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Season Gone

November 2, 2012 11:24 AM

Saying goodbye to the baseball season is always hard, but some years are harder than others. This is not one of those years. Goodbye, 2012! Adios! Aloha! Shalom! I'll think about you again...someday...maybe...

When I do think about it again in a couple of years, what I'll remember about 2012 is that the Twins were out of things pretty quickly -- both on the small scale (games) and the large scale (standings) -- and weren't a whole lot of fun to watch most of the time.

Nats win! (August 17, 2012)

I didn't fully realize this until I went to Washington, DC in August.

Nationals Park, in its bones, is pretty much a clone of Target Field -- or is it the other way around? There are lots of differences in details, of course, but walking around the upper concourse in Washington was a lot like walking around the upper concourse here. Same for the main concourse and club areas.

There were some unique spaces, but after a while, all the "unique spaces" begin to look alike. Sitting in one upper deck is pretty much the same experience as the other -- with one noticeable exception: The play on the field in Washington was a whole lot more fun to watch.

There was a snap to everything the Nationals did. Every pitch seemingly had purpose. Every swing of the bat seemed well-advised. Taking pitches seemed like more than just the absence of a swing. There was a deliberateness in both offense and defense, and definitely in pitching. Somehow scoring runs always seemed imminent, and keeping the other team (the Mets) off the board always seemed possible. A runner on first with one out? You didn't even consider the possibility of a double-play (and it didn't happen).

That night, like the Twins many times this year, the Nats gave up a couple of quick runs in the first. Unlike the Twins, that didn't seem to change them in the least. By their manner of play, they simply refused to give the momentum to their opponent. They played with great confidence -- swagger, if you will -- as if they already had the lead, and once they scored (four runs in the fourth), the Nationals laid claim to the field and held the now-real momentum through the rest of the game.

At every moment, they played like a team that had decided they were going to win the game. And to no one's surprise, they did. It was a blast to watch.

I experienced some of the same thing in watching the playoffs. The first rounds were genuinely exciting, a reminder of why we love baseball in the first place. (Unfortunately, all of that early excitement made the 2012 World Series seem like sort of a yawner. Unless you are a fan of the winning club, sweeps are always a drag.)

John Bonnes has an excellent (and very substantial) interview with Terry Ryan in the TwinsCentric Offseason Handbook (a must-have at $9.95). Ryan, having just surrendered the "interim" from his title, sounds like someone who really does understand what needs to be done to bring the Twins back to contention -- at least in theory.

And while Ryan is wise enough to know that he can't engineer chemistry or swagger or excitement, I do wonder if the organization as a whole recognizes that these are essential elements of any overhaul. Put simply, adding a few decent pitchers and maybe "some competition for Trevor Plouffe at third" is not going to get this team from workmanlike to exciting. In fact, no amount of just shuffling players or coaches around (I fear that's what they've done) will take this team to the next level.

This is where over-reliance on the numbers -- any numbers -- is a big mistake. As hard as this is to say, in terms of pure excitement, Joe Mauer is no Buster Posey (or Pick-Your-Favorite-Molina). Justin Morneau is no Prince Fielder. Denard Span is no Bryce Harper. Glen Perkins is no Sergio Romo (maybe if he dyed his beard...). And you can search high and low in the Twins clubhouse and you won't find a Brett Gardner anywhere.

These are the types of players who make a team exciting to watch, primarily because they lift everyone else around them. Where would the Twins be if they had Brian Wilson or Hunter Pence in their dugout? Scoff if you will, but that's why guys like Torii Hunter and Mike Redmond and Nick Punto are still missed (unfortunately for the Red Sox, not even Punto's endless enthusiasm could overcome Bobby Valentine; fortunately for the Marlins, Redmond will be back on a big stage next year).

Two of my favorite Twins

The Twins have shown long stretches of confident and exciting baseball in the past decade or so, most notably in 2001 when the team's snappy style of play saved the franchise and almost single-handedly paved the road to Target Field. And there is at least some excitement already in the Twins clubhouse. Ben Revere, my new favorite Twin, is one such player, and there would be some wisdom in building the New Twins around what he brings -- but hurry! After a couple of seasons of the currently-banal Twins Way, even the most exciting players begin to lose it.

Ryan does not need to make deals, he needs to make splashes (signing Greinke would do). He doesn't just need to find pitchers and hitters and fielders, he needs to find leaders and spark plugs and swagger. And he mustn't let anybody talk him out of players who are exciting to watch but "don't fit" for some weird reason (on which team would Brian Wilson not be a freak?). That has happened way too often to this franchise.

When this team next takes the field on April 1, my hope is that they can actually believe they will still be standing late in October. If that isn't the case, none of the offseason moves will matter. No amount of spin or explaining or coaching or natural improvement or off-season conditioning can be the ingredient which will lift this team beyond its dismal past two years.


Speaking of "dismal", only one of us managed to pick the World Series winner in advance, so congratulations to FD on winning the Playoff Challenge for the second year in a row! He and runners-up DeePee and Stevie B will all be receiving prizes.

Did anyone else notice that this year's World Series featured two teams which were founding members of their respective leagues, but had never met in the World Series before?

You may remember that there were eight teams in each league when the first actual World Series was played in 1903. That means there were 64 possible combinations until 1961, when the expansion era started. (Can you name the first expansion team in each league to play in the Series? Answers at the end.)

Of those combinations, 21 have still never happened. Tigers and Dodgers? Tigers and Braves? A's and Pirates? They all sound like plausible match-ups since each team has had periods of dominance -- just like Tigers-Giants sounded -- but none have happened. (Can you name the most frequent match-up in WS history? Answer below.)

I'm sure it won't surprise you to learn that the Yankees have already played all of the original NL teams (plus four of the eight NL expansion teams) in the Series at some point. But it may surprise you to learn that the Red Sox have been in the World Series enough times to also have played all but one of those original teams. (Can you name the missing one? See below.) The Cardinals, who until very recently were second only to the Yankees in WS appearances (after this year they're third behind the Giants), have never met either the Indians or White Sox there. The Giants now have only one original AL team left to meet, and it could have also happened this year: the Orioles.

If you don't want to scroll down for the answers, you can explore the history of World Series match-ups with this handy PDF grid.

Congratulations to the 2012 "World Series Champions" (you're going to need to modify that sign -- and not just to add a year)

One final observation from the actual series. Have you noticed the very subtle language change in describing the winner? At no time were the Giants referred to as "world champions." To the contrary, they were always referred to as the "World Series champions."

The difference is not merely linguistic or academic, and I'm sure it's not coincidental. The phrase "world champions" implies "best team in the world" or maybe "most successful team in the world". But the phrase "World Series champions" implies no such thing. In fact, all it means is, "winner of the World Series."

No one can deny that the MLB post-season is no longer about determining which team is the best. It's about determining which team is the hottest (and, perhaps, luckiest) at the current moment. There is certainly a required level of excellence to get into the playoffs, and the level of play is not in question, but the notion of using the playoffs to determine the best overall team disappeared a long time ago (probably 1969; sorry, Miracle Mets -- oops, I just gave away one of the answers).

Given the ascendance (and somewhat baffling recurrence) of the World Baseball Classic, combined with the expansion of the playoffs to second- and now third-place teams, there's no way the language change could be coincidence. Someone somewhere within MLB realized that they needed to stop claiming "world champ" status for the WS winner, and Buck and McCarver were given their marching orders. They were flawless. (If you think you heard otherwise, I would not be able to dispute your claim. I did not watch every inning of every game. But the phrase caught my ear early, and I started paying attention. In the time I was listening, they never wavered. Not once. And the change was also retroactive to the 2011 Cardinals whenever they were mentioned.)


I have more winners to announce next time from games you entered very early in the season. Ah, we were so foolish in our youth...

A couple of nights ago, while getting in the car after dinner out, I had a fleeting thought: "It's just about game time. I wonder who the boys are playing tonight."

The sun was still coloring the sky from just below the horizon, and I flashed on several great sunsets I watched during games out at the Railyard this summer. The Twins may not have been great, but the ballpark still is, and just watching the Great Game being played in the waning sunlight is certainly one of life's pleasures.

Hey, I said I won't miss the 2012 season. Of course, I will miss the game.


Answers: First expansion NL team: Mets in 1969. First expansion AL team: Royals in 1980. The Yankees have met the Dodgers in the WS an astounding 11 times, and the Giants 7 times. If you include the 2000 series with the Mets, there have been 14 all-New York Series, including two when the Series never left the Polo Grounds. Additional all-city series were Cubs-White Sox in 1906, and Cardinals-Browns in 1944, which was played entirely at Sportsman's Park. Meanwhile, the Red Sox have never played their former cross-town rival Braves in the World Series. In an odd twist, the Braves played their 1914 WS games at brand new Fenway Park. But in the two years immediately following, the Red Sox played their WS games at brand new Braves Field. Ah, Boston.

Comments


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Thanks for the update Rick. I did catch the World Series Champions part, but couldn't compare it year-to-year.

Posted on November 2, 2012 at 11:42 AM by tk Highlight this comment 1

Rick, I was at Nats Park in 2011 and agree that it is very similar to Target Field. One thing that I actually liked there better than here, is that the outfield seating felt more connected. I think the admin building in LF and the plaza really make the outfield upper deck seats feel a million miles away from the action.

Posted on November 2, 2012 at 2:13 PM by CSG Mike Highlight this comment 2

Wait, Rick, you're suggesting that Buster Posey and Bengie Molina are/were not merely good but EXCITING players? Agree to disagree there.

I like having colorful players on the team. Makes it more fun to root for them. But boring can win, too. (What was so exciting about the 2011 Cardinals?) The key ingredient is talent - and of that, the Twins need more.

Posted on November 2, 2012 at 4:45 PM by BR Highlight this comment 3

Oh, the reason I cam here: Casilla's an Oriole.

End of an error.

Posted on November 2, 2012 at 4:46 PM by BR Highlight this comment 4

Best news I've heard in a long time.

Posted on November 2, 2012 at 6:08 PM by Rick 5

He'll probably look like a future Hall-of-Famer next season against the Twins.

Posted on November 2, 2012 at 10:20 PM by Winona Mike Highlight this comment 6

Interesting article in SI this week about the Giants building for pitching to suit their ballpark. Enough said.

Posted on November 3, 2012 at 08:53 AM by jctwins Highlight this comment 7

At&t Park in SF is a total joke. A multi-purpose stadium gone completely haywire. They should throw the damn place into the bay and move back to the Stick.

Posted on November 4, 2012 at 07:36 AM by luke Highlight this comment 8

Go there sometime and then spout off about its merits.

Posted on November 4, 2012 at 08:02 AM by Winona Mike Highlight this comment 9

Heh...I would rather stand in front of the iron gates of hell then go to SF, of course who would know the difference?
One amazing thing about TF, you CANNOT under any circumstances, fit a football field in there. It cant be done.

Posted on November 4, 2012 at 08:59 AM by luke Highlight this comment 10

Not sure why, but Luke's last two posts reminded me of this.

Posted on November 4, 2012 at 09:25 AM by TheTruthHurts Highlight this comment 11

Is "Luke" a real person? Some of his posts are such head-scratchers that they make me wonder if he is actually an alter-ego under whose name Rick writes when he wants to take a break from adulthood and let his inner-child out.

Posted on November 4, 2012 at 10:10 AM by terry Highlight this comment 12

Oh, Luke is all too real.

Oh, and AT&T Park is one of baseball's great wonders.

Oh, and TF's designers made sure that it was possible to lay out a football grid there, though it's unclear to me just how well it would work.

Posted on November 4, 2012 at 10:47 AM by Rick 13

He definitely needs help.

Posted on November 4, 2012 at 2:09 PM by Winona Mike Highlight this comment 14

A "great wonder"? Seriously?
I tried an alter ego earlier this season terry, but the algorithim for this site doesnt make it easy...it gives it away by calling people by their registered name in parentheses (aka luke, aka terry, aka WinonaMike)...lol.

Posted on November 4, 2012 at 4:55 PM by luke Highlight this comment 15

Three possible football configurations at TF:






Posted on November 4, 2012 at 6:19 PM by Rick 16

You've got to get out and visit these places, Luke. You can't just condemn them from a distance with any kind of authority. For instance, you called AT&T "a multi-purpose stadium gone completely haywire." marking out a football field in a baseball stadium doeesn't suddenly make it "multi-purpose." Were that the case, Met Stadium would have been considered such and it was nothing of the sort. Nor were Fenway park, Yankee Stadium, Tiger Stadium, Wrigley Field, Shibe Park, Forbes Field or any other place where football was an afterthought.
And how can you say with any kind of conviction that you'd rather stand in front of the gates of hell then go to San Francisco if you've never experienced the place? It's a fantastic town, but you really need to get out of the house and out of Minnesota to appreciate that there are places that are more beautiful and interesting than Minneapolis.

Posted on November 4, 2012 at 7:35 PM by Winona Mike Highlight this comment 17

San Francisco is amazing. I was there for a long weekend and only experienced a fraction of what it had to offer. I was able to go to a Giants game at AT&T Park. I want to go back ASAP.

Luke is an idiot.

Posted on November 4, 2012 at 8:55 PM by CSG Mike Highlight this comment 18

I'm sort of afraid to ask what Luke's objection to SF the city might be... Sea food? Ocean spray? Very long bridges? Cable cars? The Muni? Alcatraz? Earthquakes? Towns named for the patron saint of animals? Cliffs? Spectacular views? Rice-a-roni? Or is it something else...?

Posted on November 4, 2012 at 9:33 PM by Rick 19

On the demise of the term, "world champions", that makes sense that it would have to do with the playoff system making it less likely that the theoretical "best" team would win, but I had just assumed it had to do with an "internationalist" perspective. I have heard complaints over the years that "world champion" made no sense since it wasn't a true international competition. (Even though there was never much doubt that the world series winner was better than any Japanese or other team.)

Posted on November 4, 2012 at 9:35 PM by robin Highlight this comment 20

Most of those reasons Rick...lol. Cable cars are cool...and the MUNI is a good system.
As for the TF football configs, I think the first would probably be more feasible. In order to allow enough room for Field Goals and PATs. The second and third seem to be a bit tight.
Last year, they sort of fit a gridiron into Wrigley HOWEVER they could only kick PATs and FGs on one side. And yes I knkw they put down mesh...but they play on the side of caution.

Posted on November 4, 2012 at 10:06 PM by luke Highlight this comment 21

Wait a minute...did you see that the field in the first one cuts into the first four rows of Sec 238 in the Grandstand? Are we putting the field on a platform?

Posted on November 4, 2012 at 10:10 PM by luke Highlight this comment 22

Luke - you are off base.

PacBell park is very nice. Candlestick? I remember freezing in July, with hot dog wrappers blowing everywhere. If I had to choose Candlestick or the Metrodome to watch baseball in, the Dome wins hands down.

Posted on November 4, 2012 at 10:30 PM by Jfh Highlight this comment 23

I like coming to this site, it reminds me that I am not the biggest idiot on the net. Thanks Luke!

Posted on November 5, 2012 at 12:45 AM by tk Highlight this comment 24

luke, Next time you ride the BART, remember to hold Mom's hand. I think you got off at the wrong stop again and wound up over at Oakland Coliseum... I simply must insist that you give SF another look.

Posted on November 5, 2012 at 10:13 AM by schweady Highlight this comment 25

I don't know TK, you did recently make a comment about commodores in schools.....

Rick I think the configuration that would fit, and make sense from a seating/viewing point is the one that goes straight down the third baseline.

Posted on November 5, 2012 at 11:09 AM by Duffman Highlight this comment 26

Okay, I suppose we could all just agree that AT&T Park actually IS a total joke at the iron gates of hell. I mean, before this game against the Twins, they had 4 whole days after the Genentech concert to bring back that crappy dead grass in CF! Unbearable. (Almost worse than the horrible shifts in sky color ignored by Canon's inadequate-but-free photo stitch software.)


Posted on November 5, 2012 at 11:29 AM by schweady Highlight this comment 27

That panorama does good justice to the view from the upper deck, which I think is unrivaled in the majors (no offense intended toward the Multifoods Tower -- wait, I mean offense intended).

My advice for SF: Buy a cheap ticket so that, if the game sucks, you can just sit back and gaze out at the bay...

Posted on November 5, 2012 at 11:52 AM by Rick 28

The worst part about ATT IMO is that there is one really long side, and one really short side. could they not have backed the place up a bit to make it more even? The DOME had better dimensions than ATT....lol.

Posted on November 5, 2012 at 12:32 PM by luke Highlight this comment 29

"The worst part is that there is one really long side and one really short side". I think I gave that answer once on a 10th grade geometry test. Teacher wasn't impressed.

Posted on November 5, 2012 at 2:20 PM by terry Highlight this comment 30

I puzzled a little bit about those football configurations -- the diagonal one would probably require some sort of notch out of one of the end zones -- trying to figure out which would afford the best revenue potential. From that standpoint, either of the perpendicular ones is probably better than the diagonal.

I did check to see if diagonally the other direction would fit, and it might. That would put the Champions Club seats on the 50-yard line, albeit pretty far back from the sideline.

None are ideal. Any could work.

(Luke, you're floating in McCovey Cove. At least fire up Google Earth and have a look before you make this worse for yourself than it already is.)

Posted on November 5, 2012 at 4:06 PM by Rick 31

Here's the other diagonal:


Posted on November 5, 2012 at 4:22 PM by Rick 32

Oh lord. I'm just laughing now...

could they not have backed the place up a bit to make it more even?

What a great point! This reminds me, couldn't the Twins have just ignored all the constraints of their site (roads, rail, HERC) and built it right where they wanted it? What failure!

Vikings execs and HKS, take note of luke's wisdom. You need not be constrained by the land you don't own, the city streets, the light rail, the telecom substations. You can build the new stadium exactly the way you want just by "backing the place up" until you have the site dimensions you desire!

Posted on November 5, 2012 at 4:33 PM by GoAUpher Highlight this comment 33

Lol terry...thanks, I needed a good Monday laugh.
Of course, I did forget that the footprint for ATT was not exactly ideal (that should sound familiar, as TF's footprint wasnt very kind either) which does explain the reason they could only fit 307 ft from home plate to the bay. It was just the parcel of land they had to work with.
To me, it just looked cavernous...I like the tight, small parks: ala TF, PNC, Fen, etc. :)

Posted on November 5, 2012 at 4:39 PM by luke Highlight this comment 34

But GoAUpher...does that not evoke a concept called Eminent Domain? If the city needs space to build a road, for example, and your house is in the way, the city will buy you out and tear your house down. Thats the way it works. Remember that same concept was what moved the BNSF tracks behind TF ever so slightly, to make more room.

