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Will the Twins wind up the 2019 home run champions?

Tonight, they broke the major league record for home runs in a season (268), but there’s still a whole month to go.

MLB: Minnesota Twins at Detroit Tigers Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

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The Twins entered the day five back of the single season team home run total of 267, set just last year by the Yankees. After tonight, they now hold the all-time major league record with 268. Okay, so, yeah, they hit six home runs tonight and extended a sizable lead over the Yankees, who hit four home runs of their own today to get to 254. Will the Twins end the year with the most home runs?

Before I speculate recklessly, let’s go back to the basics. There’s something different about the ball. There’s something different about hitters’ approach. Pitchers are throwing the ball, on average, harder than ever before. There’s a perfect storm of variables to explain the spike in home run rate, but consider that the Twins are setting a season record five months into a six-month season. So... the matter would seem to tilt a bit more in favor of the ball being the primary culprit here.

Here’s that same list but by home run rate (HR/PA):

Max Kepler — 6.5%
Nelson Cruz — 8.0%
Eddie Rosario — 5.5%
Miguel Sanó — 7.4%
Mitch Garver — 8.7%
C.J. Cron — 5.4%
Jonathan Schoop — 5.3%
Jorge Polanco — 3.2%
Marwin Gonzalez — 3.4%
Jason Castro — 2.7%
Byron Buxton — 2.6%
Jake Cave — 4.2%
Ehire Adrianza — 1.8%
Willians Astudillo — 2.1%
Luis Arraez — 1.1%

Prior to this year, here’s how this bunch broke down:

Max Kepler — 3.9%
Nelson Cruz — 5.6%
Eddie Rosario — 3.7%
Miguel Sanó — 5.2%
Mitch Garver — 1.8%
C.J. Cron — 4.4%
Jonathan Schoop — 4.2%
Jorge Polanco — 2.0%
Marwin Gonzalez — 2.8%
Jason Castro — 2.7%
Byron Buxton — 2.6%
Jake Cave — 4.2%
Ehire Adrianza — 1.2%
Willians Astudillo — 3.1%
Luis Arraez — rookie

With some exceptions, those are big leaps for a lot of players. The list is a mix of free agent acquisitions, pre-arbitration players, players entering their primes, and then the very veteran Nelson Cruz. Separately, he’s the only one you might think of as a home run hitter. Together with this Twins team, they’re an unstoppable dinger force.

But wait. There’s more.

They’re on pace, as a team, to finish with 320+ home runs for the year. The Yankees might not be able to catch up, even as they’ve added Aaron Judge and Clint Frazier back into the mix. They don’t have any more games remaining against the Orioles, either.

Even then, it wouldn’t matter. The Twins are just too far ahead and they don’t seem set to stop their prodigious rate anytime soon. What do you think the new record will be?

Poll

How many home runs will the Twins hit this year?

This poll is closed

  • 6%
    under 300
    (2 votes)
  • 27%
    320
    (9 votes)
  • 3%
    350
    (1 vote)
  • 63%
    somewhere between 301-319
    (21 votes)
33 votes total Vote Now