72 hours ago, there was no question the Twins should be working towards this year's postseason. They were six games back (five of the wild card) with 70 games left in the season. And thirty of those games were versus Detroit, Cleveland and or some random opponent while Detroit played Cleveland.
After a three-game sweep, the temptation is to think that everything has changed. The reality is that not much has. The lead is now nine games (seven behind the wild card), but there are 67 games left, and 27 where they essentially control their rivals ability to win.
And it's not like the Tigers dominated the Twins. The Tigers eeked out three wins, partly because the Twins played some bad baseball and partly because they caught some bad breaks. And it included three quality starts by Twins pitchers, extending their streak of quality starts to seven, which bodes well for the second half of the season.
The offense, as it has all season, needs some more firepower, but that wait appears to be nearly over. Not that anything is likely to happen in the next couple of days. History suggests that a trade like that doesn't happen until shortly before the trade deadline, and it has nothing to do with Terry Ryan's predilection for patience. Either a trade deadline produces a flurry of deals or very few, but either way, there are precious trades involving buyers and sellers prior to the day of the 31st.
Which brings us to the one change that likely has happened. Prior to this series, Ryan probably would have pulled the trigger on an available deal earlier if it was there. Now, I'm not sure that is true. He may wait until the deadline gets a little closer before committing one way or the other.
Given the Twins upcoming schedule that would seem prudent. The Twins have three games this weekend versus an Angels team that looked far superior than the Twins a month ago. And after a series in Toronto, they'll face Cleveland on the road for three more games. That series concludes about 48 hours before the trade deadline, which should provide plenty of time to make a trade, be it as a buyer or seller.
Think that might be cutting it a little close? Well, consider how much has changed in the last 72 hours.