Posted on November 5, 2012 at 4:43 PM by 2-160 (aka luke) Highlight this comment 35

"That panorama does good justice to the view from the upper deck..."
Rick, those were our ticketed seats, purchased intentionally for the overall view after perusing the Giants' 3D seat viewer app. I did manage one lap around the park prior to first pitch, but after that I was glued to that seat, fascinated by the changing scenes within that fabulous frame. Section VB305 Row B seats 5-6.

...and, my little Easter Egg for the day: Take a look at AT&T Park in Google Maps in a browser rather than in Google Earth. Zoom in almost all the way. Scrolling over to the first base side will display a Cal Golden Bears football configuration and scrolling over to toward the Cove will make it switch it back to baseball.

Posted on November 5, 2012 at 7:17 PM by schweady Highlight this comment 36

*third* base side... sigh.

Posted on November 5, 2012 at 7:18 PM by schweady Highlight this comment 37

The football field would have to run along one of the foul lines in order to maximize the value of half the seats in the park. I know they ran the field from home plate to centeer field at Yankee Stadium last year, but I'm sure that if they could, they'd have put the field much closer to the seats to justify higher ticket prices.

While I'm on the subject of Yankee Stadium, I'd like to remind Luke that the right field foul pole was a mere 296 feet from the plate at the old stadium prior to the 1973 renovation. when one imagines a classic ballpark, the original Yankee Stadium is always one of the first to be mentioned, even though Luke would disapprove.

Posted on November 5, 2012 at 9:35 PM by Winona Mike Highlight this comment 38

Well, yeah Winona...Jesus I am not that far removed...lol. Dimensions are a bit more standardized these days is all I was saying. Didnt Polo Grounds have a center field fence at like 435 feet? You wont find that in a MLB park these days...although I think Enron Field in Houston has center field at about 415, 420?

Posted on November 5, 2012 at 10:06 PM by luke Highlight this comment 39

the problem with that configuration is that one of the endzones would be on the on ramp to 394.

Posted on November 6, 2012 at 12:10 AM by Duffman Highlight this comment 40

The images above are to scale.

Posted on November 6, 2012 at 12:32 AM by Rick 41

i know what rick was trying to do, so i am saying this completely tongue-in-cheek. but may the golden gophers never play a football game in target field. in fact, may no football team ever play football in there. play football in, oh i don't know, football stadiums. same reason i find the nhl winter classic to now be well past it's shelf-life. don't have a desire to watch hockey (or football) in a baseball stadium. and if you are going to do that stuff for the gimmicky nature of it, at least play hockey in football stadiums where the sight lines would be good for fans.

tcf stadium now......tcf stadium forever! ;-)

oh and go gophers! ski-u-mah!

Posted on November 6, 2012 at 02:51 AM by Betaband Highlight this comment 42

I have to disagree about the Winter Classic. I love the thought of an outdoor game whether it be at a baseball stadium, football stadium, or in a corn field. Something about outdoor hockey is BA.

Posted on November 6, 2012 at 08:58 AM by tk Highlight this comment 43

Agree never should they hold the winter classic in a baseball stadium. Could you imagine Larry boy trying to repair that field after that? The goat ropping concert was bad enough. Those events should always be in a football stadium with next turf grass. Sight lines are much better there also. Forget the concerts and hockey games at Target Field! Larry has a hard enough time getting the current field to look half azz!!

Posted on November 6, 2012 at 09:15 AM by twinkfan Highlight this comment 44

AT&T might have a great view from the upper deck but I have to admit I like a nice urban backdrop visible from any seat. I think TF's is.."meh".. but the one in St. Louis is awesome with the Arch.

Posted on November 6, 2012 at 09:19 AM by James1979 Highlight this comment 45

Well, I'm not much for hockey, but I always try to catch at least part of the Winter Classic, and I think that's the point of it. It draws in the curious, gets people to sample the sport, and that sampling can only be good for the NHL. There's something just right about seeing hockey played outdoors.

And I'm not sure why anyone would care about playing hockey in a facility -- baseball or otherwise -- that would otherwise be sitting unused. It's hard to see a downside (unless, of course, you're one of the people who has to reopen the facility after putting it to bed for the winter just a couple of months earlier).

And, James1979, I also like the skyline view from TF just fine, but the San Francisco Bay? Nothing can beat it.

It's hard to hold that against TF because they actually did find just about the best backdrop they could have found in the region. It's just a shame that the boxy Multifoods Tower completely blocks the view of a much more attractive building.

Posted on November 6, 2012 at 12:44 PM by Rick 46

To BPMers everywhere: Don't forget to vote today!

It's easy to feel like a tiny dot in the gigantic pointillist painting that is the United States, but the pointillist artists all knew that even a single missing dot screws up the picture. In other words, every dot -- including yours -- counts.

It's on days like today that we realize that the "government" isn't "them" -- it's us.

So, get out there and vote!

Posted on November 6, 2012 at 1:03 PM by Rick 47

luke~
Yep, because moving a rail line just a little bit (negative effect to the rail folks, zero) so that stadium construction can happen is exactly the same as taking over larger tracts of privately owned land and displacing the businesses who inhabit them so that city streets can be rerouted in an effort to make a baseball stadium more symmetrical (when the asymmetrical version works just fine).

Posted on November 6, 2012 at 1:21 PM by GoAUpher Highlight this comment 48

Renovations to Twins' spring home approved

"Hammond Stadium's seating capacity will be expanded from 8,000 to 9,300. The concourses will also be extended with a new outfield boardwalk around the playing field, including a party deck in right field. Additionally, the dimensions of the field will be altered to match those of Target Field."

Do you think this counts towards the "improvements every year" rule that the Twins have? I've been to Hammond Stadium a few times and it could use a refresh. Great news!

Posted on November 6, 2012 at 2:02 PM by CSG Mike Highlight this comment 49

Glad to hear the concourse at Hammond Stadium will be enlarged. The smallness of the concourse is one of the few negatives about that park. Of course when you are at any ballpark and the temperature is in the 80's and it is early March, you can overlook just about any problem.

Posted on November 6, 2012 at 3:13 PM by terry Highlight this comment 50

Twink...I agree! Just look what the McChesney concert did to TF...lol. The WC is a huge production that takes up the entire field. And imagine what not only the rink would do to the grass but also the refrigeration units! I think it will be a bit more than Larry can handle...lol.
james, I would LOVE to go to Busch Stadium to see that view. St Louis is a great town, and the new park gives a great view of it.

Posted on November 6, 2012 at 6:54 PM by luke Highlight this comment 51

So how many members of the State House and Senate, who voted FOR the Vikings stadium lost their seats in the election??

I don't think it was very many, if any at all.

Posted on November 7, 2012 at 09:07 AM by Mike Highlight this comment 52

Mike: My very quick and terribly unofficial data comparison would support your guess that the stadium vote was a non-issue in terms of whether or not one's seat was truly in jeopardy. I have only taken the time to check the Senate -- not sure if I'll bother doing the same with the House -- but I came up with:

38 were in favor of the stadium bill
24 were re-elected, 4 were voted out, 10 did not run for re-election

28 were opposed to the stadium bill
19 were re-elected, 4 were voted out, 5 did not run for re-election

Posted on November 7, 2012 at 10:16 AM by schweady Highlight this comment 53

I never heard the stadium come up as an issue in any of the legislative races in my part of the state.

Posted on November 7, 2012 at 10:54 AM by terry Highlight this comment 54

My first thought was that a bunch of the stadium supporters retired rather than running again, and some of them explicitly said that votes like the Vikings one just did them in.

But I don't know of a single race where the stadium vote was actually an issue.

Posted on November 7, 2012 at 11:04 AM by Rick 55

At its longest The Polo Grounds had Center field at 483 ft. Houstons ballpark has center field at 436 ft. Could you imagine A ballpark center field today at 480 ft the players would hate it.

Posted on November 8, 2012 at 03:29 AM by Leroy Highlight this comment 56

Kenny Chesney to return to Target Field on July 12. Only one week to repair the field as Twins return home on July 19 (1st games after all star break). Click name.

I had hope they were done with these, although I figured if there was cash to be generated the Twins would keep scheduling them.

Posted on November 8, 2012 at 09:19 AM by Stevie B Highlight this comment 57

Oh my gosh, I better hurry up and call the Twins to renew my season tickets for 2013 so I can get that "presale opportunity" for Kenny Chesney....Nothing better than $100 tickets and $10 beers surrounded by thousands of drunks

That will also put me in line for the 2014 All Star Game "priority" as well...

I suppose I can expect a call from the Twins in the next week or so asking if I plan to renew.

Posted on November 8, 2012 at 10:11 AM by Mike Highlight this comment 58

The return of Kenny Chesney. If you were still holding onto that one last shred of hope that the Twins could think of ways to put fresh, new talent on the field in 2013... fuhgeddaboudit.

Posted on November 8, 2012 at 10:31 AM by schweady Highlight this comment 59

Oh, but the grass! The grass!

Posted on November 8, 2012 at 10:41 AM by Rick 60

Maybe one of the offseason enhancements will include changing to SporTurf at TF to accommodate Chesney in the future? Disappointing news about next years concert indeed.

Posted on November 8, 2012 at 12:24 PM by luke Highlight this comment 61

I still haven't figured out why having a concert at TF is a bad thing.

Because of the grass? Really? Ha!

Posted on November 8, 2012 at 12:52 PM by DreDogg Highlight this comment 62

(I was merely anticipating the uproar. I couldn't care less. The grass will be fine. The intention from the start was to make it possible to hold many types of events at TF, and I'm glad they're doing it. I'm still bummed about what happened with Paul McCartney, because that's a concert I might actually have wanted to attend.)

Posted on November 8, 2012 at 1:25 PM by Rick 63

Kenny Who??? LOL! What a waste!!! Larry Boy better be growing a couple of sod farms nearby. Lets hope for about 3 inches of raing before the concert to make it mud feast! What a joke! Let Kenny goat rope over at the Bank! FCOL!

Posted on November 8, 2012 at 3:54 PM by twinkfan Highlight this comment 64

I should clarify my earlier comment (#57). I'm not anti concert/event at TF, it just seems that a week turnaround after an event like this could be tough.

I remembered that U2 played Busch Stadium in the summer of 2011 so did a little search to see how they dealt with that, considering that tour was an even bigger project than McChesney. Check out the video I found on the field preps - they removed ALL the sod from the field (Cards had about 2 weeks from removal date until the next home game).

Posted on November 8, 2012 at 4:05 PM by Stevie B Highlight this comment 65

Willingham wins Silver Slugger Award.

Posted on November 8, 2012 at 6:36 PM by Ben Highlight this comment 66

For you Star Tribune folks, Joe Christensen is leaving the Twins beat at the end of the year and will begin covering Gopher football in 2013.

Phil Miller will switch from covering Gopher football and move to the Twins beat with LaVelle E Neal III.

I will miss Joe C's work with the Twins but I think he will be a great asset for Gopher football coverage.

Posted on November 9, 2012 at 07:47 AM by Mike Highlight this comment 67

I too was hoping for a better, or at least different person. U2, Springsteen, etc.

As for the grass it is going to look terrible either way so let them replace half of it again, Kenny's promotion is probably paying for it anyway.

Posted on November 9, 2012 at 12:23 PM by Duffman Highlight this comment 68

Sad to see Joe C. demoted like that. They could have at least given him the Minnesota Stars beat instead.

Posted on November 10, 2012 at 03:15 AM by TheTruthHurts Highlight this comment 69

Been in Las Vegas for a week, 80 Degrees and Sunny. I come back to the gloom that is a chance of Snow and 30 Degrees. I am glad that a new article was posted and Luke still has his "Sense of whatever he has" No luck on the World Series Ticket, still looking for some more suggestions.

Posted on November 10, 2012 at 11:45 AM by JoJo Highlight this comment 70

Hey Jo Jo it's almost 70 right now @ 9:30pm!!! Humid too. I heard Joe C wanted to stay closer to home with his young family.

Posted on November 10, 2012 at 9:35 PM by twinkfan Highlight this comment 71

ahh yes. TTH = once a snarky, know-it-all, becky badger supporting douche.....always a snarky, know-it-all, becky badger supporting douche. thanks for your two cents sir douche. your are the hero of internet trolls and flamers everywhere. your parents should be so proud. :-)

Posted on November 10, 2012 at 11:13 PM by Betaband Highlight this comment 72

Classy post Beta.

Posted on November 11, 2012 at 08:55 AM by terry Highlight this comment 73

No kidding...Beta must you crap on EVERYBODY?

Posted on November 11, 2012 at 10:24 AM by luke Highlight this comment 74

I still think Beta and Ben are the same person.

Posted on November 11, 2012 at 12:02 PM by Duffman Highlight this comment 75

He’s all puffed up because the Gophers beat the only team with a worse record in the conference than themselves yesterday.

Posted on November 11, 2012 at 12:31 PM by Winona Mike Highlight this comment 76

winona mike: why don't you and TTH go find a room and make it official already. idiot.

Posted on November 11, 2012 at 1:12 PM by Betaband Highlight this comment 77

you guys can finally consummate your packer & badger love while posting your oh so witty and insightful comments on ballparkmagic.com

Posted on November 11, 2012 at 1:15 PM by Betaband Highlight this comment 78

btw - sorry rick. couple posters on here who i am just not a fan of and never have been. and i am sure they feel the same way regarding me.

Posted on November 11, 2012 at 1:21 PM by Betaband Highlight this comment 79

I'm just not that good around children.

Posted on November 11, 2012 at 3:25 PM by Winona Mike Highlight this comment 80

Beta, you can hate Bucky, but he still loves you. Bucky lives above the fray.

Posted on November 11, 2012 at 4:09 PM by TheTruthHurts Highlight this comment 81

I'm beginning to miss luke's thoughtful posts.

Posted on November 11, 2012 at 5:08 PM by schweady Highlight this comment 82

"I still think Beta and Ben are the same person."

Wow! Two classless morons in just over a day - must be some sort of record!

Posted on November 11, 2012 at 5:35 PM by Ben Highlight this comment 83

Thanks schweady...lol

Posted on November 11, 2012 at 8:31 PM by luke Highlight this comment 84

Ahem, Winona. To be accurate, Purdue also has a worse B1G record. Lets keep our facts straight when insulting the Gophers shall we? =)

Posted on November 11, 2012 at 8:49 PM by GoAUpher Highlight this comment 85

The only Big Ten standings I have access to, other than digging for them online, is what I saw on-screen before Saturday's game, and it was only on-screen for a few seconds.
There are some here who might not believe it, but I've been rooting for the Gophers since the later Murray Warmath years, and I'd love to see Jerry Kill succeed in turning the sagging program around. I've lost faith in the program to a degree that prompts me to, like I do the Vikings, take a cynical, jaundiced, fatalistic view of their chances and incremental gains.

But mostly I do it to bother someone who just drops in from time to time to torch someone and then gets defensive when others poke back.

Posted on November 11, 2012 at 11:43 PM by Winona Mike Highlight this comment 86

Sounds like there may be $10 tickets available for the Michigan State game versus the Gophers on the Saturday after Thanksgiving.

I was told that if you go to www.mygophersports.com and use the promotion code "Cub", you can get $10 tickets to the MSU game.

Hopefully that works for folks.

Posted on November 12, 2012 at 11:31 AM by GoAUpher Highlight this comment 87

Winona~
Ah, yes. You got the "Purdue just beat Iowa but MN hasn't played yet" standings there.

Posted on November 12, 2012 at 11:32 AM by GoAUpher Highlight this comment 88

GoAUpher - that is correct. I saw that on a Cub receipt last week and tried to post it here but the post seems to have never appeared (maybe a problem with the link I used?).

The receipt noted that quantities were limited and it was sponsored by Gopher football, TCF and Cub.

Posted on November 12, 2012 at 12:51 PM by Stevie B Highlight this comment 89

Thanks for providing another example of why Ben.

Posted on November 12, 2012 at 11:27 PM by Duffman Highlight this comment 90

That doesn't look like a tasty Holiday dog Rick! Too bad the kid could have had 2 dogs for half the price of that crappy one at the park! LOL!

Posted on November 13, 2012 at 10:09 AM by twinkfan Highlight this comment 91

Baker signs with the Cubs

Posted on November 13, 2012 at 11:04 AM by trebor651 Highlight this comment 92

Moonshot vs The Friendly Confines

Posted on November 13, 2012 at 1:23 PM by DreDogg Highlight this comment 93

I, for one, would have been disappointed if the Twins had brought Baker back (and I will be if they bring back Pavano). It's time for a new-look rotation.

Posted on November 13, 2012 at 1:27 PM by Rick 94

I am surprised to see that no one has brought up the letter from Dayton to Wilf, about potentially pulling the plug on a deal if moving forward with Seat fees.

Click Name for link

Posted on November 13, 2012 at 3:46 PM by tk Highlight this comment 95

Click link for Stribcast

Posted on November 13, 2012 at 3:46 PM by tk Highlight this comment 96

Ah yes, the Sternly Worded Letter™. A politicians favorite.

Posted on November 13, 2012 at 3:53 PM by GoAUpher Highlight this comment 97

The Vikings can make it politically palatable if they create a private club/luxury area as the Twins did with the Legends Club and only limit seat licenses to that area. If they try to charge long time STH's a license fee to retain their own seat locations, even the face-painted crowd is going to get upset.

Posted on November 13, 2012 at 4:13 PM by terry Highlight this comment 98

I've been following it today, but it seems unlikely that the deal would unravel.

At one time there was concern about gambling revenues and whether they would be sufficient to cover the state's commitment, but I think that has passed. I only bring it up because I'm trying to figure out what the real motivation might be behind the letter, and financial issues are the first thing which spring to mind.

The second thing was that maybe it's become clear just how sweet the deal is for the Vikings and Dayton wants to reopen the negotiations. That could certainly lead down an interesting path given the new make-up of the Legislature.

Posted on November 13, 2012 at 4:22 PM by Rick 99

Gee, I wish I would have raised the likelihood that the Vikings would gouge STHs with exhorbitant PSLs to help cover their share of the deal. Oh wait...

I hate this gamesmanship and mock shock now. And where were all the media articles about this possibility when legislation was being debated?

STHs now - deal with it.

Posted on November 13, 2012 at 11:00 PM by BR Highlight this comment 100

Literally no one, be it Dayton, legislators, media members, fans or the general public, ought to be surprised or upset that PSLs are on the table. The political posturing over this matter is as opportunistic as it is revolting. Personal Seat Licenses are part and parcel to constructing an NFL stadium these days. That said, I've never believed the Vikings intended to have PSLs throughout 100% of the stadium. Such a thing simply isn't feasible. Few teams have tried that and the Jets, in particular, paid the price in damaged consumer relations and bad PR for going too far. My thought has always been that the Vikings would step no further than the lower deck between the 25 yard lines. Granted the Gophers went further at TCF Bank Stadium, but the amount of seats in that zone would be greater for the Vikings and sold at a higher price.

