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The Final Nail

August 26, 2011 12:17 PM

Being in support of something does not necessarily mean you will be happy if it happens.

A whole lot of people -- columnists, analysts, bloggers, pundits, fans -- thought the honorable thing to do, with the Twins out of contention, would be to move Jim Thome and give him a final chance at winning a title. I can't speak for anyone else, but the news that he's leaving the Twins is just about the saddest thing I could have heard, despite knowing it was coming, and even despite knowing it was the right thing to do.

It's the final nail in the lid on a dreadful Twins season -- arguably the most disappointing of all 51 seasons. With 32 games left to play, the joy of watching a great hitter and future Hall-of-Famer has been excised. I can only imagine how it will feel to be in that clubhouse today.

Opening Day, 2011

We're left wondering and pondering what might have been if the Twins had been able to field their major league team this year. That's the scenario where Thome hits number 600 at Target Field during a hot streak in May, and the team rides the adrenaline bump all the way to October.

But I'm also left remembering what it was like to watch Thome come to town as an Indian and thinking how great it would be to have this guy in our line-up. When he first became a free agent in 2002, we even had a moment of imagining him in a Twins uniform. We never seriously thought it would happen (he signed with the Phillies for $12M per year), but we dreamed a little.

Now we've had the guy in town for the better part of two years, and what we imagined about him all turned out to be true. Even as a declining player, he proved his worth, and more.

Slugger. Clubhouse guy. Humble. Professional. Hard-working. Smart. Serious. Funny. Leader. Fine example. Great human.

In 2002, the Twins were still four years away from their ballpark deal, and it was no sure thing. So I've also been wondering how things might have been different if that original 1997 proposal had passed. You remember that one: Retro ballpark on the river with retractable roof. If the deal had gotten done, it would have opened in 2001 or 2002 and the Twins would have been flush with cash at just the moment the perfect potential Twin came on the free agent market.

The Oh's were a great decade for the franchise, but it's easy to imagine how the addition of someone like Thome might have pushed the Twins over that post-season hump.

Woulda. Coulda. Shoulda.

We're left to be thankful for the time he's been a Twin. During his tenure, he's taken 5% of the total ABs, but hit 17% of the homers. Without him, the Twins power numbers would be almost non-existant. He led the team in SLG last year, and only Cuddyer is better this year (by .009). (UPDATE: Aaron Gleeman fills in some more of Thome's amazing numbers.)

His effect on a crumbling clubhouse can't really be measured, but steady veteran leadership has been known to lift flailing teams in the past. Admittedly, he's been absent from the team for big chunks of time this year, but the knowledge that he was a weapon due to return has to have had some positive effect.

In the end, it's a minor miracle of circumstance that Thome became a Twin at all. We can be thankful for that. And I'm happy that I already have tickets for the Cleveland series to get a chance to make some noise when he comes to the plate (and hits a homer off one of our September call-ups).

And I can't think of anybody better in all of baseball to have traipsed up to the most distant seat in Target Field just to hold up a Killebrew jersey.

I'll leave you with a hopeful thought: It's still possible to find joy in each individual contest. Doing so involves forgetting about the standings and the out-of-town scoreboard. And what happened yesterday. And who is pitching, or available out of the bullpen. And who is hitting or what their batting averages are. And who is catching, or where Joe Mauer is standing.

Essentially, we fans now have to do pretty much exactly what the players have to do every day of every season.

OK, that's not a very hopeful thought after all. It's a big step down from what we've become accustomed to. But it puts a few things in perspective.

It's still true that any nine-inning game in which 20 or more of the finest players in the world participate is a beautiful thing. (Feel free to insert a snide comment here about some of the lesser-known names which are sure to grace our starting line-ups.)

Of course, this is a defense mechanism only, designed to make using already-purchased tickets more palatable. (I have three more games on my schedule, including 3-year-old Truman's first time to TF tomorrow.)

This approach does not constitute a proposed new marketing strategy. "2012 Twins: Enjoy Today's Game Because It Don't Mean Squat" will probably not work to sell tickets. We're going to need some real hope, and something exciting to watch.

We used to have that, remember?

P.S. Gee, I wonder if there will be any players like that on the free agent market after the season ends...

Comments


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Would love to see a Brewers/Indians WS and to see Thome get his championship.

Posted on August 26, 2011 at 1:28 PM by tk Highlight this comment 1

The first year of any new ballpark is almost a guaranteed sell-out. People want to come down and see the new place, especially a bunch of people who have little or no interest in baseball, but just want to be seen where it is currently cool to be seen.

But in the second year that will start to dissipate. And it will dissipate very quickly if the product on the field doesn't have at least some reasonable chance of making some noise.

And as far as year three -----------------

Posted on August 26, 2011 at 1:31 PM by Ben Highlight this comment 2

If you are going to the game on Saturday, keep your ticket stubs. You just may see a no hitter thrown (by Verlander of course). Should get a * since it is against a AAA (AA?) team...

Posted on August 26, 2011 at 1:38 PM by Stevie B Highlight this comment 3

If not a no-hitter, at least win #20 for his Cy Young award stats.

Posted on August 26, 2011 at 1:55 PM by tk Highlight this comment 4

A class act Thome! Best memory the walk off vs his former team the whitties last year. Course the Hawk Harrilson silence was priceless also! I think the tribe and the Whitties to far back now to make any differnce. Course we got Diamond on the mound tonight to strike fear into the kitties lineup! Listened to Gardy on 1500 espn over lunch and he talks about bringing Thome to Spring training if he retires after the end of the year. Somebody has to teach these punch and judy sallys how to go deep. Gardy seemed much more relaxed as he knows no preassure now in whats left of the lost season. Sounds like Blackburn and Baker and Lirriano all might be shut down the rest of the year. So that leaves you with Diamond...Pavano..Slowey..Duensing..Swarzack! for the strech run! LOL!

Posted on August 26, 2011 at 2:25 PM by TwinkFan Highlight this comment 5

While we speak of "the Final Nail", click for appropriate music to go right with it and the entire 2011 Twins season.

Sorry, I don't know Latin to translate.

Posted on August 26, 2011 at 2:38 PM by luke Highlight this comment 6

Wonder if Vegas took the Saturday game off the books? Bet 900 to win 1000 if you want the Tigers? Will the baby jesus take a couple of advil and be ready to go tonight? Could not sell my tickets for tommorow so just gave them away. Will hit the State Fair instead. Beer Broads and Batter!

Posted on August 26, 2011 at 2:50 PM by TwinkFan Highlight this comment 7

I agree with Rick in feeling an irrational sadness in Thome's departure. But I'm currently in stage three of my grief, anger. Thome was the one guy who you simply had to watch every pitch, the guy who you stayed in the car to listen to the radio for the whole at bat even after you got where you were going. Trading him for a C-level PTBNL is a slap in the face to the fans, what else is there to get excited about now. And we're not giving Jim a chance to get a championship ring with this move, because the Indians simply aren't going to get past the Tigers, the Yankees, the Bosox and the Phillies.

This year has completely sucked.

Posted on August 26, 2011 at 3:58 PM by gone buggy Highlight this comment 8

The Twins can help Thome this weekend by sweeping Detroit. That is the least this hopeless bunch of crap can do for Jim.

Posted on August 26, 2011 at 4:33 PM by tk Highlight this comment 9

Twins social media on Facebook is asking who is going to the game tonight, and is pushing tickets to those that do not have them yet.

Common responses, "sorry sore neck," "General Soreness™"

Posted on August 26, 2011 at 4:46 PM by tk Highlight this comment 10

Back when Thome first left Cleveland, I had hoped we could get him in Minnesota. He could have backed up at first base, and pounded balls into the cheap seats in the dome.

I'm sad to see him leave, I'm happy that I got to see him play in a Twins' uniform, and I'd love to see him get a ring because he's one of the truly classy people in any sport.

Posted on August 26, 2011 at 8:39 PM by F_T_K Highlight this comment 11

Cuddyer is clearly affected with the left wrist and is going all out. Mauer has a "sore neck" and I have not seen a single glimpse of him in the Twins dugout.

Posted on August 26, 2011 at 9:01 PM by TK Highlight this comment 12

Thome owns the best hit in Target Field history. I'd say that homer against the Sox was the peak of Target Field...after that, it was a rather dull end to the season, followed by an ass-whipping at the hands of the Yanks. That homer was magic, and it may be years before the ballpark sees another one like that.

Posted on August 26, 2011 at 10:15 PM by twinswschamps2040 (aka twinswschamps2011) Highlight this comment 13

Wow, that next Twins WS championship just keeps getting pushed farther and farther back, doesn't it? We're up to 2040 now...lol.

Posted on August 26, 2011 at 10:20 PM by luke Highlight this comment 14

Weird, Nishioka was listed in the pregame lineups tonight then scratched right before first pitch. Does anyone know why? I was at the game and saw him listed on the lineup on the jumbotron about an hour before the game. then Splash Plouffe and Matty Tolbert take the field.

Posted on August 26, 2011 at 10:31 PM by Jared Highlight this comment 15

Nishi was not feeling 100% and took an extra day off. Following Mauer's lead.

Posted on August 26, 2011 at 11:00 PM by tk Highlight this comment 16

Here's an interesting, but somewhat disconcerting, quote from Gardy in the Strib (emphasis mine):

"I talked to him (Thome) about it (returning to the Twins next year); he'd go play somewhere else (now), and talk to us again in the winter," manager Ron Gardenhire said. "Jim wants to get in the World Series, and I told him, we plan on having a really good baseball team next year, get everybody healthy and start the year that way and we'll talk over the winter."

We plan on having a really good baseball team??? Isn't that the plan every year? Wasn't that the plan this year? That's like submitting a business plan which says, "We plan to make money at this company."

And a big part of that plan is just to "get everybody healthy"??? That will certainly not be enough this offseason. That's like including in your business plan the intention to "hire people who will come to work and try to do their jobs."

Yikes!

I know he has to say stuff like that, but here's hoping the front office knows how bad things are -- even with everybody healthy!

On that subject, I heard Bill Smith on the radio over last weekend and he sounded like somebody who was blissfully oblivious to the systemic problems with this team. It sounded like everything in his world was sunny -- except for a few minor technical issues which needed to be ironed out.

Double yikes!

My confidence was not increased one iota. In fact, I started to wonder just how delusional this front office may be right now.

Posted on August 27, 2011 at 12:04 PM by Rick 17

Again, to follow-up to Rick's post...this team is sending out letters as we speak taking away tickets from certain holders who have more than 8, despite the 20+ games under 500. I would call that being in denial. I wonder if Thome told Gardy, "Don't call me...I'll call you." I would actually be more concerned if the Twins made an effort to get Thome...this is not the kind of player we need to rebuild. We need Mauer to give partial refunds, Nish to become homesick, Bill to be removed, and we need to get some real men that play through boo-boos. Joseph P. Mauer is clogging our payroll like a huge chunk of cholesterol.

Posted on August 27, 2011 at 7:28 PM by twinswschamps2050 (aka twinswschamps2011) Highlight this comment 18

What reason other than brokering would a single account need/want more than 8 tickets per game? In the rare cases where you might have an actual group requiring over 8 per game they most likely could easily split it into multiple accounts. If we can believe what they publicly announce about the on deck circle size, they have plenty of ST buyers willing to take up some of those broker tickets.

Posted on August 28, 2011 at 12:10 AM by Dave Highlight this comment 19

"If we can believe what they publicly announce about --- "

Anything. There's the rub, as they say.

Posted on August 28, 2011 at 05:04 AM by Ben Highlight this comment 20

My point is the arrogance of the team. First of all, it might have been wise to implement that policy before Target Field opened. Anybody with a clue realized the demand was going to be huge. Second, the removal of tickets at this point shows a complete misunderstanding of how bad the team sucks and how bleak the future looks. Once the cancellations flood in, and tickets are taken away, and the On-Deck circle is pissed through, I have a feeling there will be plenty of season tickets available for those that want them. Bottom line, if somebody bought 12 tickets for whatever reason, including flipping them on Stubhub...the official partner that the Twins pimp on their website, those tickets are that holder's for as long as they want them, period. The Twins are doing this to ensure fair pricing for all fans. It probably hasn't occurred to them that for fans to get the best prices, they should allow brokers to keep their tickets if they dare, and be forced to unload them on Stubhub for $5. That would be the best scenario for family man wanting to take the kids to a game.

Posted on August 28, 2011 at 09:38 AM by twinswschamps2050 (aka twinswschamps2011) Highlight this comment 21

I guess I am not as convinced as some that there is going to be a mass exodus of people dropping their season tickets. I am as disgusted as anyone by this team's performance this year, but yet I am not going to drop my season tickets. In fact, I will upgrade to better seats if given the chance.

Posted on August 28, 2011 at 10:10 AM by antifire Highlight this comment 22

I agree with Anitfire, one down year does not mean season tickets holders are going to flock away.

Posted on August 28, 2011 at 10:46 AM by Duffman Highlight this comment 23

Down year heading into year three = double whammy.

Posted on August 28, 2011 at 10:57 AM by Ben Highlight this comment 24

Ben,

It almost seems as though you are hoping the season ticket holders flock away.

Posted on August 28, 2011 at 11:01 AM by Duffman Highlight this comment 25

That is the problem with Minnesota sports fans....they make it way too easy on the sports teams and tend to accept mediocrity or status quo.

The Wild essentially sold out their first ten years despite years of mediocrity and mismanagement by the front office until the fans started to wake up and realize last year.

What have the Twins done to make you think they are going to be such a great team next year?

This is more than just "one down year"....there is no minor league talent, the pitching is terrible with no future ace in sight. The outfield will be nothing if Cuddyer and Kubel leave. It's been years of mediocrity at 2nd base, 3rd base and shortstop.

If I am expected by the Twins to pay Major League prices for tickets, than I should expect (as a customer) to see a major league roster and a major league performance...Can you seriously consider the following players Major League players??? Tolbert, Butera, Casilla, Nishioka, Tosoni, Hughes, Plouffe, and Repko. The Twins do not have ONE single player hitting over .300 and several players hovering at .200 and below.

Yes, injuries are part of the game but EVERY team faces injuries...it's your depth and minor league talent that makes good teams great. The Twins have no minor league depth at this time and Bill Smith has done nothing to re-stock the minor league system. Why didn't he buy or sell at the deadline rather than just stand pat and do nothing?

I am sorry, but winning AL Central Division titles no longer does anything for me...the Twins have simply benefited from a poor division and an unbalanced schedule in recent years.

If they returned to a balanced schedule, the Twins would be no better than a .500 team.

Posted on August 28, 2011 at 11:30 AM by Mike Highlight this comment 26

If I did not find additional partners to take on additional tickets, you can bet anything I would have dropped my plans.

It is starting to get tough making it to 40 games a year when the team is underachieving/not caring. I drive 110 miles round-trip to each game and I have about had it.

Posted on August 28, 2011 at 12:06 PM by TK Highlight this comment 27

The bottom line is that the Twins organization is focused too much on marketing (which has become little more than shitting the "fans") and not nearly enough on baseball. This is due, in turn, to the FO being mostly marketing types. You also need to factor in the organizational lean toward cheapness which precludes the hiring of high quality baseball minds and/or managers. This leaves us with a GM who is a borderline moron, at least baseball-wise, running decidedly mediocre staffs. I would cite JJ Hardy's strong hint that his injury issues were badly handled by the Twins' training/med people as one of the more recent examples of ineptitude on the part of the baseball end of the business.

Posted on August 28, 2011 at 12:08 PM by Ben Highlight this comment 28

Duffman ---

Reality speaks for itelf.

Posted on August 28, 2011 at 12:11 PM by Ben Highlight this comment 29

"itself" --- sorry

Posted on August 28, 2011 at 12:11 PM by Ben Highlight this comment 30

OMG - the Twins actually WON a game? I don't believe it.

Posted on August 28, 2011 at 5:47 PM by luke Highlight this comment 31

Monkeys and typewriters Luke, monkeys and typewriters.

Good game though. And to think you could have nailed down LC seats for $29! I thought about it but have been so terribly disappointed of late that I just did want to go. Congrats to LH!!!

Posted on August 28, 2011 at 5:56 PM by Ben Highlight this comment 32

"did not" --- my proofreader always takes Sunday off.

Posted on August 28, 2011 at 5:58 PM by Ben Highlight this comment 33

Okay a bit of the other side of the coin here. Its true that guys like Casilla, Tolbert and Butera haven't proven worthy thus far in their careers. However, it is way too soon to write off guys like Repko, Plouffe, Nishi, Tosoni and Hughes. These guys are not only making their first full (or nearly full) season debuts in the Majors but they are also trying to do it in a truly anomolous year. You can't expect these guys go come in and start putting up Cuddy-like, above average numbers so soon. If they do great, but come on. Hell it took Cuddy 4 seasons before he became a nearly everyday player. And I am pretty sure we all were bitching about Cuddy's performances in those first few seasons. You may not consider these guys major league players now but at some point the majority of the current guys you do consider MLB players were all in the same position. Its a little short sighted to jump on these young guys this way.

This season is clearly an anomoly for Twins performances. The constant "injuries", larger number of AAA players getting time with lower numbers, sub-par pitching all creating a tidal wave of awfulness. Expectations were high for this season and its from past success that you cannot write them of as immediate failures next season. What makes anyone think they will be good next year? Well, what makes anyone think they will be this bad next year? They have a better history of success with the current roster. The past 10 years (recent history to current players) the Twins have been very successful. Average of 90 or so wins, been to the playoffs 6 times, the ALCS once. There are not many more teams that have had better and many more with way worse. That's not to say we should be happy with "just making the playoffs".

I am all for being upset that the Twins in past seasons continually fell apart in the playoffs. I am all for a call to arms to send the Twins brass a message. But with this season as the main focus: no. If the season ticket waiting list is as long as they say and we are still in the TF honeymoon phase, is it realistic that a mass drop of ST will have an effect? Especially if (like many on here say) the Twins are only out for a buck? There are 3000+ in line, you and your pouty lip are currently replaceable to them. You would be way better off keeping your tickets to some degree and getting those same number of people to write an awful lot of angry letters or something. It will probably have the same effect and if the Twins are successful next season you can at least lie and say you had hope for the team next year.

A lot of the reaction on this site is just knee jerk reaction and people just need to calm down.

Posted on August 28, 2011 at 8:36 PM by Jared Highlight this comment 34

thanks, Jared, I was there today and it's still a great way to spend a sunday afternoon, though the weather and the win sure helped. I was also thinking it isn't so bad watching guys like Plouffe, Hughes, Valencia and speculating on how they will pan out.
Maybe we are careening from an extreme giddiness last season to the opposite extreme now.
This too shall pass.

Posted on August 28, 2011 at 9:13 PM by robin Highlight this comment 35

I get that players are going to take time to develop. I think what I am seeing here, is that if we are going to field a team with those likes, the product on the field is not meeting up to the cost of admission.

Souhan who has been the biggest critic of late has confidence that Mauer and Morneau will come back strong (they better, because there isn't much we can do) and that Kubel may be back, and that the Twins need to retain Nathan, as his off field and clubhouse experience will help bring some stability to a likely inexperienced bullpen.

Souhan caught Rosen off guard tonight, by referring to Nishi as not a (paraphrasing) "baseball player...well, an American style baseball player" Rosen asked back, what do you mean? Souhan, "Twins made a big mistake."

I am not about to write Nishi off, I will give him until June next year.

Posted on August 28, 2011 at 11:29 PM by TK Highlight this comment 36

I went to the game Saturday with my family. I saw the probable Cy Young winner collect his 20th of the season. Visited with a fan from Detroit and helped him figure out who all the unfamiliar names were in the Twins' lineup. Saw the Twins be competitive for the first time in a week with one of the AAA call-ups hitting a homer and a double. Met friends after the game at an outdoor patio within sight of the ballpark. In short, I had a good time despite the loss. Talk of boycotting the Twins until the front office makes the team better is just plain crazy. And even if, as some have suggested, the only thing the front office cares about is money, the front office also knows that the way to generate fan interest, i.e. money, is to put a good team on the field. They know as well as we do they didn't do that this year.

Posted on August 29, 2011 at 07:50 AM by terry Highlight this comment 37

I have tickets to one more game this year, on the 7th against the White Sox. But I might have to buy tickets to one of the Cleveland games, just so I can give Jim Thome one more ovation.

Posted on August 29, 2011 at 08:34 AM by F_T_K Highlight this comment 38

Who the hell built the Rangers' ballpark in Arlington?
I certainly hope it wasn't Mortenson.

Clicky

Posted on August 29, 2011 at 08:39 AM by luke Highlight this comment 39

All of you complaining about how the Twins are only out to maximize their revenues, don't care about STHs, etc., well... I got an email offering a 20% discount at the Majestic Clubhouse store at TF. That's an STH perk that's in addition to a similar deal for everyone later in September.

So, clearly, you spoke, and the team listened. They're truly are all about improving the value and quality of the fan experience...

Posted on August 29, 2011 at 10:24 AM by br Highlight this comment 40

3 games for me left this year! Will I be able to improve on my 1-11 mark so far this year? Doubtful. I supppse we go back to the 1 run offense tonight? The winds of change soon to be blowing at TF this off season one can only hope!

Posted on August 29, 2011 at 11:46 AM by TwinkFan Highlight this comment 41

Is Mauer now not playing at home in order to avoid boos? Is it not interesting that even he, and the team itself, is beginning to acknowlege that an image problem exists? Or that the team has announced that Spring Training will be punched out an additional three days before games begin in order to more properly prepare for play? The first step in addressing a problem is admitting you have one - and these recent steps speak volumes.

Has anyone else taken note of the number of players who almost immediately blossom and flourish once they depart the Twins organization? Is this some sort of really weird coincidence or perhaps a matter of their finding far better care, instruction, and training elsewhere (not to mention atmosphere)? Is it possible that the baseball end of the Twins organization is just flat overmatched and needs revampment? What other baseball club would hire a SS based on a highlights video? What other teams allow their manager to openly play favorites while throwing up and coming young players under the bus? How is pitching to contact working out? Or insisting that natural talent hit the other way?

And br --- I really hope that was your idea of some sort of sour, sarcastic joke. I don't want to think that anyone posting here could be as stupid as that comment if not.

Posted on August 29, 2011 at 1:19 PM by Ben Highlight this comment 42

Well I see Gardy has added 3 days to spring training to help the boys learn the cutoff plays and learn to catch the ball. Pitch to contact works for teams that know how to catch the ball. Something this team lacks! What are we #1 in errors this year? And General Soreness #7 vows he will be back better than ever next spring! Ohh boy!

Posted on August 29, 2011 at 2:03 PM by TwinkFan Highlight this comment 43

Over at the Ballpark Authority website, they have a survey wanting public input on the design guidelines for The Interchange around Target Field. Check it out. Click my name for the link.

Posted on August 29, 2011 at 2:55 PM by Jeff Highlight this comment 44

Ben:
People don't read Jonathan Swift anymore because they can't tell sarcasm without a minimum of 3 emoticons being used.

Of course, good sarcasm travels in multiple directions.

Posted on August 29, 2011 at 3:47 PM by br Highlight this comment 45

Has any team in the history of baseball given up as many runs on 45 foot hits as the Twins have this year? In the meantime, the Red Wings' hitters show again why they lost almost 100 games last year. As to the so-called regulars, Lou Gehrig continues to spin in his grave.

Posted on August 29, 2011 at 9:08 PM by terry Highlight this comment 46

Nish's non-tag because he was scared of cleats for what should've been an easy out just has to make Bill swell with pride. Get this imposter back to Japan. I think Bill may have gotten into a bidding war with himself over Nish's rights.

Posted on August 29, 2011 at 9:12 PM by twinswschamps2011 Highlight this comment 47

The first thing out of DickBert's mouth at the top of the broadcast tonight was about the Twins " --- bringing their spoiler act to Chicago ---". So, the Twins play six or seven absolutely miserable games in a row and then finally win one and that makes them spoilers??? Now, I know these guys are paid to be homers to the point even of being weasels - but, are they also required to insult our intellignce?

Posted on August 29, 2011 at 10:25 PM by Ben Highlight this comment 48

Say what you will about Hawk, but I much prefer his bluntness, even when it's partisan. If a team sucks, no one can BS me into thinking that it doesn't.

I have great respect for Dick Bremer, and consider him to be very good at his job, but that kind of crap, unless it's done tongue-in-cheek, really would bug me -- if I could watch it, that is.

I hear Hawk call games all the time now, and in some ways know the Chicago teams better than I know the Twins, which is wrong on so many levels.

Posted on August 30, 2011 at 12:09 AM by Rick 49

I guess it's a good thing there's an "off" switch or a volume control feature on the remote, huh?

Posted on August 30, 2011 at 01:59 AM by Winona Mike Highlight this comment 50

Gardy calls out Valencia yet again. Offense scores zero runs. Nishi forgets that tags are required on non-force plays. Sox runners tag and take second on lazy flies to mid center. Twins "hitters" bunt in eighth down two with runners on. M & M boys on bench eating sunflower seeds and talking endorsement deals. Yeah, pick on Valencia.

Posted on August 30, 2011 at 07:28 AM by Ben Highlight this comment 51

Rick how are you catching the hawk play by play?. The Hawk is a train wreck so bad it's enjoyable! The Bert and Ernie fluff and stuff gets old after awhile. Maybe Gardy should move up Spring Training a couple of months instead of just 3 days. Is the Hawk ripping on the M & M boys and calling them out for being panzy asses? Can we just give Nishy 2 mil to go away and admit this was a huge mistake? be interesting to see what the Japanese press are writting about this guy. What a mistake they made on this bufoon! Way to go Billy!

Posted on August 30, 2011 at 08:39 AM by TwinkFan Highlight this comment 52

Watched the higlights with the Hawk call on Mlb.com. Danny boy muffs the grounder and Nishy just looks at the ball while Alexia scored from 2nd base! You just can't make that stuff up! Danny boy most of the time thinks he is the real deal. A huge step back this year. I can see how he drives the mgr crazy. Must be that U of Miami full of himself attidude.

Posted on August 30, 2011 at 10:59 AM by TwinkFan Highlight this comment 53

Well, at least I have the State Fair to look forward to 3 times later this week.

Posted on August 30, 2011 at 11:09 AM by tk Highlight this comment 54

I assume Rick catches the Hawk on Chicago's Superstation WGN. I used to love watching TBS for Braves games and WGN for Cubs/White Sox games before the advent of super-mega get every channel imaginable...

The Twins are playing for a good draft pick in 2012 now. The more losing the better.

Posted on August 30, 2011 at 11:12 AM by Max Highlight this comment 55

My understanding is that they black out all the WGN games if playing the twins? Was the game on WGN last night? They only do about 20 games a year as it is now. Even the cubs are not on that much anymore. Yep the days of Cubs and Braves on everyday are long ovaaaa as the Hawk would say!

