Players to Watch: Twins
Josh Willingham: It’ll be interesting to see just how well Chris Perez‘s favorite free agent miss performs in his final series in Cleveland this season. He’s lit up the Tribe this season and repeatedly been the catalyst for a handful of routs. He does come into the series on a bit of a downward slide, struggling to find the power stroke that made him such a feared hitter for the majority of the season. If the Tribe can keep his bat in check, they substantially improve their odds for success.
Joe Mauer: Mauer is recovering from a tight back that kept him out of five straight games this past week, but after homering in his return to the field on Sunday he looks ready to go for the home stretch of the 2012 season. While his power numbers aren’t what they were prior to moving into Target Field, he still hits for a remarkably high average, gets on base, and drive in handfuls of runs. He’s one of the best hitters in the game today and it’s awesome to see him back to form.
Players to Watch: Indians
Lonnie Chisenhall: It’s good to see Lonnie back in the lineup and making a positive impact on the outcome of games. Prior to his being hurt he was a bit lost in the shuffle and it was easy to forget he was in the lineup. This time around it’s been different. He’s posted a triple slash line of .300/.391/.500 and has a home run to go along with four RBI and a game winning base hit. If it’s a sign of thing to come then maybe, just maybe, there’s a reason to be excited for 2013.
Shin-Soo Choo: Choo has had an impressive season considering how bleak thing looked for him after the 2011 season. Finally healthy, it looks as if Choo is playing like the Choo of old. With that said, these final games may allow for Choo to further pad his stats and make him even that much more appealing in trades with other teams this offseason. A healthy Choo, playing to his capabilities, could return quite a haul in an offseason trade. It also means that this may be one of the last few times we get to see Choo take the field wearing an Indians uniform. Enjoy it, Cleveland. Enjoy it.