Posted on November 13, 2012 at 11:29 PM by Jorge Highlight this comment 101

PSLs throughout 100% of the stadium...simply isn't feasible.

I disagree. If the price is right, I'd be willing to bet there's a market for it. At the very least, the Vikings would have been foolish not to at least test the idea to see what kind of reaction they got.

And I agree that Dayton's shock is a bit overplayed, and that we're witnessing some sort of political theater here. But that makes figuring out what's really going on all the more important.

Dayton could say the word and the bill passed last year could simply be amended in next year's session to delete the PSL language -- or whatever other clauses he has come to find distasteful.

So, what does he really have up his sleeve?

Posted on November 14, 2012 at 12:50 AM by Rick 102

My guess re Dayton is that he's just looking to play "protector" - appear to get the team to back off a bit and limit the use of PSLs to something along the lines of what Jorge suggests. Keep the possibility of relatively cheap seats alive, consistent with his grand vision of a "peoples' stadium" (whatever that really means).

It's working, too, given the stupid piece that Souhan penned for the Strib today.

Posted on November 14, 2012 at 08:38 AM by BR Highlight this comment 103

I thought TF was the "people's stadium".

Posted on November 14, 2012 at 09:46 AM by Ben Highlight this comment 104

I'm a Vikings season ticket holder on the upper deck in a corner. The socio economic make up of the fans in the immediate vicinity of my seats and in the concourse below largely aren't candidates for PSL purchases at significant prices. The prices the Vikings could reasonably expect to get from that segment of the fanbase would be low enough to make it worth skipping due to the backlash. This isn't the lower deck or even the upper deck between the 30s and below row 15 where you have a significant number of corporate seats. These are largely middle income people who will think twice about renewing if the Vikings ask for $1,000 per seat and if the team can only get $250 per seat, is the relatively low return really worth the hassle?

Posted on November 14, 2012 at 10:47 AM by Jorge Highlight this comment 105

I'm looking at this as posturing on the same level as the alcohol nonsense the Legislature pulled on the U. In both cases, the issue at hand (no booze in GA/PSL sales) was well known in advance and was approved as part of the respective bill. After the fact, politicians found easy populist capital in decrying the thing they voted for/signed into law.

That said, much as we've seen an orderly and positive transition to GA booze sales at TCF following the pressure from the Legislature it is totally possible that this posturing results in a "positive" (for STH at least) result on the issue of PSL's.

Posted on November 14, 2012 at 10:59 AM by GoAUpher Highlight this comment 106

This will sound brutal, but I think that may be the point, Jorge. Part of the idea behind PSLs is to shift the customer base to those with a higher level of disposable income. In other words, one of the revenue benefits of a new stadium on the scale of an NFL team is to shake out people like you and me, who can't contribute significantly to the Vikings' bottom line on an ongoing basis.

The questions then are A) can the market support it through corporations and the higher income fans, and B) will the revenue gains offset the backlash from the fans who will be shut out.

Posted on November 14, 2012 at 11:15 AM by Rick 107

Rick~
The Gophers have been having the same battle for a while now and while no one at the U will admit it there's plenty of evidence that this is the case. Right now the U is able to earn more revenue from basketball with the required "donations" for basketball despite losing STH. And if the Gophers start winning more, that money only increases.

Obviously as you note there is a tipping point where the market won't support it, but at least initially the U seems to have pegged the numbers right from a purely revenue perspective (though not on a home field advantage one).

Posted on November 14, 2012 at 11:33 AM by GoAUpher Highlight this comment 108

I see your point about turning over the fan base, but if you try to do that, you need to know people will come in to replace those going out. Now to a certain extent, the new stadium will get people jumping on the bandwagon, much in the way that many fans who previously never owned or considered season tickets flocked to the Twins when Target Field opened. What the Vikes need to worry about is the fact that Minnesotans are accustomed to seeing every game on TV and did so even when the NFL had a vastly higher amount of blackouts than now and that Minnesotans are lower deck snobs.

Regarding the first point, although the Vikings have drawn well for pretty much their entire history, a significant portion of fans only want to watch on TV and wouldn't consider going to the stadium at all or more than once per season. Large HD TV screens, more camera angles than ever before, deeper analysis, DVR pause/rewind and things like Sunday Ticket and RedZone have created an even greater incentive to stay home. Overcoming that barrier will be a difficult task in the long run, especially if fans used to the home front can’t adjust to life off the couch.

The bigger issue is the second matter. Minnesotans love sitting on the lower deck, even if it means taking an inferior seat to one on the upper deck. I remember seeing fans in section 134 in the Dome at Twins games, truly awful seats, when superior seats were open in sections 226 or 227. I struggle to see how the Vikings will get moneyed fans to lay down significant sums when an upper deck seat outside the 25 yard lines comes in return. Many people will simply stay home and watch than sit in what they consider the hinterlands, regardless of the game day atmosphere and good view of unfolding plays.

Posted on November 14, 2012 at 12:00 PM by Jorge Highlight this comment 109

Torii Hunter to sign 2 year deal with Detroit. That lineup just keeps getting better.

Twins will probably counteract that by signing Yuniesky Betancourt.

Posted on November 14, 2012 at 12:13 PM by Stevie B Highlight this comment 110

Minnesota fans just need to wake up and get with the times.

Remember all of those fans ripping the Twins for getting rid of the cheap seats general admission seats when they moved from the HHH Metrodome to Target Field? When you go from 50,000+ to 38,000 you will lose a lot of those cheap seats. And most ballparks these days no longer have general admission seating.

Then fans started complaining about the pricing tiers too for premium games and such.

I don't know why Governor Dayton is making issue of this now when it was clearly stated in the stadium bill that the Vikings "private" contribution could come from user fees, which includes PSL's. This concept is nothing new and we heard over and over that if we build a stadium, the people who use it should be the ones paying for it.

Is it simply Vikings season ticket holders complaining as a result of the recent survey sent out by the team??

And the market will dictate how much and how many PSL's will be sold. Let the market play itself out. This isn't New York, Washington or Dallas but it's also not Jacksonville, St. Louis, Buffalo or Oakland.

Just ask the Twins from their experience with Target Field, the market will dictate the premium seating/pricing and if there is no demand, the teams will be required to reduce the inventory or reduce the price until the demand is high enough.

It just seems like this PSL thing is such shock to Minnesota and Vikings fans when the reality is that this concept has been around almost 20 years. It's just new to the Minnesota market.

Posted on November 14, 2012 at 12:32 PM by Mike Highlight this comment 111

Well, there's nothing like building a stadium to highlight the class shift in progress. Attending these events in person has gradually shifted from "available to all" to "available to the moneyed". New stadiums accelerate that process and bring it to the fore.

My hunch is that the people complaining are the ones who will be shut out -- also the ones more likely to vote for Dayton in a couple of years. (Is that too cynical?)

Posted on November 14, 2012 at 12:58 PM by Rick 112

It depends on how you view things when you discuss who's being priced out and how. Not long ago the Vikings priced all 64,000 tickets equally. Eventually, I think during the McCombs era, they got wise and implemented tiered pricing. The top price tiers today absolutely exceed the top price of the early 1990s as do much of the middle tiers. However, the lowest price for a Vikings ticket is $15. Long story short that equals $9 in 1992 dollars and you weren't even getting in the door to the Dome for $9 back then. Even the second lowest price of $39 is about $23 in 1992 dollars, which also wouldn't have got you into the stadium back then. So it's relative. A long time season ticket holder sitting downstairs on the 45 is paying significantly more now than then, but also went years without paying true market value for those seats. However, if your goal is to just be in the building, it's easier now than then.

Posted on November 14, 2012 at 1:13 PM by Jorge Highlight this comment 113

Do they really offer $15 tickets? I find that hard to believe for today's NFL tickets.

Last I knew, the cheapest possible ticket for a Vikings game is around $40. We paid $50 face value for row 22 upper deck seats for the 49ers game in September. And those seats were pretty high up and in the corner (section 205).

Posted on November 14, 2012 at 2:05 PM by Mike (aka Mike) Highlight this comment 114

The media coverage of the outrage over PSL is dumb. They were always in the plan. Move on local media, next topic.

I found a new site/forum that I am loving... It has info on all the development going on around town. I've wasted at least 4 hrs on it today alone. Click for link.

Posted on November 14, 2012 at 2:39 PM by CSG Mike Highlight this comment 115

Mike, I hopped on Ticketmaster before writing that post and there was a $15 price tier available. You're a long way from the field by Metrodome standards, but you're at the game.

Posted on November 14, 2012 at 3:41 PM by Jorge Highlight this comment 116

Ben TF is the Peoples Ballpark...do not call a place like that something as droll as a stadium.
Maybe they will call the new Vikes place The Peoples Temple? Lol...how many of you are old enough to remember THAT infamous moniker?

Posted on November 14, 2012 at 4:38 PM by luke Highlight this comment 117

I am completely understand the business sense of implementing PSLs, however, I am not fond of them being implemented to all areas.

I know that I have a differing opinion than most of you. And yes, the market will dictate the price. However, true fans will pay and it will get paid, but at the cost of some fans that are not as economically endowed.

Posted on November 14, 2012 at 5:45 PM by tk Highlight this comment 118

When last I was a season ticket holder with the Vikes – two years ago – they were offering a $99 season ticket. I suspect there were just a few, in the corners, behind columns, and in the last row of the upper deck. But for a ten spot you were in the door. It may have gone up by now or perhaps not; for two years now, the Vikes have had to beg fans to come to games. I know this for a fact; I’ve received several calls over the past two years asking me to consider returning.
I can’t believe that the Vikes will try to gouge the folks in the last rows with PSLs. They can turn off their TVs and tell them to pound sand’ leaving the Vikes with a half-empty stadium and sagging TV ratings. As an outstater, I felt cut off when the North Stars opted to take a more lucrative deal with a TV station that reached a far smaller outstate audience. I quit on them and have never watched hockey again. Not even the formation of The Wild has sparked a rekindling of my interest in the NHL.

Posted on November 14, 2012 at 6:25 PM by Winona Mike Highlight this comment 119

I was a Viking STH for 31 years, going back to Met Stadium days. A combination of things caused me to give them up four years ago. Ever-increasing cost of tickets, being required to pay full freight for two meaningless scrimmages, all the discomforts of the dome including the "child sized" seats, the ever-increasing amount of drunkenness and the fact that more and more games were being played at times when I could not attend (if I went to a Monday night game, I could expect to be home between 1:30 and 2:00 AM - with the rest of the work week still ahead of me). Sports franchises that have enjoyed great fan support must resist the temptation to sit on their laurels and take their fan base for granted. In deciding to what extent they should go the PSL route, the Vikings should keep this in mind.

Posted on November 14, 2012 at 7:18 PM by terry Highlight this comment 120

Asking questions is not the same as making an actual decision. The team is in info-gathering mode. Let's not overeact. I think it is HIGHLY unlikely that they will decide to impose PSLs on every seat. I'd put the over/under at about 30% of the seating, with 3 or 4 tiers depending on location and club options/amenities. This market can easily support that, without pissing off Average Joe STH.

Posted on November 14, 2012 at 7:35 PM by BR Highlight this comment 121

Pricing exhibition games the same as regular season games bothered me at first too. But when I thought about it and did a little math, I didn’t feel so badly. For starters, season ticket holders got a per ticket price break for buying for the entire season. When I first became a STH, the per-ticket discount was enough to more than make up for the price of the two exhibition games. I don’t know what they’re charging these days, so that may no longer be the case. But for the first part of my 15 years as an STH, even with all the games priced the same; I was still realizing a discount.
But as I said, all that may have changed by now.

Posted on November 14, 2012 at 8:07 PM by Winona Mike Highlight this comment 122

Preseason games remain the same price as regular season games which is no big thing for season ticket holders. If the Vikings, or any NFL team, reduced preseason prices, they'd increase regular season prices to make up the difference. They're not about to leave that revenue on the table.

Posted on November 14, 2012 at 10:10 PM by Jorge Highlight this comment 123

Well, the Governor has backed off.

Maybe this dust-up was just, I don't know, a misunderstanding...? That would be such a simple and unsatisfying answer, but I suppose it happens.

Posted on November 15, 2012 at 1:36 PM by Rick 124

I may be living in a cave here, but would the PSL be a one time charge as long as you are a season ticket holder, or is it a once a year charge that goes along with your season ticket package?

Posted on November 15, 2012 at 1:54 PM by JoJo Highlight this comment 125

One time - for as long as you continue to renew the plan on the seats.

Posted on November 15, 2012 at 1:56 PM by Ben Highlight this comment 126

Dayton often acts very impulsively, resulting in negative results even if his intentions were pure. Regardless of what was or wasn't explicitly written, he's either naive or foolish to actually believe PSLs weren't in play as a funding mechanism on the Vikings' part from stage one. After the Star Tribune did a little old fashioned muck raking, Dayton sent his letter, the tone of his which unnecessarily and unproductively amped up things in the media and general public. Seeing that things were headed to a potentially bad place, he dialed it down today.

For their part, I think the Vikings were a bit afraid to use the PSL word too much during negotiations precisely due to fear that use of this relatively standard funding mechanism would get blown out of proportion. Not knowing the extent to which PSLs would be used and how they would be priced also likely induced a low volume on this issue by the team. However, taking the position of "it's better to ask for forgiveness than permission" didn't exactly help matters once the team placed PSLs in the open.

Posted on November 15, 2012 at 2:21 PM by Jorge Highlight this comment 127

It's ok Gov Goofball just took a few more pills and all is well! We could see another 180 tommorow!

Posted on November 15, 2012 at 4:36 PM by twinkfan Highlight this comment 128

PSLs are a slippery slope and don't benefit fans at all, unless the team becomes wildly successful. (Witness the number of folks trying to sell PSLs for the Legends Club at discounts of 50% and more, just 3 years into a new park). In MLB, only the Cardinal's PSLs have done well on the secondary markets.

To the Twins credit, the LC memberships (essentially PSLs) were placed on a new level of seats that didn't exist at the Dome, so no STH was faced with the issue of "buy a PSL or lose your seats", but it doesn't seem like that will/could be the case with the Vikings.

Granted PSLs have more history in the NFL, but it can be a disaster for PR and long-standing STHs (witness the debacle in New Jersey).

If the Vikings are smart, PSLs will only apply to a new class of seats. If they are greedy, they will alienate their long-standing fan base.

Posted on November 15, 2012 at 8:56 PM by Jfh Highlight this comment 129

Good points jfh. I wonder what a "new class" of seats would be for the Vikings? Field suites? I believe the Carolina Panthers were the first to introduce PSLs in the NFL?

Posted on November 15, 2012 at 9:40 PM by luke Highlight this comment 130

PSLs are tough in MLB because the good seats attached to them already cost so much money due to the sheer volume of games. Even if the top NFL tickets cost more on a game by game basis, pre and regular season combined account for only ten games. MLB asks for a greater commitment of time and money.

The Jets made several vital errors. They overpriced their PSLs and spread them almost throughout the stadium. The team's theory was the Giants spread their PSLs through 100% of the stadium and did so at higher prices than the Jets. The Jets oblivously missed that the Giants have had more success over the past thirty years or so, have a wealthier fan base in general, have a deeper corporate base, and also date back to 1925 rather than 1960 and have some season ticket holding families that date at least back to the post World War II era. The marketing and sales effort by the Jets also pushed too hard and alienated people.

At the height of the controversy, the Jets and Giants simultaneously hosted NFL Draft parties for season ticket holders at the soon to formally open Met Life Stadium. The Giants party was held in one of the stadiums nicest club areas and featured free, top quality food and an open bar and only minor pushing of the PSLs. The Jets party was held in what amounted to a concourse area with some chairs and tables spread around, stadium style food and drink, none of which were comped, and sales people pressing PSLs to the point of being obnoxious. The Giants low key approach created some sales and the Jets alienated their already upset fans even more. The team, despite pledging not to, eventually cut PSL prices and reduced the number of affected seats.

Posted on November 15, 2012 at 11:22 PM by Jorge Highlight this comment 131

I should add that the Giants party was for PSL and non PSL buyers alike. The Jets actually had a private area for PSL buyers with nicer accomodations and put non PSL buyers in the concourse with spartan conditions which led to even more hurt feelings when the division and comparison to how the Giants handled things became known in the aftermath.

Posted on November 15, 2012 at 11:27 PM by Jorge Highlight this comment 132

One time - for as long as you continue to renew the plan on the seats.

Or, you can finance the PSL. So, at Cowboys Stadium for example, if you can't quite swing the $150,000 PSL for their very best club seats, you can make a down payment of $15,000, followed by annual payments of $12,652.51 at 8.15% interest for 27 years. This in addition to the actual ticket price of $3,500 per seat, per year.

Wow.

Posted on November 16, 2012 at 01:23 AM by Expectorate Highlight this comment 133

You can't finance most PSL's.

$150K for a PSL? Must be a lot of dumb oil money in Texas. Wow indeed.

Posted on November 16, 2012 at 03:19 AM by Jfh Highlight this comment 134

Another sad day for Twinkies fans.

Posted on November 16, 2012 at 08:08 AM by schweady Highlight this comment 135

The financing schedule I cited above was taken directly from the Cowboys season ticket site. There are similar offers for the Jets. You can also do it for the more "economical" club seats at Cowboys stadium, with their PSLs of either $16,000, $35,000, or $50,000.

It's amazing - the club seating at Cowboys Stadium, with the prices above, takes up all seats except the upper deck on the sidelines, 3 tiers, basically from endzone to endzone. Except for some sections in the very highest corners, there are PSLs everywhere else in that stadium, ranging from $2,000-$12,000.

There may be a market for PSLs in the new Vikings stadium - but not that market.

Posted on November 16, 2012 at 09:02 AM by Expectorate Highlight this comment 136

The Twins didn't impose PSLs on the Champions Club, did they? Anyone know why not?

I fundamentally dislike the concept of a PSL. STHs have always been able to renew their tickets, so coming up with a new way to charge for that privilege is, in my view, transparently greedy. A form of extortion, really. (Want to keep your tickets? Pay up extra or we'll let someone else buy 'em next year! Nice way to do business, with your most loyal fans.) If the team wants to raise more money, it can simply increase the cost of the ticket. Of course, they do that, too, but at least it's more honest.

The only legit reason to charge an additional fee, imo, is for access to something other than the seat. The Legends Club, for example. And in those cases, they should call it a membership.