Posted on August 30, 2011 at 11:20 AM by TwinkFan Highlight this comment 56

Danny should just concentrate on playing baseball. He is always trying to look cool - he's always checking to see if he's being shown on the big scoreboard. Always making sure he has the right number of buttons open on the top of his jersey....Mr Hollywood (or so he thinks.)

Posted on August 30, 2011 at 12:07 PM by Go Go Twins Highlight this comment 57

^Carlos, is that you?

Posted on August 30, 2011 at 12:32 PM by tk Highlight this comment 58

Rick - I've noticed a few comments from you recently regarding not being able to watch the Twins. Are you taking shots at the new contract they signed?

Posted on August 30, 2011 at 12:37 PM by IowaWigman Highlight this comment 59

Rick doesn't have cable or satellite television, so he either has to see the team in person, or catch the occasional Fox Saturday game.

Posted on August 30, 2011 at 12:53 PM by F_T_K Highlight this comment 60

I see 2 or 3 games from Chicago per week on WGN. We have the "antenna replacement" level of cable, which costs about $15 per month, because otherwise we don't get much of anything here in south Minneapolis. That package just happens to also include TBS, CNN, and WGN.

As a refresher (of this), up to 1/3 of Twins fans may not have FSN. Such fans only see the Twins on TV when they are the Fox Saturday game (about once a month).

Posted on August 30, 2011 at 1:14 PM by Rick 61

Rick - I get the Sunday thing but the rest of the week remains unchanged from prior years no?

Posted on August 30, 2011 at 1:19 PM by IowaWigman Highlight this comment 62

IowaWigman,

Yes, but just the exclusivity part of it, which effectively eliminates the equivalent of TV "cheap seats".

Posted on August 30, 2011 at 1:20 PM by Rick 63

Correct. The Sunday thing was a lifeline for me (and others) which is now gone.

If the Twins are going to suck for any length of time, they will regret the exclusivity part because it alienates a lot of casual fans, as well as fans who are priced out in other ways.

Posted on August 30, 2011 at 1:22 PM by Rick 64

tk - advice: don't go to the Twins booth at the State Fair. I went over there this year and was sorry I did. I was expecting it to be a lot more - quite disappointed.

Some season ticket info, the inflatable TF mockup and lots of clothing (clearance from TwinsFest?) is about all there is.

Posted on August 30, 2011 at 1:42 PM by luke Highlight this comment 65

I think they did you a favor this year by eliminating the Sunday games :-)

Posted on August 30, 2011 at 5:53 PM by IowaWigman Highlight this comment 66

^^My dad called me and told me he wished they would not have added the 20 or so games to the package, as he is now forced to (passionate fan) continue watching this disaster continue to unfold when he doesn't attend a game.

Posted on August 30, 2011 at 5:57 PM by tk Highlight this comment 67

My god!! Morneau injured again! Fire Billy Smith!! Fire Gardy!! Fire the entire training staff! Get some people in who can teach these wimps how to avoid injuries!! "Bad luck" and "coincidence" get's old! Time clean house everywhere!!

Posted on August 30, 2011 at 6:21 PM by Injured wimps Highlight this comment 68

Maybe Valencia should go on the DL like everybody else then Gardy won't rip him. Lost a lot of respect in Gardy for all the crap he has pulled this year.

Posted on August 30, 2011 at 7:39 PM by bmjundt Highlight this comment 69

Twins. Corn maze. Brooklyn Park. Linky. That is all.

Posted on August 30, 2011 at 8:26 PM by Jared Highlight this comment 70

How many double play grounders do the pitchers have to induce before they actually turn a double play ... or even get a single out?

Posted on August 30, 2011 at 8:50 PM by terry Highlight this comment 71

I hate to say it, but is it possible Justin Morneau has played his last game as a Minnesota Twin, or even perhaps, the final game of his career?

He is experiencing minor concussion symptoms and that is never a good sign considering what just happened last year.

I hope he has not played his final game, but he also has a one year old daughter and a wife at home. All we can do is hope for the best.

Posted on August 30, 2011 at 9:53 PM by Mike Highlight this comment 72

Nice of Gardy to bench one of the players who WANTS to play and has did a pretty decent job..So Hughes makes 2 costly errors...

Posted on August 30, 2011 at 9:54 PM by Steve Highlight this comment 73

To quote Bremer, the WSox completed an "impresive come-from-behind win."

That game was anything but impressive. The Twins pitching staff beams 3, a couple costly errors, and an inability to hold a 3-run lead.

The only thing impressive is that the WSox didn't lose any players from the errant of Twins throws.

Posted on August 30, 2011 at 10:19 PM by tk Highlight this comment 74

OK, I'm back. What did I miss?

Posted on August 30, 2011 at 10:52 PM by The Truth Hurts Highlight this comment 75

TTH: Luke...

Posted on August 30, 2011 at 11:12 PM by Max Highlight this comment 76

No call out on Cuddy?

Posted on August 31, 2011 at 12:46 AM by tk Highlight this comment 77

Welcome back TTH. Long time no see...

Posted on August 31, 2011 at 08:27 AM by luke Highlight this comment 78

Gardy not about to throw Cuddy under the bus! Nice throwing error, poor base running and a terrible at bat in the 7th. Please do not break the bank for this guy. If he won't take 2 years at $16mil let him walk. Looks like some long rebuilding years ahead for our boys. Fire Smith should be job #1.

Posted on August 31, 2011 at 10:17 AM by TwinkFan Highlight this comment 79

I'm generally not in the "fire people to solve problems" camp.

But Bill Smith? I could be convinced.

Posted on August 31, 2011 at 10:24 AM by Rick 80

Perhaps a swap of GM's with the Whitties? Williams for Smith? LOL!

Posted on August 31, 2011 at 11:09 AM by TwinkFan Highlight this comment 81

Name Just ONE GOOD move that Billy Smith has made as GM? I bet you can't name one.

Posted on August 31, 2011 at 12:18 PM by Todd Highlight this comment 82

The fact that Rick could be convinced pretty much clinches it - BS needs to be replaced by someone with a more comprehensive and complete knowlege of what it takes to construct and nurture a competitive professional baseball team. This is my way of saying that the guy is a fool, in way over his head, and shoud be turned loose before he utterly destroys the Twins as a viable MLB entity.

Gardy and his minions (pitching, hitting, training for sure) need to have their parameters and proceedures closely scrutinized as well, at minimum. It is clear something rotten has either worked it's way into the on-field management or was there all along and has merely manisfested itself lately.

We are starting to hear DickBert mumble about injuries in a broad sense on a regular basis - this is the beginning of the "All our problems this year are due to injuries" spin campaign by the usual weasels. Don't fall for it! The issues go far beyond injuries and were predicted by most of the more astute observers before the season even began. Glaring holes in the middle infield, bullpen, starting pitching, and power hitting areas were well noticed and documented. The ineptness of training and minor league instruction systems was not as well known but have become painfully obvious - injuries factor in here but to a much less degree than we are going to hear in the coming weeks.

This team is in need of a soup to nuts overhaul.

Posted on August 31, 2011 at 12:30 PM by Ben Highlight this comment 83

The one and only good move I can think of is the JJ Hardy for Carlos Gomez trade in November 2009....unfortunately, Smith wanted Jim Hoey so he traded JJ Hardy to Baltimore after just one season in Minnesota. The Pavano acquisition in August 2009 turned out to be a good pickup too.

Other than that, Smith has done nothing...tends to buy high and sell low. Bullpen is depleted, minor leagues are depleted of talent, no major league back-up catcher, has failed to resolve the ongoing problem with 2B/3B/SS. Failed with the Garza/Bartlett-Young trade as well as the Santana trade...again, he tends to buy high and sell low. Why wasn't Delmon traded last year when his stock was as high as its ever been? The list just goes on and on...

It's not like Rochester is any good either so it could be a while before the Twins are a good team.

Posted on August 31, 2011 at 12:39 PM by Mike Highlight this comment 84

BS gets credit for signing Thome (twice, even though this year didn't work out as well).

I'm firmly in the fire BS camp though.

Posted on August 31, 2011 at 1:37 PM by Stevie B Highlight this comment 85

The boys brought their bats today. 6-0 after one inning and 4 balls landing in the seats (2 doubles, 2 hr).

If Kubel leaves the Twins I hope he doesn't land with the W Sox. He seems to always kill the ball in their park.

Posted on August 31, 2011 at 1:38 PM by Stevie B Highlight this comment 86

Forgot it was a day game. And it's on WGN!

Yippee! I get to watch the Twins on TV! What a fine birthday surprise.

Posted on August 31, 2011 at 1:56 PM by Rick 87

Happy Birthday Rick! Hope the Twins lead holds up and they give you that bonus gift on your day.

Posted on August 31, 2011 at 2:10 PM by Stevie B Highlight this comment 88

Tom Kelly currently on am1500 reminiscing about Sparky Anderson. Kelly joking about how one of Sparky's most memorable statements to him was that he "the best thing you can do as a manager is to recognize when he has a good team and then sit up with your feet under the bench so you don't trip and hurt anyone as they go by".

Have the Twins been slouching on the bench a lot this season?

Posted on August 31, 2011 at 3:34 PM by Jared Highlight this comment 89

Huff n Puff on the mound 2 on on out runners 2nd & 3rd protecting 3 run lead bottom of the 9th!

Posted on August 31, 2011 at 3:45 PM by TwinkFan Highlight this comment 90

Wally out serving us some beers at the Famous Daves stand at the fair. No ID required.

Posted on August 31, 2011 at 3:50 PM by tk Highlight this comment 91

Come on Huff n Puff! Now 7-6!

Posted on August 31, 2011 at 3:51 PM by TwinkFan Highlight this comment 92

We sure we just don't wanna give Joe aka Huff N Puff $2mil and have him go away next year? The guy is cooked!

Posted on August 31, 2011 at 3:54 PM by TwinkFan Highlight this comment 93

Thanks Rios!

Posted on August 31, 2011 at 3:56 PM by TwinkFan Highlight this comment 94

Stone: "And for a catcher he's turning into a pretty good first baseman".
Hawk: "It don't take a Rolls Royce long to get warm".

Posted on August 31, 2011 at 4:04 PM by Ben Highlight this comment 95

The baby jesus a rolls royce?? You just can't make that stuff up! Love the Hawk!

Posted on August 31, 2011 at 4:10 PM by TwinkFan Highlight this comment 96

And like Mauer, a Rolls doesn't get used much every year...I guess unless you are super wealthy then you use it every day? I don't know, the idea started off well.

Posted on August 31, 2011 at 4:18 PM by Jared Highlight this comment 97

No offense meant to Dicknbert, but it was a great pleasure to watch that game with the Chicago crew calling it. Outstanding.

And it was fun to see their hopes raised -- and dashed!

Posted on August 31, 2011 at 4:19 PM by Rick 98

Rick nuthing beats the Hawk trying to get his boys a win. Put Bert and Erie to shame! Like a train wreck it's hard not to watch!

Posted on August 31, 2011 at 4:23 PM by TwinkFan Highlight this comment 99

But actually seeing the game played reminds me again of how much a catcher affects the pitching staff's performance.

In other words, the cost of Butera may very well have been contention in 2011.

Posted on August 31, 2011 at 4:24 PM by Rick 100

Train wreck? Not so much. It was a thing of beauty.

There aren't many announcers who so fully embody the spirit of the franchise as Hawk does: sparse and relevant commentary, attitude, occasional cheering (when warranted), respect and contempt as appropriate to players on both sides, an underlying assumption that the viewer knows and loves the game. No condescension.

At the conclusion, going into commercial:

"The Sox lose this one and a game to Detroit who beat the Royals. We'll be back."

Poetry? You could make a case.

Posted on August 31, 2011 at 5:00 PM by Rick 101

I agree, Rick. I was tuned in to WGN, too.

Posted on August 31, 2011 at 5:29 PM by luke Highlight this comment 102

Where are Bartlett & Garza today?

Posted on August 31, 2011 at 8:05 PM by Winona Mike Highlight this comment 103

Another classless Twins' front office move regarding Joe Nathan...coming to him 30 minutes before the deadline as to whether or not Joe would want to exercise his trade veto rights? The quote by Joe says it all, just like the quotes from JJ Hardy last week regarding the rehab on his wrist in Baltimore compared to Minnesota.

"The tough part was the timing," Nathan said. "They came to me with 30 minutes left until the deadline."

Posted on August 31, 2011 at 10:42 PM by Mike Highlight this comment 104

Todd-

He was able to sign Jim Thome for next to nothing. I know it wasn't Jim Thome in his prime, but last year it was really fun to watch him play. Don't get me wrong I would like to see Smith go, along with Anderson and Vavra, but you asked for one good move he made.

Posted on September 1, 2011 at 02:25 AM by Duffman Highlight this comment 105

Hindsight is always 20/20. Anyone can be a brilliant GM after the fact. I've read people on this page post things like, "The Twins need to pick up a couple of shut-down, number 1 starters." Agreed; but what do you give up for those kind of guys? What do you offer to free agent pitchers who play only every fifth day? The solutions are always easy when you can just wave a magic wand.

Posted on September 1, 2011 at 05:39 AM by Winona Mike Highlight this comment 106

It seems like the Twins have had an inordinate number of games this year in which they have scored a bunch of runs early and then the offense has just shut down completely for the last seven or eight innings, e.g. yesterday afternoon. Maybe that hasn't happened any more frequently than in other years, but it sure seems like it has.

Posted on September 1, 2011 at 07:28 AM by terry Highlight this comment 107

What should the Twins do with Nathan this offseason? Let him walk? They owe him a $2M buyout. I can't see them exercising his $12.5M option. Absent an abundance of internal late inning relief options, I'd be inclined to try to negotiate a one-year deal in the $7M range, maybe with a joint player/team option. Maybe with some bonuses (All-Star appearance, etc.). He's pitched fairly well the last month or so. I'd be ok building the bullpen around him and Perkins.

Thoughts?

Posted on September 1, 2011 at 09:38 AM by br Highlight this comment 108

I would buy him out for $2mil. Maybe offer him 1 yr at $5 mil. Nathan looks like he is about to have a nervous breakdown at anytime on the mound with all the nervous ticks and all. Me thinks Nathan does not like the preassure and he is old in the tooth and tommy john etc etc etc. Don't break the bank on this guy or Cuddy. Looks like we are in full rebuilding mode anyways! Time to trim the fat and cut that payroll down to about $80 mil or so. Twins want to sell more concessions? Lower the prices. Simple supply and demand.

Posted on September 1, 2011 at 10:32 AM by TwinkFan Highlight this comment 109

Twins want to sell more concessions, they should start selling the Holiday dogs and such. Huh? Huh? Amiright or amiright?

Posted on September 1, 2011 at 11:11 AM by Jared Highlight this comment 110

br - ask that question the morning after Nathan goes 1-2-3 on 11 pitches and you might get different answers. Many of the posts on this board tend to follow whatever direction the wind is blowing. (and the wind has been blowing in most of the season)

Posted on September 1, 2011 at 11:11 AM by clublevelfan Highlight this comment 111

"Looks like we are in full rebuilding mode anyways!"
Where do you see evidence of that?

"Twins want to sell more concessions? Lower the prices."
This is another area where I think they are really missing the boat.

Posted on September 1, 2011 at 12:12 PM by Ben Highlight this comment 112

Who says the cupboard is bare? We've got Kyle Gibson just around the corne....

Posted on September 1, 2011 at 1:18 PM by The Truth Hurts Highlight this comment 113

We will see Gibson in spring of 2013 after his tommy john suregery. Rebuilding and salary purge years dead ahead. Jared nothing beats the holiday dogs and or brats for taste and value. $5.00 beers would be nice. Might prevent me from smuggling in all that rum!

Posted on September 1, 2011 at 1:59 PM by TwinkFan Highlight this comment 114

Next game monday afternoon! Got tickets for the night game rainout also. Ohh boy! Will I be 1-13 at the end of the day at TF? Mercy! May have to stumble to Sneaky Petes between games.

Posted on September 1, 2011 at 2:06 PM by TwinkFan Highlight this comment 115

Today the TwinsGeek wrote about reasons why Cuddyer might have trouble finding another team. It's contingent on whether he looks to the rankings like a First Baseman or an Outfielder.

Implicit in this is that the Twins have a great deal of control now over how much leverage Cuddyer will have (by deciding which position will be used to evaluate him). If they want him back, they'll play him in the outfield as much as possible, where he's more likely to become a Type A free agent, and thus less attractive to other teams.

If, on the other hand, they're ready to be done with him, they can keep him at First Base, where he's likely to evaluate as a Type B free agent, requiring other teams to give up much less if they decide to sign him.

My prediction, which agrees with Bonnes, is that the Twins will play him in the outfield as much as possible, knowing that he wants to stay a Twin (leverage), and will be evaluated as a Type A free agent (further leverage). Thus, there is hope that whatever deal he signs with the Twins would not be a blockbuster.

Things are a little less clear with Kubel, but it's reasonable to think that the Twins want him back and will do whatever it takes to get him into the Type A category. Of the two, however, it now looks like he's the more likely to sign with somebody else.

Nathan doesn't rank as either Type A or B right now, meaning teams won't be as likely to shy away. He'll still be a roll of the dice for anybody. Even though he's been looking more and more like his old self, that's a trend which is hardly guaranteed to continue. His value might be more in leadership than his actual arm. And, yes, some teams do pay for that.

It's hard to imagine the Twins picking up his option, so the buyout is pretty much a shoe-in at this point. The question then is whether they value his leadership enough to bid on him (at a reduced price) for another year.

Based on the things we hear about him from the Twins, and the serious problems wrought this year by high turnover in the bullpen, it's pretty easy to imagine the Twins offering him something, while also being hard to imagine him being somebody else's setup man for that same amount of money.

So, my official predictions:

Cuddyer returns.
Kubel walks.
Nathan returns.

(Remember, I'm not saying what I would do, but trying to predict what the Twins will do.)

Would the Twins be crazy to make these moves? I'm sure some would think so. I know some want them to let all three of these guys walk.

But these are standard "Twins way" predictions, consistent (I think) with history. They certainly depend as much on the market as they do on what the Twins want.

The problem may be that these are all non-aggressive moves, which means they will need to be coupled with some much more aggressive moves or the team has little chance of improving.

They will need a DH (Thome? Adam Dunn? could be cheap and may only need a serious change of scenery), a better back-up catcher (Varitek?), at least one high-profile starter (good luck with that), one or two swapped out bullpen parts, and a fix for the morass in the middle infield (release or demote Nishi, sure, but then what?).

Oh, boy. Contention may very well be more than a year away. (If you're not "contending" then you must be "rebuilding", right?)

Posted on September 1, 2011 at 2:14 PM by Rick 116

A Legends Club member forwarded me this little tidbit:

Dear Legends Club member,

We are delighted to announce our first ever private beer tasting in the 573 Club – exclusively for Twins Legends Club members and guests.

On Wednesday, September 7th, we will be offering an assortment of premium Craft Beers from 6 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. Included are:

Lucky Bucket Pre-Prohibition Lager from Nebraska
Lucky Bucket IPA from Nebraska
Tommyknocker Jack Wacker Wheat from Colorado
Marten's Belgian Pils from Belgium

Please join us in the 573 Club on September 7th!

Your Twins Ticket Sales and Service Team

Can't hurt to lubricate the potentially-disgruntled, I suppose.

Posted on September 1, 2011 at 2:45 PM by Rick 117

Rick free beer for the rest of the season might help some of us forget this year!

Posted on September 1, 2011 at 3:00 PM by TwinkFan Highlight this comment 118

I think you might be able to get Kubel the cheapest. That would be the only one they should take back. Unless they wanna overpay for Cuddy and Huff n Puff! Would Nishy take $2 mil buyout and a slap on the back to head back to Japan? Is Morneau done forever? Infield next year Danny Boy at 3rd SS Plouffe, 2nd Base Lexy, 1st Baby Jesus. OF Span, Revere, kubel.. Need a catcher and 2 starting pitchers and a new bullpen.

Posted on September 1, 2011 at 3:09 PM by TwinkFan Highlight this comment 119

Anyone know who the potential free agents are for "high profile starting pitchers?" I have no idea who will be out there this offseason.

Posted on September 1, 2011 at 3:12 PM by Stevie B Highlight this comment 120

By league, ordered by current (approximate) ranking:

AL
A - C. J. Wilson (Rangers)
B - Mark Buerhle (White Sox)
B - Bruce Chen (Royals)
B - Freddy Garcia (Yankees)
Joel Piniero (Angels)
Rich Harden (A's)
Jeff Francis (Royals)
Brad Penny (Detroit)
Tim Wakefield (Boston)

NL
B - Hiroki Huroda (Dodgers)
B - Edwin Jackson (Cardinals)
Livan Hernandez (Nationals)
Chris Young (Mets)
Javier Vazquez (Marlins)
Vincent Padilla (Dodgers)
Rodrigo Lopez (Cubs)
Jason Marquis (D'backs)
Chien-Ming Wang (Nationals)
Kevin Millwood (Rockies)
Dontrelle Willis (Reds)

Posted on September 1, 2011 at 3:35 PM by Rick 121

Not really any names that jump out as the kind of pitcher the Twins really need to anchor the staff. If they could somehow get Buerhle and CJ Wilson it would give them a decent duo though. Don't see that happening.

Posted on September 1, 2011 at 3:39 PM by Stevie B Highlight this comment 122

"We are delighted to announce our first ever private beer tasting in the 573 Club – exclusively for Twins Legends Club members and guests."

Cost?

Posted on September 1, 2011 at 3:41 PM by Ben Highlight this comment 123

The Twins are probably hosting the beer tasting to get the LC members hammered before the Twins tell them they're going to raise the "membership" (PSL) fee.

Posted on September 1, 2011 at 5:26 PM by luke Highlight this comment 124

Luke the Legends Clubs PSL was a 1 time payment.

Rick: It should be noted on your Free Agent rankings that the Twins by virtue of finishing in the lower half of baseball would NOT have to relinquich their 1st round pick in 2012 should they decide to sign a Type A free agent (highly unlikely as we all know). Instead any team drafting 1-15 gives up their 2nd round pick in exchange for signing a Type A. This was designed to help promote league parity and competitive balance...

Posted on September 1, 2011 at 6:55 PM by Max Highlight this comment 125

There is nothing preventing the twins from signing cudyer, or kubel. There is no salary cap in baseball. It's cheapness is the only thing stoping them. The giant video board with the dancing bear must be distracting people from noticing they are printing money.

And Joe Mauer needs to fire Kent herbek as his personal trainer

Posted on September 1, 2011 at 7:39 PM by Jlh Highlight this comment 126

*relinquish*

Posted on September 1, 2011 at 8:00 PM by Max Highlight this comment 127

I do not want to see Adam Dunn anywhere near Target Field. He would actually lower the team BA. Was that a serious thought?

Posted on September 1, 2011 at 9:55 PM by twinswschamps2117 Highlight this comment 128

Re Twins-Cuddy, he probably knows he is worshipped in the Twin Cities and really isn't quite as good as his numbers indicate, and the Twins aren't really thrilled at the prospect of another multi-year with him, but know that they can't get much better for the money. It's a relationship of convenience for both parties. Kubel makes a little more sense in that he is cheaper, younger, and seems to like it here. Nathan...no way in hell he's back. $2 million, thanks for the memories, and don't let the door hit you in the ass. I say Cuddy and Kubel are back, Nathan is out...to make it look like Bill is cleaning some house. He will be replaced by some worthless arm. How in the hell do you end up with a $2 million buyout for a pitcher of that age?

Staring at my 2012 payment due...with heavy heart...I want to, but I know better.

Posted on September 1, 2011 at 10:02 PM by twinswschamps2117 Highlight this comment 129

I agree with you, Rick, for the most part. (I had the same sort of take as Bonnes on Cuddy's Elias/free agent status, and posted it on Gleeman's site BEFORE the Bonnes article!) I do think there's room on the team for Cuddy and Kubel, with Thome and Young gone, and I think the Twins will make a legit effort to keep Kubel.

Middle infield is a mess, but teh Strib today suggest that they still "believe" in Nishy. Gulp. I think they stand relatively pat there, and go into 2012 with Nishy/Plouffe/Hughes/Casilla etc all vying for spots. Advisable? No, but those are the tea leaves, I'm afraid.

And I'd actually be ok with that if they found a way to trade for a legit #1 starter and signed 1 good and a couple of decent veteran bullpen arms. But that's really wishcasting...

Posted on September 2, 2011 at 11:25 AM by br Highlight this comment 130

A year ago would you have wished to trade teams and farm systems with the Royals? That's enough for me to wish Bill Smith a speedy adieu.

Posted on September 2, 2011 at 4:04 PM by The Truth Hurts Highlight this comment 131

Weaver gone to a funeral. Twins will be making another Cy Young candidate out of whoever the Angels send in - watch for Gardy to tip his cap.

Posted on September 2, 2011 at 4:55 PM by Ben Highlight this comment 132

China boy (Mauer) is sick, what else is going to happen to this team?

Posted on September 2, 2011 at 9:02 PM by bmjundt Highlight this comment 133

Who is the old guy in the dugout that wears "boss" hat?

Posted on September 2, 2011 at 9:21 PM by Sara Highlight this comment 134

Sara,

It is: Wayne "Big Fella" Hattaway

Equipment Manager/Clubhouse Attendant and has been up with the Twins since 1961 and on the bench since 2002.

Posted on September 2, 2011 at 9:30 PM by tk Highlight this comment 135

Thankyou very much!!

Posted on September 2, 2011 at 9:33 PM by Sara Highlight this comment 136

I'm monitoring the game from the State Fair. What was the "on field delay" in the first inning?

Posted on September 2, 2011 at 9:40 PM by Rick 137

I wonder if Hattaway wears the BOSS hat when the Twins play the Yankees. If so, It must be a cursed hat and it should be disposed of.

Posted on September 2, 2011 at 11:16 PM by TK Highlight this comment 138

Fun game to watch - and enjoyable. Maybe the Twins ought to tell M & M, etc. to take the rest of the season off and just play the heck out of the AAA and AA guys.

Posted on September 3, 2011 at 01:14 AM by Ben Highlight this comment 139

I wish I had this much sick leave...

Posted on September 3, 2011 at 8:46 PM by TK Highlight this comment 140

Wow, Duensing out, I would say they shut him down for the season if he is injured. Cuddy to start Tuesday?

Posted on September 3, 2011 at 8:56 PM by TK Highlight this comment 141

Nice job by the bullpen tonight. Dumatrit really stinks

Posted on September 3, 2011 at 10:24 PM by twinkfan Highlight this comment 142

Turned in to the WCCO Sports cast.

Liz and Dennis poked at Mauer tonight by telling Max, "Liz and I have been battling an upper respiratory infection, but we showed up tonight." Max responds, "You two are gamers."

Posted on September 3, 2011 at 10:35 PM by TK Highlight this comment 143

Had the pre-game on as background noise today. When they were selecting players, I thought they said they were playing "pick the sick"...

Posted on September 4, 2011 at 3:59 PM by F_T_K Highlight this comment 144

Ya gotta give 'em credit for finding new and colorful ways to be entertaining while losing. At the Major League level you can't remember the number of outs? I thought Milton Bradley had the exclusive franchise on that boner.

