feeling was bolstered by a starting pitching staff that figured to be good enough to offset what looked to be a potentially historically bad offense.
Through the first 25 games, though, everything was twisted around. The offense was on fire, scoring six runs or more in nearly half those games (12). The starting pitching was mostly wretched, though, and the team wound up with a 12-13 record in that span.
These last 25 games, then, have been more like what we expected: brutal offense, generally decent-to-good starting pitching, and still that overall sense of improved play -- since they also went 12-13 in that chunk of games, including last night's 1-0 loss to Texas, and now sit at 24-26 through 50 this season. They have stayed afloat thanks to pitching and the fact that their last 10 wins have been by 1 or 2 runs.
The Twins have scored six runs or more just twice in their last 25; the offense has been particularly anemic lately, with 12 runs scored in the past seven games.
What will the next 25 bring? It's anyone's guess, but our hunch is this: similar work from the pitching staff, with perhaps even a little improvement (Ricky Nolasco won't be this bad, Kevin Correia should be marginally better, and Phil Hughes figures to drop a little). The offense will kick up a tick. But the close games will even out, and the Twins will find themselves just a shade below .500 again -- better than last year, for sure, even if it's still not good.