Still, PSLs are part of the financing landscape and expecting a team to forgo them entirely is naive. As for Dayton's letter, it was over-the-top reactionary, but with a purpose. "Protect the little guy" is always a good populist strategy. And Twinkfan, stop posting stupid posts like #128. Says far more about you than it does Dayton.

Posted on November 16, 2012 at 09:19 AM by BR Highlight this comment 137

So long as "fans" allow themselves to be gouged they will be gouged.

Posted on November 16, 2012 at 09:53 AM by Ben Highlight this comment 138

The acronym PSL reminds me of another acronym I learned (the hard way) as a youthful new car buyer: ADP (Additional Dealer Profit).

You can call it gouging, but it's not really. Businesses and rich people pay it willingly, many without a second thought. It's just part of the cost of a business amenity, or rich person's leisure activity.

But there's no denying that it is part of the process of transforming a "people's sport" into a "rich people's sport", as Dayton's letter bluntly stated. But since we, as a society, place so much emphasis on free markets, there's not much to be said. If the market will bear it, the Vikings would be foolish not to capitalize.

In fact, I'll go as far as to say that if they allow their stadium to sell out on a regular basis, then they're not charging enough for tickets. Smart pricing strategies tell you that you should raise prices to the point where you're at about 90% capacity. Only then will you know you've gotten all the money there is out there for your product.

Yeah, the whole thing makes me want to puke too. (Then again, I haven't watched a single NFL game all season. I don't miss it, though I do sort of miss the days when I felt like it was something I could enjoy.)

Posted on November 16, 2012 at 10:04 AM by Rick 139

I feel like going out and buying a box of Twinkies to feed to my kids -- just so they can say that they ate one once (to the best of my knowledge, they haven't yet). But I have a feeling the stores are selling out even as I type this...

Posted on November 16, 2012 at 10:06 AM by Rick 140

Re the Twinkies deal: There was a bit on the news when this first came to light that the Teamsters had it so Twinkies would be delivered by one truck, Cupcakes by another, etc. So, you had several trucks running around doing the job of one truck. Good for union jobs - bad for business.

Posted on November 16, 2012 at 10:13 AM by Ben Highlight this comment 141

Rick ---

No problem - check eBay.

Posted on November 16, 2012 at 10:23 AM by Ben Highlight this comment 142

Yeah, the coverage of this little labor flap has sort of soured the wholesome impression I've always held for Hostess as a company. It sounds not like a company which makes a high-demand, culturally classic product, but a bunch of low-life, cut-throat bosses having a very public pissing contest.

When I was a kid, we lived for a time across the street from their day-old store on Winnetka Avenue in New Hope. Whenever Dad pulled the Galaxie 500 in there, we knew we were in for a special treat. It will always be, for me, a truly magical destination.

Posted on November 16, 2012 at 10:26 AM by Rick 143

Regarding Twinkies, Ho Ho's, Wonder Bread, and other brands, they'll all live on. Those brands and their recipes represent major value when Hostess is liquidated. Another company, or companies, will purchase them and continue onwards. They may even get the Hostess name in bargain. No one should fear this is the end for Twinkies. It isn't.

Look at it this way, you can buy such beers as PBR, Grain Belt, Schlitz, and Rolling Rock even though the breweries that created them are long gone with the brands surviving in the hands of new holding companies and being brewed on a contractual basis by the likes of Miller. Twinkies and Wonder Bread won't come from a Hostess factory anymore, but they'll look and taste the same and will still be widely available.

Posted on November 16, 2012 at 10:31 AM by Jorge Highlight this comment 144

You're right, Jorge, as long as the manufacturing processes transfer. Have you ever had those Dolly Madison Twinkie knock-offs? Too spongy!

A Twinkie that isn't really a Twinkie would be a crime against humanity... (Hmm, that's a sentence I never thought I'd write. And as crimes against humanity go, I suppose it'd be a misdemeanor at most.)

Posted on November 16, 2012 at 10:41 AM by Rick 145

Are Hostess products a big enough deal for the Chinese to be interested in?

Posted on November 16, 2012 at 10:52 AM by Ben Highlight this comment 146

Sales of $2.5B annually, so, probably.

Posted on November 16, 2012 at 10:59 AM by Rick 147

A Galaxie 500. My older sister had one - what a tank that was!

Posted on November 16, 2012 at 11:07 AM by BR Highlight this comment 148

I was never a big Twinkies guy. Gre wup out east. Drake's was big -Funny Bones and Ring Dings, mmm mmm mmm. They were bought out by Hostess long ago. Wonder what'll happen to them...

Posted on November 16, 2012 at 11:10 AM by BR Highlight this comment 149

Should the recipes be sold we'll probably find out that the fillings started out as crocodile shit. Isn't that what happened with Oreo?

Posted on November 16, 2012 at 11:13 AM by Ben Highlight this comment 150

1965 Galaxie 500 was my first car. Tahoe Turquoise. With the 390 engine, 'tank' is not the first word that comes to mind.

Probably a pile of Banana Flip wrappers under the seat, too...

Posted on November 16, 2012 at 11:25 AM by schweady Highlight this comment 151

We grew up with Zingers before I'd ever had a Twinkie. Plus, I felt so patriotic around the bicentennial eating Dolley Madison stuff.

Posted on November 17, 2012 at 12:35 AM by fiesta Highlight this comment 152

Ooh! Banana Flips! Love 'em!
I had a budddy who drove his dad's old Galaxie 500 past the 200,000 mile mark. It was a tank. We went everywhere in that thing. It looked like hell those last few years, but it never stopped rolling.

Posted on November 17, 2012 at 01:06 AM by Winona Mike Highlight this comment 153

BR -

If I remember correctly, there were no PSLs for Champions Club, but there is tiered pricing depending on the seat location. I'm sure I would have asked why when I went to the Sales suite during construction, but don't remember the answer.

The logical one may be ownership - if you have an LC membership, you can sell/transfer the seat locations and maybe the Twins wanted total control of those seats.

Besides - if it costs over $16K/seat/season, did they really need a PSL? And there are far fewer CC seats than LC seats.

Posted on November 17, 2012 at 05:26 AM by Jfh Highlight this comment 154

Sinker has written another nice piece "Section 219: Throwing cold water on the hot stove" - he is pretty much the only writer around who seems not to be Twins stooge.

Posted on November 17, 2012 at 12:11 PM by Ben Highlight this comment 155

Ouch. If Kill can't keep his own players, how can he recruit?

Posted on November 18, 2012 at 9:16 PM by TheTruthHurts Highlight this comment 156

That letter won't do AJ any favors with other head coaches. You never bad-mouth your previous employer in a job interview and you should never post a long, harsh letter such as his, blasting your coach. I'm sure Jerry Kill's no different than any other HC at a major school in the way he handles players. Other coaches will read that letter and consider him toxic.

Hope the kid's keeping his grades up; he may have shot his football future in the foot.

Posted on November 18, 2012 at 10:40 PM by Winona Mike Highlight this comment 157

Good for the kid, Kill sounds like a douche. Especially after he had Teague cancel the UNC football games because UNC was too tough. What a headcase. He has already made Teague his bitch like Mason did to Maturi.

Posted on November 19, 2012 at 02:20 AM by Duffman Highlight this comment 158

This kid put one foot (probably the one with the bad ankle) in his own football grave by writing that letter and allowing it to go public.

That's the kind of letter you write before bed and tear up in the morning. Then you write a nice little "I hereby resign" letter in its place and go on about your life.

Obviously, these two people did not get along. And having never been a part of such a culture, it's hard to know just how dysfunctional all that stuff really is. As an observer, it looks more or less like what you hear about from locker rooms at that level.

Posted on November 19, 2012 at 07:18 AM by Rick 159

I've always thought that football culture was a bit dysfunctional. The coaches screaming obscenities and using misogynistic and homophobic terms to question the "manhood" of any player who is injured or who has made a poor play,followed by the emotional talk of the team's love for one another. Too much like a really bad melodrama for me, but that kid at the "U" knows that culture goes with the territory.

Posted on November 19, 2012 at 07:53 AM by terry Highlight this comment 160

I am pretty sure that is the case with most sports Terry.

Posted on November 19, 2012 at 09:03 AM by Duffman Highlight this comment 161

But football takes it "to the next level" to use one of the most over-used cliches in sports.

Posted on November 19, 2012 at 09:19 AM by terry Highlight this comment 162

Terry nails it. It's the pseudo-militaristic "team building" crap employed by coaches who think they're armchair psychologists, or master motivators, or some such nonsense. You see it in other sports, but it's FAR more prevalent in football.

Part of it has to do with the infrequency of the games - you need to be more even keeled when you're plugging away for 162 baseball games (or 40+ college baseball games v. a dozen football games). Part is the inherently brutal nature of football. Exert your will on the opponent, physically dominate them, etc. Part is the need to get 11 people doing the right thing in sync on each play.

All in all, it's not the most healthy human endeavor we've ever devised...

Posted on November 19, 2012 at 09:29 AM by BR Highlight this comment 163

It's hard in this day and age to say, "Well, that's just football." And it's a shame because only bad comes from this. The young man is now blacklisted, and the coach looks like he has lost control of his team, when he's trying to turn the Titanic-- a difficult enough chore on its own. Let's call it what it is: a system where both sides are encouraged to use each other to the fullest to get what they want.

Posted on November 19, 2012 at 2:43 PM by The Truth Hurts Highlight this comment 164

No matter who's side you take, I will say its pretty sad the way this kid quit. You don't quit via email. Nonetheless, publish it via social network for everyone to read. Than he's got the courage to sit on 1500 ESPN numerous times today.

At the very least, the coach deserves a face-to-face meeting. Heck, even if you need to go to the AD, than do that.

But it goes to show this kid's thin skin by quitting via email and using the social networks as an easy-out rather than being an adult about it and talking with the coach. Why didn't he insist on having a meeting with his parents, coach Kill and the AD??

Posted on November 19, 2012 at 3:51 PM by Mike Highlight this comment 165

Clearly you haven't heard this:

Posted on November 19, 2012 at 7:05 PM by Duffman Highlight this comment 166

If I was a football player I would prefer a coach like Lou Holtz or Tony Dungy. A good person with moral standards who just happens to be a great coach and motivator. A coach like these 2 greats would probably get a lot more respect in the long run. Just my thoughts,though.

Posted on November 19, 2012 at 8:09 PM by Tom D. Highlight this comment 167

Ah, the inherently brutal nature of golf...

Posted on November 19, 2012 at 9:40 PM by schweady Highlight this comment 168

He sounds like a ninny. Stupid Millennials think they are owed everything. i bet he was coddled in every level of football he was in.

Posted on November 20, 2012 at 08:38 AM by DreDogg Highlight this comment 169

There is a recently retired coach in Collegeville who is the kind of football coach I wish I had played for.

Back to baseball - here is the Twins starting rotation as of today according to their website:

.ROTATION
1. S. Diamond
2. L. Hendriks
3. C. De Vries

Here is who they are "targeting" again from their site

"Minnesota is more likely to look at free-agent pitchers such as Shaun Marcum, Joe Saunders, Joe Blanton and Jeremy Guthrie. Anibal Sanchez and Edwin Jackson are other intriguing options but could get too expensive for the Twins."

Ugh - has there ever been a team with worst starting pitching? Better hope some young guys grow up in a hurry!

Posted on November 20, 2012 at 09:32 AM by ole Highlight this comment 170

I don't know if a reasonable expectation to be diagnosed properly and treated for an injury is coddling. While I am perfectly fine with coaches yelling at players, if there is any truth that training staff held back from telling O'Brien the extent of his injury, especially at the behest of the head coach, there would be a problem there. Look what happened to Mike Leach (Fired Texas Tech and current Washington State head coach), and he was a good coach. All he did was have a player who was suffering from light sensitivity sit in a dark equipment room.

Posted on November 20, 2012 at 10:39 AM by Duffman Highlight this comment 171

Maryland and Rutgers to join the Big Ten in a couple years. More teams for the Rodents to lose to and Jerry Kill to have seizures about. The Gophers wont win a Big Ten basketball championship with Maryland running the show.

Well I always believed the Rodents needed more challenging teams to play...Maryland should fit the bill nicely. Terrapin Country here we come. What the hell is a Terrapin anyway? The Big Ten should just be renamed to the BIG Conference.

Posted on November 20, 2012 at 5:27 PM by luke Highlight this comment 172

Luke:

A. Maryland basketball hasn't been relevant since Gary Williams retired.

B. A Terrapin is a tutle.

Posted on November 20, 2012 at 5:34 PM by DreDogg Highlight this comment 173

*turtle

Posted on November 20, 2012 at 5:35 PM by DreDogg Highlight this comment 174

pretty insensitive comment about Kill's seizures, lukey.

Posted on November 20, 2012 at 9:59 PM by schweady Highlight this comment 175

Point taken Dre...although Maryland has been to the NCAA tournament alot more in the last ten years than the Golden Gophers have.... I remember watching them in the Natl Championship game against Duke in 2001 live and in person. Thats when the average joe could still get into the Final Four...lol

Posted on November 21, 2012 at 06:49 AM by luke Highlight this comment 176

It's tough to find good sources to fill you in on what a terrapin is.

Posted on November 21, 2012 at 08:09 AM by Stevie B Highlight this comment 177

Why stand in line for that overpriced TF food? The Holiday Station is just a mere block or so away! You can bring a grocery bag into the game man! Then empty a water bottle out and fill it to the brim with some clear rum and tighten that cap up real tight your good to go! Happy Turkey Day everybody? Who will win the Reusse Turkey of the year award this year? Mr Whipple aka Gardy just might be your winner!!!!

Posted on November 21, 2012 at 08:43 AM by twinkfan Highlight this comment 178

We are now in the season of Thanksgiving and holiday season and Luke continues to be insensitive.

That comment regarding Jerry Kill's seizures was totally uncalled for regardless of what you think of him as a person.

You said some pretty insensitive things regarding the bridge collapse a few years ago on this thread as well that was uncalled for.

I know several friends and relatives that suffer from seizures and it's pretty sad you would come out and say such stupid things. Unless you have been in their shoes, keep your mouth shut. What if it was you? Put yourself in their shoes.

Posted on November 21, 2012 at 10:11 AM by Mike Highlight this comment 179

Well said Mike.

Posted on November 21, 2012 at 11:58 AM by tk Highlight this comment 180

I had to unblock Luke to see what he had written. I shouldn't have been surprised.

Posted on November 21, 2012 at 11:59 AM by tk Highlight this comment 181

First- I have dealt with seizures before...and i found that most of the seizures I had were stress related. Which is why i said what I did. Second I cant imagine saying anything insensitive about the bridge collapse except possibly for blaming MNDOT for it. The worst infrastructure disaster in this country since Point Pleasant is nothing to joke about. If i offended I am sorry.

Posted on November 21, 2012 at 12:10 PM by luke Highlight this comment 182

OK folks who will be the Turkey of the year? Gardy? Gov Goofy? Rodent AD or Kill for writting the check to UNC? Well??? Lets hear it man!

Posted on November 21, 2012 at 3:25 PM by twinkfan Highlight this comment 183

Gotta be Twins fans/STH collectively. Is there anyone more deserving?

Posted on November 21, 2012 at 3:31 PM by Ben Highlight this comment 184

This may be unconventional, but I'd be tempted to go with Bill Smith -- whose "legacy" just keeps on gobbling.

Posted on November 21, 2012 at 3:37 PM by Rick 185

Luke should be a no-brainer for Turkey of the Year.

Posted on November 21, 2012 at 4:11 PM by FD Highlight this comment 186

And why did we duck out of the UNC game? I still think we should play Notre Dame sometime...lol. we would get creamed, but it would be a big draw. And is Dame still adamant about being independent? I have long thought they would be a great addition to the Big Ten...er 14

Posted on November 21, 2012 at 6:02 PM by luke Highlight this comment 187

Hmm...Luke may be many things, but I don't recall Luke being insensitive about the bridge collapse, and I would have been noticed being I was half way across it when it fell.

On another note: Everyone have a great holiday and be safe out there.

Posted on November 21, 2012 at 6:48 PM by TheTruthHurts Highlight this comment 188

Terry Ryan....He taught Bill Smith everything he knew, plus Jason Marquis, need anything more be said.

Posted on November 21, 2012 at 8:14 PM by Duffman Highlight this comment 189

TTH you're a collapse survivor?

Posted on November 21, 2012 at 8:39 PM by luke Highlight this comment 190

Happy Thanksgiving, BM regulars (and lurkers).

Hope your best turkey today isn't a sports team.

Posted on November 22, 2012 at 07:25 AM by F_T_K Highlight this comment 191

BM regulars? I almost lost my coffee on that one...lol
Happy Thanksgiving all. By this time next year hopefully we will be discussing pertinent design features of the Vikes new stadium.

Posted on November 22, 2012 at 11:08 AM by luke Highlight this comment 192

Luke-the final stadium design will be unveiled to the public by the end of the football season.

Posted on November 22, 2012 at 11:20 AM by Tom D. Highlight this comment 193

...And I'm anxious to see what they come up with.

Posted on November 22, 2012 at 9:48 PM by Winona Mike Highlight this comment 194

@luke - Yes.

Posted on November 22, 2012 at 10:27 PM by TheTruthHurts Highlight this comment 195

Tom and Winona - I cant wait to see what they come up with either..should be a treat. On a non-TF and Vikes Stadium point: no Wild hockey thru at least Dec 15 and no NHL All Star Game in 2013. Which means we will once again go two years without an NHL ASG as 2014 will be an Olympic year, and they do not have ASG's in Olympic years. *sigh...guess I will have to keep up on the hockey Gophers and T-wolves.

Posted on November 23, 2012 at 9:05 PM by luke Highlight this comment 196

No hockey?! What ever will we do?

Posted on November 24, 2012 at 02:55 AM by Winona Mike Highlight this comment 197

No hockey?! What ever will we do?

Posted on November 24, 2012 at 02:55 AM by Winona Mike Highlight this comment 198

Watch the MLB Network..lol. baseball on the mind.

Posted on November 24, 2012 at 12:21 PM by luke Highlight this comment 199

If I was Reusse, I'd have named the Twins organization Turkey of the Year as a whole. Not only was the team horrible this past season, but when a complete overhaul and reexamination of the team's entire playing philosophy was needed after 2011, the Twins arrogantly thought they could patch up the team with scotch tape and contend in 2012. Then when that didn't work, a bloodletting took place that claimed the jobs of many people whose responsibility for the fall is questionable while other clearly culpable parties were spared.

However, Tubby Smith's reign as Gopher basketball coach has disappointed without a doubt and I'm fine with him taking the trophy. The fact that Reusse loves to troll a hardcore element of the Gopher sports fanbase, and that this group generally seems oblivious to his intentions, may have put Tubby over the top.