Posted on September 4, 2011 at 5:32 PM by terry Highlight this comment 145

It's really sad - what is the saddest is that "The Twins Way" used to mean something, but has now become a sour joke.

Posted on September 5, 2011 at 08:48 AM by Ben Highlight this comment 146

Well now 1-14 at Target Field this year. Not even going to bother going to the 2nd game tonight. The F-Troops gave it all they could! Crowd never got into it. Suprised to see it that full this afternoon. Very hot sitting out in the sun. I would expect about 1/2 full tonight at best for the makeup game. Well on our way to 100 losses! Time to trim the fat. No way they should pay Cuddy or Kubel or Nathan. Set them free!

Posted on September 5, 2011 at 3:55 PM by TwinkFan Highlight this comment 147

Good Jesus, is it possible that a) the stupid Royals might actually finish ABOVE the Twins in the final standings this year? Not sure if that's ever happened before, and b) the Twins almost exactly twenty years later will tie or (gag) best their worst ever record of 60-102?? [Insert scream here]

Posted on September 5, 2011 at 6:04 PM by luke Highlight this comment 148

For decades the Cubs promoted Wrigley Field as much as the team. Bold letters atop the scorecards read "Chicago Cubs Wrigley Field". It's good marketing when you have a good ballpark. The Twins have a good ballpark; I just hope they understand that having a good ballpark and having a good team are not mutually exclusive as they were for so many years on the north side of Chicago.

Posted on September 5, 2011 at 7:51 PM by terry Highlight this comment 149

On tonight's broadcast, Dick made mention to the removal of the trees and would like to have them back.

Posted on September 5, 2011 at 7:56 PM by tk Highlight this comment 150

Amazing: no one here has bitched about the fact that Stewart has a perfect game against us so far, headed to the top of the 8th.

Posted on September 5, 2011 at 9:06 PM by luke Highlight this comment 151

Nice 2 game effort by the F troops today. So close to 100 losses you can taste it. Glad I skipped the nightcap as the boyz had a ton more hits in the day game. Course we battled our tails off.

Posted on September 5, 2011 at 9:58 PM by twinkfan Highlight this comment 152

Luke,
The Royals have finished above the Twins numerous times in the standings in past years. Perhaps you may recall they won a World Series in 1985, and made a few playoff appearances in years previous to that.

Posted on September 5, 2011 at 10:30 PM by Winona Mike Highlight this comment 153

Winona - that was a little tongue-in-cheek on my part. I remember the Royals' 1985 run very well. KC was down 3-1 in both the ALCS and WS. The WS win for the Royals might be credited by some Cardinals fans to Don Denkinger and his botched call in Game 6.

I was mostly referring to the last several years, as the Twins have been on the top in the Central and you can set your watch by KC losing 90+ games a season.

I had to do some research on perfect games against The Boys last night. I found that Catfish Hunter did it to us in 1968 and David Wells did it to us in 1998 (forgot that one). I got a little nervous though finding that both games were 4-0 decisions in favor of Oakland and NY Yankees respectively; and that was the score last night until Danny Valencia's hit in the 8th.

Part of me really wanted to see that perfect game from Zach Stewart though...

Posted on September 6, 2011 at 09:41 AM by luke Highlight this comment 154

Heading out to see the last-place Twins tomorrow night. I wonder what sort of sign I could bring into Target Field...

How about:
"1991: Worst to First!
2011: First to Worst!"

/sigh/

Posted on September 6, 2011 at 09:48 AM by F_T_K Highlight this comment 155

And I just checked stubhub, there are tickets for tonight and tomorrow starting at less than $2 each. That's just sad...

Posted on September 6, 2011 at 09:53 AM by F_T_K Highlight this comment 156

Nearly 4,000 tix on Stub as I write - starting at 49 CENTS!!!!! Also, lots of good deals in the Legend areas.

Posted on September 6, 2011 at 11:47 AM by Ben Highlight this comment 157

I'll sell mine for 48 cents - for TWO tickets.

I am more than a little disappointed that until now some are surprised that the season is ending the way it is. Me and others, as the season began, noted the glaring inadequacies of this roster. I said this team would be lucky to get out of Toronto and then the Yankees with more than one win. We're not prophets: It was just that noticeable.

We like to blame Bill Smith -- Hell, I like to blame B.S. -- but the reality is that it permeates deeper than Bill. It's the culture of the Minnesota Twins. When they win, it's called "The Twins Way." But when they don't, then a spade should be called a spade. This team is never built to win it all. I'd even argue that for 1987 and 1991. All it needs to be profitable is to be competitive; thankfully for the Twins, it plays in a division where that is possible, and their philosophy is not so glaring.

The sad part is there is no solution other than new ownership, IMHO. The Twins' model of "just be competitive enough" is profitable, so it won't change. The fan base this offseason will once again be forced to settle for this year's Nishioka, Rondell White, Tony Batista (remember that stellar move?), J. J. Hardy ... the list goes on forever. We rebuild with spare parts, a wing and a prayer. We can't trade for star talent because we have none to give up. No free agent would voluntarily sign here. When you have no poker chips, you can't even come to the table to play.

What team -- other than this one -- would get one put over on them by THEMSELVES? (Joe Mauer signing) Other teams don't have to screw over the Twins because they can just do it to themselves.

The ineptitude isn't a fluke. You reap what you sow -- so Larry DiVito better stock up on some weed killer.

Posted on September 6, 2011 at 2:19 PM by The Truth Hurts Highlight this comment 158

Speaking of Divito..what has he done around home plate?. Grass looks different color. Did he replace it? Just put the traditional checkerboard design we had for opening day last year back Larry. Don't care if the ball comes off different or not. Shezzzzz

Posted on September 6, 2011 at 2:50 PM by TwinkFan Highlight this comment 159

The biggest question then becomes "how many season ticket holders aren't renewing for 2012?"

If enough people stop giving this organization money, would that get their attention and maybe make them realize that they have to put at least a competitive team on the field?

Two games ahead of the Orioles for the worst record in the American League. Put that on a pennant and fly it over the left field bleachers...

Posted on September 6, 2011 at 2:55 PM by F_T_K Highlight this comment 160

F_T_K- for your sign, how about just: /sigh/

TwinkFan - The groundscrew replaced a large segment of turf behind home plate and some select locations around the field a couple weeks ago. I remember seeing a couple TwitPics of the area behind the plate devoid of grass before they put the new sod in. I can't find them but here is an image after the new sod was laid... http://twitter.com/#!/TCGroundsCrew/media/slideshow?url=http%3A%2F%2Flockerz.com%2Fs%2F130475554

Posted on September 6, 2011 at 3:02 PM by Jared Highlight this comment 161

Currently lined up to draft 3rd in the 2012 MLB Entry Draft. Epic!!!

Tickets for tonight more than 2 hours before they close StubHub ticket sales:

Get in the Door: 10 cents
Legends Club: 13 dollars
Dugout Box: 18 dollars

If someone wanted to go to the game can somebody tell me why on earth you'd buy from the team directly? This is a great time to be a vulture...

Posted on September 6, 2011 at 3:06 PM by Max Highlight this comment 162

Walked in yesterday afternoon during the bottom of the 2nd inning. Guys out there with fistloads of tickets with very sad expressions on their faces. They can't even give them away now! About as popular as T wolves tickets!

Posted on September 6, 2011 at 3:09 PM by TwinkFan Highlight this comment 163

If enough people stop giving this organization money, they'll simply cut way back on their payroll and the futility will continue.

Posted on September 6, 2011 at 4:08 PM by Winona Mike Highlight this comment 164

"The sad part is there is no solution other than new ownership --- "

New ownership might be the best thing that could happen - and may well be what current ownership has in mind anyway. Imagine ownership that gave a rat's ass about the on field product - that cared about providing value to it's fans - that truly enjoyed the game and not just the resultant profits. Imagine!

Posted on September 6, 2011 at 4:56 PM by Ben Highlight this comment 165

From a business perspective, the Twins have a gold mine. For those fans that expect a winning team, we are not in a good position. Unfortunately, the Twins have a huge market with STH that have tickets for business purposes only.

Posted on September 6, 2011 at 6:58 PM by tk Highlight this comment 166

Have any STH received their playoff ticket application yet? I am surprised the Twins did not send that out to get our $30 non-refundable deposit...

Posted on September 6, 2011 at 8:02 PM by tk Highlight this comment 167

Just walked in to the room to watch Dinkelman strike out, and I hear Bert say, "You're out of here girls." I had a really good Laugh Out Loud moment, until I realized he must have been speaking about the Circle Me Bert crowd he had in the booth.

Posted on September 6, 2011 at 8:13 PM by TK Highlight this comment 168

That's it...as hard as it is to let go of my tix, the sub $1 pricing for a White Sox game closes the deal. This team sucks, they will more than likely suck next year, and Target Field alone can't draw 'em in anymore.

Posted on September 6, 2011 at 9:03 PM by twinswschamps2060 Highlight this comment 169

One run in 3 games vs the awesome white sox cy young pitching staff? WOW

Posted on September 6, 2011 at 9:08 PM by twinkfan Highlight this comment 170

No season renewal packet here yet either. Assuming they are just waiting until they win a game before dropping them in the mail. (smiley face thingy)

Posted on September 6, 2011 at 9:13 PM by NodakBob Highlight this comment 171

Ben brings up an interesting point. The goal of any good businessman is to sell at peak value (right now in my opinion). I know there are people out there who believe that once the Pohlad's got Target Field the plan was to sell the team. I could see the team sold within the next 2-3 years.

RE: Postgame Gardy Presser

Is there anything better than hearing Robby Incmikoski ask some stupid a$$ question to Gardy in the postgame interview on FSN and seeing Ron give him the stink eye? I mean it brings a smile to my face on a nightly basis hearing some of the idiotic questions from Robby. I do wonder about some of the flak Robby must get on the team charters for his rah rah nerdy attitude. Anyone that thinks the FSN crew should ask/comment on tough questions doesn't realize they travel with the team. Dick, Bert, Robby, the Radio crew are all puppets for the club...

Posted on September 6, 2011 at 9:20 PM by Max Highlight this comment 172

No different than in decades past, really.

Posted on September 6, 2011 at 10:06 PM by Winona Mike Highlight this comment 173

Which brings a question to my mind. Could the same be said of ESPN and the Yanks/Sox/Phils?

Posted on September 6, 2011 at 10:08 PM by Winona Mike Highlight this comment 174

Our team has been officially eliminated from the playoff possibilities. Makes me wonder what the atmosphere will be tonight at the ballpark.

Oh well, we got good seats (section T), might as well enjoy them!

Posted on September 7, 2011 at 08:28 AM by F_T_K Highlight this comment 175

We should all be rooting for 100 losses! Mr Whipple aka Gardy doing everything he can to keep the boys healthy by playing the F-Troop the rest of the way. Will Mr Whipple get a call from the Commish to get some of his Charmin boy regualars back in the lineup and not lay down like a mut the rest of the year? Good thing the Tigers are not looking for any help from us.

Posted on September 7, 2011 at 09:38 AM by TwinkFan Highlight this comment 176

Got our season ticket renewal package. Nothing super new and different. They tweaked a few of the perks. They've brought back a bobblehead giveaway but it's not given to all - it's one of those "you get a chance" perks. They list some perks as "improved," but in the cas eof postseason ticket priority, that means they're making it easier for 40 game plans to get seats, harder for those with 20 game packages.

Nothing really good and innovative. Not surprising, but probably short-sighted, given the direction things are headed. They probably figure not raising ticket prices is good enough.

Posted on September 7, 2011 at 09:55 AM by br Highlight this comment 177

Robby I is impossible. He asks the most inane questions. Asking someone "how did it feel to hit that home run?" is not exactly cutting edge journalism.

Gardy sat the regulars after the division was clinched last year. They were horrible the last two weeks of the season and we all know what happened in the playoffs. Then came the Train Wreck that is known as the 2011 season. Did their implosion begin mid-September 2010 rather than April 2011?

Posted on September 7, 2011 at 09:58 AM by terry Highlight this comment 178

I don't think we need to worry about 2012 postseason ticket priority anytime soon...

Posted on September 7, 2011 at 10:10 AM by Mike Highlight this comment 179

The official box score from MLB.com for yesterday's game cites the attendance as 36,959. Is it safe to say that's the smallest "official" attendance at TF thus far? I saw lots of empty seats last night on the TV.

Posted on September 7, 2011 at 11:06 AM by luke Highlight this comment 180

Fantastic game experience last night. Shorter lines and less crowded concourses. Elbow room at the Town Ball Tavern. Stretched our legs out over the empty row in front of us. Three major-league debuts. Guys with the numbers 62, 63, 64 on their backs. Dinkelman had the best batting average in the starting lineup. Chris Parmelee's walk up music was "Pumped Up Kicks." Lots of tweets about Joe Benson's mullet. Beautiful night with a gorgeous moon. Last-place September baseball is vastly underrated.

Posted on September 7, 2011 at 12:29 PM by ClarkAddison Highlight this comment 181

Forgot to mention: best of all, two Australians in the lineup!!!!

Posted on September 7, 2011 at 12:30 PM by ClarkAddison Highlight this comment 182

Love the attitude, Clark. With the Twins officially done, I can finally join the "wait'll next year" crowd. Neither optimists nor pessimists... just fans of the game, I guess. I hope I can view our tickets for the Saturday Cleveland game in the same light... a chance to join ranks with everyone wearing the colors in having a good time at the yard. And cheering for Thome as a bonus.

Posted on September 7, 2011 at 1:36 PM by schweady Highlight this comment 183

I bet it was also nice seeing that "TC" flag flying proudly in last place high above the RF grandstand...Maybe Bill Smith can ceremoniously raise that flag at the 2012 Home Opener?

Posted on September 7, 2011 at 1:44 PM by Mike Highlight this comment 184

Clark & Schweady I agree with you. I should put in a disclaimer that anything I post within an hour of a loss should be ignored. Your last two posts have captured how I actually feel. As bad as the Twins have played, I am still sad to see the season coming to an end.

Posted on September 7, 2011 at 2:04 PM by terry Highlight this comment 185

Attendance is defined as the number of persons present. The Twins are never going to talk straight when a lie sounds better.

See if you can spot the grievously misused word in the following:

"The Twins value the support of all of our fans throughout Twins Territory. However we are especially appreciative of the support of Season Ticket Holders. In fact, it's because of this that we have invested more in Season Ticket Holder rewards and benefits than ever before - exponentially more than in past seasons - not less."

Posted on September 7, 2011 at 2:34 PM by Ben Highlight this comment 186

Ben- I am going to say..."value"

Posted on September 7, 2011 at 3:21 PM by Jared Highlight this comment 187

It seems very unlikely that the Twins are adding "exponentially" more benefits.

Math has never been their strong suit.

Posted on September 7, 2011 at 4:36 PM by Rick 188

So, Ben, are you going to re-up for next year?

Posted on September 7, 2011 at 5:35 PM by Winona Mike Highlight this comment 189

I have a lot of reading to do up above so forgive if I repeat anything, but for me I know that I would NEVER go into the dome this week with such lovely weather, school starting, and so on. Yet, it is a pleasure to sit outside and watch baseball in our park. So it is still worth it all to me. I don't expect the next generation to be so generous, but for those of us that lost 28 years.....

That said, 2 runs in four games won't do it. I understand trading Thome but the team needs something to bring us out there and that was one of them for me. There are now so many exposed holes that a .500 season next year would be great. I don't need another trophy next year, but something to root for would be great.

I always dread going back to the late 90's, or the Pirates/Royals scenario. That is when it is really tough to be a baseball fan.

Posted on September 7, 2011 at 6:54 PM by Lincster Highlight this comment 190

Dick is at it again tonight.

On a ball that barely looked like it would have hit the track, "if that ball stayed fair, Mauer would have hit the foul pole for a HR." To his credit, he did change his stance after seeing the replay.

Then he compares Mauer's down year to AJ.

AJ
BA HR RBI OBP
Regular Season .287 6 40 .326

Mauer

BA HR RBI OBP
Regular Season .286 2 29 .346

He goes on to say, "yes, Mauer has 110 less AB's, but comparing the two are not that far off."

Let's look at Salaries now,

Mauer: $23,000,000

Anthony John: $2,000,000

I will take both AJ's salary and numbers over Mauer, at least for this year.

Posted on September 7, 2011 at 7:54 PM by TK Highlight this comment 191

Dick needs to hang up the microphone. He gets so excited when a Twins player hits a ball to the outfield which isn't even close to being a HR.

Posted on September 7, 2011 at 8:27 PM by bmjundt Highlight this comment 192

Dick needs to hang up the microphone. He gets so excited when a Twins player hits a ball to the outfield which isn't even close to being a HR.

Posted on September 7, 2011 at 8:28 PM by bmjundt Highlight this comment 193

Au contraire; Dick and Bert are both doing what they're paid to do, which is try to make Twins games exciting enough that viewers will remain tuned in. Not everyone is looking for cold, clinical analysis of a game. Most who tune in are looking for entertainment, and that's what the pair are working to offer the casual fans.

Perhaps it's time to watch the games with the sound off.

Posted on September 7, 2011 at 10:34 PM by Winona Mike Highlight this comment 194

Winona ---

We have not decided yet. The pick and choose (Stubhub) option is attractive, and I am unhappy about value reduction in regard to tangibles.

Posted on September 7, 2011 at 11:59 PM by Ben Highlight this comment 195

Winona Mike,

I totally get that is what their role is, I just can't believe how far they have gone...

Posted on September 8, 2011 at 12:14 AM by TK Highlight this comment 196

Ben, I think the 'grievously misused word' word in that quote is "all".

Weird night at the park yesterday. At first pitch I'm guessing there was only 5000 to 6000 fans in the seats. I was sitting in a row of 22 seats (section T), all by myself. By the time the last stragglers came in around the fifth inning, the place might have been half full.

How many balls did our guys actually hit hard last night? Two?

Posted on September 8, 2011 at 08:24 AM by F_T_K Highlight this comment 197

FTK - I noticed that too. Were you there for the National Anthem? The place looked absolutely empty. I'm glad that it did fill in as the game went on and the guys gave us a little something to cheer for.

I had my LC seats last night and I thought the beer tasting event was going to be a nice little perk. They were giving out 1 oz tastes. They were the smallest cups I have ever seen! Then if you liked the taste you could buy a 12 oz bottle for $6.50. What a joke! I noticed a lot of people stopping by asking where the beer tasting was located, then when they saw the tiny size they left without wasting time.

Posted on September 8, 2011 at 10:27 AM by CSG Mike Highlight this comment 198

Well --- at least the "taste" was free.

Posted on September 8, 2011 at 12:52 PM by Ben Highlight this comment 199

Are the bobbleheads going to be kits that people will get to put together, including finger paint?

Posted on September 8, 2011 at 1:11 PM by tk Highlight this comment 200

Will Mr Whipple aka Gardy have the Baby Jesus catching tommorow night?

Posted on September 8, 2011 at 1:47 PM by TwinkFan Highlight this comment 201

Looks like Hard Rock Cafe is closing by the end of the month. Is it time to put the final nail in block E. I thought the ballpark was supposed to help with things around there guess it didnt.

Posted on September 8, 2011 at 3:42 PM by Leroy Highlight this comment 202

I think the Block E site would be an outstanding spot for the "To Be Constructed" new Surly Brewery that is going to be built in the Twin Cities metro. Would be a great attraction to the city. Tours all day, everyday. Serve pints and appetizers before all Twins/Twolves/Concerts/Theater etc.

I feel like the Number 1 reason Block E has been an epic failure is the complete and utter scum that hangs around it especially along the Hennepin Ave and 7th St sides. This absolutely falls on the pathetic Mayor and his council. Go to Chicago and see if you see any of these "gangsters", homeless, incredibly sketchy characters hanging around the places where people spend money (Wrigley Field, Michigan Ave, Navy Pier, the Loop, downtown Chicago as a whole). No chance. The city has made it a priority to "cleanup" areas that the people with the $$ want to be. Now the trouble and scumbags still exist, but they are NOT in the busy areas that tourists or people from the suburbs gather at. I've always wondered why other cities can cleanup up their cities and Minneapolis has NOT been able to do this. To be quite honest, it is real sketchy walking back to the car after a Friday or Saturday night game. You look around and pay attention to your surroundings, because there are lots of unscrupulous characters just "hanging out". And this is all coming from a guy who has traveled extensively and lives in an urban environment. I'm not the guy from Warroad or Yankton or Jamestown who gets a major cultural shock from coming to the "big city". Just my opinion.

Posted on September 8, 2011 at 4:17 PM by Max Highlight this comment 203

Yup not even pipeing in goat ropping music can chase the gangsta's out of there anymore.

Posted on September 8, 2011 at 4:35 PM by TwinkFan Highlight this comment 204

Block E failed for so many reasons that it's really hard to compile a comprehensive list.

Probably first and foremost is that it was ill-conceived and ill-timed. But it was also poorly-designed and badly-managed. That skanky folks are hanging out around it now is an effect, not a cause (although it may be an effect of bus routes more than anything else).

And Minneapolis mayors have so little power that it isn't really fair to blame them (present or past) for much of anything. The biggest problem with Minneapolis city government is that it's structured so that there never actually is anyone to blame because authority for any given thing is spread so broadly.

Frankly, it's a miracle that the gigantic caverns beneath downtown Minneapolis haven't opened up and swallowed the whole thing -- figuratively speaking.

The question now is whether an up-scale casino on Block E is going to improve anything or just change the type of undesirable humanity which hangs out there. My prediction is the latter.

So my vote -- if I were Mayor -- would be to knock 'er down and start over. In fact, put the Shubert back where it was and build a park around it (like wiser plans envisioned back in the day).

(Cowles Center for the Performing Arts, you say? Oh. That sounds like a good idea too. OK, leave it where it is.)

Posted on September 8, 2011 at 4:39 PM by Rick 205

I would agree Rick that the bus routes on Hennepin/Nicollet Mall bringing the scum from North Mpls and some of the bad South Mpls neighborhoods is a big part of the problem. What are they doing downtown? I mean they certainly aren't working in the skyscapers in finance, real estate, law, professional services, etc. How do I know? C'mon look at how they are dressed. I think it is actually quite an embarrassment to see what a ghost town Nicollet Mall turns into after 5pm. You can literally roll a bowling ball down it from 4th Street to 10th and never hit a thing (beyond the loiters on the sidewalk waiting for the bus on the sidewalks).

My main point stands, regardless of who you want to place "fault or blame" on, in that there is no way that other well-thought of large cities (Boston, San Francisco, Chicago, Seattle) would let them loiter/hangout/up to no good on the street corners of an area of the city where people come to spend money. That is the bottom line. Money talks and bullshit walks. There is no way to completely eradicate the trouble that hangs out near Block E. However, you CAN force them out and back into the areas where they live. The moment people are afraid or hesitant to come downtown and spend money is the moment you are in big big trouble as a city. I distinctly remember at least 1 weekend this summer when there were multiple shootings downtown near the Karma Nightclub. This is NOT far from the hustle/bustle of the Warehouse District (some might call it IN the Warehouse District)...

Posted on September 8, 2011 at 5:20 PM by Max Highlight this comment 206

Just received the renewal packet. If the Twins baseball team could produce anything as quality as the Marketing department, we would have no issues watching a quality product.

I see the "SCCCCHHHHHHWEEEEEEEIIIGEERRRRTTTT Dug out dogs dug out dogsssssssssssssssssss HEEEERRRRRRREEEEEE" vendor featured in the materials, whenever I need a mid-winter pick-me up, I can flip through the nice pictures and wish for warm weather and a quality ball club to watch.

Posted on September 8, 2011 at 5:35 PM by tk Highlight this comment 207

I forget about what time last year we were talking about 2011 facility upgrades? I think at this time we were looking forward a playoff run and were too consumed by that. I am just wondering if anyone recalls?

I am just looking forward to seeing what may be around the corner.

Posted on September 8, 2011 at 5:43 PM by tk Highlight this comment 208

Minneapolis has cracked down pretty hard on aggressive panhandling and solicitation, as most major cities have. Way better than it us to be, heck even 10 years ago it was still pretty bad compared to today. And if you go back to the mid 80's it was terrible.

Scalpers can be more bothersome now with unwanted solicitation than the bums and drunks.

Posted on September 8, 2011 at 6:40 PM by Dave Highlight this comment 209

I was going to slightly agree with Max until his second post....

So, I've seen this stretch when it was anchored by Moby Dicks. It is certainly better than that. However, everyone has a right to be downtown, the bus stops are where they are (for now), and this stretch is CLEARLY not as bad as many of the "sketchy" downtowns in America (much less the world).

However, the original premise that there are "touristy areas" downtown that need a comprehensive plan (Nic Mall, Stadium/Warehouse district) is true, and we have figured it out on the mall for the most part. The problem is that we haven't quite figured it out yet in the warehouse district.

Don't ever blame the mayor in Minneapolis. Always blame the city council. They have the power.

Finally, the problem with the current development on Block E is clearly the design, just as it was with the Conservatory. Don't build inwardly facing malls downtown. Keirans works because it opens to the street. Fogo works because it offers valet on the street (and could be ever more successful with some more windows, the dummies). Hard Rock had a 9 year run which is great for bad corner - if the T-Wolves were successful would have they made it? Sadly, this is a cornerstone block of downtown, and a fantasy casino is 10-50 years off.

I don't think it is that hard now that the ballpark is there providing 81 games a year. At-scale independent eateries (which we can subsidize just as much as a big developer), outdoor areas with heaters so we can use it 8 months a year, valet parking, move the bus stops.

Posted on September 8, 2011 at 8:43 PM by Lincster Highlight this comment 210

Last week, I had a meeting downtown and walked the skyway from Ramp C all the way through to the City Center - thus taking me through the second level of Block E. It's sad walking through there. Sure, Mrs. Fields is still open as is the movie theater, but, there's really no activity up there whatsoever.

I had a dream a few weeks ago about being a multi-billionaire developer, gutting out Block E and building a 110-story hotel and casino I ended up calling Grand Casino Minneapolis. Of course, I realized that isn't a great plan; because then who'd go to the Hinckley and Mille Lacs locations??

Posted on September 8, 2011 at 8:58 PM by luke Highlight this comment 211

I am so ancient I go back to before even Moby Dick's. It was a wonderful place right out of Damon Runyon called "The 620 Club", owned by Max Winter among others. It was a hangout for sports and entertainment celebrities "where turkey was king". When it closed, it became "Moby Dick's", 'nuff said. I suspect someone like Sid Hartman could have a ton of stories from there.

Posted on September 8, 2011 at 9:33 PM by terry Highlight this comment 212

Probably. Sid probably also has lots of stories about him and "Doc" at the Longbranch.

