This past week was a crucial stretch for the Cleveland Guardians. Fail and they see the gap between themselves and the division leading Minneosta Twins potentially grow to an insurmountable number. Succeed and that gap closes which keeps them in the thick of the division race. The good news is that it was the latter and not the former which took place at the corner of Carnegie and Ontario.
It was the Guardians offense that did a ton of heavy lifting the past week. Cleveland not only out-hit their opponents 70-52, but they outsored them 38-25 as well. Averaging 6.3 runs and 11.7 hits per game compared to their opponents marks of 8.7 and 4.2 is impressive considering how much their bats have struggled until recently.
Cleveland's offensive performance were certainly boosted by the performances of Will Brennan and Jose Ramirez, and it could not have come at a better time. Ramirez slugged three home runs to power the Guardians to a 10-3 win over Boston. Meanwhile Brennan has been red hot at the plate as of late and his walk-off double to cap-off an impressive win in 14 innings against Houston was just the icing on the cake.
From a broad big picture perspective, this recent stretch from the Guardians shows that this team is more than ready to break out and give the Twins a run for their money. It also makes trying to determine where they stand in terms of the upcoming trade deadline a bit more difficult. There are cases to be made for the team to go in any direction in terms of trades later in the season. If they can continue to win, being buyers or a combo of buying and selling is on the table.
Both the Guardians and Twins are idle Monday and will pick back up on Tuesday. Cleveland will have a chance to make Minnesota a bit more uncomfortable in their position atop the American League Central. There is even a possiblity that the Guardians swap positions with the Twins by the end of the week. All they have to do is continue playing at the high level they have shown recently and hope that Minnesota continues their downward trend.