For the third time in five months, the Twins played exactly .500 ball, finishing August at 14-14. It was not a steady month, though, as the Twins played horrible baseball for the first half of the month, winning just 4 of 15 games, and then finished strong by winning 10 of their final 13 games. That culminated in Minnesota being above .500 for the first time since July 31st.
Best record at any point (games above .500): 66-65
Worst record at any point (games below .500): 56-62
Days in first (and biggest lead): 0 (2.5 GB)
Days in last (and furthest out of first): 0 (6.5 GB)
Longest win streak: 5 games
Longest losing streak: 3 games
Runs scored/runs against: 148/151
Most runs scored/most runs allowed: 11/14
Shutouts/times shut out: 2/1
Extra inning games: 1
Longest game: 10 innings
Hitter of the month: Joe Mauer (115 AB, 21 R, 8 HR, 23 RBI, 12 BB:9 K, 3 SB, .391/.449/.652)
It was another spectacular month in a monumental season for Joe Mauer. If not for a sub-par final week, this may have looked very similar to his performance in May when he hit over .400 and got on base half the time. In August, though, he threw in an added bonus of a few stolen bases to make his skill-set complete.
Bizarro World hitter of the month: Nick Punto (51 AB, 6 R, 0 HR, 5 RBI, 6 BB:16 K, 1 SB, .235/.310/.294)
For the fifth time in as many months, a middle infielder lands in this spot, and Punto receives it for the second time this year. Despite finally finding the bench towards the end of August, he did enough damage in his playing time to warrant this. He struck out in almost 1/3 of his at bats and yet again had a slugging percentage under .300, something he's avoided in only one month this season.
Pitcher of the month: Scott Baker (4-0, 39.2 IP, 33 H, 5 BB, 29 K, 3.18/0.96)
Baker continues to pitch well after a stint on the disabled list to start the season and a rough few weeks after that. In August he had his lowest ERA of any month and allowed opponents to bat just .220. In four of his six August starts he pitched at least seven innings, and in six of his last nine starts he's allowed 2 runs or fewer. Jose Mijares was the best reliever for the Twins in August.
Bizarro World pitcher of the month: Anthony Swarzak (0-4, 13.1 IP, 33 H, 3 BB, 8 K, 14.85/2.70)
He's back in Rochester now, but Swarzak made four starts for the Twins in August. He lost each of those four starts, lasting until the fifth inning just once, which isn't surprising when he allowed at least 5 runs in each start. In 16 fewer innings than Baker, he allowed the same number of hits because of the ridiculous .471 batting average opponents had against him. He also gave up as many home runs (8) as he had strikeouts.
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