Posted on September 8, 2011 at 11:53 PM by Ben Highlight this comment 213

So I just got my STH "sweet spot" opportunity to run the bases at Target Field...with only 9 home games remaining, my options were limited to three games...Sept 22, Sept 26 and Sept 28. Of those three, my season ticket package only includes one game, Thursday Sept 22 at 12:10pm. I sold those tickets long ago. So my question is, if this is considered a STH "benefit" than why can't they at least give you game date availability based on your STH plan?

They are also changing the single game presale so that they have THREE pre-sale events in 2012...The first one for 81 game plans and 40 game plans (with 7+ years of continous tenure), #2 for 40 game plans and 20 game plans with 7+ years of continous tenure and the third and final presale event being for 20 game plans and flex plans...

So someone like me who has had a flex plan for 4 years and now a 20 game plan for 2 years, I get the "third" pre-sale event? How is that any added "value" to my plan???

There is simply no need for me to renew at this point.

I also like the fact how the Twins suddenly decided they would give a STH discount at the Majestic Twins Clubhouse store at TF and than have the same public sale two weeks later....how "exclusive" is that for STH's when its the same public event two weeks later???

Posted on September 9, 2011 at 12:40 PM by Mike Highlight this comment 214

"We are pleased to offer you and a guest the opportunity to Run The Bases after an upcoming game - and we hope you can join us! Exclusive to Minnesota Twins Season Ticket Holders --- "

This is a ST perk? Should not anyone who pays taxes in Hennepin County be extended this offer?

And the opportunity to pay overinflated (even at discount) prices at the TF store --- don't get me going on that one.

Just how stupid do they think we are?

Posted on September 9, 2011 at 1:11 PM by Ben Highlight this comment 215

"So someone like me who has had a flex plan for 4 years and now a 20 game plan for 2 years, I get the "third" pre-sale event? How is that any added "value" to my plan???"

Apparently you didn't get the memo ---- as a public service:

"The Twins value the support of all of our fans throughout Twins Territory. However we are especially appreciative of the support of Season Ticket Holders. In fact, it's because of this that we have invested more in Season Ticket Holder rewards and benefits than ever before - exponentially more than in past seasons - not less."

By the way, "exponentially" (Rick got it) is the word I have the most trouble with. Steve Smith needs a dictionary.

Posted on September 9, 2011 at 1:41 PM by Ben Highlight this comment 216

Well I see the twins have fired the coaches at Rochester after the back to back 90 loss seasons. And Morneau arcticle about not much hitting or a work ethic down there. Wonder who will be next?

Posted on September 9, 2011 at 1:52 PM by TwinkFan Highlight this comment 217

Quote from Jim Rantz..."These changes in Rochester are just part of an overall directional change that is being implemented throughout the minor league system this off-season."

How about some overall directional changes in the front office and at the major league level as well?

I wonder if sthis announcement and the sudden sweet spot invitation as well as recent announcement of the "discount" at Target Field clubhouse store has anything to do with the fact that season ticket renewals are due in three weeks?

Posted on September 9, 2011 at 2:18 PM by Mike Highlight this comment 218

TwinkFan, can you link to those articles?

Posted on September 9, 2011 at 4:34 PM by Winona Mike Highlight this comment 219

Found it. Never mind. Minneapolis Tribune. Thanks anyway.

Posted on September 9, 2011 at 4:46 PM by Winona Mike Highlight this comment 220

Here I thought I had a one-of-a-kind offer to run the bases!

Posted on September 9, 2011 at 4:52 PM by tk Highlight this comment 221

We are a STH family - 2 adults, 3 kids. So myself and a guest get to run the bases. Which child do I choose? (Sarcasm intended, but we have 5 season tickets so why can't all 5 of us run the bases?)

Posted on September 9, 2011 at 6:24 PM by Go Go Twins Highlight this comment 222

Yes, but if it's TWO adults, TWO season tickets, wouldn't you get to run the bases with a guest, and the other person get to run the bases with a guest, whereby having four people run the bases? And, maybe you can slip the fifth under your jacket or something?

Posted on September 9, 2011 at 9:02 PM by luke Highlight this comment 223

One sits on the other's shoulders while wearing a very long overcoat. I've seen this work in the movies...

Posted on September 9, 2011 at 9:35 PM by Winona Mike Highlight this comment 224

:):) Another STH with the "chance " to run the bases email..I never picked that perk when they sent the email about which perks I would be interested in and with 3 games to choose from at this point in the battle it's a slap in the face...

Posted on September 9, 2011 at 10:28 PM by Steve Highlight this comment 225

Don't they still let kids run the bases after every Sunday home game?

Posted on September 9, 2011 at 10:54 PM by Dave Highlight this comment 226

I think it is their ploy to have STH stay the whole game...apparently people have been leaving early?

Dave, yes, kids still get the chance, but this is an EXCLUSIVE opportunity for the STH and their families...er, one person and a guest.

Posted on September 9, 2011 at 11:42 PM by tk Highlight this comment 227

Maybe we should start a file of badly mis-used words.

Posted on September 9, 2011 at 11:50 PM by Ben Highlight this comment 228

Four run lead after one inning, followed up by eight straight zeroes on the scoreboard and another loss. Sound familiar?

Posted on September 10, 2011 at 03:38 AM by terry Highlight this comment 229

The trick is to isolate the "undesirables" of block E in their own neighborhoods. No more buses. If you don't have money, than you shouldn't be around people with money. After you isolate the bums, it will be easier to round them up and send them to camps. Or we could just eat them.

Posted on September 10, 2011 at 03:46 AM by Fuhrer Highlight this comment 230

Jerry Kill collapses on field due to seizure with seconds left in the game this afternoon.

Posted on September 10, 2011 at 6:23 PM by luke Highlight this comment 231

You gotta wonder how long before someone falls for the old "hidden ball" play.

Posted on September 11, 2011 at 11:29 AM by Ben Highlight this comment 232

At more games than anyone cares to remember this year the Twins have had from three to six players in their starting lineup who should have been playing for the Rochester Red Wings. So what do you do? Fire the Red Wings mgr. and batting coach. If this were a criminal case, we'd say the Twins were "blaming the victim".

Posted on September 11, 2011 at 11:36 AM by terry Highlight this comment 233

La Velle reported the other day that Justin Morneau came back from his rehab stint in Rochester with some very critical observations of the work ethic there. It could be just spin from the team, but it made the changes sound more than justified.

Posted on September 11, 2011 at 1:13 PM by Rick 234

16 games left on the schedule, including one more doubleheader.
If the Twins win only one game in the next 16, they would tie their franchise-worst record from 1982 (60-102).

Yikes. Well, we have the Royals later this week, and one make-up game next Monday against the Damn Yankees. That will count for three losses.

Posted on September 11, 2011 at 5:42 PM by luke Highlight this comment 235

The team at the other end of downtown looks like they're not going to have any better season than the Twins. But for a few holes San Diego shot in their own feet, that could have been (SHOULD have been?) about a 41-17 game. Oh well, the Twins avoided a shutout in the 9th.

Posted on September 11, 2011 at 6:18 PM by terry Highlight this comment 236

Does anyone know of any 12 year old kid who recently had a cast removed from his arm and now can throw a 100 mph or baseball savvy team owners grandson who wants to take a shot at helping this team next season?

Posted on September 12, 2011 at 08:32 AM by Jared Highlight this comment 237

I can't see this team being a 500 club next year. All office staff and mgmt should all be on double triple secret probation next year. May be time to clean house for sure by then. 80 wins might be a pipe dream though with this group. Let the lean years begin!

Posted on September 12, 2011 at 10:15 AM by TwinkFan Highlight this comment 238

The T-wolves just hired a new coach, Rick Adelmann. Does anyone think the Twins will be on the manager hunt this off-season?

I like Gardy. He seems like a stand-up guy. But, I think the sun has set on his time in Minnesota. Anyone agree?

Posted on September 12, 2011 at 3:26 PM by luke Highlight this comment 239

Gardy will be on double triple secret probation also next year. I expect another looooooooooooong season for the boys and 4th or 5th place finish sub 500.

Posted on September 12, 2011 at 3:35 PM by TwinkFan Highlight this comment 240

It would seem a bit unfair to fire the skipper one year after he wins manager of the year, but I suppose it's possible.

But we need to remember that for most of this season he's been able to put a lineup with three or four major leaguers on the field every game. When over half your starting lineup should be in the minors, it's tough to win even in the AL Central.

Posted on September 12, 2011 at 3:47 PM by F_T_K Highlight this comment 241

Injuries are part of the game. Gardy has consistently been outmanaged and has also benefited from a weak division for many years. The Twins won't fire him because they're too nice.

Posted on September 12, 2011 at 4:37 PM by FD Highlight this comment 242

F_T_K you could make the same argument for Triple-A Rochester manager Tom Nieto and hitting coach Floyd Rayford

Posted on September 12, 2011 at 4:42 PM by tk Highlight this comment 243

There doesn’t seem to be a lot of hope for next year evident on this site lately. Sure, the Twins can’t seem to buy a run these days and the pitching staff is unrecognizable from the opening day roster. While the notion that much of the Twins’ troubles stem from a couple dozen stints on the DL has been discounted here, I can’t help but look back to July, when they were the hottest team in baseball. Jim Thome didn’t do that all alone, and Delmon Young’s contributions were minimal. That tells me that the remaining personnel can compete, even if it’s only in their own division. My suspicion is that the sum of all the team’s parts is better than what we’ve seen most of this season. And while it may very well be true that the young call-ups have demonstrated an alarming lack of fundamentals, sometimes part of the culprit is just bad luck.
Will Morneau be back at 100% next year? I can’t confidently say yes. Can Mauer get through an entire season without injury or illness? The smart money says no. But last year JJ Hardy spent two stints on the DL with wrist injuries and wasn’t much of a factor; this year, he’s performing at the level the Twins had hoped for. Too bad he’s doing it somewhere else. Players bounce back. Twins players will bounce back.
Perhaps the majority of focus in the front office should be on restoring the farm system and a rededication to fundamentals. The Twins may find themselves in contention at the end of September next year, or there may a lean year or two more to follow, but if they remain healthy, it may be a lot easier to abide.
I think back to 1968, when the Twins, after coming within a game of going to the World Series, suffered through a miserable year with almost the same roster as the year before. Then, in 1969, they had two 20-game winners and dominated the offensive statistical categories en route to a 97-win season and a 98-win season in 1970.

Posted on September 12, 2011 at 5:33 PM by Winona Mike Highlight this comment 244

Well put Winona Mike. Glad I'm not the only one around here who remembers the '60's. All those Tommy Chong jokes are after all just jokes.

Posted on September 12, 2011 at 6:14 PM by terry Highlight this comment 245

Has anyone heard any inkling of what will happen to LC seats if the PSL holders just don't renew? I know my group may let ours go, so we can't be the only ones. And we had pretty good seats.

Posted on September 12, 2011 at 10:16 PM by jctwins Highlight this comment 246

Well, all I remember was 1965 when the Twins went 102-60, and lost Game 6 of the WS.

Speaking of the WS...off-the-cuff question I know, but when the Senators moved here in 1961, didn't the franchise history move with the team? I've always wondered why the Twins don't recognize the 1924 Senators WS championship? I know it wasn't the Twins per se, but it was the same franchise.

Posted on September 12, 2011 at 10:37 PM by luke Highlight this comment 247

Jctwins: The Twins reclaim the seats and resell the PSL. I'd do my best to sell the PSLs on the secondary market if possible before turning the seats back to the Twins with no compensation. Your success probably depends on how good your LC seats are...

I think if the Twins are being honest (slim to none chance) they'll burn through the 3K+ on deck circle immediately.

Posted on September 12, 2011 at 11:28 PM by Max Highlight this comment 248

Correction, Luke. the Twins WON game 6, taking the series to game 7, when Sandy Koufax blanked them 2-0.

Posted on September 13, 2011 at 06:06 AM by Winona Mike Highlight this comment 249

Good story by Joe Christensen in the Strib this morning about Joe Mauer's season and health. Mauer acknowledges, even if the Twins do not, that use of the obfuscating term "bilateral leg weakness" was a huge public relations blunder.

Posted on September 13, 2011 at 08:52 AM by terry Highlight this comment 250

Rumor has it that it was lymes diseas for the baby jesus! Perhaps caught up at the palatial cabin in cambridge?

Posted on September 13, 2011 at 09:08 AM by TwinkFan Highlight this comment 251

I know Ben and tk are renewing for 2012...anyone else renewing?

Posted on September 13, 2011 at 12:14 PM by Mike Highlight this comment 252

I will be renewing. I didn't get season ticket because the team was good or bad. I got ST because I enjoy going to the games. I'm excited to see if we will be able to move up a couple rows this year.

Posted on September 13, 2011 at 12:23 PM by Joe117 Highlight this comment 253

I never did think the Mauer issues were of much consequence or validity in regard to all the negative commentary directed at the Twins and this season in general. I do, however, maintain my position and support same of anyone else that the organization has become arrogant beyond belief and that the front office is manned mostly by fools who should be replaced by people capable of actually running a baseball team rather than spinning webs of lies and misdirection. I think the fans deserve much better than they are getting and that that situation is not going to change until the focus shifts to less marketing and more baseball.

Take a close look at your renewal package. The common denominator as far as benefits and "rewards" is all straight out of a carnival barker's handbook - chance at this and chance at that. It's like the marketing guys are writing for the lottery people. We deserve better.

Posted on September 13, 2011 at 12:25 PM by Ben Highlight this comment 254

We're renewing, mostly. Had a 4-ticket 20 gamer and a 2-ticket 20 gamer. Keeping the 4, dropping the 2.

I agree with Ben about the brochure. Slick and purdy, but almost deliberately obtuse. Too clever by half. No simple chart as used in the past to show exactly what you get versus what you might get.

Posted on September 13, 2011 at 2:37 PM by br Highlight this comment 255

Not sure if I will re-up my 20 game pack or go 1/2 with my brother on his 20 game pack. I'm in 326 he is in 321

Posted on September 13, 2011 at 2:58 PM by TwinkFan Highlight this comment 256

Will be renewing my 20-gamer. If they would put the trees back I'd double down.

BBtT

Posted on September 13, 2011 at 3:41 PM by ClarkAddison Highlight this comment 257

Even a bobblehead is a maybe. A maybe bobblehead - how clever can you get?

Posted on September 13, 2011 at 4:04 PM by Ben Highlight this comment 258

Lots of hot air from Dave St. Peter on the radio airwaves today. I've heard him on 1500 ESPN twice today attempting damage control. He has mastered saying a lot without saying anything...

Posted on September 13, 2011 at 4:19 PM by Max Highlight this comment 259

As mentioned by Mike, we are renewing our Full-Season and 40-game plan, but have a very different looking partner list next season.

Posted on September 13, 2011 at 4:32 PM by tk Highlight this comment 260

It sounds like my group will renew, but looking for partners to take as few as 10 games for HPB, LC, or DB. If anyone is interested, let me know. We'd pass them on at our STH price.

Posted on September 13, 2011 at 5:01 PM by jctwins Highlight this comment 261

I think that stagnant and complacent baseball presented by people who would rather deceive and spin than improve the actual product is viewed by the majority as preferable to no baseball at all. And we wonder why that is what we get?

Posted on September 13, 2011 at 5:47 PM by Ben Highlight this comment 262

Renewing in 306 Row 1 and 109 Row 11..Also looking to add Section B Legends Club (2)seats(Full Season)..Anybody out there wanna transfer there Legend Club B seats to me?

Posted on September 13, 2011 at 6:14 PM by Steve Highlight this comment 263

Called the Twins today and canceled my season tickets. After answering questions about why I was not renewing for about 15 minutes(Performance, Bill Smith, front office, Bill Smith, general direction of the team, Bill Smith... and plenty more) And then refusing to change my mind. I was told by my rep that he felt sorry for me because I would regret my decision and wouldn't be able to get tickets for the majority of games next year without paying more on the secondary market. He also made a comment about an All Star game in the near future and numerous season tickets benefits that i would miss out on. After I some how managed to decline all of that the Rep said "ok" and hung up the phone... Keep up the good work

Posted on September 13, 2011 at 7:04 PM by FormerSeasonTicket Highlight this comment 264

If every time a Minnesota team had one bad year, I dropped my season tickets, I wouldn't have tickets to anything. I've had Twins tickets throughout the 80's and 90's. We had some bad teams in that time period, and we played in the stinkin dome. I hung in there through all those years, so i certainly wouldn't think of dropping my tickets at Target Field after just one terrible season.

Posted on September 13, 2011 at 7:29 PM by clublevelfan Highlight this comment 265

Not renewing my full season tickets. Partly because tickets will be easy to come by next year; partly because I started a business this summer and won't have the time like I did last year.

TTH

Posted on September 13, 2011 at 8:42 PM by The Truth Hurts Highlight this comment 266

"I was told by my rep that he felt sorry for me because I would regret my decision and wouldn't be able to get tickets for the majority of games next year without paying more on the secondary market. He also made a comment about an All Star game in the near future and numerous season tickets benefits that i would miss out on."

Sounds like the organization's apprenticeship program "How to Become a Shameless Marketing Weasel" is having the desired results. What a load of crap!

Posted on September 14, 2011 at 12:12 AM by Ben Highlight this comment 267

I'm lucky to get 20% of my original value, the Twins wouldn't dare buy my tickets back for 10% of the value knowing there would be no money to be made.

I am going to be buying plenty more tickets on the secondary market next year.

Posted on September 14, 2011 at 01:02 AM by TK Highlight this comment 268

Gardy "tips his cap" to yet another pitcher "over there" - you would think he could at least come up with a different line once in a while - this guy was throwing so soft he was not even registering on the gun and the Twins manage two hits?!?!?!?

Posted on September 14, 2011 at 08:16 AM by Ben Highlight this comment 269

Former - how long have you been an STH? If you've had a long-standing account, I would have hoped your rep would have handled your situation with a bit more candor. He/she sounded like a class A jerk on the phone.
Clublevel - and how bad is it going to be next season? Paying thousands of dollars to see a lousy team 81 nights a year? Doesn't seem appealing to me.

The Twins are well headed towards that 0-16 mark to finish the season I spoke of earlier. And, it's really sad to see a team that had the second best home record last season (best in AL, second to the Phillies) to this season, to having the worst home record in the AL (and thank God we're not the Marlins). In one year. *sigh*

Posted on September 14, 2011 at 08:21 AM by luke Highlight this comment 270

The 2012 schedule is starting to get leaked out...

Opening Day April 6 @ Baltimore Orioles
Home Opener Monday April 8 vs LA Angels

Cubs @ Twins June 8-10
Twins @ Milwaukee May 18-20
Milwaukee @ Twins June 15-17

Posted on September 14, 2011 at 10:19 AM by Mike Highlight this comment 271

correction...Monday, April 9 is home opener

Posted on September 14, 2011 at 10:19 AM by Mike Highlight this comment 272

Entire 2012 schedule is out...

Red Sox (week night games in April)
Yankees (week night games in September)

The Phillies, Cubs and Brewers will all be high demand games but the Red Sox and Yankees are both weeknights in April and September, so those will not be very attractive even though they are the Red Sox and Yankees.

Posted on September 14, 2011 at 10:31 AM by Mike Highlight this comment 273

Am I tired of all the anemic hitting (how many times have they scored 3 runs or less)? Yes. Am I tired of truly horrendous fielding (the number of errors has risen by 50%)? Yes. Same for the botched plays that were not scored as errors, the inconsistent starting pitching and the self-immolating bullpen. But is there anywhere I would rather be next summer - especially on a weekday afternoon when I can get out of the office - than Target Field? No.

Posted on September 14, 2011 at 10:34 AM by terry Highlight this comment 274

Only one weekend series in August?

3 weekend series' post-Labor Day (when school is back in session, NCAA football, NFL football)....It's not a very attractive schedule if you are looking to re-sell your ST's...in other words, buy next year on the secondary market because there will not be very high demand other than the Phillies, Brewers and Cubs...mostly of which will be Phillies, Brewers and Cubs fans.

Posted on September 14, 2011 at 10:37 AM by Mike Highlight this comment 275

The marlins new stadium is coming along and the hype is building. See: linked brochure and the dramatic music. I wonder what kind of demand there has been for tickets there. I would reference attendance stats but we know the potential for skewed numbers there. Has there been a lot of hype and are people buying into it? I suppose I could look around the web to find out...

Also, we are renewing our season tickets and looking to move to the field box sections, an upgrade from our current seats. The good thing is that we aren't swayed by perks and it was the game itself (not particularly the team this season) that decided.

Posted on September 14, 2011 at 11:39 AM by Jared Highlight this comment 276

Jared - given the Marlins' home record this year, the only draw for the SunLife Mother Ship will be the fact that it's a new ballpark. Jesus, from that link you posted, the place looks like a scaled-down version of the Jerry Jones Ecumenical Palace of Football Worship.

And, to think, the powers that be wanted to build one of those things here on the Mississippi River waterfront way back when in 1997. Thank God that didn't happen and we got the cool ballpark we did.

Having said that, click my name for a link about the Twins giving away tickets for the Lynx playoff game this weekend. I hope the Twins aren't testing out a new marketing strategy for their own ticket distribution next season.

Posted on September 14, 2011 at 12:04 PM by luke Highlight this comment 277

Also, Rick has posted numerous "concepts" for Twins ballparks but here (linked) is a website that also has other teams stadium concepts, including Metrodome proposed renovations and a concept proposed to try to lure the Twins to North Carolina. Now during that time I was just a kid living in South Dakota and maybe its old hat for people who were here and aware during that time but I thought it was interesting.

Posted on September 14, 2011 at 12:09 PM by Jared Highlight this comment 278

last one I promise: The StadiumPage.com site I previously linked has a rather extensive collection of photos from each of the places the blogger has visited. Each is super-categorized and detailed...and I thought I was TF panorama crazy, this guy has almost every angle from every time of day from every stadium visited.

He also has an extensive collection of images of world series rings, tickets, extinct stadiums, etc. Just. Amazing.

Posted on September 14, 2011 at 12:27 PM by Jared Highlight this comment 279

I love those types of stadium sites! Thanks for the link, Jared. I hadn't seen that one before.

Still, it bears mentioning that all but two of the Twins-related images seen there are also featured on (and were perhaps lifted from) my Wishful Fields archive. (I've never before seen that North Carolina image, or the riverfront site plan. Very interesting.)

Posted on September 14, 2011 at 12:34 PM by Rick 280

I had to laugh at those random guys they had in the introductory video for the Marlins brochure. I was about five guys in before I realized that those are the actual Marlins -- just out of uniform.

Funny the power of laundry.

Posted on September 14, 2011 at 12:37 PM by Rick 281

much agreed. Thank you Jared.

Posted on September 14, 2011 at 5:02 PM by luke Highlight this comment 282

The only complaint I do have about the Unrealized Concepts page is whoever set that page up seemed to go "dome crazy" and put domes on alot of stadiums. Kinda like how we went "dome crazy" around here in the 70s and early 80s. But overall a great site.

Posted on September 14, 2011 at 5:10 PM by luke Highlight this comment 283

I still love the Cisco Field design. If Oakland could ever revive that plan, it would be great.

Posted on September 14, 2011 at 8:33 PM by FD Highlight this comment 284

Yeah, I posted more for the informational purposes of the other teams and the few random Twins ones (like the NC proposal). I loved some of the pieces of the Twins concept drawings. And like FD, I really liked the Cisco Field proposal.

Luke, the way your statement reads to me you misunderstood the concepts page. The guy building the site didn't draw up/design/create the concepts. These are serious proposals/designs/drawings by architecture companies for teams. All the site guy is doing is showing them all on one page. I may be misreading your post but that's how it seems to me like you are interpreting.

Posted on September 14, 2011 at 9:29 PM by Jared Highlight this comment 285

I should say too, that I loved, loved, loved the idea behind the canopy/roof for the proposed Rays ballpark. It is so simple and unique and I think it would have been great. The only part I would have like different with it is maybe a more stylized post in the outfield, depending on the function. It goes against my liking it because its simple but hey, I liked it anyway.

Posted on September 14, 2011 at 9:43 PM by Jared Highlight this comment 286

Jared, yeah, I figured that out now. When I first saw the page, I saw lots of "domes" in places I didn't even think were considering them. I've looked at them all now, and yes, those were real drawings.

I guess kudos to whomever set that page up (it looks a little bit like the same format ballparks.com uses) to dig up all those old concepts.

Posted on September 14, 2011 at 9:49 PM by luke Highlight this comment 287

Note to Bill Smith: Watch Tigers dominate due to lights-out pitcher making much less than arthritic catcher, a good-hitting free agent pickup who can catch or DH, and several Latino players. Not aging white guys, not Aussies, not Japanese. See the connection? Think we're going to rip off 12 in a row with Luke Hughes, Nish and Slowey?

Posted on September 14, 2011 at 11:38 PM by twinswschamps2060 Highlight this comment 288

Only if the "rip off" you're referring to is charging people to watch this team play...

(clumsy attempt at humor this early in the morning, pre-caffeine!)

I'm still planning on going to see Friday's game, I want one last chance to cheer for Jim Thome.

Posted on September 15, 2011 at 08:27 AM by F_T_K Highlight this comment 289

Mr Whipple still saying our boys are facing cy young like pitching everygame? We're still battling out tail ends off! Magic # 11. I thought TK summomed it up to Richard pretty well when they agreed that out infielders are scared to death that a ball is coming there way. Thats no way to play at the major leaugue level.

Posted on September 15, 2011 at 10:43 AM by TwinkFan Highlight this comment 290

ClarkAddison -- your offer to double down on tickets if they bring back the trees may have gotten Dave St. Peter's attention. On Tuesday, during a radio interview with Joe Schmit, Mr. St. Peter said: "There's been some talk both internally and externally about putting the trees back in . . . that hasn't worked out so well for our offense. So, stayed tuned, we'll probably have something more to announce on that in the month of November."

Now I'd like to see the trees back where they were, but to address Rick's concerns that the trees were "puny" and "out of place" and certain players' apparent concerns about the batter's eye, perhaps they could relocate the bullpens to down the baselines and put trees where the bullpens currently are. They could put a forest in there -- rescue some big trees from the BWCA fire -- and perhaps some wildlife too.

BBtT

Posted on September 15, 2011 at 11:01 AM by msp Highlight this comment 291

I've never believed any of the malarky about the trees being a distraction. Every batter's eye has shadows -- except the one we have now, which is made (I believe) out of black holes from which no light can escape.

Further, I can't remember a single time when I saw one of those tree branches move in the wind. They just stood there. And with the background painted a similar color, the shadows were about the same as anywhere else.

If you can't see the ball because of that background, it's because you're not looking at the ball.

Clearly, the batter's eye wasn't the problem. It was simply the scapegoat for all of the issues we've seen blossom beautifully this year. Offensively, last year must now be viewed as the leading edge of this year. (Overall, Target Field's pitcher-friendliness may have more to do with the Twins' bats than anything in the design.)

Conceptually, I loved the trees. But I was very disappointed to see them put in trees which were going to take a decade or more to grow to anything approximating what was seen in the concept drawings. I had assumed they knew they could get some tall, skinny, more mature trees, and that's why they drew them the way they did.

