I'm going to keep this short because it's a holiday weekend and we have a lot to do, including relearning the words to Lee Greenwood's "Proud to be an American" for when we go watch fireworks and deciding what to wear to watch the women's World Cup final..

The Twins are five games above .500 and entered Friday's game at Kansas City 3 1.2 games out of first place in the American League Central.

They would have been a better bet right now to be fourth or fifth and 13 1/2 games out, or more, when most of us were figuring out stuff at the start of the season.

The Twins have more starting pitching than they need and have managed to work around and battle through the assortment of flaws that separate them from being taken more seriously. ESPN, which got a bit carried away earlier this season when ranking them fifth, have the Twins at No. 13 in its current power rankings.

Drug-suspended Ervin Santana will pitch against the Royals on Sunday afternoon. His presence is like picking up a veteran at midseason, even if it's happening this way for the wrong reason. The Twins have made the futurists happy by bringing up four of their top minor-leaguers and sending a fifth, the pitcher Jose Berrios, to Rochester, where he is one step away from the majors.

Meanwhile, the Royals have lost four in a row and scored only six runs -- five of them in one game. So maybe the Twins are catching Kansas City at the right time, the same way that Milwaukee (a genuinely bad team) chewed on the Twins last month when they were struggling.

Things are going better than expected. Much better, I'd say, even with June's tumble.

Yes, things could still fall apart for all of the reasons we've talked about on the blog.

But for now, I'd suggest having fun with it. A wary eye on the future doesn't mean we can't have fun right now.