Posted on November 24, 2012 at 9:56 PM by Jorge Highlight this comment 200

The whole "Turkey of the Year" is so played -- and so inimitably Reusse, who has somehow turned trolling into a profession.

Who did the most for Minnesota sports this year?

Uh...I'm trying to come up with a possibility or two...but...uh...hmm...

Posted on November 25, 2012 at 3:22 PM by Rick 201

I think I agree. I was trying to think of a short phrase or word for how I think of it. And "played" is good. "Contrived and cute", but with a little different connotation maybe.
I admit I did read it again this year. It's probably a popular column, so it will continue.

Posted on November 26, 2012 at 12:48 PM by robin Highlight this comment 202

Just catching up and saw the pic of the day. Was it ever discussed why the trees on that part of the plaza were removed? If it was, I must have missed it. Can someone fill me in.

Posted on November 26, 2012 at 9:09 PM by Jared Highlight this comment 203

Sorry all, I've loved Reusse's work both in print and radio for 30 years. I think he is great, and anyone that is a Twins fan has to love his knowledge of Twins history. His Turkey column was a lambast of the entire Gopher organization...don't get hung up on Tubby.

Who has done the most for MN sports this year? I'll vote for Governor Mark Dayton. He got the deal done. You don't have to like it, but someone has to step up and finish these things and he did.

Posted on November 26, 2012 at 10:41 PM by Lincster Highlight this comment 204

The most for MN sports, hmmmmm ... I'll go with Adrian Peterson's orthopedic surgeon.

Posted on November 27, 2012 at 4:19 PM by Expectorate Highlight this comment 205

The Twins are reportedly considering bringing back Francisco Liriano... You just can't make this stuff up

Will be interesting what moves Terry Ryan makes at the winter meetings next week.

Posted on November 28, 2012 at 08:13 AM by Mike Highlight this comment 206

The Star Tribune article this morning said that Liriano was one of the worst pitchers in baseball last season, why in the world would you bring him back?

Posted on November 28, 2012 at 09:33 AM by Tom D. Highlight this comment 207

Because Terry Ryan is a shitty GM.

As for someone who did the most for MN sports, I would like to say Craig Leopold for signing his sports two biggest free agents, but due to Donald Fehr and the NHLPA there is no hockey right now.

Posted on November 28, 2012 at 11:22 AM by Duffman Highlight this comment 208

If Liriano is signed get ready for another long season of hearing the phrase "He's going to be fine-we just need to build his confidence" (again) by Twins brass. If 15-22 and a 5.40 ERA the past 2 years is what quantifies a signing for the Twins that is pretty sad.

Posted on November 28, 2012 at 3:50 PM by Uffda Highlight this comment 209

Totally unrelated topic...but did anyone here win the Powerball jackpot?

Posted on November 28, 2012 at 9:49 PM by luke Highlight this comment 210

Luke asking about an unrelated topic? By now, do you even have to preface your statements/questions as being irrelevant?

Posted on November 28, 2012 at 11:44 PM by tk Highlight this comment 211

Yes, I won it.

Posted on November 29, 2012 at 12:48 AM by Rick 212

Metrodome question: why do the seats behind home plate (sections 119-131) alternate shades of blue in ascending order from the field to the top of the level? Simple design quirk when the Dome was built, to make the "prime" seats look distinct from the rest of the stadium? Some other reason?

Posted on November 29, 2012 at 09:51 AM by hofflalu Highlight this comment 213

Great question hofflalu! I have always wondered the same thing.

I won $100 (got the 16, 23, 29 and Powerball 6) Was not even close on the other two.

As the old saying goes, you can't win unless you play and it only takes one ticket to win it all. I do think its funny how some people are throwing hundreds of dollars away into those lottery pools.

Posted on November 29, 2012 at 11:31 AM by Mike Highlight this comment 214

Rick - will you by buying season tickets for all your faithful followers here then? :)

Posted on November 29, 2012 at 1:22 PM by Jfh Highlight this comment 215

Hmm, now what did I do with that ticket...? Let's see, I bought it while I was driving through Kansas City, and I remember setting it down on the counter for a second...

What happened to that darn thing?

Posted on November 29, 2012 at 2:09 PM by Rick 216

Span to the Nats. Sorry folks, just reporting the news. Name for linky.

Posted on November 29, 2012 at 3:49 PM by jared Highlight this comment 217

I was just about to mention that, for a prospect that pitched at Class A last year. Terry Ryan is aware we need MLB level pitching right?

Posted on November 29, 2012 at 3:52 PM by Duffman Highlight this comment 218

I hate to see Span go. He is a class guy and a steady performer at the plate and in the field. Let's hope the class A pitcher turns out to be the real deal ... and that he doen't require Tommy John surgery the moment he walks into the Twins clubhouse.

Posted on November 29, 2012 at 4:09 PM by terry Highlight this comment 219

I'm sad to see Span leave, he was one of my favorite players on the club.

So I suppose this means Revere in center, but who plays in right?

Josh Willingham better hit 45 home runs, since he will probably be our only power in the outfield.

Posted on November 29, 2012 at 4:18 PM by F_T_K Highlight this comment 220

F_T_K, It sounds like Plouffe.

Posted on November 29, 2012 at 4:25 PM by tk Highlight this comment 221

This is frustrating! This move ought to sell the place out the next three years.

I am all about a player seeing success, so I am glad to see Span off to the Nationals who are aligning themselves quiet nicely for a very nice guy to make a major impact. I always like to see great players find good homes and I think that is a really good fit for Span.

Posted on November 29, 2012 at 4:26 PM by tk Highlight this comment 222

I am sort of regretting renewing the season tickets....Oh well, I will be the guy hanging giant "Fire Terry Ryan" banner in the outfield next year.

Posted on November 29, 2012 at 4:27 PM by Duffman Highlight this comment 223

I dunno Span for me soured over the last couple years! Not durable and refused to play RF. Be good to see Ben as everyday CF. I think he was kind of a pain in the ass in the clubhouse also! See ya latter. Now if we can only deal the 1st baseman!

Posted on November 29, 2012 at 4:44 PM by twinkfan Highlight this comment 224

Why so quick to jump to conclusions on this trade?

Meyer was a 2011 first round draft choice so it's not really a fair comparison to judge his major league value at this time.

Now, if Meyer is not ready to be on the major league starting rotation in two years, than there is legitimate reason to question this move.

It's not like the Twins were going to contend in 2013 anyways, they need to re-build for 2014 and beyond. And it starts with stocking up on pitchers.

Sure, its sad to lose someone like Span, but he is one of the few players on this team that has any value.

Posted on November 29, 2012 at 4:50 PM by Mike (aka Mike) Highlight this comment 225

I am not jumping at the trade for future value, I just think the $70 Mil current payroll is pathetic...

Posted on November 29, 2012 at 5:02 PM by tk Highlight this comment 226

Tk...bite me, then take a bloody chunk out of yourself ok?

Hofflalu...that is a good question. Submit it to Jason Derusha I would be curious. But I bet it was done to distinguish the best possible seats for baseball. Met Stadium as you know had various colors in several different sections of seats. Who knows maybe they tried to recreate it...lol.

There ya go tk...a topic based on a question a fellow BPMer asked. Off-topic? I dont think so. But still...bite me.

Posted on November 30, 2012 at 06:12 AM by luke Highlight this comment 227

The explanation of the different shades of blue seats back in 1982 was that the Dome wanted to have an homage to the Met, which also had different shades of seats, in the primary baseball seating area. They carried no other special status. All lower deck and upper deck infield seats initially cost $8 and upper right $4. When attendance tanked, lower left went down to $4 and upper right to $3 before the inaugural season was done.

Regarding the trade, Meyer was considered the #3 or #4 prospect in the Nationals' system. At least it looks like the Twins are trying to rebuild now instead of doing a patch up job. Too bad the club came to this conclusion a year late.

Posted on November 30, 2012 at 08:03 AM by Jorge Highlight this comment 228

Anyone going to the Twins Clubhouse sale tomorrow?

Looks like STH get a first time shot at the merchandise of outdated Span jersey and some good looking game-used items.

I was thinking about going, but not sure now, as I guess STH get first crack two hours early. My guess is that a lot of the good stuff to get there early for would be swept up.

Anyone know how they are monitoring the STH first priority?

Posted on November 30, 2012 at 3:27 PM by tk Highlight this comment 229

Also, I just don't get the idea of charging $5 to walk in the door to browse. So a family of four will have to pay $20 to just have an opportunity to look at what might be "left" after the STH walk-through.

I am not trying to be a Grinch, but that just seems odd. Especially since there is not a list of the potential...

Posted on November 30, 2012 at 3:36 PM by tk Highlight this comment 230

I should add, that the $5 can be used toward the purchase should you buy something. The question now, is if you pay for 1 item and you paid for four people, do you only get the $5 towards the item. Seems like there is always confusion to what the Twins try to do.

Posted on November 30, 2012 at 3:38 PM by tk Highlight this comment 231

Saw two pictures of the game used items in visitors dugout sale that starts Saturday and ends Sunday. There were several circular racks of Twins jerseys and a couple displays of clear tube enclosed bats. Maybe 30 bats and 100 jerseys? There should be more items included such as bases and balls to recoup the $5 admission, but that is speculation on my part. Twins VIP line should be able to answer questions. For me, they have been much more helpful in answering questions this last season.

Posted on November 30, 2012 at 5:00 PM by NotMendoza Highlight this comment 232

Jorge -- Thanks for bringing back great memories of the $4 lower / $3 upper general admission tickets. My first Twins game at the Metrodome was late September 1983 (reminds me of a song) against the Rangers; there couldn't have been a thousand people in the place and we could hear the players in the dugouts talking to each other. Our slow-pitch softball team spent a number of Friday and Saturday nights at the ballpark in 1984-1986 in those $4 seats (section 105) rooting for Kirby. The upper deck was an absolute zoo on some of those Saturday summer evenings.

Posted on November 30, 2012 at 8:16 PM by Raging Peasants Highlight this comment 233

Raging...I loved Sec 105.

Posted on November 30, 2012 at 8:41 PM by luke Highlight this comment 234

I don't know if this has been mentioned yet, but I just saw the 2013 tiered pricing. 5 tiers now instead of three, with the highest price tickets being 3X-ish the lowest price tickets.

The "elite" games include opening day, all four NYY, and Fri-Sat summer games against DET and CHI. The "extra value" games include April Mondays (except for the opener obviously), and some of those weekday September games. If you were a scalper that believed in the Twins, you'd scoop up that late September Tiger series for sure.

For those that don't want to click...dugout box ranges from $46 to $118; home plate box from $35 to $89; skyline view from $9 to $23. Just interesting I guess. With this plus dynamic pricing once the season starts and stubhub, you are pretty much assured paying a different price than your neighbor. I don't care about that, but I am interested to see if this all works for a mid-market team with declining demand.

Posted on December 1, 2012 at 6:30 PM by Lincster Highlight this comment 235

For those STH who are relocating seats...Has any dates been set yet?

Posted on December 1, 2012 at 8:07 PM by Steve Highlight this comment 236

Steve - nothing yet. We are supposed to get details on the relocation time slots this week.

Posted on December 1, 2012 at 9:27 PM by Jfh Highlight this comment 237

Lincster, it was brought up a month or so back...maybe in October?

I have lost interest in caring where ticket prices are currently at as I will likely only invest my time in looking at tickets should the team feel like playing.

I do not recall how it worked, but STH pay their same price as last year...face value on some tickets will be a % below what you paid, and others will be % above what you paid

Posted on December 1, 2012 at 11:22 PM by TK Highlight this comment 238

Someone said earlier that Legend Club relocation is possible. Anyone know about that, and if it is part of the general relocation? How does it work with the PSL?
thanks

Posted on December 2, 2012 at 06:48 AM by robin Highlight this comment 239

LC relocation seems to be a YMMV thing. I didn't pursue with my rep to learn how the ownership details would be handled. However, I'm surprised they are doing it at all, since that seems to go against how the whole LC process is supposed to work.

(For me, the best open seats were no better than what I have, so it wasn't worth following up)

Posted on December 2, 2012 at 11:43 AM by Jfh Highlight this comment 240

thanks, maybe I'll make a call just for the heck of it.
One more question: what does YMMV mean?

Posted on December 2, 2012 at 9:33 PM by robin Highlight this comment 241

YMMV = Your Mileage May Vary = there seems to be inconsistency as to how the deal may be handled

Posted on December 2, 2012 at 11:39 PM by Jfh Highlight this comment 242

Ah. Thanks again.

Posted on December 3, 2012 at 05:33 AM by robin Highlight this comment 243

Robin I'd be interested in what you hear about relocation, or what's available. As a silent partner I get info second hand, and never as fast as it's posted here.

Posted on December 3, 2012 at 11:16 AM by jctwins Highlight this comment 244

Construction progress on our new RF drink rail seating. Canopy frame going in... (link)

I didn't realize the new section would meet up with the Overlook seats like that.

Posted on December 3, 2012 at 12:01 PM by CSG Mike Highlight this comment 245

Well, it certainly looks nice. It seems to me they are basically just using the same concrete risers that once held the RF bleachers.

Does anyone here think it strangely odd that the Twins are making a renovation/remodel (the technical term for it is Capital Improvement) like this so early in TF's history? Obviously this isn't by any stretch a huge renovation (i.e. not compared to what TC will be going through next summer), but a renovation nonetheless.

Posted on December 3, 2012 at 6:52 PM by luke Highlight this comment 246

Luke - It is not strange because I think it is all about the money that the Twins will make off this new set-up. I am not an expert by any means so if I am wrong somebody please tell me.

Posted on December 3, 2012 at 8:31 PM by Tom D. Highlight this comment 247

"It seems to me they are basically just using the same concrete risers that once held the RF bleachers."

Yeah, that's why there were 5 sets of new concrete forms set up and in the pic they're troweling out fresh concrete.

Here's a comparison pic from May 2010, showing how low that section's seating was:
Worst Seats at Target Field

Posted on December 3, 2012 at 9:07 PM by schweady Highlight this comment 248

Okay. (My guess for now is that you would pay the transfer fee, per trade or per ticket, if there is anything available of interest.)

Posted on December 4, 2012 at 05:51 AM by robin Highlight this comment 249

Not at all Luke, after 3 seasons, it has given them a chance to see what areas work and which need improvement. I don't think anyone here would disagree that some of the views from those seats were pretty bad.

Posted on December 4, 2012 at 09:31 AM by Duffman Highlight this comment 250

Duff...absolutely that is true. The back row of the RF bleachers (9 I think) was really bad sightlines. And of course sports teams are coming up with new seating options and other teams adapt (ie the Wolves putting in makeshift "Loge Box" seats at TC).

Posted on December 4, 2012 at 5:26 PM by luke Highlight this comment 251

So did anyone go to the clubhouse sale this past weekend or know of anyone that went? Just curious what kinds of items they had available and what the prices were.

I wanted to go but had other prior commitments. I was a little disappointed that the Twins did not advertise this better. Something more than an email sent 10 days before the event. Perhaps, it was a new event, so maybe they didn't start planning this until recently?

I heard they had a bunch of 2013 calendars for sale, but they were all missing the month of October --rim shot--

Also heard they had several "un-used" 2B and 3B bags --rim shot--

Posted on December 5, 2012 at 10:43 AM by Mike Highlight this comment 252

Tucked away in today's budget forecast is the news that electronic pulltabs haven't brought in as much revenue as projected. Now who could have predicted that?

Posted on December 5, 2012 at 2:56 PM by terry Highlight this comment 253

I went to the clubhouse sale. It was ok. As a STH I was "invited" to go before the public. Got there about 10:15 (opened at 10) and there were already 100+ people in line ahead of us. And the line wasn't moving because the clubhouse was already full. Eventually moved along and all STHs got in by 11 or so. But the logistics will clearly need work if they decide to do this each year.

Nice way to get a peak at the clubhouse. 50% off was a decent deal given the wide selection of jackets, shirts, hats and novelties, but they had no replica jerseys. I THINK they had some on sale in the Majestic store but we didn;t have time to go check.

Game used merchandise included maybe 50 jerseys (lots of coaches and Repkos, etc), couple of racks of bats, a few dozen balls ($40 for game used but unsigned balls. Rip. Off.). Best deals might have been the street banners - most were $20.

Posted on December 5, 2012 at 4:18 PM by BR Highlight this comment 254

Speaking of rip-offs, the Twins are once again offering a "Guaranteed Giveaway" package.

Posted on December 5, 2012 at 4:49 PM by Ben Highlight this comment 255

Uh oh, here comes the annual "I should get a free bobblehead" rant.

Posted on December 5, 2012 at 8:30 PM by Duffman Highlight this comment 256

Looks like the garaunteed giveaway program is more expensive for less stuff. This program was once reasonable, but with the omissions the last few years, the Twins ought to just put this out of its' misery.

Posted on December 5, 2012 at 9:25 PM by Jfh Highlight this comment 257

Rick, change your latest title from "season gone" to "revere gone"

Posted on December 6, 2012 at 11:39 AM by Rube Highlight this comment 258

Early on, this looks like a good trade for the Twins. It all starts with pitching and the Twins obviously have lacked pitching in recent years.

Posted on December 6, 2012 at 12:04 PM by Mike Highlight this comment 259

Oh no! Two years in a row my favorite Twin is gone...

Posted on December 6, 2012 at 12:25 PM by Rick 260

Whoa, didn't see that one comin'.

Posted on December 6, 2012 at 1:04 PM by terry Highlight this comment 261

I don't mind this trade either. I liked Revere but he was never going to be a superior player due to his arm strength. Now with Span gone, which frees up another $3 million, who are the Twins going to spend $25-$30 million on. We know it probably won't be Greinke or Sanchez. So who else are they looking at?

Posted on December 6, 2012 at 1:06 PM by Duffman Highlight this comment 262

Well, if Worley's elbow problems are behind him, and the Twins get the 2011 version of him, and if May finds some better command, this could be a huge deal for the team. But who's playing CF on opening Day?

Posted on December 6, 2012 at 1:21 PM by BR Highlight this comment 263

Knowing these clowns, probably the ghost of Kirby!

Posted on December 6, 2012 at 3:04 PM by JoJo Highlight this comment 264

I could be wrong on this but don't the Twins have outfielders Aaron Hicks,Joe Benson,Chris Parmalee,Danny Mastrioni, and others to fill in some spots.

Posted on December 6, 2012 at 3:49 PM by Tom D. Highlight this comment 265

I think it's clear that, whatever you think of Revere, this is the perfect time to trade him. He will probably never again be worth as much. That makes this a relatively rare case of the Twins selling high instead of waiting until the moment has passed.