(It would be a fun game to compare concept drawings to reality. After you've seen a few such comparisons, you never view those sketches the same way again.)

Additionally, I have come to hate the new batter's eye from a fan perspective. I could just barely see over that wall out in center before, and now it's even harder. I feel like bringing a step stool with me to the park. (I know, I know. I'm short.)

So I cautiously say: Bring back the trees, but ONLY if you can get some statuesque ones, and it means the standing room view behind them goes back to the way it was.

(Hard to imagine trees thriving in the shade of the bullpen area, but I'm not an arborist.)

But we all remember who was the chief anti-tree force in the Twins clubhouse, right? And that fellow is going to be a free agent, right? An expensive, old, free agent at that, right?

Maybe DSP is signalling a little something more in his trees tease...

Posted on September 15, 2011 at 11:36 AM by Rick 292

Rick ---

Young trees which will require a decade or more to become as you describe are cheaper than the other kind.

Posted on September 15, 2011 at 12:57 PM by Ben Highlight this comment 293

If anyone has an ESPN insider account, linked are two articles about the Twins and Liriano. If you could, inform the rest of us their contents.

Bye Bye Twins

Liriano-no-no!

Posted on September 15, 2011 at 1:14 PM by Jared Highlight this comment 294

The spin from the Twins is that all that is needed is for everyone to get healthy again. Their shills and apologists are all pounding on the "we've been here before and look how things turned out" drum. Anyone with half a brain and the ability to pay attention can see the flaws in the current "logic" however. There is not the large core of young, aggresive, raw talent the team was blessed with before and the apparatus needed to train, construct, improve, and nurture is missing in action. It is clear, at least to me, that "we" need to rebuild rather than repair. This is going to take some time as well as the acquisition of some smarter baseball people (luckily enough the easy part) and the sooner the Pohlads get this through their heads the better. Bring back the trees AND overhaul the on-field product.

Posted on September 15, 2011 at 1:27 PM by Ben Highlight this comment 295

Yes and let Divito go also! Clean house from the upstairs down and trim the payroll and the fat. 10% chance you can plug up the holes and come back next year! Addios to Cuddy, Kubel, Nathan , Crapper to start. Try and deal Span, Slowey, Lirriano, Ishy Nishy and get rid of most of the bull pen. Might as well trim the payroll by 40 mil and retool. Give em 5 years!

Posted on September 15, 2011 at 3:10 PM by TwinkFan Highlight this comment 296

I have not heard it mentioned in any local media until today...but Reusse was talking on his 1500 ESPN show today about the Twins in 1982 going 60-102. Maybe people around here didn't want to mention it a) cause they're too embarrassed or b) if they mentioned it, we'd hit the record. Reusse figures the Twins are going to hit the 100-loss mark this year, and he figures at this point we should just go for the full monty and try to tie or beat the record.

With the Indians coming to town this weekend, it can't be getting any better, can it?

Posted on September 15, 2011 at 3:59 PM by luke Highlight this comment 297

Folks, think about it. How long has it been since we've seen one of those feel-good stories about one of the Target Field trees being planted in a state park?

Two of them were planted in St. Croix State Park in June. Before that a couple were given to a season ticket holder and winner of the essay contest.

Since then: not a peep out of the Twins' PR megaphone about any tree-planting activity.

This tells me that the trees are being held in an undisclosed nursery somewhere, as a power struggle that will determine their fate goes on inside the shiny Twins office tower in the left field corner. Dave St. Peter's remark about an "announcement in November" concerning the trees is just a cover to give him enough time to fire the people opposing the center field reforestation program.

Posted on September 15, 2011 at 4:20 PM by ClarkAddison Highlight this comment 298

My conspiracy is on the trees, it worked out nicely as a little fundraiser that they can keep every 2 years. This year we sold the trees and went treeless. Next year we will get a new crop, and uproot in 2013 to add some more cash to their pockets.

Posted on September 15, 2011 at 4:31 PM by tk Highlight this comment 299

I wish my life was so problem-free that the matter of the trees was actually importsnt enough to fuss over.

Posted on September 15, 2011 at 5:55 PM by Winona Mike Highlight this comment 300

For just a split second, when I saw the Phillies and Cubs coming to town next year, I regretted my decision to not renew. Then, I watched the Twins play later that night. I'll go pick them up on Stubhub for $3 the day of game. Whoever said it a few days ago hit it right on the head...raw deal for the "fans" who rely on reselling. Bad times for the Sox and Yanks. Bad Opening Weekend. Killer interleague schedule though. It does not get any better than Cubs, Phillies and Brewers.

Posted on September 15, 2011 at 7:19 PM by twinswschamps2077 Highlight this comment 301

"There is not the large core of young, aggresive, raw talent the team was blessed with before and the apparatus needed to train, construct, improve, and nurture is missing in action. It is clear, at least to me, that "we" need to rebuild rather than repair."

Agreed. Just hang on to the guys who made up the roster in July when the Twins were the hottest team in baseball.

Posted on September 15, 2011 at 9:17 PM by Winona Mike Highlight this comment 302

Curse of Wally the Beer Man.

Posted on September 15, 2011 at 9:18 PM by FD Highlight this comment 303

msp you are on the right track with that trees in the bullpen idea. It might even lure Kirby the Kestrel and the Target Field Squirrel back into the park as you suggest. Maybe a deer or two would wander in from the Cedar Lake Trail.

But another option that would kill two birds with one stone would be to move in the left field fence several yards, and then re-plant the trees in that gap between the fence and the left field stands. Of course the trees would have to be trimmed to not block the view from out there.

Problem 1: Twins can't hit any homers in this park. SOLVED
Problem 2: The tree thing could turn into an eternal thorn in the side of the Twins, like the Billy Goat curse in Chicago, unless they put the trees back. SOLVED

Posted on September 15, 2011 at 9:32 PM by ClarkAddison Highlight this comment 304

Not sure moving the fence in would be a good idea for our pitch to contact pitching staff. Trees or goats won't help this club rebound anytime soon. I expect some lean years ahead till we can draft and trade for some players! The Twins way used to be defense and basic fundamental baseball. Wow have we digressed in that department.

Posted on September 16, 2011 at 12:14 PM by TwinkFan Highlight this comment 305

This weekend apparently marks "Fan Appreciation Weekend." Given the way this club is playing, it'll also be "Fan Depreciation Weekend." Tickets have been sold, but I don't think people are going to sit outside in the upper 40s to watch this ballclub this weekend.

Posted on September 16, 2011 at 1:11 PM by luke Highlight this comment 306

Tomorrow afternoon: 66 degrees and sunny.

Who's going to be there? Well, at least me, my whole family, and our guests from out of town.

We're looking forward to watching professional baseball played outdoors and on real grass. And we'll be cheering one last time for Jim Thome, if nothing else.

You're going to complain about that? Uh, OK.

Posted on September 16, 2011 at 3:03 PM by Rick 307

I'll be there - Sunday also. My only comment would be that tickets comparable to those I have are available for half of what I paid for them.

Maybe we can get that picture at the flagpole?

Posted on September 16, 2011 at 3:18 PM by Ben Highlight this comment 308

Mauer shut down for rest of season. Pneumonia this time.

Posted on September 16, 2011 at 6:32 PM by Ben Highlight this comment 309

Just read an article on the internet that said the engineering of our ballpark involved some kind of pivot-point which brought the whole ballpark closer to the action than most built in the last twenty years. Also read that because the Twins implemented many fans input which included very good ideas, the ballpark turned out very well for everyone. I think this website is one of the reasons why our ballpark turned out so well.

Posted on September 16, 2011 at 7:26 PM by Tom D. Highlight this comment 310

Now if we can get someone to explain what a pivot-point in this context is...

Posted on September 16, 2011 at 8:19 PM by Winona Mike Highlight this comment 311

here's a new one for you... I called about 2 weeks ago to cancel my ST. The sales rep gave me the same carnival barker routine..."WAITING LIST OF 4000!"... blah, blah, blah... well, he couldn't convince me. Then, he said he couldn't cancel them by phone, he'd need a signature... "wait for the renewal pack, and send in the form, and sign it, indicating that you don't want to renew."

the packet came... and the form doesn't exist! It's just a bill! I think they'll figure out what's happening when I don't pay it.

Posted on September 16, 2011 at 8:21 PM by mj Highlight this comment 312

lol Rick. So, I guess you and yours will make up about 70% of the gate receipts tomorrow?
Sure, it's nice weather to watch baseball outdoors, The kind of atmosphere we were deprived of for 27 very long and oppressive years. But, to take words from an old classic, "there's no joy at TF" this year. So why spend the money?

Posted on September 16, 2011 at 8:58 PM by luke Highlight this comment 313

Duh, maybe because the money has already been spent? Tickets already in hand. What should he do, just burn them?

Posted on September 16, 2011 at 10:29 PM by Brian G Highlight this comment 314

Mauer goes to Mayo Clinic to be seen?

Posted on September 17, 2011 at 12:05 AM by Ben Highlight this comment 315

"The packet came... and the form doesn't exist! It's just a bill! I think they'll figure out what's happening when I don't pay it."

Don't count on it. I figured that the Vikings would simply drop me from their season ticket rolls if I just didn't pay the invoices when they arrived. They pestered me for six months, and last month even left another message on my answering machine (stone age, I know) hoping I'd changed my mind. This was after I sent them an official notice of my intent to drop my tickets, and their acknowledgement of such. My guess is the Twins will be just as dogged in keeeping you on board.

Posted on September 17, 2011 at 12:30 AM by Winona Mike Highlight this comment 316

The calender given out tonight is one of the worst they have ever made..I really don't want one that has super fans on every month..How about some good field actions shots or something?

Posted on September 17, 2011 at 12:54 AM by Steve Highlight this comment 317

Brian G - perhaps he should. Burn them in protest. Resell them in protest. Put them up on eBay: "Pay low dollar to see a crappy team push themselves farther down in the standings. At least you get to sit in a nice ballpark."

I like your idea, burn them. That'll stick it to the front office.

Posted on September 17, 2011 at 09:21 AM by luke Highlight this comment 318

"My guess is the Twins will be just as dogged in keeeping you on board."

You would think they could care less given the "4000" new customers waiting in the wings. Maybe things are not falling neatly into place?

Posted on September 17, 2011 at 09:54 AM by Ben Highlight this comment 319

The ovations for Thome last night, especially the one after his home run, reminded me of the ovation Harmon got in '75 when he came back to the Met as a Royal and homered. I didn't think a scene like that would ever repeat itself.

Posted on September 17, 2011 at 10:07 AM by terry Highlight this comment 320

I can't believe Cuddyer or Kubel would even WANT to sign with this team. Good bye fellas, nice knowin' ya.

Posted on September 17, 2011 at 11:25 AM by Paul Highlight this comment 321

Rick,does no look like a nice mid sixty degree day out there. I see lots of empty seats and cold people watching our F troops ttoday! What a lineup.

Posted on September 17, 2011 at 12:19 PM by twinkfan Highlight this comment 322

Swarzak throwing batting practise up there. Alread down 5-0. How many on this team could even make the St. Paul Saints? Meanwhile the baby jesus is giggling from his ranch up in Cambridge. 100 losses looks like a sure thing!

Posted on September 17, 2011 at 12:42 PM by twinkfan Highlight this comment 323

6 or 7 quick HRs, and we're right back in this one.

What an awful product. Who did the fans choose for "pick the sick"?

Posted on September 17, 2011 at 12:59 PM by mj Highlight this comment 324

could the Twins just forfeit their makeup date for the rainout against the Yankees?

it hardly makes sense to send this band of AA and AAA misfits to NY for one game.

Couldn't they just say "everyone is sick, we can't come"?

Posted on September 17, 2011 at 1:22 PM by mj Highlight this comment 325

lol mj.
For Fan Appreciation Weekend, did the Twins per chance hand out T-shirts to game attendees saying, "I don't belong at this game"?

Posted on September 17, 2011 at 3:03 PM by luke Highlight this comment 326

Beautiful day at the ballpark today! A little cool in the shade, but not windy -- and spectacular in the sun. Tru and I hung out on the plaza for a couple of innings and it was glorious.

It was our last family game of the year, and we said so long to the ballpark on our way out. Even with a lousy team, it's still a sad moment.

(I'll be there on Thursday afternoon by myself for one last lap before winter.)

Posted on September 17, 2011 at 3:46 PM by Rick 327

"I see lots of empty seats"

Not sure what you were seeing. The place was packed. (Legends Club and Champions Club folks were staying inside, which may be what you saw.)

Posted on September 17, 2011 at 3:53 PM by Rick 328

Watching on the telly this afternoon, I saw lots of empty seats in the 300 level in LF. I think there were about 15 people in the Grandstand. And it looked sparse in the LF bleachers too.

The main seating bowl was definitely packed (likely STH's getting their money's worth). I'm not sure about the 300 level view seats (301-327)...the box score from MLB said attendance was like 39-some-odd thousand, but it looked closer to the high 36,000 range to me.

Posted on September 17, 2011 at 4:07 PM by luke Highlight this comment 329

"I like your idea, burn them. That'll stick it to the front office."

You are welcome to burn the tickets that you've already paid for, but why buy the tickets in the first place? Why not just burn the money directly and save a step?

Better yet: I have this nifty fire pit in my back yard. It does real good fires. Just gather up all the money that you were planning to send to the Twins and send it to me. I'll make sure that it gets properly burned, and even send you the ashes and a certificate of destruction.

I offer the same service, by the way, for any other protest money you were thinking of burning. Just put the title of your protest on the outside of the envelope and I'll make sure to curse whoever you want while I'm taking care of business.

If you would like to burn money by using your credit card or PayPal, I can take care of that as well. I'll convert as much as you want into cash for proper burning.

I'm happy to accommodate any of your money-burning needs.

Posted on September 17, 2011 at 4:13 PM by Rick 330

In the early innings, the place was packed all around the bowl.

In the later innings, it was a ghost town.

Gee, I wonder why.

Posted on September 17, 2011 at 4:14 PM by Rick 331

In a tight economy, people come up with creative new business ideas and opportunities. Rick, if you pay your wife or son to help with the "burning", we can officially call you a "job creator".

Posted on September 17, 2011 at 4:18 PM by terry Highlight this comment 332

Oh, yes, everyone in the family will help. Where do I apply for federal stimulus funds?

I suppose we could just cut out the middle man and have Luke send me all of his tax money directly. I'll report it to the IRS as a direct stimulus payment so he gets proper credit.

Honest.

Posted on September 17, 2011 at 5:04 PM by Rick 333

The video linked to my name...skip ahead to 1:10. I wonder if Lorenzo Music can re-dub the voiceover on this cartoon and replace "Cleveland Indians" with "Minnesota Twins"

Posted on September 17, 2011 at 5:38 PM by luke Highlight this comment 334

I was at this afternoon's game and it was definitely diseased. Lots of empty seats in the 100 and 300 level and it was just a disappointing experience overall. Not very fun. In fact, the wife and I left after just the 3rd inning and it was hilarious how many people were leaving after just the 2nd and 3rd innings. Long innings, lots of pitching changes, pitchers struggling to throw strikes, etc.

There were still fans trickling in while there were fans leaving at the same time. I love baseball and I love outdoor baseball but it has not been a fun experience at Target Field the last two months. All you need to do is look at the lineup and ask yourself who are these guys? Perhaps, the Twins marketing department will need to re-launch the "Get to know 'em" campaign used in 2001 and 2002.

I always enjoy the calendars they give out each year on fan appreciation weekend, but the 2012 calendar is a major disappointment in my mind with "fans" featured every month. Why not show some action shots and showcase the ballpark or even show shots of former Twins players or something. But to show "fans" holding up a little chalkboard with their thoughts on Twins baseball and outdoor baseball is ridiculous. And of all of the games I have been to, I never saw anyone from the Twins walking around with the chalkboard and taking pictures with fans to put on the 2012 calendar.

Not to mention, they forgot to put the road games on the calendar for the month of June.

Posted on September 17, 2011 at 5:41 PM by Mike Highlight this comment 335

By the way...congrats to the Detroit Tigers on their AL Central Championship...would be nice to see them do some damage in October and actually beat one, if not, both of those AL East Teams....something the Twins can never do.

Posted on September 17, 2011 at 5:56 PM by Mike Highlight this comment 336

The calendar is very weak, probably done on the cheap (big surprise). For an entity that should be in business retention mode they seem to be pushing the other way - almost as if by design.

Posted on September 17, 2011 at 5:58 PM by Ben Highlight this comment 337

By the way, our church is doing a bakesale/raffle. Second prize is four tickets to a Twins game during the final home series. First prize is a blueberry muffin. Tickets anyone?

Posted on September 17, 2011 at 6:11 PM by Ben Highlight this comment 338

Because of what could possibly be weak ticket demand next season - possibly the return of CheapSeat/General Admission seating? The Grandstand perhaps?

Posted on September 17, 2011 at 6:11 PM by luke Highlight this comment 339

If somebody wins second, can they pass and hope for first?

For the TF box office ribbon board:

"Tonight: Puppet show and Twins vs. Indians"

Posted on September 17, 2011 at 7:00 PM by Rick 340

Mike, On the ride back on the Northstar my wife also noticed the road games in June were not printed...Totally agree with your thoughts on the "freebie" for fan appreciation weekend..

Posted on September 17, 2011 at 9:25 PM by Steve Highlight this comment 341

having players on the calendar is risky... you can't put Cuddyer, Kubel or Nathan on there... they might be gone next year. And you can't put a picture of Mauer, Morneau, or Span laying in a hospital bed.

Posted on September 17, 2011 at 10:13 PM by mj Highlight this comment 342

for the church raffle, I'd take the blueberry muffin, or a kick in the ass with a steel toed boot before I'd take those tickets!

Posted on September 17, 2011 at 10:22 PM by mj Highlight this comment 343

Rick with the "Spinal Tap" reference. Nice. :-)

Posted on September 17, 2011 at 10:52 PM by F_T_K Highlight this comment 344

The pocket schedule handout for FAW is an early or "winter" edition, isn't it? Perhaps MLB still has yet to schedule the entire season?

MLB isn't sending players to London for the Olympics, are they? Mayhaps that's the reason a section of games is missing?? June is about the time for the Olympics.

Posted on September 18, 2011 at 11:35 AM by luke Highlight this comment 345

Watched the team at the other end of downtown blow a 17 point lead in convincing fashion then turned to the lads of summer and have watched enough horrible fielding and relief pitching in two innings to last a lifetime. And some were worried about the stench from the garbage Burner?

Posted on September 18, 2011 at 3:50 PM by terry Highlight this comment 346

When the Twins schedule the first concert at TF next summer...I want the band seen on the video linked to my name. clicky.

unfortunately, Cliff Burton died about six months after this 1985 concert was recorded, but the band is as kick-ass as ever.

Posted on September 18, 2011 at 3:54 PM by luke Highlight this comment 347

I don't like sports anymore.

Posted on September 18, 2011 at 6:25 PM by Jeff T. Highlight this comment 348

Tomorrow marks six months since that day that I endured 5-1/2 hours in the Virtual Waiting Room to get my hands on some very coveted tickets for the 2011 campaign. I "scored" some okay seats to a couple of games, and then went after one last pair for a late season tilt even though they were anything but stellar seats. Dreams of a possible clinch game against a likely second place opponent filled my head. My words back then: "Sep 17 - 2 seats in Skyline View Sec 326 Row 12. This one cold be a chilly one, even though it's a day game. Always like going to Fan Appreciation Weekend. ere's (sic) hoping it's a meaningful game against the Tribe."

As the months wore on, it became painfully obvious that Cleveland's second place spot was the only part of the dream was to come about. Ah, well... at least I could cheer for Thome one last time... But even that was stolen from me as Hafner filled their DH spot on Saturday.

I thought about not going... what's the point, really? On the way in, it was interesting to pause for a bit and listen to the pathetic voices of the scalpers on 6th St. One potential buyer's offer of 50 cents was overheard. A passerby inside the park was heard to say he spent 5 dollars on his seat, and others in his group reacted as if he had paid too much.

In all honesty - if you could ignore the scoreboard - it actually was an enjoyable afternoon. No lines, no crowds in the concourses. Nice warm sun came out in the middle innings, enjoying a hot dog, singing Take Me Out to the Ballgame and adding special emphasis on the "If they don't win it's a shame" part... There was plenty of base running and lots of situational field positioning to observe from way up there. And from so far away, the field actually had that dazzling green you love to see.

We saw more than a few paper bags being worn. And, even though Thome wasn't there to cheer for, I did get one last chance to lustily boo Matt Capps off of the field.

I guess I can't add much more to what I wrote here last March: "In the end, I want to be in the park. The memories are being made every season, win, lose, whatever. It is a different world, sure, but the game has has always that draw for me. Over the generations ahead, the Facebook and iPhoto images of the Dome and TF that my daughters share on their pages will soon be cherished with as much nostalgia as the Polariods and fading Brownie Instamatic snapshots of my old Met era childhood. We will continue to piss and moan about sky-high salaries, the DH, and ticketing system failures, but it's still 3 strikes, 3 outs, 9 innings. And I'm gonna be there."

Posted on September 18, 2011 at 8:25 PM by schweady Highlight this comment 349

I'm a little concerned about Mr Whipple aka Gardy. He seems to be eating his way through all the strees of the last couple of months. He looks like he is fast approaching 3 bills. Can't blame him I guess! 100 a lock!

Posted on September 18, 2011 at 8:55 PM by TwinkFan Highlight this comment 350

The boy and I took the bus downtown for today's drizzly affair. Noting all the empty seats, we decided to take in the game from a number of new vantage points. We started in 120 in left field, and got a good look at Pavano's early-inning mastery in front of a defensive lineup that averaged about 15 years his junior. Enjoyed a beer and a bag of peanuts, while the kid threw away part of his college fund on a hot chocolate in a souvenir cup. Very nice view from out there and mostly dry.

Then we circled the park clockwise, (eschewing the ridiculously long line at the mini donuts) winding up close down by the field in section 104. Just in time to see that horrible long 7th inning. Highlight was fairly early on when Parmelee muffed a (difficult) ball and then added insult to injury by throwing over to Pavano at first, who had already given up on the play and was struck by the toss. The body language between them was deafening. Pavano knew that a defensive play was about to cost him another win, which proved to be the case. I had another Summit, the boy ran off for an ice cream.

After that debacle we moved into prime seats in 108, very nice seats just a few rows up above the moat. Really enjoyed being on this side of the park just as a change of pace, since our regular seats are up in Skyline View. The drizzle let up and, just when we thought things were starting to get a little dull, a guy in a gorilla suit sat down in our row. What is up with that? I had never seen him before and to tell you the truth he seemed like any other fan, he was watching the game and not acting out in any odd way - it's just that he did so in a gorilla suit. Go figure. After a half an inning or so he wandered off.

After the young Twins squandered their chance to get back into the game, the Mrs. called and said she had finished her errands and could pick us up if we were so inclined. We agreed that we had extracted sufficient pleasure from this match, and beat the remaining 5,000 or so people to the exit and were swiftly picked up and driven home, where we regaled the rest of the family with our tale over a nice dinner.

It seems there are a lot of folks on this site who are down on September baseball, but I have to say the past few games have been among the most enjoyable baseball experiences I've had since I threw away a summer on the 1982 Cubs.

Posted on September 18, 2011 at 9:44 PM by ClarkAddison Highlight this comment 351

To switch things up and entertain ourselves, wifey and I decided to taste test several rum & cokes in several areas of the park. Here are our results:

Club Metro - $7.93 Tasty, two straws, and filled with lots of ice. In the 5 minutes it took us to finish over 3/4 of the cup had ice. Nice place to stay dry and admire the surroundings.

Lower Deck Stand Along Right Field Line - $7.75 Tasty, three straws, and half filled with ice. We savored this one as we walked over to the Statue of Liberty, Mickey Mouse, and of course Captain Morgan.

Captain's Deck - $7.75 Tasty, one straw, and maybe four ice cubes total in the cup. Could see part of the field and hear too much of the conversation about the girl banging a friend while she is engaged to be married this fall.

Perhaps next time we can review the rum & coke in Club Level, Twins Pub, and Champions Club.

Posted on September 18, 2011 at 10:32 PM by NotMendoza Highlight this comment 352

Well, I am glad I did not burn my tickets to an unused Twins game, was able to get 2 free drinks from Rock Bottom Brewery. More than the tickets were worth in the end!

Posted on September 18, 2011 at 10:49 PM by tk Highlight this comment 353

The following comment was found on one of the Strib pieces - I think it sums things up pretty well:

"The front office and Gardy have to shoulder most of the blame for this abismal season. Here are just a few of the problems that would not have happened this year if we had a major league front office: 1. Joe Mauer's legs should have been dealt with as soon as last season ended, instead he was allowed to wait over 2 months to have knee surgery and was never healthy this year. 2. The bullpen issues should have been addressed. When you lose 5 players from the bullpen and do nothing then you get the results that we did and start the season 17-37 with countless blown leads. 3. Trading JJ Hardy has to fall on Gardy. He wanted more "speed" at shortstop. Hardy now has 26 HR and only 5 errors. Is the scout that brought Nishioka to the Twins being held accountable? 4. The team has quit on Gardy for several weeks now, time to change managers. I could go on but what is the use. The Twins will not address their real problems by cleaning house starting at the top of the organization as they should. They will not be getting any of my hard earned money next year, that is what I can do about it and I have been a diehard Twins fan since they came here in 61 when I was 6 years old."

Posted on September 19, 2011 at 06:15 AM by Ben Highlight this comment 354

Salient point = "IF WE HAD A MAJOR LEAGUE FRONT OFFICE."

Posted on September 19, 2011 at 06:17 AM by Ben Highlight this comment 355

Clark - that's pretty cool. Jesus, at the Inflatable Litter Pan, ushers would never have allowed you to move around like that.

tk - having not taken a great look at the ducats I used to enter the games I went to this season, I thought those Rock Bottom coupons were contingent on a Twins victory. Which of course, as we all know, is incredibly hard to come by.

Posted on September 19, 2011 at 08:02 AM by luke Highlight this comment 356

I was at the game Friday night, first row in 236 (straight-away center field), my favorite spot in the park.

Got to the game very early, wandered down to 128 as the Twins were taking batting practice. Just as their session was ending, one of the players (no idea who - there are a lot of faces on the 40 man roster I don't recognize!) turned with a ball in his hand and looked into the stands. Nobody reacted, he got a disgusted look on his face, I instantly raised and waved my hands - and from about 50 feet away his toss hit me right in the hands. I yelled "Thank You!" as loud as I could, and headed up to 236 giddy as a kid on Christmas morning.

Probably the highlight of my 2011 season. :-)

Posted on September 19, 2011 at 08:19 AM by F_T_K Highlight this comment 357

You can tell it has been a long season, as rick, who is usually a middle of the road moderator, has been throwing some real zingers at Luke. Thank you Rick, for this site, and for making the last few weeks bearable, atleast on the comment side of things!

