Commentary

Insider Intel: Twins vs. Yankees

The Yankees swept Minnesota in the regular season, but the Twins come in hot

Originally Published: October 7, 2009
By Keith Law | ESPN Insider
Getty ImagesThe Twins come in happy. They may be doomed.

This is a No. 15 seed versus a No. 2 seed, for you March Madness fans out there. Could the Twins, the worst team in this year's playoffs, upset the Yankees, probably the best? Sure, they could, but it doesn't look promising.

When the Yankees are up

1. The Yankees like to take walks. The Twins don't like to give 'em. Something's gotta give.
The Twins get good work from mediocre pitching prospects by teaching them to throw strike after strike and not to hand out free passes, an approach that works well when you're facing a lineup with several hitters who don't control the zone. The Yankees are not such a lineup.

2. The bases may be silent.
The Yankees shouldn't need to do much base stealing given the strength of their offense, and while soon-to-be MVP Joe Mauer had an off year in catching base stealers, he had caught over 41 percent of would-be thieves before this year, and I think that's more reflective of his true ability as a rifleman.

To read more of Keith Law's analysis of this 2009 ALDS series -- including his idea on how the Twins could maybe take this thing, plus notes from Baseball Prospectus, Inside Edge and ESPN Stats & Information -- you must be an ESPN Insider. Insider