In Philly, the comments appear to be split more or less like the comments here. About half think the Phillies won this trade and about half think the Twins did.

As disappointed as I am not to watch Revere play every day, I think the Twins just HAD to make this deal. It appears to address our needs directly and not really hurt us all that much even in the short run (loss of excitement notwithstanding).

Now, sign Greinke! (I will agree to buy an extra hot dog per game to support the cause. I will NOT, however, buy a $40 non-signed used game ball. What a rip-off.)

Posted on December 6, 2012 at 4:11 PM by Rick 266

Danny Mastrioni apparently = Darin Mastroianni.

Posted on December 6, 2012 at 5:51 PM by Ben Highlight this comment 267

Rick:
What if they offer you that $40 ball for $36?? ;)

Posted on December 6, 2012 at 9:25 PM by BR Highlight this comment 268

Good trade for the Twins, at least on paper. I think Philly was really worried about CF and overpaid (presumably the Rockies said NO to a Fowler trade and went to the Twins),

Posted on December 6, 2012 at 11:01 PM by Jfh Highlight this comment 269

Meant to say. ... And then the Phillies went to the Twins.

Posted on December 6, 2012 at 11:02 PM by Jfh Highlight this comment 270

Relocation email came...11th at 1:15....Gonna go cheap just as my Twins are going...:):)

Posted on December 7, 2012 at 8:30 PM by Steve Highlight this comment 271

Dodgers close to signing Greinke to 6 year/ $145 million deal.

Posted on December 8, 2012 at 7:06 PM by ace Highlight this comment 272

So much for his desire for a small market...

Posted on December 9, 2012 at 05:44 AM by Winona Mike Highlight this comment 273

Winona...he did it to avoid coming here. People would go to ANY lengths to avoid playing for the Twins.
Rick, I am already tired of looking at snow. Keep those TF pics coming.

Posted on December 9, 2012 at 07:14 AM by luke Highlight this comment 274

Shields and Davis to KC. Looks like the Royals want to make a run this year. Not good for us.

Posted on December 10, 2012 at 02:21 AM by Jfh Highlight this comment 275

Maybe we are just going to load up on offensive players this offseason? If you can't get quality pitching, you might as well try to score 12 a game.

Posted on December 10, 2012 at 1:18 PM by DreDogg Highlight this comment 276

That was tongue-in-cheek, by the way.

Posted on December 10, 2012 at 1:19 PM by DreDogg Highlight this comment 277

"Twins name Doug Mientkiewicz manager at Fort Myers"

Posted on December 10, 2012 at 4:13 PM by Ben Highlight this comment 278

And some piss poor pitcher to a 2 year/10 million

Posted on December 10, 2012 at 11:32 PM by Duffman Highlight this comment 279

Steve... If you see some good seats save them for me. I pick at 1:42.

Posted on December 11, 2012 at 12:27 PM by joe117 Highlight this comment 280

HaHa..Ok joe117...I ended up dumping my 109 Row 11's for 305 Row 1..7,000 dollars saved..Twins go cheap...I go cheap..I can always get some good seats if needed because it's gonna be a buyers market for a couple years anyway and I keep my Full Season account in good standing..The days of going to 20 or so games are probably gone anyway right now with one grandbaby born this year and 3 more on the way in the next 9 months :):) Did ya grab my 109's?

Posted on December 11, 2012 at 2:35 PM by Steve Highlight this comment 281

I am a bargain basement STH, 20 games in the field terrace level. I select tomorrow morning. What if any location improvement is available may tell us something about what the last two disastrous seasons have done to fan interest.

Posted on December 11, 2012 at 3:40 PM by terry Highlight this comment 282

JCTWINS: It does seemm an informal process; just let your rep know what you are interested in (infield, low rows, aisles, under overhang, etc.) and wait for a reply if any possibilites show up. No PSL but pay the transfer fee for each seat, not for each transaction. I don't know yet what is available.

Posted on December 11, 2012 at 6:31 PM by robin Highlight this comment 283

In looking at seat relocation options today noticed there were some pretty nice dugout box seats available (Section 2 Row 5 - actually 2nd row of seats behind accessibility area. A scattering of 2 to 4 seats together in homeplate, diamond, and field box areas beginning row around row 5 and up. At my 1:30 selection time there seemed to be more openings than last season. Nothing to get me too stoked. Especially with a Kevin Correia signing to begin my day.

Posted on December 11, 2012 at 7:59 PM by NotMendoza Highlight this comment 284

I was actually surprised that there seemed to be fewer options for relocation, at least in Home Plate Box - there seemed to be a lot more openings last year.

I lost out on a row 4 pair, about 45 seconds before my window started, and despite the change in language that seemed to indicate that the Twins were going to allow orphaned seats, that wasn't the case. I considered adding a third seat just to get down to a row 3 or 4 location, but really can't see eating 1/2 to 2/3 of a single seat for a season and I don't want to test the new floor pricing of the new StubHub agreement.

I improved (slightly) to 117 row 9, but I had really expected to do better, given what I thought was going to be more of an exodus.

As for the LC seats, I asked, but most of the available seats are either high up or in the outlying sections.

Posted on December 11, 2012 at 10:58 PM by Jfh Highlight this comment 285

Steve - that's quite a change in perspective from 109 to 305. I think my group would revolt if I even suggested an idea like that.

Posted on December 11, 2012 at 11:04 PM by Jfh Highlight this comment 286

Thanks Robin & JFH, that's helpful. No word from my partner after his selection window today, so apparently no improvement.

Posted on December 11, 2012 at 11:36 PM by jctwins Highlight this comment 287

We have a 20 gm pkg and wanted to switch from C to F (better game selection for us). But I didn;t want to downgrade our location. We switched, moving from 305 to 306 but back a few rows. I looked at Field View for all 20 gm pkgs and there really wasn't much available that was better or even as good as our seats.

Possibly good news for the team, although I'm thinking a large number of fans downgraded as Steve did, taking fewer games or downgrading locations in favor of lower priced, better "value" options. That ain't gonna help the team's bottom line...

Posted on December 12, 2012 at 09:29 AM by BR Highlight this comment 288

If you are an STH or a member of a group - did you either downsize # of games or downgrade location? If so, how many and/or to where?

Posted on December 12, 2012 at 11:09 AM by Jfh Highlight this comment 289

I was a little surprised that selection wasn't better. I managed to go from 204 to 206 and I am very happy about that, but I think a little luck was involved; that was about the only option in any of the four 20 game plans that was an improvement on my former seat location.

Posted on December 12, 2012 at 12:18 PM by terry Highlight this comment 290

Well I kept my same seats in 323, plan B (40 games). Could have moved a row closer if I had switched to plan A, but like the B schedule better.

If anybody wants to buy a big group of tix in a cheap section, Plan A has 10 seats together available in row 5 of 323. Must have been a speculator/reseller who gave up on 2013.... I suppose those could become available as a 20 game tix as well? Good seats for the money.

Posted on December 12, 2012 at 12:59 PM by Clark Addison Highlight this comment 291

Lack of available seats breeds the temptation to start thinking conspiracy theory. The Twins are holding the better seats to sell themselves and forcing STH to renew with less selection.

Posted on December 12, 2012 at 1:25 PM by jctwins Highlight this comment 292

Glad I dumped my 20 game pack a couple years ago. 2 years was enough! What a crappy schedule they have in June, July and August! One weekend homestand in July and it's the freaking Indians???? I'll wait for some freebies thanks!

Posted on December 12, 2012 at 2:12 PM by twinkfan Highlight this comment 293

jctwins - I doubt it. If that was true and it ever came to light, the PR would be devastating.

I know someone who got a cold call from a Twins rep last week and he was offered a pair in Home Plate Box in row 17, which certainly aren't anything special.

No STH is going to renew moving to worse seats in the same price level - they would just keep their existing location.

Posted on December 12, 2012 at 3:33 PM by Jfh Highlight this comment 294

The online process was more streamlined than in past years. Assigning specific times meant that when your time arrived, you were immediately able to select. No "virtual waiting room" nonsense as in the past.

Posted on December 12, 2012 at 3:39 PM by terry Highlight this comment 295

JFH I'm not trying to push that this is true, but they could hold back some of the available inventory for "special needs" which come available shortly before game time. I think that happens already, so they probably have an established inventory they could modify.

So people would be improving at their price point, maybe just not with a full selection field.

Just stirring the pot, I have nothing to base this on.

Posted on December 12, 2012 at 4:44 PM by jctwins Highlight this comment 296

All clubs have an inventory in the main seating area (e.g. like Home Plate Box) for club use and they have to set aside a certain number of seats for MLB needs, so those needs are taken care of.

But a very small percentage of what you and I would consider prime seats are involved. Most of the time, I would consider them "good, but not great" seats and I just don't see the Twins (or any other club) taking what STHs would consider good upgrade seats out of available inventory. (Besides, the whole idea behind the relocation process is that the better your seats get the "stickier" you are as a customer/STH - it's not as hard to give up seats in row 24 compared to seats in row 4!)

Bottom line - it seems fewer STHs are dropping good locations than we thought and/or more are upgrading, because there were a LOT of upgradable seats last year (at least in HPB) - not so much this year. Maybe part of the ASG push, maybe folks thinking the team can only be better. - who knows. But it's not deliberately holding back more inventory.

Posted on December 12, 2012 at 6:12 PM by Jfh Highlight this comment 297

Agreed JFH, it's just very much counter to what I expected during the relocation process. I guess hopefully that means there may be a stronger resale market before the season starts than originally anticipated, too.

Posted on December 13, 2012 at 10:37 AM by jctwins Highlight this comment 298

Hamilton to the Angels. What a lineup!

Posted on December 13, 2012 at 2:05 PM by ole Highlight this comment 299

Dang, Hamilton signed with the Angels. I really thought the Twins would be in on him.

Posted on December 13, 2012 at 2:18 PM by FD Highlight this comment 300

The Angels are becoming the new Yankees; Pujols last year and Hamilton this year. Too bad Billy Martin isn't still around so they could start the cycle of hiring/firing.

Posted on December 13, 2012 at 3:52 PM by terry Highlight this comment 301

Looks like California - Angles, Dodgers and Giants - want to take over baseball.

Meanwhile, back in Minnesota, there is no plan and STHs have to commit to season ticket plans months before we know just how bad the team is going to be (or for how long).

A number of us were surprised that there wasn't more availability during relocation - maybe the ASG marketing has indeed worked.

For those upset, just wait until fall 2014 when the emperor has no clothes and all the remaining STHs end up in the first few rows ...

Posted on December 13, 2012 at 9:33 PM by Jfh Highlight this comment 302

If your going to buy season tickets get the cheapest seats. Then move down to wherever you want to sit! Back to the good old days of the Met. Used to buy the $2.00 bleacher seat and buy the 3rd innning I was in the box seats behind home plate! First couple of years they would even let you bring coolers of beer into the game!

Posted on December 14, 2012 at 08:48 AM by twinkfan Highlight this comment 303

I'm not sure it's that easy anymore. And easier said than done if you run a group. I would probably do that before I dropped entirely, but once you've gotten used to good seats, it's tough to consider nosebleeds. However, to TF's credit, there are very few bad seats at the park - I almost got some skyline view seats for my daughter to share with her friends in 2010.

Posted on December 14, 2012 at 10:49 AM by Jfh Highlight this comment 304

Speaking of seats, if anyone is interested in between 8 and 15 games in Home Plate Box section 117 row 9, send me a note.

Posted on December 14, 2012 at 10:52 AM by Jfh Highlight this comment 305

Peronaly, Jfh, I think it's a better class of people up in Skyline View. IMHO.

Posted on December 14, 2012 at 7:04 PM by Clark Addison Highlight this comment 306

PS twinkfan that strategy still works! As long as the team sucks. And if it doesn't, you are happy with your nosebleed seats.

Posted on December 14, 2012 at 7:18 PM by Clark Addison Highlight this comment 307

I think baseball all year, but it's kind of hard today in light of what happened in Connecticut.

Posted on December 14, 2012 at 8:09 PM by terry Highlight this comment 308

Charley Walters in this mornings fishwrap said that if no retractable seats are incorporated into USBank Stadium, and we hope there arent, the left field line for Rodents baseball would be 380 feet. Right field would be 280 feet. Doubt me, look it up.

Why do we always have to make compromises for amateur baseball in this state? No other state in the Union makes compromises for amateur baseball...you suck it in. Michigan, Wisconsin, Iowa...can all make it work without compromise. If you cant do it, dont have amateur baseball.

Posted on December 16, 2012 at 10:23 AM by luke Highlight this comment 309

Twins signing reclamation project Mike Pelfrey:
http://www.mlbtraderumors.com/2012/12/twins-to-sign-mike-pelfrey.html

I'd rather have had Baker return, but this is a decent gamble. Still like to see them get Marcum on a 2 year + option kind of deal.

Posted on December 16, 2012 at 7:53 PM by br Highlight this comment 310

Sconny don't have college baseball they dropped it! Addison me thinks it will be a looooooooooooooong time before they get back to jamed houses!Until then sit where you want! LOL!

Posted on December 17, 2012 at 11:04 AM by twinkfan Highlight this comment 311

I realize the Twins are already conceding the 2013 division title, but shouldn't there at least be one signing that makes us get even a little juiced for spring training to start? I have zero interest in what the Twins are offering as their 2013 roster thus far.

Posted on December 17, 2012 at 9:47 PM by TheTruthHurts Highlight this comment 312

I agree. This has been downright painful to watch.

It's truly shocking how fast things can change when you rest on your laurels. I mean, why would any self-respecting major leaguer want to come play here?

Posted on December 17, 2012 at 10:05 PM by Rick 313

What I really meant to say is, why not just fire Gardy now? Why make him twist in the wind for a season when the writing is already on the wall?

Posted on December 17, 2012 at 10:27 PM by Rick 314

Why not fire Ryan for conceeding next year before it began, and over spending on players that wouldn't make other teams rotations, much less anchor them?

Posted on December 18, 2012 at 05:33 AM by duffman Highlight this comment 315

If what one local radio station said on the air the other day is correct; which is they said the Pohlad family has the most money of any other baseball owner, why are the Twins not paying for a few more decent starting pitchers. I realize the Twins have a lot of money tied up on Mauer and Morneau, but if we stink during the regular season,that can't be a great business plan for the organization or its fans.

Posted on December 18, 2012 at 08:37 AM by Tom D. Highlight this comment 316

Just because the Pohlad's are some of the wealthiest owners, that does not mean they should be spending excessively. They have a business plan they follow like any other business owner. The Pohlads did not get wealthy by making stupid business decisions. Any business owner is not going to spend more than what their revenues will be regardless of their personal wealth.

The Twins bring in about $29M/annually with their TV deal with FS North while the Tigers bring in $40M, Rangers $80M, Angels $150M, Yankees $400M. TV revenues drive MLB salaries more than ever this day in age. Not to mention, Minneapolis-St Paul is 2nd to last in MLB with just 81% of households with cable and/or satellite. Ahead of only Milwaukee (80%) while Boston is #1 with 98%.

Overpaying/payroll does not guarantee success...just ask teams like the Marlins, Mets, Red Sox, Angels, Dodgers, Cubs, and Yankees over recent years. And who says any of these "marquee" players would even want to play in Minnesota??

Most fans know the Twins will not be at the top of the AL in 2013, so why try and hide it? If you are honest and concede 2013 and can show the fans that you have a long-term plan, its much more understandable as a fan. They lost 95+ games each of the last 2 seasons so that tells me they need more than a marquee free agent or two.

The reason they are where they are is because of numerous bad front office decisions over the last 5 years.

Posted on December 18, 2012 at 09:40 AM by Mike Highlight this comment 317

Hard to know exactly where the problem lies. My guess: Ryan's always been a good company man. I think ownership has likely given him too little payroll to add signficant FA. With big market teams signing ridiculous TV deals, salaries are going up. Look at what Anibal Sanchez - a nice #3 pitcher on a good team - got from Detroit. Silly money.

But that's the game now. Unless you're willing to strip it down completely, maximize high draft picks, and build with cheap young prospects (which the Twins might actually be trying to do; hence the trades), it's hard to maintain ongoing competitiveness without increasing payroll. $100M ain't going to get it done without having a few really good pre-arb players on the roster.

Posted on December 18, 2012 at 09:47 AM by BR Highlight this comment 318

Also, what Mike said. I do get the sense that if MN had had the Tampa FO for the past 5 years (including the oportunity to trade Johan), they'd have put together a far better roster.

Posted on December 18, 2012 at 09:51 AM by BR Highlight this comment 319

The more I look at the next two seasons, I am glad I am a casual fan and not a monetary committed fan.

Posted on December 18, 2012 at 10:10 AM by tk Highlight this comment 320

I agree that barring some sort of Roy Hobbs-like miracle the 2013 Twins will be near the bottom of the standings again. But if they can get younger and find better balance among starting pitching, relief pitching and hitting, they may have something on which to build. This is not the time to be focusing on journeyman veterans or on one year rent-a-star acquisitions.

Posted on December 18, 2012 at 12:40 PM by terry Highlight this comment 321

I

Posted on December 18, 2012 at 12:47 PM by tk Highlight this comment 322

hit post too fast.

I hope to eat my words this upcoming season, but I do not think there will be much to get excited about after April.

Posted on December 18, 2012 at 12:48 PM by tk Highlight this comment 323

We're going to have to do a lot of pretending that we like the ballpark -- and the game itself -- enough to put up with this team.

Really, what could the Twins' front office do that would make '13 more interesting to watch? Sign Brian Wilson? Nick Punto? Lew Ford? (Hey, shouting "Lewwwwww" every few innings was a nice distraction back at the Dome.)

Posted on December 18, 2012 at 1:47 PM by Rick 324

How about firing Gardy and getting Lou Piniella in here to create an entertaining bridge to Molitor in '14 or '15?

Posted on December 18, 2012 at 1:49 PM by Rick 325

"The Pohlads did not get wealthy by making stupid business decisions."

The (current) Pohlads got wealthy by being born. Things would be better, I think, if ownership were baseball peoplle and hired same for the FO. The Pohlads know as much about baseball as a pig knows about Sunday (sorry HT).

Posted on December 18, 2012 at 2:29 PM by Ben Highlight this comment 326

The Strive for 75!!!!!!! Wins that is!!!!

Posted on December 18, 2012 at 3:13 PM by twinkfan Highlight this comment 327

My youth in Cleveland clearly has me inoculated against too-high expectations. Even as bad as the Tribe was in the 70s, I still couldn't wait for baseball season to start. I'd sure hate to write off 2013 in December, 2012.