Posted on September 19, 2011 at 09:22 AM by JoJo Highlight this comment 358

Some nice write-ups and reflections the past few days. I'll throw this out there, fwiw:

Sun and season fade
The white ball evades young gloves
We catch only dreams

Posted on September 19, 2011 at 09:55 AM by BR Highlight this comment 359

my wife and i took our son to the game yesterday in the drizzle. we sat out in sec 130, 5th row just out of the rain. i have to say it was quite enjoyable. it's always a good time sharing baseball with our son. my wife and i have been to 4 or 5 games this year and it was his first of the year. i'm also a big fan of no lines for a beer & seeds and having a little leg room for a squirmy, sugared up 4 year old. the game was a good watch up until the 7th but we still hung out through the 8th. even though the team is horrible there isn't a much better way to enjoy a sunday with the family watching outdoor baseball.

Posted on September 19, 2011 at 11:02 AM by fanboy Highlight this comment 360

Ohhh boy forecast looks great for Wed night! Low 50's and rain! With 2 games left for next 3 Wed's I get a chance to finish 1-15 @ TF this year! Arrive by 7:30 out the door by 9:00pm. Lets hope I score some free parking at least. And of course have the holiday dogs to look forward to. Not too exicited to see a poor mans St Paul Saints team take on the mariners. What a year what a year!!!!!!!MERCY!

Posted on September 19, 2011 at 11:43 AM by TwinkFan Highlight this comment 361

Right, JoJo.
Anyway, getting back to reality...

Posted on September 19, 2011 at 12:17 PM by luke Highlight this comment 362

Our F _troops battling back from down 5-0 to the Yanks now trail 5-4 bottom of the 6th. Will the streak be stopped? I kinda doubt it....Mr Whipple shouting in the dugout way to battle your tails off boys!

Posted on September 19, 2011 at 2:34 PM by TwinkFan Highlight this comment 363

Magic # now at 7! Rivera sets record 602nd save vs our F- Troops. Maybe there should be an astrisk on that save?

Posted on September 19, 2011 at 3:45 PM by TwinkFan Highlight this comment 364

Mr Whipple breaking out another dozen donuts for the plane ride home.

Posted on September 19, 2011 at 3:46 PM by TwinkFan Highlight this comment 365

I'm going to the game Thursday and sitting in the LC section for the first time. It's a long way from the blue collar neighborhood where my seats are located. Any advice from people who have been there? I don't want to look too gauche.

Posted on September 19, 2011 at 9:40 PM by terry Highlight this comment 366

Ben I'm not sure if the players have quit on Ron Gardenhire or they just simply aren't good baseball players (in comparison to the competition of course). I believe strongly that it is misplacing the blame or fault this year when Bill Smith and/or Gardy talk about all the injuries. This team was horrendous from the get go, flashed a bit in June, and has fallen off the cliff since. You can't win major league ballgames with Double A players. I root for losses now as they can hopefully lock up the #2 pick and maybe just maybe enough futility will result in a "martyr" firing. Vavra, Liddle, Ullger...I certainly see NO scenario where Jim Pohlad would have the testicular fortitude to fire Bill Smith, Rob Antony, Ron Gardenhire, Rick Anderson.

I was at Yankee Stadium this afternoon and it was embarrassing watching Diamond throw cookies, Hoey walk guys AGAIN, Benson weakly wave at AJ Burnett who is pitching horrible this year, Hughes look like the glove belongs on his right hand, etc. etc. Pretty neat to see Mariano Rivera set the MLB save record in person. By all accounts he is in the Jim Thome category of across the board classiness.

Posted on September 20, 2011 at 12:09 AM by Max Highlight this comment 367

Hey what happened to my posts? Too much negativity? F- troops? Mr Whipple? Sheszz

Posted on September 20, 2011 at 06:35 AM by twinkfan Highlight this comment 368

Ironic that Mariano Rivera broke the save record against our favorite 9...a sight too common over the last 9 years, especially in October.

Line of the night...Dick Bremer on Mariano Rivera's record save..."At least the Twins won't have to worry about that this year in October" (or something similar to that) Gotta love Dick trying to put a positive spin on something so negative...

Ron Coomer's response to Dick from the FS North studio "Well I would rather be playing in October"

...Does Ron Coomer not realize the Twins never win in October, especially against the Yankees...?

Posted on September 20, 2011 at 07:35 AM by Mike Highlight this comment 369

I'm shutting myself down for the year. I got up to get medicine for my respiratory infection and I pulled my hamstring. Reaching into the medicine cabinet I pulled my oblique and strained my reaching shoulder. And you don't even want to hear about the bilateral leg weakness I experienced walking to the medicine cabinet! So I've been shut down and someone from New Britain will likely be sitting in my seats for the final two games of my package.

Posted on September 20, 2011 at 09:19 AM by terry Highlight this comment 370

I'm liking the 2011 Twins Haiku idea:

Sun, sky, grass lost to
Bilateral leg weakness
Dare we hope for spring?

Posted on September 20, 2011 at 10:29 AM by Rick 371

Squirrel fled the park
Kirby kestrel flew away
Sure do miss those trees

Posted on September 20, 2011 at 10:56 AM by ClarkAddison Highlight this comment 372

season lost, weather stunk
whimpy warriors checked out
refund checks in the mail

Posted on September 20, 2011 at 11:46 AM by TwinkFan Highlight this comment 373

Going Postseason
Road-trip to Miller Park, Yeah!
Hope to see real ball

Posted on September 20, 2011 at 12:37 PM by tk Highlight this comment 374

Watching the Giants/Rams game last night, looks like two of the Giants players fell down with Phantom bi-lateral leg weakness at the same time.

Posted on September 20, 2011 at 12:41 PM by tk Highlight this comment 375

Gardy, Billy Smith
Rick Anderson, Joe Vavra
All add up to squat

Posted on September 20, 2011 at 1:02 PM by schweady Highlight this comment 376

Our brand new ballpark
Inside, a bad baseball team
The magic is gone

Posted on September 20, 2011 at 3:40 PM by F_T_K Highlight this comment 377

Lost baseball season
This is Twins Territory?
Where's my lineup card?

Posted on September 20, 2011 at 3:48 PM by ole Highlight this comment 378

I miss you Harmon
Number 3 steps to the plate
The crack of the bat

Posted on September 20, 2011 at 3:55 PM by schweady Highlight this comment 379

O sparkling confines
shining like a golden goose
your team laid an egg

Posted on September 20, 2011 at 4:03 PM by Rick 380

North Loop location
Beautiful stadium
Worst season ever?

Posted on September 20, 2011 at 4:12 PM by F_T_K Highlight this comment 381

all aboard the train
at the ballpark, the signs say
"puppet show / twins game"

(nice reference, Rick!)

Posted on September 20, 2011 at 4:15 PM by F_T_K Highlight this comment 382

beatdowns galore
all players shutdown
holiday dogs the bomb

Posted on September 20, 2011 at 4:35 PM by TwinkFan Highlight this comment 383

stubhub has three seats for 95 cents each, in 303 row 7, for tonight.

Posted on September 20, 2011 at 4:42 PM by robin Highlight this comment 384

Make that 95 cents plus 10.20 in fees (I'm not kidding).

Posted on September 20, 2011 at 6:26 PM by Rick 385

Stubhub:

Price sweet like honey
until fees and charges flow
like mighty river

Posted on September 20, 2011 at 6:33 PM by Rick 386

Yep, I was seeing some tickets on StubHub in the 300 level for about $2 per for tonight's game. $10.20 in fees?? FOR WHAT? StubHub doesn't even give you the real tickets for Christ's sake! They send them to you through email. Jesus, I hope StubHub doesn't sell tickets for the ASG in 2014, if we get it here. Those things are collectibles...I'd hate to have a piece of paper with a QR code and an eHarmony ad on it to prove I went to the game.

God StubHub sucks...

Posted on September 20, 2011 at 6:55 PM by luke Highlight this comment 387

One minute, three strikes
Triple, double, runner scores
Another twins loss?

Posted on September 20, 2011 at 7:17 PM by tk Highlight this comment 388

Lead off double in the 3d and the man never moves until it is time to go into the dugout at the end of the inning; man at 3d with 1 out and he doesn't move; and the best was saved for last, bases loaded with no one out in the 9th and nobody moves. Situational hitting anyone?

Posted on September 20, 2011 at 10:14 PM by terry Highlight this comment 389

Bottom of the ninth
Bases loaded, no one out
No bats, ten losses

Posted on September 20, 2011 at 10:14 PM by Rick 390

It's ridiculous
With ten lost games in a row
Worst team in baseball?

Posted on September 21, 2011 at 08:30 AM by F_T_K Highlight this comment 391

Can't win a game
It's hopeless
59-103 here we come
worst record
in franchise history
*sigh*
(well, since the inception of the 162-game schedule. In 1904, the Senators went 38-113.)

Posted on September 21, 2011 at 09:10 AM by luke Highlight this comment 392

Twins tumble, Vikes Fall
Sports give way to poetry
Time to hibernate.

Posted on September 21, 2011 at 09:36 AM by BR Highlight this comment 393

sleep, perchance to dream
about team winning ballgames
wake me when Spring comes

Posted on September 21, 2011 at 09:39 AM by F_T_K Highlight this comment 394

I went to Lynx game last night and recommend it. Maybe a Twins/Lynx doubleheader tomorrow.

Posted on September 21, 2011 at 09:52 AM by robin Highlight this comment 395

Anybody at the game last night? Lots of no shows? Thinking I may be down by the moat tonight with all the available seats. Arrive 3rd inning out the door by the 7th! Will I be 1-14 after tonight? Will Our F-Troops win another game all year? What is the record I wonder for consecutive games lost? Anyone anyone?

Posted on September 21, 2011 at 10:10 AM by TwinkFan Highlight this comment 396

For about six weeks or so now one of DickBert's standard spiels has been that the "On Deck" deal is at "3,000 and growing" - which would seem to indicate that at some point the number becomes larger than 3,000. A couple guys here report that reps have stated that there are 4,000 people waiting in line so you better hang on to your STs. Last night a ST sales exec invited by DickBert to speak/spin says the number is "3,000" period. Now, I know that DickBert is just executing a list handed to them by the Twins before the broadcast ("Lies and spin to include during the game") but wouldn't you think the team would at least get on the same page in regard to the number they are shitting us about?

Posted on September 21, 2011 at 10:58 AM by Ben Highlight this comment 397

Not sure if this has been posted before or not. Interesting Twins site

http://temp.twinstriviacom.officelive.com/default.aspx

Posted on September 21, 2011 at 11:04 AM by TwinkFan Highlight this comment 398

robin - yes, the Lynx are the best thing going in this town right now. I've toyed with the idea of checking out a game myself. Great game last night. Watched most of it.

Posted on September 21, 2011 at 11:04 AM by luke Highlight this comment 399

Quick ballpark-related item: I saw on Uni Watch a link to a story about the end zones at Camp Randall being repainted, as they have taken on a pinkish hue. At the Labor Day Twins doubleheader, I noticed the Twins and MLB logos looking similarly washed out. Surprising after just 3 years. (They had already been installed in July 2009). The article did say that red is a color that takes the biggest UV hit.

Posted on September 21, 2011 at 11:30 AM by fiesta Highlight this comment 400

And that would be the Twins and MLB logos on the limestone dugout roofs, for clarification.

Posted on September 21, 2011 at 11:31 AM by fiesta Highlight this comment 401

Perhaps, next year, the Twins should apply the approach the movie Moneyball (2011) speaks of:

employ a "non-traditional sabermetric (meaning based on on-field statistics. Usually generated by computer software) approach to scouting players, [and attempt] to create a competitive baseball team at a fraction of the cost of the large market teams." quote from Wikipedia.

And, by God, it WORKED (even against the Twins in the 2006 ALDS)! Lord knows, nothing Billy Smith is doing is working, now is it?

Posted on September 21, 2011 at 12:49 PM by luke Highlight this comment 402

Ben, i think it's time you said "adios" to the Twins an

Posted on September 21, 2011 at 6:21 PM by Winona Mike Highlight this comment 403

Ben, i think it's time you said "adios" to the Twins an

Posted on September 21, 2011 at 6:21 PM by Winona Mike Highlight this comment 404

Ben, I think it's time you said "adios" to the Twins and looked for another interest to fill your time, because obviously this team brings you nothing but negative feelings. The slightest little thing seems to point to their greed and desire to posess your last buck when clearly they shouldn't be in the business to maximise their profits, but to field a World Series-caliber team at any cost.

Posted on September 21, 2011 at 6:27 PM by Winona Mike Highlight this comment 405

Just an observation Winona. Another one would be that the Kool-Aid seems to give you the jitters in regard to the "send" button.

Posted on September 21, 2011 at 6:53 PM by Ben Highlight this comment 406

Bases loaded with no one out and they don't score. Have we been here before?

Posted on September 21, 2011 at 8:50 PM by terry Highlight this comment 407

Bert with the quote of the year towards DSP in the booth, "it was a 2-0 ballgame before you got up here." Again, the Twins front office messing things up :)

Posted on September 21, 2011 at 8:52 PM by tk Highlight this comment 408

lol tk. dammit, I missed that one.

Posted on September 21, 2011 at 9:31 PM by luke Highlight this comment 409

Yeah, I don't know what happened there. I wwas typing and the screen went white. But in refernece to your point, I don't see how looking for positives instead of dwelling endlessly on the negatives of this season constitutes "going all in" on the season. The term "drinking the Kool-Aid" is so over-used as to have lost any specific meeaning anymore. Anyone who tries to see some glimmer of hope for next year is now accused of quaffing gallons of the stuff, and therefore are characterized as suckers, I guess.
But if there's someone out there who is at a point where they seem to be obsessed with the negative, and sees everything the Twins do with suspicion and cynicism, costantly pointing out the organization's perceived greed and penury, yet will continue to pony up for season tickets every year...

Oh, never mind.

Posted on September 21, 2011 at 10:47 PM by Winona Mike Highlight this comment 410

This lousy keyboard doubles up on everything on the left side. Sorry for the typos last post.

Posted on September 21, 2011 at 10:50 PM by Winona Mike Highlight this comment 411

Article on Knoblach in the Strib, click name for link.

He's got the ugly red jersey featured in one of the pictures from the article. I can see why he keeps his stuff in boxes, that's one ugly jersey!

Posted on September 22, 2011 at 12:26 AM by tk Highlight this comment 412

Winona --- Perhaps if you were to hire an interpreter - someone to unscramble both your typing and your thoughts.

Posted on September 22, 2011 at 12:35 AM by Ben Highlight this comment 413

As unscrambled as bellyaching about everything the Twins say and do and every year lining up to hand over to them your money? The Twins are greedy and seek only to separate you from your cash, according to you, so you continue to fork it over.

Posted on September 22, 2011 at 05:29 AM by Winona Mike Highlight this comment 414

"Drinking the Kool-Aid" is a phrase that is only overused around here.
As far as the mainstream world is concerned, the notion of Kool-Aid drinking isn't used enough, IMHO.

Posted on September 22, 2011 at 06:31 AM by luke Highlight this comment 415

11 straight losses now. What's the team record for losses in a row, anyway?

I might still go to one more game during the Royals series next week. Even when our team is sucking, I still enjoy visiting the ballpark.

Posted on September 22, 2011 at 07:33 AM by F_T_K Highlight this comment 416

Well now 1-14 after the beatdown last night. Arrived bottom of the 3rd got my free parking near the salvation army. Never went to my seats in the upper deck. Sat in sec 115 right behind home plate about 10 rows up from the moot. Had the whole row to ourselves! Looking through the net kinda sucks but was too lazy to move. Slowy throwing the no hitter through 5 2/3rd and then the wheels fell off the cart. Left after the top of the 7th and home in 10 minutes. I would guess about 25,000 there tops if that maybe closer to 20,000. One game to go. At least the weather looks promising next wed. 14 games in a row I think is the record. They also have lost 13 straight before. I think this is the 3rd longest streak! Might as well run the board the rest of the year.

Posted on September 22, 2011 at 08:40 AM by TwinkFan Highlight this comment 417

A great deal of polish is called for, but at least these kids are making things more interesting/entertaining lately than they were a couple/few weeks ago.

Posted on September 22, 2011 at 10:20 AM by Ben Highlight this comment 418

Fans have every right to complain and be critical of the Twins.

They have done nothing in the front office to make this club better within the American League. Instead, they use their "AL Central Division Championships" as a cover-up and claim to success. Sure, its absolutely nice to win and win division championships, but how much of that was due to a weak division and an unbalanced schedule? 6 of 9 division championships and you have won only ONE postseason series? Ironic, it was Gardenhire's first year (meaning a lot of these players were brought up under TK) and he had players like Torii Hunter, Corey Koskie, Eddie Guardado, LaTroy Hawkins, AJ Pierzysnki and Johan Santana...guys who wanted to play and were not afraid to play hurt. Guys that showed some fight and emotion.

The Twins need a new philosophical approach and new identity...plain and simple. Until that happens, we can expect to see players who are babied and AAA players such as Butera, Tolbert, Repko, Casilla, Plouffe and Tosoni.

Bill Smith has absolutely destroyed this ballclub. The minor leagues are depleted and their answer is to fire the AAA manager?

Who is going to be accountable at the major league level??? Bill Smith has failed just about every deal he has made except the Gomez-Hardy trade in November 2009. He held on to Santana too long, Delmon Young too long...should have kept Crain or Guerrier and Hardy. Putting too much stock into minor league "prospects" and putting too much stock into players like Casilla. Not solving the backup catcher position knowing that Joe Mauer is very fragile. You go with Butera when you also had Morales and Ramos? Have they developed any ace pitchers in their minor leagues? Have they went out and acquired an ace pitcher to lead their rotation? It's been a big need for this team now for several years and has yet to be addressed. They have also failed to address the needs of the middle infield. Why didn't the Twins "SELL" at the July deadline? Or why didn't they go out and "BUY" at the deadline?? Instead, they did nothing...

Minnesota Twins fans are probably some of the softest fans in MLB. If it was Boston, NY, LA, St Louis or Chicago, fans would have been calling for Bill Smith to get fired by now or calling for a new manager, pitching coach, or hitting coach.

Not to mention, the Twin Cities media is full of "homers"...is there anyone in the media (TV/Radio/newspaper/online) that ever calls out the Twins or their management approach? Reusse and Barreiro have a few times, but nothing major. Souhan also wrote an article recently but few and far in between.

Just look at some of the teams in the last ten years to make a world series appearance...Arizona, Anaheim, Detroit, Chicago White Sox, St. Louis, Tampa Bay, Colorado, Florida, Texas and San Francisco...And I did not even mention New York, Boston or Philadelphia. The Twins simply don't have the mentality needed to compete in October. At least we won't have to worry about the dreaded ALDS loss this year.

Maybe Morneau will rip the dimensions at Target Field again this year. Someone else can blame the new batter's eye and the glares since the trees are not the problem. Maybe they can blame the grass pattern...oh wait, its the same pattern as last year since the players love it so much because it plays so much better...

I have been a STH since 2005 and will still support the Twins but I am not renewing my season tickets for 2012. I will go on a single-game basis and let the market play itself out before investing a lot of money in season tickets for another year.

Posted on September 22, 2011 at 11:34 AM by Mike Highlight this comment 419

Well said Mike... I'm leaning twords not renewing my 20 game pack also. Will miss the holiday dogs! Reusse pretty much hit the nail on the head with his article today. Be ready for some lean years! We battled out tails off gets real old. Time for some shakeups and get some fire back in the belly of the beast. Somebody has to call out these bunch of whimps.

Posted on September 22, 2011 at 1:30 PM by TwinkFan Highlight this comment 420

"Maybe Morneau will rip the dimensions at Target Field..."
Yeah, well, it doesn't seem that other teams that played at TF this season or last had much of a problem with the dimensions. God, they sound like a bunch of whimps, "the trees cause glare", "move in the fences".

Maybe if Morneau pushes the dimensions applecart again, he should sit himself in a DeLorean, take himself back in time to Polo Grounds - 450 ft to left- and right-center. And a whopping 483 ft to dead center.

Posted on September 22, 2011 at 2:00 PM by luke Highlight this comment 421

Runners on the corners with 1 out all tied in the bottom of the 8th! Cuddy grounds into the 4-6-3 double play! As Mr Whipple would say we are really scuffling out there with runners in scoring postion.

Posted on September 22, 2011 at 2:51 PM by TwinkFan Highlight this comment 422

The streak is over!

Posted on September 22, 2011 at 3:29 PM by TwinkFan Highlight this comment 423

The box score is telling me today's game is over, but it's also saying that the Twins scored more runs. Are they allowed to do that?

Posted on September 22, 2011 at 3:29 PM by Chad Highlight this comment 424

Mike is preaching to the choir, but he hit it on the head nonetheless. Don't call us non-fans because we are critical. We just know that all of us deserve better for the money being shelled out. I called my ticket rep yesterday and told him I wasn't renewing my full-season tickets. (I had them for two years.) He didn't even put up a fight, other than ask if I would be interested in a smaller pack of games, to which I also declined.

We laugh at the Timberwolves, but at least they have potential in Rubio, Williams and Love. We can snicker at the Wild, but at least they stepped up in the offseason and grabbed a pair of scorers from San Jose. We jest at the Vikings, but ... OK, I got nothing. That team is a frickin' mindf@ck year after year but at least the soap opera is entertaining to watch. But the Twins???? We're staring into a long period of suckitude, my friends, and there seems to be no admission of acknowledgement or responsibility from the FO and no game plan for how to correct it.

Next year I'll walk up to the window and buy a ticket when I want one. That won't be a problem next year, sadly, but until the front office admits its failures and shows it needs to and will do better, I'm not going to throw away money on them. Wall Street is already taking care of that for me.

TTH

Posted on September 22, 2011 at 3:54 PM by The Truth Hurts Highlight this comment 425

How long before the mindless twits jump on Mike and TTH?

Posted on September 22, 2011 at 4:31 PM by Ben Highlight this comment 426

Truth, timing could not be any worse in that regards with the stock markets tanking. Gonna be a different story for selling tickets for next season.

Posted on September 22, 2011 at 4:37 PM by TwinkFan Highlight this comment 427

Interesting information in the Notes section of the Strib article from today's game.

"Minnesota C Drew Butera's RBI single in the fifth inning snapped a personal 0-for-21 stretch. It was the first hit by a Twins catcher since Sept. 9, a string of 27 at-bats"

Posted on September 22, 2011 at 4:45 PM by tk Highlight this comment 428

Has anyone else noticed that the "kids" seem to at least display a pulse when Mauer is elsewhere? Is it possible that Mauer is no longer, for whatever reasons, the humble / down-home / kid next door / ah shucks / etc. person we have been led to believe he is (or was)? Is there a tiny bit of speculation that our boy has developed a "I'm Joe Mauer and you're not" attitude that is found to be less than 100% attractive or welcome on a team top heavy with MLB minimum players? And yes, I know this is total blasphemy.

Posted on September 22, 2011 at 4:51 PM by Ben Highlight this comment 429

I was at the game today and on the light rail ride I talked to a fan who had visited AT&T Park in SF this summer and I asked him if the San Francisco ballpark was better than ours and he said that contrary to what most of the ballpark experts say, he thought that Target Field was "way better". To go from the crappiest ballpark experience of all time for 28 years to one of the best of the current ballparks in existence is more than I ever dreamed for.

Posted on September 22, 2011 at 7:31 PM by Tom D. Highlight this comment 430

Ben - I think all we're saying is we get it -- you are down on the Twins and aren't renewing your season tickets. Move on.

Posted on September 22, 2011 at 7:40 PM by antifire Highlight this comment 431

And don't get me wrong, I agree with most of what you say. But enough harping.

Posted on September 22, 2011 at 7:41 PM by antifire Highlight this comment 432

I think we've gone from the flavored water is dry to the the heavy stuff and are about to have a proverbial drunken brawl here.

Posted on September 22, 2011 at 7:45 PM by tk Highlight this comment 433

My last game of the season today. There was plenty to criticize, e.g. yet another botched pickoff, poor situational hitting resulting in wasted scoring opportunities, etc. But that rocket Tosoni hit to end the game was pure joy ... and how about Perkins getting Ichiro to bounce back to the pitcher with the bases loaded?

Posted on September 22, 2011 at 8:13 PM by terry Highlight this comment 434

Perkins has done pretty well this year. Makes me wonder how much he will be making next year playing someplace else.

Posted on September 22, 2011 at 9:43 PM by F_T_K Highlight this comment 435

My lesson learned today: If you have a couple of worthless tickets to a September day game, nobody's holding a gun to your head and making you go to the whole game.

You can call a friend who works downtown, see if he's had lunch, walk over to the ballpark, catch the first few innings over a bowl of chili in the Town Ball Tavern, walk out to the stadium and take your pick of thousands of empty seats, watch an inning or two, and then go back to work.

It's not a crappy ball game, folks; it's an above-average lunch.

Posted on September 22, 2011 at 9:53 PM by ClarkAddison Highlight this comment 436

I guess I could write about what a wonderful place TF is, nobody has brought that up for an hour or two. Amazing what you can do with half a billion of someone else's money.

Posted on September 22, 2011 at 11:16 PM by Ben Highlight this comment 437

Or, how about we get constructive and discuss what needs to be done in order to right this ship - and how long it should reasonably take. I think we need to start with the premise that no changes of any consequence will be made to the FO or on-field staff and go from there.

Posted on September 22, 2011 at 11:27 PM by Ben Highlight this comment 438

#1 reason for most of the STH's not renewing on this board: They don't think they can profit from them next season.

Unless your a corporation or broker, that was dumb reason to buy season tickets to begin with.

Everyone wants to have a competitive team and win, but is that the only reason for attending games?

For me there is much more to it than simply winning. Some of my most enjoyable games have been at ballparks where the Twins weren't even playing and I didn't care who won.

The pitcher/batter battle, the crack of a wooden bat, the speedy infield hit, a towering homer, a miraculous play, the roar of the crowd, $7 beers (maybe not), ......

Frankly, I'm amazed at the number of STH'ers there are. I really enjoy going to a game, but I couldn't even imagine going to 81 games in a single season even if I could afford to do so. Even 20 games in a single season seems a bit much to me. 5-10 games a year (one or two per month) is my comfort level.

Posted on September 23, 2011 at 12:30 AM by Dave Highlight this comment 439

Man Rick I had a really epic rant/post this afternoon & it vanished when I hit post. It was long so I decided against retyping it. Any software to recover such gems?

Tick tock tick tock September 26 fast approaches...

Posted on September 23, 2011 at 12:35 AM by Max Highlight this comment 440

I've lost track of how many games I attended. I know I started off going 2-11, and then I went to KC on a road trip, to where they won 4 in a row, and then I was witness to about 9 wins in a row subsequent to this, and then we somehow became irrelevant and I did not see another win 8 or so games. That puts me at a mark of about 11-19 at home. Was really looking forward to more games, but life happens and it is going to be a long off season.

