But we have to wonder if the Twins are letting the early results at the park go to their heads too much and too soon. Frustration is visible on batters' faces when a well-hit ball comes up short. Our guy Joe C suggested a new phrase be applied to such long outs. Via Twitter:
Looking for a phrase for should-be home runs at Target Field. How about TF'd? As in, "Joe Mauer just got TF'd" Suggestions?
Indeed. The first word is totally. The last word could either be frustrated, or perhaps something a little less printable. But let's stick with frustrated for a minute. If the main frustration is that the ball isn't flying as well as it did in the static-air Dome, well, toughen up boys and live with it. Or: hit the ball harder. You see, opponents haven't had nearly the same problem hitting home runs at Target Field as the Twins have. They have 21 in 23 games now -- including both game winners yesterday (Derek Jeter's pictured). Using math from earlier this month, AL teams are averaging about 0.94 HRs per game this season. AL opponents at Target Field are averaging 0.91 HRs per game -- almost spot on. Twins pitchers are allowing a home run per 40.3 plate appearances at home, and one per 38.1 on the road. Pretty similar. There was no problem with the ball Corey Hart launched into the third deck the other day.
So while it's clear there has been a gaping home/away split for Twins hitters -- 28 homers in 23 road games, 10 homers in 23 home games -- and the naked eye can see the ball hasn't carried all that well yet, it's probably a little early for all the frustrated looks on players' faces. After all, the Twins have still scored more runs and have a better team batting average at home. Bunch some hits. Find the gaps. Hit it higher and farther to leave no doubt. Wait for a larger sample size. Deal with it.