One of the lowest points I have ever had as a fan of the Minnesota Twins came this June.
I went to the last of the Twins-White Sox series at US Cell as part of a large group. Already known for being one of the most outspoken Twins fans on campus, I had a fairly large stake in the outcome.
The Sox completed their four-game thrashing of the Twins at the expense of young Twins' pitcher Kevin Slowey, who gave up eight runs on 10 hits in a paltry three innings of work. He fell to 2-6 on the year and gave me a terrible ride home.
As I waited for the bus to leave, I suffered through an endless parade of newly minted Sox fans, sporting brand new Sox hats and T-shirts with the tags still on them, many of whom took glee in reminding me what we had all just witnessed. I replied to each and every one with the same phrase
"This was one series in June, let's see where we stand in September".
As it turns out, that unholy beat down was part of what lit a fire under the Twins' players and compelled them to improve their shoddy play.
Two months removed and several hundred miles away from the site of his worst outing as a professional, Kevin Slowey redeemed himself and took another step towards proving me right.
He went the distance against a potent Sox lineup, throwing a stellar six-hit shutout. It was as far as he could get away from the previous outcomes he'd had against the Sox.
He dominated. He was improving as the game went on, even on a night when home-plate umpire Kerwin Danely wasn't giving him the low strike he normally relies on. It took him just 102 pitches to finish off the Sox hitters, none of whom made it past second base.
With his dominating performance, Slowey pulled the Twins to within just 1.5 games of the White Sox in the AL Central, with six games left between the two teams, all of which will be played at the Metrodome.
I'd like to make some grandiose statement here about how this game is emblematic of how the rest of the season will go, but our rivals do us no good if we can't learn from them. So, I'll leave you with this
This was a great game in late July, but let's see where we stand in September.