How 'bout 'em Lynx!

Posted on September 23, 2011 at 01:43 AM by tk Highlight this comment 441

Max,

Sorry, but I don't show any record of your post getting to my server... Can you give us the executive summary?

Dave,

You've hit on a big subject. A lousy year will, if nothing else, shake out all of those STHs who were just in it for a quick buck -- including all the new-stadium-smell folks. Of course, they'll come back if the team gets good again, but they'll be in line behind those diehards on the waiting list who are now going to get their chance.

But it's hard to say just how big a chunk the profiteers are of the whole STH base. We can say confidently that it was bigger in '10 and '11 than in the last Dome years, but is the whole bump just mercenary? I think not.

And I see folks here across the whole spectrum. You can't fault TTH (who I've seen no evidence was in it for profit) or anyone else for dropping now in favor of single game tickets next year. There's a good chance they will be plentiful, and possibly cheaper than what STHs are being asked to pay on faith. (I'm a single-game guy all the way and always have been, for a variety of reasons that long-time readers already know -- though I've also had 5-game shares with groups the past two years, and it's worked out pretty well.)

But I know someone here who has a very large ticket group that will probably see only minor attrition (I haven't checked with him lately) because he has great seats and sells them in chunks which are affordable and desirable (and throws one helluva draft party). His group is made up of a combination of hard core fans of the game (which he is) and business folks (which he also is), neither of which is going to let a single-season downturn affect their decision-making very much.

And though I don't want to put words in Ben's mouth, I know he's a big enough fan to be faced with a dilemma. He loves the game so much that it's excruciating for him to watch it being played the current Twins way. But he'd rather try to push the team to wake up (and fans like us to hold them accountable) than give up his passion. What's he supposed to do? (Baseball always finds a way to break your heart, right?)

Finally, I know a guy who was a regular visitor here in the years leading up to the opening (you wouldn't recognize his handle), who made his money and got out. He was a college kid while the park was being built, living in another Major League town and rooting for another Major League team, but he sensed that this would be an opportunity to make some serious cash. So he put his studies on hold for a year, moved up here, and brokered tickets all through 2010. He made a fortune, and then moved on. As far as I know, he didn't even re-up for 2011.

Here's the kicker: He actually went to a whole bunch of games (something most brokers never do), and turned out to be incredibly knowledgeable and a real fan of baseball, who just also happened to know an opportunity when he saw it.

Some will condemn him, but I have a hard time with that. He assumed some big risk (and lost big time on a couple of those cold and cloudy days last year) and got paid. I wouldn't be a bit surprised to see him playing tournament poker on TV someday.

I think my point is that it's impossible to generalize when it comes to STHs. And it's also impossible to generalize when it comes to the non-STHs. There are just too many different possible circumstances, and any one person may flit between them (which I think is where I fall -- though I've yet to make a profit selling so much as even a single ticket).

Apologies if I have mischaracterized anybody. (Anybody else you want me to diagnose...?)

Posted on September 23, 2011 at 01:50 AM by Rick 442

Oh please Rick, Diaganose Luke!

Posted on September 23, 2011 at 08:11 AM by JoJo Highlight this comment 443

A silver lining to the cloud that has been the 2011 season is that low ticket demand allows folks like me to get tickets in sections of the park we could not otherwise afford. My son and I sat in the Legends Club seats yesterday, right behind home plate. You know you're in primo seats when you can hear John Gordon calling the game ... and no one has a radio on. Although I did have an uneasy feeling throughout the afternoon that some security person was going to come and throw me out and send me back to the upper deck where my regular seats are located.

Posted on September 23, 2011 at 08:55 AM by terry Highlight this comment 444

Good post, Rick. To add to the anecdotal pile, I have two 20 game packages, 1 with 4 seats and 1 with 2 (oddly, in not just the same section, but the same seats). That's a total of 120 tickets, covering 40 games. We started as flex package holders, moved to 20 gamers, and added the second 20-game pair for this season. We share our seats with two other families, and we all end up going to 12-15 games this year. I also bought single game presale tickets to 2 other games (to sit in other areas and get the Hrbek/Gant bobblehead), and we bought LC tix through an auction. I got tickets from friends to go to another couple of games. And we went to spring training games this year. I went to Fenway this spring and took my son to KC for a couple of non-Twins games this summer.

With all that, I think I personally saw the Twins win TWICE this year at TF. Others in the group were more fortunate, but we all suffered through some bad luck and worse baseball.

While I love the ballpark and going to baseball games, the "new car smell" of TF is wearing off. The team and fans lacked energy throughout the second half of this season, and the kids in our families have started to get, well, bored. I know it's hard for fans who linger on websites like this one to appreciate, but there actually ARE other things to do in life beyond going to a ball game. Playing the game, for one. (And traveling baseball takes up a ton of time.) There are other opportunities and obligations that pull us in different directions over time. Sadly, in cultivating the fan base, I'm not sure if the Twins' current brain trust fully understands this.

So anyway, while we're keeping our 4 ticket 20 game package, we're dropping the 2 ticket package. Too many school year, weekday games to work in over 40 games. Too little excitement over the present and likely 2012 roster to generate the interest needed to get each family to commit to more than 6-8 games (one+ per month). That's the way it is for us. Doesn't mean we're not fans...

Posted on September 23, 2011 at 09:41 AM by BR Highlight this comment 445

"We jest at the Vikings, but ... OK, I got nothing. That team is a frickin' mindf@ck year after year but at least the soap opera is entertaining to watch."

Entertaining indeed. Of course I had to go back 30 years for this one.

My rose-colored glasses still work as I think Touchdown Tommy was the greatest of all time.

Posted on September 23, 2011 at 10:49 AM by N.D. (aka N.D. "Rube") Highlight this comment 446

Oh the irony of that video: Just another example of Minnesotans beside themselves over another "Central Division title".

Posted on September 23, 2011 at 10:55 AM by N.D. (aka N.D. "Rube") Highlight this comment 447

" --- but they'll be in line behind those diehards on the waiting list who are now going to get their chance."

Diehards on the waiting list? I don't know about that. I think it more likely that the true diehards have had ST all along and that the waiting list is populated more greatly than you assume with johnny-come-lately profiteers looking to get on the gravy-train bandwagon. It would be interesting to find out how the team does in regard to falloff from the waiting list, that might tell the tale. You would think they would not care about STH falloff so long as they had ready replacements - but we have heard stories about retention pleas that defy that logic. The only thing we can count on is that we are not going to get anything in the way of a straight story from the Twins.

We are going to renew our (20 game) ST package. I am sorely tempted to go the "pick and choose" route because I believe there are going to be great seats available relatively cheaply and we are going to be very flexible (my wife is soon to join me in retirement, which will further enhance our ability to attend anytime, even on short notice). But, as my better half says, "they aren't going to suck forever". We are hoping that we will be able to improve our seating another section or two. And, we still have the option of grabbing up any particularly good deals that pop up on the secondary market - we always go to more than 20 games and I am not going to make the pre-sale mistake again (it's the game, not the oponnent or the giveaway). For the record, we have sold tickets twice - and only because they were impossible to use for us.

My problem with the team as a business is what I perceive to be an organizational arrogance and disregard for loyalty. I have no problem with them having their hands in my pockets aside from the smugness and predatory glee. I believe they can be just as profitable without the constant spin and hucksterism. I feel they were a great deal more fan friendly when they were looking for us to buy them a new home. Further, I really think they should be more focused on just playing ball. I believe more creative and compassionate baseball-minded management would stand the team in good stead. Try to keep in mind that I go to see baseball get played - I leave the drooling over physical plant and swilling of $8.00 "beer" to others.

Posted on September 23, 2011 at 11:23 AM by Ben Highlight this comment 448

I would like people's predictions of how many STH's in Dugout Box 3,4,5,6,11,12,13 are not going to renew? Anyone care to take a guess?

Posted on September 23, 2011 at 12:34 PM by Mike Highlight this comment 449

That was a good diagnosis Rick. I don't think you mischaracterized anyone. Matter of fact, the guy I shared some tickets with last year sort of falls in the category you placed Ben. And, possibly also the person you mentioned who has a ticket group and great seats, only to possibly see "minor attrition" next season amongst the group.

Matter of fact, I think he even upgraded from a 20-game pak to the 40-game pak. But, what I know about him, he goes because it's fun to go. Sure, there's those folks who are the fair-weather types that, once the team starts tanking, they'll bail.

I think to some degree, TF still has enough of a draw to get people in the seats...but I'm not sure how much longer that will continue. Of course, it might last a while...as there's a whole bevy of folks like myself who sat for 28 years in a domed stadium being force-fed re-circulated air for 3 hours per time. But, if this team carries this horrible season into next season - it could be some lonely days at TF. And, it'll be the "die-hards" that are there.

Posted on September 23, 2011 at 12:37 PM by luke Highlight this comment 450

Mike - I'll venture a guess. I'll say about 9-10% won't renew. Those seats are just too good.

Posted on September 23, 2011 at 12:39 PM by luke Highlight this comment 451

Mike ---

I think you're into corporation seats there, tax write-offs and all that. Not the kind of seats that disgruntled individuals are parting with. Just a guess.

Posted on September 23, 2011 at 12:52 PM by Ben Highlight this comment 452

Mike,

Not a lot. The only way they might not renew would be to get rid of extra tickets that they picked up when the team moved to TF. For the most part the better the seats the longer they have had ST. People wont give up priorty for one bad season.

My guess is that most of the people that do not renew are people who got their tickets in the last couple years. These people probably only have 20-40 packs and do not have great of seats.

Posted on September 23, 2011 at 12:52 PM by Joe117 Highlight this comment 453

It's probably hard to move from anecdotal guesswork to aulity predictions, even for the team. How do you account for and balance key variables like a double-dip recession with waning interest in a new ballpark and a huge drop-off in team performance?

With the secondary market for tickets tanking, there could be plenty of long-time STHs who added seats but will scale back their total ticket packages. That would include "real fans" as well as scalpers.

Some of those tickets will be in partial plans and cheaper sections, but some will be in home plate box and Legends Club areas, too. Even some companies will likely reduce their STH packages from, say, 6 to 4 tickets, making even dugout box seats available.

Posted on September 23, 2011 at 2:48 PM by BR Highlight this comment 454

And by "aulity" above, I obviously meant "quality"...!

Posted on September 23, 2011 at 2:49 PM by BR Highlight this comment 455

seven games to play
Twins must win three of them or
one hundred losses

Posted on September 23, 2011 at 5:11 PM by F_T_K Highlight this comment 456

Yeah, well...and if we don't win any more games, we'll tie 1982 for the worst record in Twins history.
Four games against The Tribe? That looks like four losses to me.

Posted on September 23, 2011 at 6:07 PM by luke Highlight this comment 457

Surprised to see no mention of the Span/Valencia car accident. Glad both are okay, but wow, how long would Mauer be out if it was him?

Posted on September 23, 2011 at 9:14 PM by tk Highlight this comment 458

Mauer probably would have retired.

Posted on September 23, 2011 at 10:58 PM by luke Highlight this comment 459

He'd be suffering the lingering effects for YEARS.

Posted on September 23, 2011 at 11:40 PM by Winona Mike Highlight this comment 460

And that would be after a mere tap of a fender.

Posted on September 23, 2011 at 11:41 PM by Winona Mike Highlight this comment 461

Why is it I feel that when the Twins load the bases, the other team has them right where they want them?

Posted on September 24, 2011 at 08:47 AM by terry Highlight this comment 462

Liriano pitches 1/3 of an inning, and is charged with five earned runs.

Oi...

Posted on September 24, 2011 at 2:11 PM by F_T_K Highlight this comment 463

" --- Liriano struggled --- "

Posted on September 24, 2011 at 2:22 PM by Ben Highlight this comment 464

To paraphrase "Crash" Davis, Liriano couldn't hit water if her fell out of a ****ing boat. Duensing and Baker looked good though if you're looking for something positive.

Posted on September 24, 2011 at 2:56 PM by terry Highlight this comment 465

Three more losses to 100 (that number could go down to two with the second-half coming tonight).
Five more to 102.

Posted on September 24, 2011 at 3:29 PM by luke Highlight this comment 466

Oh, but he was battling his tail off out there...

Posted on September 24, 2011 at 3:52 PM by schweady Highlight this comment 467

Twin Land Rovers bump
All we can do is chuckle
Can't make this stuff up

Posted on September 24, 2011 at 4:02 PM by ClarkAddison Highlight this comment 468

Is the next Albert Pujols in next year's draft??

Posted on September 24, 2011 at 5:12 PM by The Truth Hurts Highlight this comment 469

monday night. 100th loss. be there.

Posted on September 24, 2011 at 8:58 PM by bulldog Highlight this comment 470

Speaking of teams with no direction, great job by the Maroon and Gold tonight. Especially enjoyed that Pick 6 to end the first half.

Posted on September 24, 2011 at 9:10 PM by The Truth Hurts Highlight this comment 471

You can build them a new stadium. You can hire a new coach. You can change the uniforms. You can schedule ever-more obscure opponents. You can try anything, but Gopher Football remains remarkably consistent.

Posted on September 24, 2011 at 11:36 PM by Winona Mike Highlight this comment 472

Brian roberts gives a pretty candid response on his concussions.

Posted on September 25, 2011 at 10:55 AM by Jared Highlight this comment 473

Mauer said he wants to catch at least 120 games next year.

Good one!

it's good that he hasn't lost his sense of humor, and can still tell funny jokes like that one!

he WAS joking... right?

Posted on September 25, 2011 at 11:44 AM by mj Highlight this comment 474

Very true, Winona.
It's probably a good thing Texas backed out of the home-and-home series the two schools were talking about (2015-16 I think).
The Gophers would have gotten slaughtered.

Posted on September 25, 2011 at 12:16 PM by luke Highlight this comment 475

"Unless we're going to have guys stop running into walls, stop getting hit by pitches, stop getting taken out with a broken leg at second base, it's not something you can point a finger at and say, 'The players weren't properly prepared conditioningwise or trainingwise,'" Smith said. "They're mostly collision injuries, and short of having guys not play hard, there isn't much you can do to avoid them."

And so it starts - or, actually, continues.

Posted on September 25, 2011 at 12:49 PM by Ben Highlight this comment 476

Now that Span is back he is batting one. Let's see --- best base stealer batting two behind a leftie. I guess that makes - to someone.

Posted on September 25, 2011 at 12:53 PM by Ben Highlight this comment 477

I'm part of an 81-game STH group (6 seats), and of the 10 people or so in the group, only one is dropping. My last game is Tuesday night. It may be bittersweet, but it'll be at least one final game before winter. Having grown up in Cleveland--and having the Cubs as my team-in-law--I know well the "Wait 'til next year" mantra.

Posted on September 25, 2011 at 1:52 PM by fiesta Highlight this comment 478

Oh yes, the Cubs are a TREMENDOUS example of the "Wait til next year" mantra.
"Wait til next year...when we go yet another season without winning a WS."

Of course, that was common around here too for a while: "Wait til next year...when we go yet another season winning nothing more than the Central Division title."

Posted on September 25, 2011 at 2:37 PM by luke Highlight this comment 479

A nice gesture today when Cleveland sent Thome up to pinch hit in the top of the 8th and then sent him out to 3d base before pulling him from the game. A nice final moment in Cleveland if, as expected, that was his last appearance in the city where his big league career started.

Posted on September 25, 2011 at 4:29 PM by terry Highlight this comment 480

And did not the "Erector Set" look of the exterior of Whatever-Corporation-Field make you appreciate the Minnesota limestone on the exterior of TF all the more?

Posted on September 25, 2011 at 4:31 PM by terry Highlight this comment 481

terry - definitely. That steel look would have had an ugly appearance in downtown Minneapolis. It would have looked way out of place.

Bummer...Twins win today, meaning no tying of the Twins' worst record.
But hey, we can still lose 100 games at least.

Posted on September 25, 2011 at 5:26 PM by luke Highlight this comment 482

no. to me, Target field is a very nice ballpark where horseshit embarassing baseball was played in 2011.

I had very good season tickets, but they'd have to be free before I'd take them next year. No one in my group wants any tickets!

Posted on September 25, 2011 at 6:37 PM by mj Highlight this comment 483

for me... I don't blame Drew Butera for being what he is... I blame the Twins for knowing damn well what he could and couldn't do... and they stuck his .155 ass in the lineup all summer.

Posted on September 25, 2011 at 6:46 PM by mj Highlight this comment 484

Let's not forget that he called a whole bunch of lousy pitching performances too...

No offense to the kid Butera, but this team has to rebuild around Mauer as a catcher who DH's on his off days. That means a proven back-up catcher needs to be very near the top of BS's shopping list.

Posted on September 25, 2011 at 8:04 PM by Rick 485

Rick ---

You're assuming that Mauer is going to hold up to the rigors of "his" position - which I think has become more of a fetch than many of us realize. I hope I'm wrong, but his behind the plate days are numbered no matter how you look at it. I hope I'm wrong on Morneau as well.

Posted on September 25, 2011 at 10:42 PM by Ben Highlight this comment 486

So say the team is entirely healthy for the majority of next season. Say Mauer doesn't make it as a catcher next year and the Twins decide to make him play out from behind the plate. Where do you put him? 1st base and drop Morneau? RF and drop Cuddy/Kubel? 3b and slide Valencia to short? Pitch and improve the bullpen? Maybe not drop any of the above but move them to where, then drop that guy?

Posted on September 26, 2011 at 08:55 AM by Jared Highlight this comment 487

That's not a dig either. Just a little game of "Let's be Gardy".

Posted on September 26, 2011 at 08:56 AM by Jared Highlight this comment 488

Interesting new feature in the Twins ticketing software -- you can now pick your own seats for games! This is much much better than the random assignment within price ranges. I applaud the Twins for turning this feature on. I'm much more likely to go to extra games if I know exactly where I am going to sit.

It is also interesting to see the inventory left for the last three games of the season. The reason there isn't anyone sitting in upper deck of left field is that they haven't sold hardly any of them!

Posted on September 26, 2011 at 09:28 AM by Lincster Highlight this comment 489

I like the idea of moving him to third and Danny V. to SS

Posted on September 26, 2011 at 09:28 AM by trebor651 Highlight this comment 490

Got an email from the Twins this morning: "Secure your priority for 2011 season tickets"...
Yeah, I don't think I'll be doing that.

Posted on September 26, 2011 at 09:44 AM by luke Highlight this comment 491

You need to consider the distinct possibility that Morneau is (unfortunately) cooked - which should = Mauer at first.

Posted on September 26, 2011 at 10:05 AM by Ben Highlight this comment 492

But if Justin isn't cooked, at least we know Joe has the arm to get the ball across the diamond.

Posted on September 26, 2011 at 10:09 AM by trebor651 Highlight this comment 493

Here's what I think is the most important thing the Twins have to admit to themselves:

This team is dead in the water for the next five years if Mauer has to come out from behind the plate for any length of time.

That's partly because they foolishly traded away their potential successors for him, and partly because there's no one out there that they could promote or acquire who would be even 70% as good offensively, defensively, or in calling a game. (Maybe they could draft somebody. But good luck finding the next Joe Mauer out in the high schools of America. And good luck in finding anybody who could make meaningful contributions before 2016.)

Mauer's value lies heavily in the performances he's able to get out of the pitchers, and he can't do that from behind them. This should be obvious from what happened this year (with ERAs something like a run and a half lower when he's behind the plate -- can't find the actual article right this minute or I'd link it). It's partly his brain (he seems to understand hitters, um, pretty well) and partly the confidence his presence gives to the pitching staff.

His bat will be fine, but its impact is muted without a fully-healthy Morneau or some other masher behind him. So let's face it: without some sort of miracle, his bat is likely to be muted for a while. That makes him only a bit better than replacement-level at many defensive positions. If he's going to be a hit-for-average, no-power, non-catcher, he's going to end up in right field. What a waste that would be.

As for his breakdowns this year, all we know is that we don't know the whole story -- and that what we supposedly "know" is just a load of crap. Either he's got something that will get better with time and work, or he's got something that is never going to get better. Given that the latter represents a worst case, I'm betting on the former.

So I don't really worry about his ability to remain a catcher. In fact, after seeing his body language out in the field, I'm confident that he's pretty motivated to figure out a way to stay healthy and behind the plate. It has to be killing him to watch the sloppiness the pitching staff has been through this year.

So when people start talking about where he's going to play in the field, my eyes sort of start to glaze over. That's a Twins team you follow by checking the bottom of the standings once or twice a week.

Posted on September 26, 2011 at 10:16 AM by Rick 494

Agree with the points mostly - except do you really think we are going to see Mauer behind the plate enough to validate everything else? A bit too optimistic IMO and, again, I fervently hope I'm dead wrong. BUT, does he not have at least one knee that is junked out on top of the unknowns?

Posted on September 26, 2011 at 10:27 AM by Ben Highlight this comment 495

If he's healthy, Mauer will catch over 100 games, for the reasons Rick stated. Getting a decent back-up catcher in the Mike Redmond mold who can call a competent game and manage an OPS above .650 should not be too hard. They just have to decide to spend the $1.5M necessary to do so.

Posted on September 26, 2011 at 10:43 AM by BR Highlight this comment 496

Again, agreed - it's the "if" that looms very large.

Posted on September 26, 2011 at 10:48 AM by Ben Highlight this comment 497

Is AJ a free agent? He is at least a warrior. Maybe teach the baby jesus a thing or 2 about guts anyways. Would love to see AJ in our $23 million dollar babys ear!

Posted on September 26, 2011 at 11:09 AM by TwinkFan Highlight this comment 498

I just looked at the standings here with three games left in the season. Even if the Twins sweep the Royals, they'll still have the worst record in the American League.

That's just depressing. First to worst in one season.

I'll probably be going to the last game of the year on Wednesday. It's going to be a long off-season this year...

Posted on September 26, 2011 at 11:12 AM by F_T_K Highlight this comment 499

A month or so ago I looked at the schedule and saw the final series of the year was with the Royals, who at that time were still trailing the Twins. I sardonically said to my wife that those could be crucial games with 4th place on the line. Now come to find out the Royals have 4th all locked up. There goes the last bit of drama out of this season-to-forget.

Posted on September 26, 2011 at 12:03 PM by terry Highlight this comment 500

"I'll probably be going to the last game of the year on Wednesday. It's going to be a long off-season this year..."

Lincster, hate to break it to you, but it will be the last game of the season ;)

Posted on September 26, 2011 at 12:10 PM by tk Highlight this comment 501

Well F_T_K, the bitter irony of it is, 20 years ago we had done just the opposite: Worst to First.

Posted on September 26, 2011 at 12:19 PM by luke Highlight this comment 502

It is also interesting to see the inventory left for the last three games of the season. The reason there isn't anyone sitting in upper deck of left field is that they haven't sold hardly any of them!

Lincster - I think those sections are largely reserved for group sales. The Twins probably held them for that purpose a little too long and the groups never materialized. Demand for seats dropped and those seats went unsold. Or groups DID buy them but returned large numbers of seats they couldn't sell and the Twins could not find buyers for them after that.

Posted on September 26, 2011 at 12:53 PM by Stevie B Highlight this comment 503

Call me and my kid gluttons for punishment, but I just bought Dugout box seats to tonight's game. It's not that we're going to start up the Rene Tosoni fan club, but we've never sat in that section before. Once the tix dropped below $30 apiece, it became a bit easier to justify the splurge. (Legend's club tix are even cheaper - saw some going for just $15...)

Posted on September 26, 2011 at 1:35 PM by BR Highlight this comment 504

Well BR, I'm in the same position. I had tickets, but game them to my wife and her friend to use. Figured I'd take the son and go sit somewhere close. Just watching the prices for those dugout box seats. Would love to get him in close behind the Twins dugout. It would make his year.

Posted on September 26, 2011 at 2:05 PM by schda Highlight this comment 505

Well same position, but for Wednesday night :)

Posted on September 26, 2011 at 2:06 PM by schda Highlight this comment 506

My last game and possibly 15th loss of the year vs 1 win will be wed night. Weather in the 70's. Will be moving behind home plate or right or left of both dugouts. Last wed had whole rows to ourselves in sec 115. Ghost town baby!

Posted on September 26, 2011 at 2:14 PM by TwinkFan Highlight this comment 507

I have a single on Stubhub for tonight's game in Dugout Box. If someone has an interesting seat they'd like to trade with me for I'd consider it just for the experience of sitting in a different section and to give someone the opportunity to use the tickets.

Send an e-mail before 4:00 to make sure I see it before I leave e-mail access.

Posted on September 26, 2011 at 2:17 PM by jctwins Highlight this comment 508

I should clarify. I have a pair of seats, but was planning to sell one and use the other. So I have two seats if the one I have listed doesn't sell.

Posted on September 26, 2011 at 2:17 PM by jctwins Highlight this comment 509

JCT you can sit anywhere you want with the exception of the champions club seats. Ushers don't care where you sit these last few games! Open seating!

Posted on September 26, 2011 at 2:48 PM by TwinkFan Highlight this comment 510

Does anyone know if tomorrow night is a STH "Run The Bases" game?

Posted on September 26, 2011 at 5:21 PM by FD Highlight this comment 511

if it is, FD...take your foot and scrape the words "F*** you Billy Smith" in the infield dirt for me and everybody else here, would ya?

Posted on September 26, 2011 at 6:58 PM by luke Highlight this comment 512

Rumor is Ozzie is headed to the Marlins. That would be sad. I love Ozzie and his craziness. The AL Central just got more boring if true.

Posted on September 26, 2011 at 9:23 PM by Lincster Highlight this comment 513

And another lead (albeit a short-lived one) blown by the Twins.

Posted on September 26, 2011 at 9:29 PM by luke Highlight this comment 514

As far as I know, the lowest recorded attendance at TF tonight: 34,847. Ouch.

Posted on September 26, 2011 at 10:04 PM by luke Highlight this comment 515

the Pohlads are laughing their asses off... and it makes me sad. Zigi Wilf...spent a fortune... and has had no luck whatsoever.

Posted on September 26, 2011 at 10:23 PM by mj Highlight this comment 516

the Pohlads are laughing their asses off... and it makes me sad. Zigi Wilf...spent a fortune... and has had no luck whatsoever.

Posted on September 26, 2011 at 10:24 PM by mj Highlight this comment 517

the Pohlads are laughing their asses off... and it makes me sad. Zigi Wilf...spent a fortune... and has had no luck whatsoever.

Posted on September 26, 2011 at 10:24 PM by mj Highlight this comment 518

Zygi is just reaping what was sown for him by past Vikings administrations. The sentiment for a long time has been, "We built that damn Metrodome for you guys, so we'll get around to you eventually."

This will get resolved in the next session, but the Arden Hills concept is about to die an unceremonious death...

Posted on September 26, 2011 at 10:45 PM by Rick 519

Interesting Q&A in the Strib tonight with LA VELLE E. NEAL III and Jim Pohlad.

I wish Pohlad was my supervisor. If I had half the amount of excuses as some in this organization would have in my work, it would be tough to continue employment. Got to love a supervisor who agrees with your excuses, no accountability.