Posted on December 18, 2012 at 9:43 PM by fiesta Highlight this comment 328

Lol Twink. Aside from the Hillbillies reference (yes I got it)....I. thinking more like the Drive for 65...wins that is...lol

Posted on December 19, 2012 at 05:48 AM by luke Highlight this comment 329

Fiesta - look at this roster and tell me what aspect gets you "up" for Twins baseball in 2013? I would like to know so that I can get excited for it as well. I don't think any of us want to sit through another near-100 loss season at TF next year.

Posted on December 19, 2012 at 2:37 PM by The Truth Hurts Highlight this comment 330

Rumor is that Edwin Jackson is close to signing a 4 year $52m contract with the Cubs. At $13m a year that should be in the Twins budget, consider the little amounts they have been paying out so far. If they could steal Jackson from the Cubs, it would give them a legitimate 1-2 starter xombonation, assuming Diamond does regress in his first off season under Rick Anderson's skill killing direct supervision.

Posted on December 20, 2012 at 03:32 AM by duffman Highlight this comment 331

Uhh...doesn't

Posted on December 20, 2012 at 03:33 AM by duffman Highlight this comment 332

Anyone catch this nugget from Sid's column today:

New title for Molitor

Twins President Dave St. Peter reports that Paul Molitor, in addition to remaining with the organization in 2013 and serving as a roving minor league instructor, also will be working as a special assistant to St. Peter.

It's no secret around Target Field that both St. Peter and General Manager Terry Ryan were interested in having Molitor on the 2013 coaching staff, most likely as the bench coach.

However, manager Ron Gardenhire, while not having any personal problem with Molitor, preferred to have his close, personal friend and former Twins catcher Terry Steinbach as the bench coach. Gardenhire has been a longtime admirer of Steinbach, who has worked with the Twins in spring training and has done a great job.

The interesting thing about Molitor is that in the past he has turned down many chances to coach and manage. However, he was willing to accept the new position with the Twins.

I have a lot of respect for Gardenhire, and he has proven his ability to manage by winning six division titles in 11 years. The late Gene Mauch used to tell me that a manager will steal at best a half-dozen games a season and that you win with talent.

It's no secret the Twins didn't have the pitching the past two years to contend. Gardenhire couldn't pitch for the team, and I hope he gets the talent this year so he can manage a winner.

But if there is a change in managers, it wouldn't surprise me if Molitor was Gardy's successor.

So there you have it, Gardenhire must be feeling the heat and probably does not want his successor on the bench with him. You keep Vavra and Ullger around but don't offer a spot on the staff to Molitor? How many more "demotions" can Ullger receive until he is gone?? From hitting coach, to third base coach, to bench coach, to first base coach in a span of a few years.

Posted on December 20, 2012 at 09:30 AM by Mike Highlight this comment 333

TTH,

I think Fiesta is just going for baseball over non-baseball -- which I get. The world is always better with baseball (even if we all will need some work on suppressing our gag reflex when we see the Twins roster). We still get to watch 50 of the best baseball players in the world play the Great Game almost every day. That's something.

At the same time, I am with tk in relief that I'm not too deeply financially committed to the team for '13. Who could have imagined anyone saying that so soon after TF's opening day? (Yes, Ben, I know.)

duffman,

I've thought for a couple of years that Edwin Jackson would be a perfect fit for this team. Plus, I like the new word: "xombonation". That's really what the Twins need at the top of their rotation!

Mike,

The thing I take away from the Sid piece is this acknowledgement that A) Gardy's gone if the Twins don't win this year, B) they can't win without pitching, and C) they still don't have any pitching.

It acknowledges that Gardy isn't the real problem, but he's gone anyway, and there's pretty much nothing he can do about it.

(I've just assumed that Molitor was the heir apparent ever since Gardy beat him out in '02.)

Posted on December 20, 2012 at 10:11 AM by Rick 334

I know he's a HoFer and a St. Paul guy, but why does everyone assume that Molitor is a top managerial candidate? He has very little coaching experience and no head coaching on his resume, AFAIK. And it's not as though great players always make great managers - in fact, the reverse has more often been true (see e.g. Williams, Ted).

Posted on December 20, 2012 at 1:55 PM by BR Highlight this comment 335

Rick, you say that Gardy has to "win" to keep his job. What is your best guess as to what win number he must reach in order to do just that?

Posted on December 20, 2012 at 2:40 PM by The Truth Hurts Highlight this comment 336

The story may be Apocryphal, but Joe McCarthy supposedly said he looked at the record and concluded he was a better manager when DiMaggio was playing centerfield than when he wasn't. Leo Durocher, John J. McGraw and Svengali all rolled into one couldn't have avoided the basement the last two years with the position players the Twins were trotting out in 2011 and the starting pitchers they were sending to the mound in 2012.

Posted on December 20, 2012 at 3:09 PM by terry Highlight this comment 337

I could have managed last year and avoided the basement. Let's stop excusing some of Gardy's poor managing skills as not part of the problem. Everyone here last year knew Capps was not a good closer, it took Gardy half the year to figure it out. Hell it took him 3 years and reconstructive surgery to realize Nathan wasn't that solid of a closer, who was also making way too much money. He has continued to believed in Alexi Casilla, and probably still would give him another chance to start if he was still on the team. His belief that Rick Anderson actually knows how to develope pitchers, even though he hasn't developed one solid pitcher. These are all errors that rest soley on Gardy. Yes he is a nice guy and been with the Twins a long time, but at some point you need to make that business decision and realize Central Division titles don't mean dick. With a playoff record of 6-21 (4 wins were in 2002 alone), he has shown he can not manage with the big boys, time for him to retire or be let go...

Posted on December 21, 2012 at 03:06 AM by duffman Highlight this comment 338

I think that's a very interesting question, TTH. Basically, we have to look at the roster, make an estimate of what they are capable of, and then compare how they actually do. The question to be answered is: Did the manager get more, less, or about what was expected from the team?

Right now it seems like Gardy is toast no matter what. And it could be that the franchise just plain needs a change there, regardless of Gardy's actual skill level (which, contrary to what some people think, is actually very high -- with some well-known blind spots).

So let's say that he'd have to pull at least a winning record to merit consideration for an extension. 85 wins or more makes him probably a lock for '14.

But it's a long way to opening day. Those numbers don't really consider what may or may not happen between now and April 1. If they run this crappy rotation out there, you shouldn't really fault the manager for losing 90 games again.

The question may change to: Is change just for change's sake really the best next step? (It could be.)

Posted on December 21, 2012 at 1:02 PM by Rick 339

Right now it seems the Twins strategy for pitching is bring in a bunch of cheap coming off injury players and see which bounce back. If some don't they were cheap, so how cares. Of course if they all stay healthy and pitch well, people will start claiming, once again, Terry Ryan is a genius. That being said, I do think Pelfrey will work out and be a good addition to the rotation.

Posted on December 21, 2012 at 1:07 PM by Duffman (aka duffman) Highlight this comment 340

Lol, Rich Harden

Posted on December 21, 2012 at 1:57 PM by DreDogg Highlight this comment 341

Man, if I am going to TwinsFest this year, I am going to get me one of the Twins Wives grab bags and see what recovering pitcher I pull out of the bag and see if TR wants it!

Posted on December 21, 2012 at 2:57 PM by tk Highlight this comment 342

Liriano to Bucs

Posted on December 21, 2012 at 9:48 PM by TheTruthHurts Highlight this comment 343

Rick Anderson as the fall guy for our pitching staff is something I am not buying. A coach can not make a mediocre pitcher an ace. I would love to see the people who are slamming him try to do better. Gardy does have some defeciencies but sticking with certain players too long could be the result of the front office wanting players like Capps and Casilla to play; Gardy's hands might have been tied. The bottom line is that the players have not played well. As far as Gardy's playoff record - in my view a manager guides a team through the regular season and it's ups and downs and if his team makes the playoffs, the players must perform in that 5 or 7 game series.

And in response to some other comments; if you don't enjoy the game of baseball then don't attend the games. I will always support the Twins because I love baseball. I love coaching my middle school guys, watching them when they play for the varsity team, and enjoy watching any college, minor, or major league game. Anyone can back a first place or annually contending team; real fans support teams through good and bad. It's the best game there is; the strategies, the traditions, the history.

Posted on December 22, 2012 at 8:27 PM by ole Highlight this comment 344

Ole, i too love baseball and have spent many years watching the Twins when they were down...however at todays prices, it's on TV and in the comforts of my home. Traveling 2.5 hours for 40+ games a season takes a toll on a non contender.

Posted on December 22, 2012 at 10:04 PM by tk Highlight this comment 345

So I guess now that Liriano is headed to Pissburgh, I guess we can expect the Bucs to be playoff contenders in 2013 and the Twins once again will lose an assload of games? Thats what always happens, ex-Minnesota athletes leave, become contenders and leave us sniffing the dirt. God this state sucks.

Posted on December 22, 2012 at 10:16 PM by luke Highlight this comment 346

Then quit complaining and move.

Posted on December 22, 2012 at 10:52 PM by Winona Mike Highlight this comment 347

Didn't know I was complaining Mike? Stating an opinion.

Posted on December 23, 2012 at 12:29 AM by tk Highlight this comment 348

"God, this state sucks" can certainly be taken as a complaint.

Posted on December 23, 2012 at 12:59 AM by Winona Mike Highlight this comment 349

gotcha, you were referring to Luke. Thought it was in reference to my commute to Target Field...

Posted on December 23, 2012 at 02:21 AM by tk Highlight this comment 350

Winona, you loved the This State Sucks mantra as much as anyone, admit it. And, admit it, I WAS RIGHT.

Driving 2.5 hours for a non-contender? Could drive to Kenosha and watch a AA team, who would know the difference? Lol

Posted on December 23, 2012 at 07:53 AM by luke Highlight this comment 351

Traveling 2.5 hours? Easy peasy.

How about flying 1800 miles round trip in 3-4 days, 4 or 5 times a year?
(Only seen one winning series in the last two years too)

Posted on December 23, 2012 at 10:02 PM by JFH (aka Jfh) Highlight this comment 352

Merry Christmas, Luke. You're a rare bird indeed. Merry Christmas to everyone else who frequents these boards as well.

Posted on December 24, 2012 at 12:14 AM by Winona Mike Highlight this comment 353

There are great things to see in a baseball game even when the team is terrible. There is a picture of Met Stadium in Wikipedia which was taken July 30, 1964 which makes this point. I was at that game with a group of altar boys from my church (no altar girls in those days!). The Twins had a dismal year in '64 after two 90+ win seasons in '62 and '63. But in that one photo alone, there are three HOFers and a potential HOFer visible. Brooks Robinson is playing 3d, Louis Aparicio is at short; Harmon is at the plate and Tony Oliva is the base runner at 3d.

Posted on December 24, 2012 at 10:47 AM by terry Highlight this comment 354

Merry Christmas to you as wel, Winona! And everyone else! Stay safe and drive safe!

Posted on December 24, 2012 at 11:54 AM by luke Highlight this comment 355

*as well

Posted on December 24, 2012 at 11:55 AM by luke Highlight this comment 356

Good God, winter really DOES quiet folks down in these parts. Spring Training...where art thou?

Posted on December 27, 2012 at 5:35 PM by luke Highlight this comment 357

Obviously you are the only person that survived the end of the world Luke!

Posted on December 28, 2012 at 10:38 AM by JoJo Highlight this comment 358

Well...you did as well JoJo...lol. Reminds me of that one Friends episode when Chandler said to the others "I managed to survive whatever killed the five of you!"

Posted on December 28, 2012 at 12:34 PM by luke Highlight this comment 359

Gopher defense looked good tonight. Unfortunately, they couldn't stop TT at the end. All in all, not a bad showing on national TV.

Posted on December 29, 2012 at 01:04 AM by Winona Mike Highlight this comment 360

Tough loss last night. They needed one or two more first downs after Carter's 2d interception and couldn't get them. C'est la guerre. At least Gopher football is somewhat relevant again.

Posted on December 29, 2012 at 09:03 AM by terry Highlight this comment 361

Ha!

Posted on December 29, 2012 at 12:38 PM by duffman Highlight this comment 362

Looks like Target Field is gonna get paid off early.

Posted on December 29, 2012 at 1:23 PM by Forgot my name here Highlight this comment 363

"At least Gopher football is somewhat relevant again."

Huh?

Posted on December 29, 2012 at 4:41 PM by TheTruthHurts Highlight this comment 364

The program will only gain relevance once they upgrade that sorry non-conference schedule they've always used to pad their records. Play some programs of consequence, start to win some of those contests, and notice, along with relevance, will come.

Posted on December 29, 2012 at 4:55 PM by Winona Mike Highlight this comment 365

thanks for the link...gotta love the ending from DSP, since the city is doing well with revenue, maybe they will help with upgrades.

Posted on December 29, 2012 at 9:28 PM by tk Highlight this comment 366

*county

Posted on December 29, 2012 at 9:30 PM by tk Highlight this comment 367

@Forgotmyname...not surprising. We didnt use gambling dollars on the financing.
Meanwhile, the Vikes have a bit of a shortfall with the EPTs.
Anyone hear rumblings of Seattle on that one?

Posted on December 30, 2012 at 09:06 AM by luke Highlight this comment 368

Quite the weekend for MN sports! The football Gophs keep it interesting but ultimately disappoint, but...

1) Vikes
2) Gopher hockey 8-1 over BC
3) Gopher basketball beating Michigan State by 13

Pretty nice way to end the year!

Posted on December 31, 2012 at 5:33 PM by Lincster Highlight this comment 369

Winona~
Given that MN fans are bandwagon fans that doesn't make any sense. If they are 9-3 or 10-2 no one will care if the non-con schedule was soft. All casual fans care about is supporting a winner.

Posted on January 2, 2013 at 09:09 AM by GoAUpher Highlight this comment 370

The fans just want wins, it doesn't matter how they get them.

While it would be nice to see more intriguing non-conference games, I don't think its going to happen anytime soon until the Gophers can prove they can consistently win in the B1G. With Michigan, Michigan State, Nebraska, Iowa, Northwestern and Wisconsin on the schedule each year, B1G wins are going to be very difficult to come by. Not to mention, Ohio State and Penn State who will be rotated into the schedule every few years as well.

Glen Mason's approach to scheduling worked well, however, his downfall was his failure to "win the big one" or take the "next step" and elevate the program. He consistently won 6-7 games but could never seem to get over the hump and get that occasional 9-11 win season. We were on track in 2003 until that Michigan game....

So if you can get 4 cupcakes in the non-conference schedule and go 4-0, all you need to do is go 4-4 or 5-3 in B1G conference play to consistently win 8 or 9 games. The problem is that the Gophers cannot seem to win more than 2 or 3 B1G games.

Posted on January 2, 2013 at 3:48 PM by Mike Highlight this comment 371

The schedule won't change soon just b/c of the current lack of B1G wins. The current non-con schedule is locked/full until 2017 (the old UNC slots are still marked TBA but I'm ignoring them b/c obviously they're filling those with NMSU or another lower level team) and there's very little chance that they'll pay buyout fees to make the schedule harder. So for the next 4 seasons what you see is what you get. FWIW, 2015 and 2016 were supposed to include Texas (Brewster tried to get that home/home scheduled) but those games feel through over Texas' issues with some media rights money questions. 2017 & 2018 see the addition of a BCS school again in Oregon State.

Posted on January 2, 2013 at 4:36 PM by GoAUpher Highlight this comment 372

The program will only gain NATIONAL relevance and the accompanying polling if they strengthen their non-conference schedule and begin winning games against marquee schools. Once there, the attendance will be there as well.

I guess I assumed that the national polling point was self-evident. My apolgies.

Posted on January 2, 2013 at 6:00 PM by Winona Mike Highlight this comment 373

As a coach you are paid to win games and your job performance ultimately falls on wins and losses so I can't blame a coach for padding their non-conference schedule with cupcakes.

I agree that you are not going to gain national relevance if you are playing MAC teams. On the other hand, you need to win as many games as possible when you have Michigan, Mich State, Nebraska, Iowa, Wisconsin and Northwestern on the schedule each year.

That is why I was disappointed when the Big Ten-PAC 12 scheduling agreement fell through last summer. It would have matched up some great programs each year. Not saying you have to play USC, Stanford or Oregon each year but a win against Oregon State or Washington or Washington State will go much further than winning a game against New Mexico State or Miami of Ohio or New Hampshire. I will say Cal and Syracuse were some good non-conference opponents in recent years.

I definitely see both sides of this issue and hope they can eventually figure out the non-conference schedule because the current system is a joke.

Is a 9-game schedule in the B1G a sure thing once Rutgers and Maryland join in 2014? I say just go to a 10-game conference schedule starting in September and give each team 2 non-conference games. That way you can spread out your non-conference/conference games as well as your bye weeks. And from a fan's perspective, you would not need to wait until late September to see conference games.

Posted on January 2, 2013 at 9:16 PM by Mike Highlight this comment 374

Playing cupcakes doesn’t get you on national TV too often. Blue-chip recruits want to be playing on TV; especially back home. If you’re only playing the SDSUs of the world, you’re going to face an uphill challenge recruiting kids from football hotbeds like Florida and Texas. They want to win championships and they want to be seen by the pros. Playing set-ups and push-overs at Minnesota isn’t doing that for them right now. If you have Michigan, Ohio State and Nebraska on your conference schedule every year, you need to hone your act against worthy competition.
Strength of schedule has always hurt teams like Boise State, who have gone undefeated or have had one-loss seasons, yet can’t get any national respect due to their Mountain West conference opponents. They can stay on the field with just about anybody, but they can’t get into the BCS.
A strong non-conference schedule can draw in fans. I’d rather go to see the Gophers play USC or Notre Dame or Alabama than watch Western Michigan and Ohio University.

Posted on January 3, 2013 at 05:29 AM by Winona Mike Highlight this comment 375

Aw come on. Everyone knows the "strong non-cons" argument is weak at best. The only reason anyone around here cares about strong non-cons right now is because it was UNC they dropped, it got a ton of publicity because of the money and for some ridiculous reason people around here consider them to be a strong opponent. Now granted, they are currently better (emphasis on "currently" because in ACC football 'good' doesn't last long) than the UNLV's and Western Michigan's of the world

Minnesota plays in the Big Ten. There is plenty of "strength" in that schedule there that they can't even beat. This is where people's focus should be right now. Forget about the non-cons. You can't be relevant nationally if you can't even beat those in your own conference, no matter how strong your non-con schedule is. Does a strong non-con help? Sure, but if you can't beat Iowas/Northwestern/Wisconsins (middle tier B1G teams) regularly, then how do you expect to beat a strong non-con? What good does that do? Scheduling not a strong one at least increases your odds for winning, gaining momentum for a tough conference schedule (for Minnesota standards) and in a season like this increases your odds of making a bowl game. It may be podunk bowl this season, but its TV exposure you didn't have, helping you gain funding and recruiting and leads to more momentum for next season. Is the following season a guarantee? No, but it helps.

