Another year, another playoff birth for one of the model franchises in baseball.

With their 6-4 win over the Cleveland Indians, coupled with the Chicago White Sox losing to the Oakland A’s, the Minnesota Twins have clinched the American League Central title and their sixth AL Central title in nine years.

The Twins were down 3-1 to Fausto Carmona and the Indians, but rallied for a run in the sixth knocking Carmona out of the game and then laid the smackdown on Justin Masterson with four runs in the eighth to secure the win. Just another solid win for the team that has the second best record in baseball.

That’s all this franchise does is win. No drama, no silly pitcher’s rules that take up 90 percent of the air time on the radio, no management issues, and no off the field issues that take away from the on-field accomplishments.

The Twins are a machine.

The Twins draft the right players and more importantly, they bring in the right players. The best example of this would be Jim Thome, who just happened to hit his 25th HR last night.

Nobody wanted Thome this offseason, so the Twins brought him in on a one-year, $1.5 contract to be a left-handed power source off the bench and to occasionally be a DH against right-handed pitching.

All Thome has done this year is put up a hitting line of .280/.412/.631 with 25 HR’s. He’s been worth about $14 million to the Twins this year according to Fangraphs.

However, it’s not so much the production on the field that made the Thome signing so valuable. It’s what he brings to the table off the field that made the Thome signing so valuable.

Thome is a solid guy. He’s a great clubhouse guy. He’s a leader. He’s pretty much everything the Twins look for in a player.

That’s why the Twins win.

The Twins are going to need Thome and the rest of the lineup to continue to step up like they have been in the absence of Justin Morneau in the playoffs. There is a slight chance Morneau might make it back for the playoffs, but concussions are a sensitive subject and I wouldn’t bet my life on his return.

It’s a tall task to ask a team to win a World Series without their second best offensive player, but if any team can do it, it will be the Twins.

You can follow The Ghost of Moonlight Graham on Twitter @ theghostofmlg

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