Updated:
Original:

Reasons for hope: Twins flashed power, defense, lineup depth and pitching

From Miguel Sano's early power to Jason Castro's strong debut, there are plenty of reasons to be optimistic about the Twins.
Author:

Without even mentioning Ervin Santana's gem to start the season, the Twins provided plenty of reasons to get excited for the season with a 7-1 win over the Royals on Opening Day. Here are our top

1. Miguel Sano's power

His power has never been questioned, but it's been inconsistent through his first year and a half in the big leagues. Let's hope he can hammer pitches all season like he did in the opener.

The home run he hit went off the bat at a whopping 113.8 mph, making it the hardest hit ball through two days of the season, according to MLB.com.

This is the hardest hit ball of 2017 (so far). pic.twitter.com/S4v5XuHYwI

— Parker Hageman (@ParkerHageman) April 4, 2017

2. Byron Buxton's defense

Buxton will undoubtedly provide a season's worth of defensive gems like the two diving catches he made Monday.

And then he added this fantastic quote: "Us outfielders have this thing where nothing falls but raindrops," Buxton said, via Rhett Bollinger.

The next step is providing some offense, which he didn't do in an 0-5 day at the plate as the No. 3 hitter.

3. Bottom of the batting order

Even though Buxton did nothing at the plate, the bottom of the lineup is something to get excited about. New catcher Jason Castro had two hits and a walk to lead the bottom four of the order. Jorge Polanco had two hits and got on base three times while Max Kepler and Eddie Rosario each had a hit – Kepler's was a key bunt single in a six-run seventh inning.

It's still way too early to tell what kind of impact Castro will have on the pitching staff, but holding the Royals to two hits and one run is a fantastic sign of the potential that exists.

4. Matt Belisle in the bullpen

The Twins waited until February to add bullpen help in free agency, but that patience might pay off big time in the form of right-hander Matt Belisle. The 36-year-0ld pitched above his career norm last season with a 1.76 ERA in 40 appearances with the Nationals, and he picked up where he left off with a 1-2-3 eighth inning in the opener.

Next Up

Gopher Hockey

Watch: No-call lifts Gophers to OT victory over St. Cloud State

A blatant hook marred a top-four battle in St. Cloud.

Ambulance hospital emergency

Driver killed after crashing into parked semi-trailer

The crash occurred on the 5800 block of University Avenue Northeast.

Mike Zimmer

Vikings-Panthers: 5 things you can count on happening

The Vikings will look to open things up in Carolina.

Tanner Morgan/Gopher Football

Morgan's resurgence, Nebraska's miscues help Gophers hold on

The Gophers quarterback threw a pair of touchdowns in a 30-23 victory.

Tina Smith

Sen. Tina Smith warns Dems she may not vote for budget bill if climate plan dropped

This comes amid a White House effort to get its "Build Back Better" plan passed.

Pixabay - emergency room ambulance hospital

St. Paul man dies six days after crash on I-94

The Hennepin County Medical Examiner has identified the man as David Rodney Hardaway.

police lights squad car dark - Unsplash

Double murder in northeastern Minnesota, suspect kills himself after chase

The suspect died at the scene from a self-inflicted gunshot wound.

chaska school fight

Anti-masker involved in school board meeting fight charged with assault

It happened last month at an Eastern Carver County Schools hearing.

Marcus Foligno

Marcus Foligno throws hands, scores game-winning goal in Wild's opener

The Wild forward scored with 7.2 seconds left to beat Anaheim.

Screen Shot 2021-10-15 at 10.01.55 PM

Large police presence at Emagine Willow Creek movie theater in Plymouth

There are few details at this stage as to what has happened.

Related

Reasons for hope: Twins flashed power, defense, lineup depth and pitching

From Miguel Sano's early power to Jason Castro's strong debut, there are plenty of reasons to be optimistic about the Twins.

Watch: Sano scares pitching coach with a fake snake in the dugout

Miguel Sano scared the crap out of pitching coach Neil Allen.

Watch: Sano scares pitching coach with a fake snake in the dugout

Miguel Sano scared the crap out of pitching coach Neil Allen.

Watch: Dozier, Sano didn't wait long to homer in return to the lineup

Brian Dozier, Miguel Sano and Eduardo Escobar homered early against Chicago.

Watch: Dozier, Sano didn't wait long to homer in return to the lineup

Brian Dozier, Miguel Sano and Eduardo Escobar homered early against Chicago.

You can't stop the Twins' pitching staff, you can only hope to contain it

Knock on wood, but the Twins pitching staff has the best ERA in baseball.

You can't stop the Twins' pitching staff, you can only hope to contain it

Knock on wood, but the Twins pitching staff has the best ERA in baseball.