Posted on September 27, 2011 at 12:27 AM by TK Highlight this comment 520

If you read between the lines he said two things:

1. We made a lot of money and therefore were successful.

2. Next year we will again make a lot of money so why change anything.

Posted on September 27, 2011 at 12:47 AM by Ben Highlight this comment 521

He sounded pretty confident about the extended length of the so-called "honeymoon". He may not be aware of, oh, let's say CitiField -- where the honeymoon ended almost before it began, and all because of the quality of the team. (I could name other examples.)

Calmness is certainly a handy trait to have (or at least to project). Rash decisions usually make things worse. But knowing how and when to shake things up just enough to get what you want? That's an art. Now we get to see a little of what our new owner is really made of (besides money, that is).

Between the lines, I heard, "We want to win, but don't expect us to spend this much money on payroll again. It was a bust on so many levels."

Posted on September 27, 2011 at 01:11 AM by Rick 522

Let's be clear that I truly believe we owe a lot of gratitude to the Pohlads for buying the team, keeping them here, and investing what they did in Target Field (as well as employing thousands of Minnesotans in their other businesses). There are all sorts of events you can pull out over the past 30 years to paint them in a bad light, but the truth is we need families like this to have a great city.

That said, after reading the article this morning I'm with Rick....Jim thinks he has a "three to five year" honeymoon period. I think the fans will still come out next year, but if we have a second 62-100 season in a row I think year 4 gets back to a nice comfortable average of 20-25K or so a game. The Pohlads and Billy have never been shy in saying that the payroll is a percentage of revenues, so next year is a big deal in my opinion in sustaining the honeymoon (and thus the ability to sign players).

If I were to bet today, my guess is that the 2013 opening day payroll is $75-80M, with Mauer and Morneau taking up half of that space. A half of the roster would have to be major league minimum type guys.

Posted on September 27, 2011 at 07:31 AM by Lincster Highlight this comment 523

Odd of hitting a hondo tonight??? 50-50? Why throw good money at Cuddy Kubel and Nathan? No way this team even with these guys next yeat gets to 500. Might as well cut an run and build. Last game tommorow night. Either finish 2-15 or 1-16! What a year! Lots of magical beatdowns at the yard this year. It was a nice 2 year run. Anyone at the game last night? Half full?

Posted on September 27, 2011 at 08:39 AM by TwinkFan Highlight this comment 524

I don't think the Twins - when healthy - are as bad as their horrendous record this year. The sun don't always shine on the same dog's backside and there's no question the Twins had more breaks go against them than for them this year. Two players in separate cars collide with each other on the way to the airport??!! Even the '62 Mets didn't have that happen! That's the stuff of legend!

I was glad to see Gardenhire announce spring training would start earlier next year. In their quest this year to keep everyone well rested for October, they didn't do a very good job of getting ready for April through September.

Their needs are pretty obvious and have been mentioned by many on this site: a catcher who can hit better than a buck fifty; a bullpen; a stopper at the top of the rotation; a stable middle infield; and, depending on what hapopens with Kubel and Cuddyer, an infusion of power. That's a lot to find in one off-season.

Posted on September 27, 2011 at 08:40 AM by terry Highlight this comment 525

I was watching the game on FSN last night. When Slowey was pulled, they showed him in the dugout with the most perfect 'deer in the headlights' look on his face.

He finishes 2011 0-8, 6.67. Think he'll even be in baseball next year?

Posted on September 27, 2011 at 09:10 AM by F_T_K Highlight this comment 526

Pohlad: " --- and, (wink, wink, nod,nod) don't publish that interview until AFTER season ticket renewals are due --- "

LEN: " --- you got it, boss --- "

Posted on September 27, 2011 at 09:12 AM by Ben Highlight this comment 527

I know Mr Whipple can not stand the pompus Slowhand! Looking forward next year to waddle in about the 2nd inning and paying $5.00 for an $80 seat. I mean what else are the scalpers gonna do? Eat it?

Posted on September 27, 2011 at 09:30 AM by TwinkFan Highlight this comment 528

How about starting spring training in December? Man some of these guys don't have a clue about cutoffs and which base to cover and are terrrible catching the ball. Terry your wish list is extensive! Almost the whole team needs a make over. I would send Nishy to fall ball maybe with a chest protector.

Posted on September 27, 2011 at 09:35 AM by TwinkFan Highlight this comment 529

Did anyone enjoy their exclusive "run the bases" opportunity last night?

Posted on September 27, 2011 at 10:01 AM by Mike (aka Mike) Highlight this comment 530

Mike, Nope! But I sure was hoping the Twins would have.

Posted on September 27, 2011 at 11:32 AM by tk Highlight this comment 531

Goddammit - Star Tribune "Do you plan on bringing [Billy Smith] back as GM, then?" Jim Pohlad "Yes..."

Click my name for the Star Trib interview with Jim Pohlad.

Posted on September 27, 2011 at 12:14 PM by luke Highlight this comment 532

Yes, the Twins have again made The Onion:

Twins Continue Clawing Their Way Down To Bottom Of Standings

Posted on September 27, 2011 at 1:48 PM by Rick 533

Thank you, Rick...I needed a good laugh.
I especially liked the quote in the last line, "...their brand of shit ball." That's what the front office calls the "Twins Way."

Posted on September 27, 2011 at 5:21 PM by luke Highlight this comment 534

Don't miss tonight's OTL: Almost Famous on ESPN @7pm. Perspective from the guy sitting next to Bartman at Cubs/Marlins NLCS. This will be a good one...

Posted on September 27, 2011 at 6:12 PM by N.D. (aka N.D. "Rube") Highlight this comment 535

100 will wait...

Posted on September 27, 2011 at 9:41 PM by schweady Highlight this comment 536

Rene Tosoni is doing everything in his power to avoid 100-losses...

Can we lose just one final game tomorrow to make it an even 62-100?

Posted on September 27, 2011 at 9:52 PM by Mike (aka Mike) Highlight this comment 537

LOL...come on, the Twins, win a series against the Royals?
Not possible.

Posted on September 27, 2011 at 10:19 PM by luke Highlight this comment 538

Great atmosphere at the park tonight. More people showed up than I thought would, and the players actually played big league baseball tonight.

Posted on September 27, 2011 at 11:36 PM by FD Highlight this comment 539

im on my phone, so its tough to cut and paste... can someone post the Pohlad quotes about payroll... something like "naturally, the payroll will go down because it was higher than we wanted this year".... and "its not like we're just pocketing all the money"

I was VERY glad I canceled my season tix after reading that.

Well Jim, "it is like" you are pocketing a very large amount of money beyond what the current payroll is.

and you are killing the golden goose in year three. Go buy the Yankees and sell the Twins to Zigi Wilf.

throw out an offer... of say... a billion dollars for the Yankees... and the Steinbrenners will take it, and you still will have 3 billion in your wallet.

Posted on September 28, 2011 at 02:25 AM by mj Highlight this comment 540

there is almost no one who goes to all 81 games. a STH is the person who organizes a group in most cases, and the people in the group attend the vast majority of the games. (and sell the tickets they can't use.) I know there are exceptions, but no one in my group looked at it as a money making scheme.

Posted on September 28, 2011 at 02:58 AM by mj Highlight this comment 541

I was at the game last night as well. It was a nice night to be at the ballpark. Worked our way around, sitting in 9 different areas. Happened to be on the lower 3b side when Revere tried for the inside the park homer so had a great view of him running through the stop sign. Thought he was going to make it.

Looks like tonight's weather will be nice as well - grab some cheap tickets and go on out. Either you will see a Twins win or a history making 100th loss.

The guy I was with noticed a couple kids in the concourse he had seen outside earlier, asking around if anyone had some free tickets to donate to them. Guess they found something.

Posted on September 28, 2011 at 08:21 AM by Stevie B Highlight this comment 542

After tonight, a long gloomy stretch of time until Twinsfest in January. I wish I lived in the metro so I could get to the ballpark tonight.

Posted on September 28, 2011 at 09:19 AM by terry Highlight this comment 543

Well my last game tonight! Near 80 degree temps..might even get there before the 2nd inning. I'm hoping alot of no shows so I can grab some good seats. A couple of Holiday brats some smuggled rum and of course hoping our boys lay an egg and get to 100 tonight! If the boys go down tonight I will be 1-16 this year! It was a nice 2 year run @ TF. Will go to maybe 3-4 games next year. I think we can win 70 games next year. But thats a big maybe. Rumor has it that Gardy wants little Nicky back next year. At least he can catch and throw. Plueff looks like he does not have a clue at SS. Make him an outfielder or something. Has Nishy left the country?

Posted on September 28, 2011 at 09:35 AM by TwinkFan Highlight this comment 544

I just found two decent tickets on stubhub for a nice price. So, I'll be at the game, hopefully I can talk my baseball loving coworker to come along. Weather is supposed to be almost perfect, might as well enjoy the ballpark one last time in 2011.

Definitely going to be a long off-season this year. After a good season, the winter flies by as we're looking forward to spring training. After a year like this one, winter is going to seem twice as long... :-(

Posted on September 28, 2011 at 10:03 AM by F_T_K Highlight this comment 545

After last year's disappointing end, it was a long off-season for me.

Posted on September 28, 2011 at 10:58 AM by tk Highlight this comment 546

Man, I feel sorry for John Gordon.
His last broadcast tonight after so many years behind the mic for the Twins.
Good grief, loss #100 isn't exactly a proper sendoff for the guy.

Posted on September 28, 2011 at 1:36 PM by luke Highlight this comment 547

If you thought the Pohland Q & A was disappointing, read this article. It sounds like Bill Smith thinks there is nothing wrong with a team that may lose 100 games, nothing wrong with the coaching staff that hasn't improved a player once they make it to the major leagues. Nothing wrong with a training staff that can't seem to keep anyone healthy and coddles players. Nothing wrong with a pitching coach who has had years to work with the current rotation, and yet they struggle like it's their rookie year.

I attempted to stay positive through most of the season, mostly out of spite of the overwhelming negativity on this board from supposed fans, but after tonight it will be the post season and there are serious issues to be addressed. Sadly the main cause of the Twins problems, Smith, is not going anywhere and neither is any of his staff.

Posted on September 28, 2011 at 2:03 PM by Duffman Highlight this comment 548

Yep TK we will miss the annual beatdown by the bronx bombers this year. I'm a little worried there may be a big crowd tonight with the nice weather and all.

Posted on September 28, 2011 at 2:08 PM by TwinkFan Highlight this comment 549

Pitching staff next year

Starters
Pavano
Baker
Diamond
Blackburn
Swarzak

Bullpen

Dunsing
Perk
Nathan sign for chump change or let him go
Mujares cheap
Dumatrait
Burnett

Trade if you can Lirrano. Thats a sad looking staff!

Posted on September 28, 2011 at 2:18 PM by TwinkFan Highlight this comment 550

I sold my tickets to tonight's game on Stub Hub. I sold them for less than face value, but for more than what tickets have been going for the last few weeks. Suppose it's the combination of warm weather and it being the last game of the season. I did not get season tickets in order to resell them, but it's inevitable that there will be some games I just can't get to.

Posted on September 28, 2011 at 3:57 PM by terry Highlight this comment 551

Twins' season in a nutshell: I am an STH and I am taking my wife to the Dar Williams concert instead of the finale. Enough said.

Posted on September 28, 2011 at 4:08 PM by The Truth Hurts Highlight this comment 552

I guess I'm in the minority. Just getting ready to leave work for the ballpark. This is game number 57 for me this season and I'm looking forward to tonight's game. Sad to see the season come to an end for us. I got an invite to spend the evening cruising lake Minnetonka, but I would prefer to watch the Twins. True, I have already paid for the tickets so I might as well go to the game, but the truth is that I just like baseball. I have really enjoyed the last month of games. I know some have complained about the performance on the field and would never consider watching a last place team, but I will watch most of the playoff games TV, because I'm a baseball fan. It really doesn't matter that my team didn't make the playoffs.

Yes, it will be a long winter, but MLB doesn't a great job of spreading out the awards each week and as the off season transactions start to occur, there is always the possibility that Billy will make a good trades or signings.

Posted on September 28, 2011 at 5:06 PM by minn55441 Highlight this comment 553

Terry, I too, was able to sell my tickets to the game tonight, as I am on-call for work. In this market and how things have been going, I guess I am okay with 50% back. Wish I could say that to the unused games.

Posted on September 28, 2011 at 5:23 PM by tk Highlight this comment 554

If

Posted on September 28, 2011 at 5:26 PM by Winona Mike Highlight this comment 555

If I knew who Dar Williams was, I might understand the full magnitude of TTH's comment.

Posted on September 28, 2011 at 5:27 PM by Winona Mike Highlight this comment 556

Honestly, I've never heard the name before. Country? Rock? Classical?

Posted on September 28, 2011 at 5:29 PM by Winona Mike Highlight this comment 557

In case TTH is too busy preparing for a night on the town,

Dar Williams is singer and songwriter in Pop Folk.

Surprised he didn't mention that it was also Joan Osborne tonight!

Posted on September 28, 2011 at 5:39 PM by tk Highlight this comment 558

" --- there is always the possibility that Billy will make a good trades or signings."

Indeed. And the astronauts may land on Neptune tomorrow morning.

The kids have had their moments and have even been entertaining at times - not entirely certain you can call it professional quality ball though (anybody see Rivera's throw to nobody?).

Posted on September 28, 2011 at 5:51 PM by Ben Highlight this comment 559

Funniest moment so far tonight had to be the fan email question "What was your most memorable moment this season?" DickNBert fell into an unusually long and awkward silence and then got into some stop-and-start half sentences before Bert finally came up with Thome's 600th HR. (I guess this was the scripted answer, since the camera had already zoomed in on the 600 logo on the LF fence...) So, Dick manages a sort of 'Yeah, me too' response before remembering that he should probably mention Harmon's memorial...

Yeah, that's what 2011 seemed like to me, too...

Posted on September 28, 2011 at 8:54 PM by schweady Highlight this comment 560

Well, at least the dufuses gave John Gordon a fitting farewell: a WIN!
Wonders never cease.
Sad to see him go...
Close up TF, lock the gates and let's forget all that was the 2011 season, shall we??

Posted on September 28, 2011 at 9:34 PM by luke Highlight this comment 561

HEY! A walk-off 99-loss season! Let's monkey pile!

Posted on September 28, 2011 at 9:38 PM by schweady Highlight this comment 562

The pile-up was probably more out of relief that the season was finally over and in the books than anything else. I’m sure it wasn’t too much fun for any of them, either.

Posted on September 28, 2011 at 10:21 PM by Winona Mike Highlight this comment 563

Enjoyed watching the ending of Boston's soon-to-be-over season, as the Orioles came back to walk-off Papelbon. Minutes later Longoria walk-off homered the Yankees, to where the Rays erased a 7-0 lead that went into the bottom of the 9th, eventually to tie the game in dramatic fashion and head to free baseball.

That is my highlight from the Twins off-season so far!

Posted on September 28, 2011 at 11:14 PM by TK Highlight this comment 564

7-0 lead that went into the bottom of the 8th

Posted on September 28, 2011 at 11:15 PM by TK Highlight this comment 565

Joan was the opening act but she completely upstaged Dar. For you younger folk, Joan was what Adele is -- but better.

Posted on September 28, 2011 at 11:17 PM by The Truth Hurts Highlight this comment 566

She would pretty much have to be wouldn't she?

Posted on September 29, 2011 at 12:26 AM by Duffman Highlight this comment 567

Oh, I hate to be the one to point this out, but, while the Twins are going golfing, Nick Punto is going to the playoffs with the Cardinals.

Posted on September 29, 2011 at 12:54 AM by Rick 568

Ruesse's latest piece gives us a pretty good early look at his annual "Turkey oh the Year" piece, which is always a hoot. My vote, for now anyway, would go to Mauer - even though he may not totally deserve it. For sure, Pat will not have to look beyond the Twins organization for copy.

Posted on September 29, 2011 at 12:58 AM by Ben Highlight this comment 569

Rick ---

Punto was my wife's favorite Twin - and she's the smartest person I know. Good for him!!!

Posted on September 29, 2011 at 01:00 AM by Ben Highlight this comment 570

Well I finish the season on a high note with a walk of win to go 2-15 @ TF. Both wins vs the Royals. Actually stayed the whole game this time. Perfect short and short sleeve weather. Lots of empty seats in the 3rd deck. Actually counted only about 40 people in the entire family section 309. Ended up moving down to sec 109 row 4 after 2 innings from my sec 326. There were quite a few seats open in this section. It was a nice 2 year run of outdoor ball. Will grab some games from my brothers 20 game package next year. Or get some $5.00 tickets from the scalpers next year. I think Detroit dominates this divison for at least the next 5 years. KC and Clev on the rise. Twinks and Whitties on the decline. I think 70 wins and last place is where we end up next year. No reason at all to throw good money at Cuddy, Kubel or Nathan this off season.

Posted on September 29, 2011 at 08:39 AM by TwinkFan Highlight this comment 571

They must have been there yesterday, but I hadn't noticed all the downed leaves in the street until going to work this morning. It looked like the morning after the end of the baseball season. And how painful is it to see Rick's countdown clock at the top of this page registering 193 days?

Posted on September 29, 2011 at 08:51 AM by terry Highlight this comment 572

Ah, Jesus Rick, why did you have to point that out? lol.
Well, as far as this year's playoff crop, I'm pulling for the Rangers and Cards or D'Backs in the WS.

All I want is an early NLDS exit by the Brewers.

Posted on September 29, 2011 at 09:05 AM by luke Highlight this comment 573

I really wanted to see Dan Gladden and John Gordon on the 'kiss cam' last night.

Lovely night at the ballpark last night. Pavano pitched well, including getting out of a jam in the 8th after a leadoff triple. Defense was solid, with Revere getting another nice diving catch. And Span with the big pinch-hit double, and the walk-off run. And I noticed that nobody smacked him on the head for it!

Let's hope this team makes some improvements during the offseason.

Posted on September 29, 2011 at 09:45 AM by F_T_K Highlight this comment 574

Yes will miss gordo nest year. Course he did not get to call many touch em alls this past season. Lets hope attabury gets nowhere near that mike next year. He is horrrrrrrrrrrrrrrible!!!!!Rumor has it that Leferve will maybe get a shot at play by play next year. Kutz would be ok also

Posted on September 29, 2011 at 10:30 AM by TwinkFan Highlight this comment 575

Very interested in the Detroit-Yankees ALDS matchup!

There are some very good managers in the postseason this year...Charlie Manuel, Jim Leyland, Tony Larussa, and Joe Maddon. Heck, even Ron Washington and Joe Girardi have won at least two postseason series' and all of these managers have appeared in at least one World Series in recent years...how many postseason series' have Gardenhire and the Twins won???

Are the Tigers going to be intimidated by the Yankees and the nostalgia that is October baseball in Yankee Stadium??? I sure hope not! I want to see Detroit take this series and represent the AL Central well...something the Twins fail to do when the calendar turns to October.

Posted on September 29, 2011 at 10:54 AM by Mike (aka Mike) Highlight this comment 576

For those of you that think higher payroll = winning....Just so you know, 7 of the 10 teams with the highest payroll in 2011 did not make the postseason.

Posted on September 29, 2011 at 11:25 AM by Mike (aka Mike) Highlight this comment 577

Amazing night of baseball last night! I went to the game rooting for the Twins to lose, and went away very happy they won. Heard the Rays tie it up on the drive home, and watched the ends of both games to see them overtake the Sox. Just incredible!

Posted on September 29, 2011 at 12:04 PM by jp Highlight this comment 578

Was especially fun to find myself transfixed by baseball once again for that hour or so last night while 4 teams had their postseason fate sealed. LOVED to see the Braves eliminated. Now all playoff games can be enjoyed without the drumming and tomahawk chop chanting. Hated to see the Sox out of it, but they certainly deserved to lose. And it's so incredibly entertaining to see the number ways they come up with to fail. Had to feel that some outside force was at work last night when the Skankees blew the 7-0 lead and then couldn't (wouldn't?) push across that go-ahead run with runners at first and third nobody out. But we've felt that hopeless hurt you saw in their eyes, no?... my thoughts drifted back to 1967 and the Twins' failure to clinch in that last dreadful weekend in Boston.

Posted on September 29, 2011 at 3:16 PM by schweady Highlight this comment 579

Is Rick going to fire up the playoffs guessing contest or is that only when the Twins are involved?

Posted on September 29, 2011 at 3:32 PM by Ben Highlight this comment 580

That final weekend of the '67 season in Boston! Oh why did you have to mention that? Forty-four years later and that one still stings!

Posted on September 29, 2011 at 3:33 PM by terry Highlight this comment 581

Yes 67 was a buzz kill as we got swept the last 2 games in beadtown. Twins had a hell of a team back then. I remember Yaz was on fire for Boston. Finished 91-71 that year.

Posted on September 29, 2011 at 3:58 PM by TwinkFan Highlight this comment 582

I’m pleased as punch that the BoSox blew it. I’ve come to hate them as much as the Yankees. They want the nation to look on them as these plucky underdogs who’ve labored in the shadow of the Yankees all these decades, and how their faithful fans have waited so long for a title. I look at them as another big-market team that can throw enough money at the guys they want and dominate the game. I don’t care about how they’ve been bested by the Yanks all these years, and had their hearts broken by tem countless times. I don’t ever want to hear another word about their stupid curse or any other irrational excuse they may toss out.
Maybe if they and the Yanks didn’t dominate ESPN programming and chatter all summer long, I might not have developed this white-hot hatred of Boston sports teams. Funny thing is, I used to be a Sox fan. I guess you can learn to hate filet mignon if it’s shoved down your throat every night.

Posted on September 29, 2011 at 4:12 PM by Winona Mike Highlight this comment 583

Yes! The 2011 Playoff Challenge will be ready to go tonight. Had to wait much later this year before I could get the correct teams slotted in -- at which time I noticed that the only change in the AL from last year to this is the Tigers in place of the Twins.

Yankees blow a 7-run lead? No Rivera when up by one in the 9th? No runs after first and third with no outs?

Gee, it's almost as if the Joe Girardi thought that a Rays win might work to his advantage somewhere down the line...

Posted on September 29, 2011 at 4:27 PM by Rick 584

(Either that or it was just a good way to stick it to the Sox.)

Posted on September 29, 2011 at 4:27 PM by Rick 585

I would like to see a Detroit vs Brewers final. Course we would never hear the end of it from our friends to the east. I think they have kicked our ass in every sport the last couple years except in pro hockey.

Posted on September 29, 2011 at 4:34 PM by TwinkFan Highlight this comment 586

Whew! I got just enough done last night that I was able to finish it now:

2011 Playoff Challenge

Posted on September 29, 2011 at 4:50 PM by Rick 587

The Rays entered the season with their bullpen lost to free agency, their top outfielder gone and...they win the wild card. When it got hard, they didn't quit. Meanwhile in Minny....

Posted on September 29, 2011 at 9:55 PM by The Truth Hurts Highlight this comment 588

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"You talk about the magic, the aura, but what really makes a stadium is the fans. Concrete doesn't talk back to you. Chairs don't talk back to you. It's the people who are there, day in, day out, that makes the place magic."

– Bernie Williams

Explore the Site

Here are 50 images chosen randomly from the 3037 found on this site. Click the image to be taken to the original post. A new list is created every 10 minutes.


It's pretty easy to see right into the Twins dugout!



B ramp glimpse















This is the LRT bridge under construction as viewed from the east looking west. The ballpark facade would be at the left in this photo.



Cleveland



A whole bunch of guys working on something.



This is a good overview of the spot where the Northstar (bottom) and LRT (top) will intersect.












Note the speakers hanging beneath that deck



The connection from the corner of Seventh Street and Second Avenue. You can now see where the little grassy area and franchise history board will be (the triangular area in the foreground).



Hubert's remains the only sports bar within site of the Dome after 28 years of its existence. It's a cautionary tale.



Click to see the whole page from this 1971 program.



Hardware in the window! (But why are there three trophies? 1924?)









This would be easy to miss, but I found it on a cart located directly behind the Batter's Eye seating on the upper concourse in center field.



Two signs visible from beyond the confines of the ballpark.






Seventh Street windows









This is the view from where the plaza will connect to the walkway on the west side of Target Center. This presumably aids traffic flow back to the A ramp, and perhaps to the skyway connection (though the doors to the skyway right there are typically exit only).



One more exterior view shows that, while the original look was attractive in a way, it seems to be a variation on the look of the Washington ballpark (albeit with a much more coherent collection of elements). What's remarkable is that the design team has refined the concept amazingly well, improving it immeasurably. What we're actually getting is clearly descended from this, but it's in a whole different league:






The glove



Break time






After the rain. (We were in the wrong spot to see the rainbow...)



Ballpark magic: Infield materializes (click to enlarge)



Home Plate Terrace -- really great seats; maybe my personal, budget-based favorite



You write the caption...



Here's a detail from the above image, showing the LED strips up close.



Looking down Sixth Avenue toward the plaza






Checking out the bike racks on the promenade.



Lots of pix waiting to be seen from Bert's memorable night.









Click to see the whole, beautiful image. (Photo by Tyler Wycoff)



(Click to enlarge.)



Since pictures of the ballpark are forbidden, perhaps you'll enjoy this shot of the lovely apple tree in my front yard.



Staging for the next section (Home Plate Box)






This is the left field pavilion in the original concept model. The restaurant pictured to its right has been moved, and the seating area has been extended at least one full section toward center.





Glossary

BPM - Ballpark Magic

BRT - Bus Rapid Transit

DSP - Dave St. Peter

FSE - Full Season Equivalent

FYS - Fake Yankee Stadium (see also: NYS)

HERC - Hennepin Energy Resource Company (aka the Garbage Burner)

HPB - Home Plate Box

HRP - Home Run Porch

LC - Legends Club

LRT - Light Rail Transit

MBA - Minnesota Ballpark Authority (will own Target Field)

MOA - Mall of America

MSFC - Minnesota Sports Facilities Commission (owns the Metrodome)

NYS - New Yankee Stadium

SRO - Standing Room Only

STH - Season Ticket Holder

TCFBS - TCF Bank Stadium

TF - Target Field

Selected Bibliography - Analysis
 


(1993)
 


First Edition (1992)
 


Second Edition (2006)
 


(2008)
 

Selected Bibliography - Surveys
 


(1975)
 


Second Edition (1987)
 


Not a "Third Edition" exactly,
but it replaced the above title
(2000)
 


(2000, large coffee table)
 


Original edition (2000, round)
 


Revised edition (2006, round)
 


(2001, medium coffee table)
 


(2002, small coffee table)
 


(2003, medium coffee table)
 


(2004, very large coffee table)
 


(2006, very large coffee table)
 


Combines the previous two titles
(2007, medium coffee table)
 

Selected Bibliography - Nostalgia
 


(1992)
 


Book and six ballpark miniatures
(2004)
 

Complete Bibliography

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