Some people have the sink or swim attitude and its clear that Coach Kill has a 'build your skills in the shallow end of the pool and work your way to the deep end' kind of mentality. His track record of success with this method is very good and in my opinion people around here need to take a step back and see it. Contrary to popular belief the Gophers are still not a very good team. There are big strides forward in two seasons so far but by no means are they ready to jump into the deep end. Their focus should be to just get competitive non-cons and keep their eyes/attention on regular conference foes.

Posted on January 3, 2013 at 08:57 AM by jared Highlight this comment 376

Wow, so many typos...be careful how you read that.

Posted on January 3, 2013 at 09:00 AM by jared Highlight this comment 377

I should clarify too. I understand people aren't asking for 4 ranked SEC teams to start off every season, although some people sure sound like that's what they want.

But, ultimately it's a catch 22. You can't get success and relevance overnight and by being everyone else's cupcake on their schedule nor by playing the 'Idaho School of the Blind' 4 times to start of each season.

Kill is working his way up to those big names by building fundamentals for success now so that the program can be successful for more than one apparent fluke season. This takes time, I support it but also would like more success now and we just need to be patient. Look at how much better the team has gotten already. I think we have all seen enough awful seasons that we can bear a few more seasons of struggle to ultimately see a return to perennial success.

Posted on January 3, 2013 at 09:39 AM by jared Highlight this comment 378

I suspect the non-conference schedule would be more easily overlooked if the Gophers were more successful within the conference. It's when they go 4-0 nonconference and then are consistently below .500 within the conference that the strength of schedule becomes hard to ignore.

Posted on January 3, 2013 at 11:49 AM by terry Highlight this comment 379

Jared-

The problem with the weak non-conference games is that is does them no favors when they play their "strong" Big 10 schedule. (I say "strong" because minus OSU, the Big 10 for the most part sucks.) To use your pool metaphor, the Gophers are not even in the shallow end right now, but in the locker room watching an education film on how to swim. If they continue to go up against "cupcakes" they will always be overwhelmed when facing a faster, better coached, better prepared, more talented team. So it may look better for Kill's record, but does nothing to help the football program. You only get better by playing better teams.

Glenn Mason's problem was that he couldn't always win those cupcake games, and even whe he won a bowl game, it was some pointless bowl game which he treated as if he had won the Rose Bowl. He was much less a football coach than a used cars salemen, selling a Pinto and convincing Maturi it was a Ferrari.

The outrage over the buyout of UNC, was because UNC is a cupcake game, and Kill said they were too good to play. I'm sure that really helped recruiting, "Come here, were not even good enough to play UNC in football, and won't be for at least two more years, but come here non the less" Plus it wasted $800,000 of taxpayer money. (You can argue is came from some other fund or would be paid for by donations, but in the end it is still tax payer money. That money could have been used somewhere in the university where instead taxes were used to fund.)

Posted on January 3, 2013 at 12:35 PM by Duffman Highlight this comment 380

So the Twins have been called out for not keeping pace with their AL Central opponents as far as pitching is considered. Uh oh...

Posted on January 3, 2013 at 1:53 PM by TK Highlight this comment 381

I have attached the TwinsDaily link to this post. Gotta love this blog.

Posted on January 3, 2013 at 1:55 PM by TK Highlight this comment 382

I'm not one who buys the "weak non-con does you no favors when you reach the B1G" argument. The biggest reasons? Youth and depth. The current Gophers team has no real depth, particularly at the skill positions. Injuries present a huge problem and playing a tough non-conf schedule opens up more opportunities for the team to get beat up prior to conference play.

The youth side of things has to do with experience and confidence. When you're a younger team that is building itself up taking beats in the non-con doesn't really help you. If you're not good enough to beat a certain caliber of team playing outside your weight class in the non-con and getting killed won't help your confidence. Also, when you're young you REALLY want/need the extra 15 practices (essentially a free Spring practice period) that comes with the bowl games. So getting bowl eligible is especially important and a weaker non-con helps with that.

That said, I wasn't in favor of the UNC decision. But I can at least see the logic in play.

Posted on January 3, 2013 at 2:06 PM by GoAUpher Highlight this comment 383

Now, if you are an better team in terms of experience/talent team I do agree that playing better teams should help you. But I'd like to see the people that would claim the current Gophers squad is one of those teams.

Posted on January 3, 2013 at 2:08 PM by GoAUpher Highlight this comment 384

Duff~
Mason didn't really have an issue with his cupcakes. His last cupcake loss was in 2001 and in total, he only lost 4 cupcake games (2 of which happened in his initial season). By the time he had his best teams he was winning his cupcake games easily. That said, I do agree that he'd ignore the role playing cupcakes had on making bowl games and he'd always oversell the impact of those games (though I'm not sure what else he was supposed to do...badmouth his team's accomplishments?)

The problem with calling UNC is cupcake is that they are the equal (and possibly better) than Minnesota right now. Teams that are of equal (or better) talent/skill to your own aren't cupcakes. Are they a USC in terms of national stature? No. But a game against UNC is one that the Gophers certainly could lose.

As for the recruiting bit, I sincerely doubt it matters. Why? One, because it's easy for Kill to point to where he started, say this move is part of the process of rebuilding the program, and then point to all the good teams the Gophers face in the B1G portion of the schedule.

Lastly, they didn't waste ANY taxpayer money on the buyout. The athletic department budget isn't funded with tax dollars, it is funded by it's own revenues. Unless you're straining logic by saying the people who go to games do pay taxes and thus "taxpayers'" money is being misused.

Posted on January 3, 2013 at 2:16 PM by GoAUpher Highlight this comment 385

Final thought for Duff...realized that I read past your final comment about "using the money elsewhere in the university" instead of on the buyout. That's just wrong. As I note, it's revenues (and in this case, some athletic department donations) that will be used to pay for the buyout. Those revenues are never directed back to the wider university and any donations that will be used would be solicited for the specific purpose of the buyout and thus can't/wouldn't be used for anything else.

Posted on January 3, 2013 at 2:20 PM by GoAUpher Highlight this comment 386

Winona~
Playing cupcakes doesn’t get you on national TV too often. Blue-chip recruits want to be playing on TV; especially back home.

If you are a legitimately good team, playing cupcakes will get you on national TV b/c ESPN will put you there as one of the best teams in the B1G. Want proof? Just look at how many of the cupcake games for Wisconsin, Michigan, Ohio State, etc got placement on national cable (and in some cases regional ABC) broadcasts. The problem isn't the cupcakes, it's that the Gophers aren't one of those teams.

If you’re only playing the SDSUs of the world, you’re going to face an uphill challenge recruiting kids from football hotbeds like Florida and Texas. They want to win championships and they want to be seen by the pros.

It's already an uphill slog to get the better kids from these areas for reasons way more simple than "not enough national TV games". First, to be technical, BTN games are national. It's just that the channel isn't on basic cable in every part of the country. But more important is the fact that the good FL/TX kids have plenty of local schools that offer them better chances to play for titles. If playing for titles is the issue, then Minnesota loses out on that aspect before it loses on TV b/c we're not a title caliber program right now.

Strength of schedule has always hurt teams like Boise State, who have gone undefeated or have had one-loss seasons, yet can’t get any national respect due to their Mountain West conference opponents.

Exactly. We don't play in the Mountain West. If the Gophers ever ran the table in the B1G then they'd have respect for winning a real conference. Boise State doesn't play in a conference with enough good teams. And you need to remember that the old BCS is going away. If Minnesota is ever good enough to win the B1G with 1 loss or undefeated then they'd make the new "4 Team Playoff" off the strength of their conference wins.

A strong non-conference schedule can draw in fans. I’d rather go to see the Gophers play USC or Notre Dame or Alabama than watch Western Michigan and Ohio University.

I agree with this one to a point. You'll definitely get more fans for a decent opponent, but given the problems Minnesotans have with bandwagon jumping you'll also face issues if playing a tougher schedule means fewer wins. Sure, they'll come early but then they'll jump off. The only real way to get fans in Minnesota to come and then to stay is to win and to keep winning. I like this argument more if it is altered to be a "season ticket holders deserve some decent games for the money they pay" type of assertion.

Posted on January 3, 2013 at 2:31 PM by GoAUpher Highlight this comment 387

I suspect the non-conference schedule would be more easily overlooked if the Gophers were more successful within the conference. It's when they go 4-0 nonconference and then are consistently below .500 within the conference that the strength of schedule becomes hard to ignore.

Exactly, though the only people focusing a lot on it are people who want to find something to complain about. If you're a squad that isn't good enough to be .500 in the B1G then that means you are a fringe bowl team. And that means you REALLY need the extra practices that come with being a bowl team. Which means you're smart to guarantee yourself 4 good chances at a win in the non-con part of your schedule.

The only time it's worth being critical of the non-con schedule of a sub .500 B1G team is if someone is trying to argue that the team is better than they are (most likely by ignoring the softness of the non-con schedule).

Posted on January 3, 2013 at 2:34 PM by GoAUpher Highlight this comment 388

I had a response prepared, but by the time i could get to it, GoAUpher had responded. We are on the same page often and this appears to be the case for this topic...and the response he gave is very much more eloquent than mine would have been.

Posted on January 3, 2013 at 8:28 PM by jared Highlight this comment 389

Anybody get the number of that bus?

Posted on January 3, 2013 at 9:35 PM by Winona Mike Highlight this comment 390

As a member of a traditionally-strong conference, a non-conference schedule full of cupcakes works just fine when trying to turn a program around. Exhibit A: Kansas State.

Posted on January 3, 2013 at 10:55 PM by Expectorate Highlight this comment 391

Regarding the Gophers' football home and home against Texas, that wasn't just an attempt. Both schools actually announced and listed the games on future schedules. The media rights issue wasn't about money. The official explanation concerned a hold up about Texas getting the rights to re-air and perpetually use footage from the game played in Minnesota, those rights technically belonging to Big Ten, on its then developing Longhorn Network. The unofficial reason is Texas only scheduled the game as a favor from head coach Mack Brown to his former assistant Tim Brewster and wanted out in order to schedule a flashier foe when it became apparent that Brewster would be long gone by 2015-16.

The speed at which Texas announced Notre Dame as Minnesota's replacement on its 2015 and 2016 schedules made the Longhorns’ motivation for moving the Gophers aside grossly evident. I said as much to Joel Maturi at the time and asked why the U of M didn't push Texas to fulfill its commitment to play the games. He responded that the U of M could file a lawsuit, but added, “that's not how we operate". I later had the chance to repeat that explanation to Norwood Teague and his stunned reaction suggested he neither knew of, approved of nor would have taken that course of action, or non-action, himself had he sat in the AD's chair at the time.

Posted on January 4, 2013 at 11:41 AM by Jorge Highlight this comment 392

Jorge~
Love the behind the scenes details. I'll add it to my insanely large list of reasons why Joel Maturi is a very nice man who should never have been left in charge of a major university's athletic department for more than a few transitional years.

Posted on January 4, 2013 at 12:09 PM by GoAUpher Highlight this comment 393

GoAUpher speaks truth and class is in session. Some of you smarmy, wish ass, know-it-all, flaming dolts (you know who you are) should probably pull up a chair and listen close.

Later.

BTW - Nice play on the periodic table GoAUpher. i.e. With the periodic symbol for gold being "Au". Clever. :-)

Posted on January 4, 2013 at 8:06 PM by Betaband Highlight this comment 394

Here's where my concern about strength of schedule comes into play. This from Wikipedia. ESPN also corroborates this information:

"The latest proposal was announced on June 26, 2012 and will adopt a four-team playoff system. The system is to go into affect starting after the 2014 season and continuing to 2025. A new selection committee will determine which four teams will be playing for the championship."

I found the most interesting part of that to read, "A new selection committee will determine which four teams will be playing for the championship"
It doesn't say that the champions of the four major conferences will be bracketed in a playoff format. It appears to me as though it will remain a popularity contest up until the time the playoff kicks off each year. If this playoff selection goes anything like the NCAA Basketball Tournament selection process goes, strength of schedule will probably be a factor.
Despite what some may think I’d love to see the Gophers compete for the national championship, but from what I’m reading, winning the Big 10 championship won’t be enough to assure automatic inclusion in a championship playoff. If the Gophers continue to pad their record with wins over Division 1 schools, I don’t see why they won’t get overlooked by the selection committee.

I found the most interesting part of that to read, "A new selection committee will determine which four teams will be playing for the championship"
It doesn't say that the champions of the four major conferences will be bracketed in a playoff format. It appears to me as though it will remain a popularity contest up until the time the playoff kicks off each year.

Posted on January 5, 2013 at 04:05 AM by Winona Mike Highlight this comment 395

I don't know how that third paragraph got repeated at the end. I composed my post in Word and then pasted it here. Oops.

Posted on January 5, 2013 at 04:08 AM by Winona Mike Highlight this comment 396

From the NCAA website comes this information:

“A selection committee will pick the four teams — using guidelines such as strength of schedule, head-to-head results and won-loss record — after the regular season. The committee will give preference to conference champions. The makeup of the committee is to be determined, but it will likely be about 20 conference commissioners and college athletic directors.”

While the committee will give preference to conference champions, there are five conferences who, within recent memory, have produced National Champions (ACC-Florida State, Miami U; Big 10-Ohio State; Big 12-Texas, Oklahoma; Pac 12-USC; SEC-Alabama, Florida, LSU) These conferences also have produced serious challengers to the title over the past few years, Among them Kansas State, Oregon, Stanford, and Michigan. We’ve also got to throw in independents like Notre Dame. In two years, the Mountain West Conference (Boise State) will also be thrown into the mix.

With five conferences contributing serious contenders, along with cash cows like Notre Dame, it seems to me that being the Big 10 champion doesn’t make a school a shoe-in for the four team field for the playoffs. And since there won’t be a set formula for inclusion, but a committee of as many as 20 people, the entire process appears a bit selective to me. I would also note the list of guidelines starts with strength of schedule.

Finally (At last!), the championship game will be put up for bid among the bowls chosen to participate in the playoff, so this will turn out to be yet another NCAA cash-grab. In that vein, it feels like a certainty to me that the committee will favor schools that travel well and draw huge TV ratings. Unfortunately, the U of M does neither particularly well right now. They need to beef up their strength of schedule to assure inclusion in any playoff discussions.
I apologize for going on like this, but I feel like I was fending off assault from every side, and a vehement defense was called for.

Posted on January 5, 2013 at 10:27 AM by Winona Mike Highlight this comment 397

TK - that Twins Daily article is dead on. Everyone else n the Central has improved more than the Twins this winter. Hard to understand how the Twins think they will move up from the cellar.

Posted on January 5, 2013 at 2:02 PM by Jfh Highlight this comment 398

Is it not the greatest kharma ever to know that its less than three months for the boys to return to Target Field?

Posted on January 5, 2013 at 9:17 PM by luke Highlight this comment 399

What was that "Thud" sound I heard from Wisconsin last night?

That game looked about like a Twins v Yankees playoff game... /sigh/

Posted on January 6, 2013 at 05:36 AM by F_T_K Highlight this comment 400

Who'd have imagined ever thinking, "If only Ponder had been in there...?"

They say that the most popular player on any team is the backup quarterback. Today I'm not so sure that would apply here. Webb looked like a guy who hadn't thrown a pass all season. He didn't even look like a guy who'd thrown a pass all year in practice, either. He had a tough night, and looked as green as Ponder did this year.

Posted on January 6, 2013 at 09:31 AM by Winona Mike Highlight this comment 401

Winona~
It shouldn't really concern us for a couple of reasons.
1) The Gophers aren't a program that will be in contention for that very often. There are a wealth of improvements that have to happen before talk of being in the 4 team playoff is even close to realistic. If Coach Kill was trying to strengthen the next few years of schedules based on the 4 team playoff that would be...well, foolish. There are legit reasons for the Gophers to look at SoS improvements down the road. The 4 team playoff isn't one of them.
2) Even if the Gophers had a weaker SoS in the non-con going undefeated will get you into the 4 team playoff. There is no way a selection committee leaves out an undefeated conference champ from a major conference unless there are more than 4 of them. It's just not going to happen. It is a rarity for more than TWO teams from major conferences to go undefeated in a given season. In other words, all the Gophers would have to do in the future to cap off a great season with a 4TP appearance is take care of business. SoS would not be needed.

Posted on January 7, 2013 at 08:42 AM by GoAUpher Highlight this comment 402

You have to place most of the blame on coaching regarding Webb. He was the No. 2 QB all year. Where was the coaching to have him ready in case Ponder got hurt, not just in the playoffs but all year? And if he did stink that bad, even with coaching, it is the coaches' responsibility to replace him as the No. 2. Bottom line: this team was ill prepared when it came to QB depth, and this was known LONG BEFORE Ponder ever got injured at the end of the season. In my gut, I believe this team NEVER THOUGHT it would make the playoffs, so it decided at the beginning of the season that it was Ponder or bust - and BUST it did. That is a sad, sad way to run things at the NFL level, no matter whether you are a perennial contender or in rebuilding mode.

Posted on January 7, 2013 at 2:33 PM by The Truth Hurts Highlight this comment 403

GoAUpher-

While I remain unconvinced, I’m throwing in the towel on this one simply because digging up data to support my assertions isn’t time well spent considering what little is at stake. You might be correct, and I might be too skeptical or cynical regarding future national respect a winning Gopher football program might gain. It seems to me that the sporting press is so enamored of conferences like the SEC, and elite programs from other conferences, that the light emanating from a dominant Gopher program could easily get lost in the perceived brilliance thrown off by schools and conferences that have been praised and admired for the past few decades.

I hope you’re right, and I hope I’m wrong.

I’ll pursue this topic no further. (Cheers from all the other posters)

Posted on January 7, 2013 at 6:17 PM by Winona Mike Highlight this comment 404

So the team ranked Number One in the Nation comes into a game a double-digit underdog to the team ranked Number Two and the odds-makers are vindicated when team ranked number two wins by four touchdowns. And they wonder why there is cynicism about the BCS?

Posted on January 8, 2013 at 07:59 AM by terry Highlight this comment 405

Winona~
To be clear, I don't think you're totally wrong. A future winning Gophers program would be met with skepticism, no doubt. And if they lost any B1G games, even if it were only 1, that could be enough to keep them out of a 4TP if their non-con SOS is weak. But I guarantee that going undefeated would get them in regardless. The 4 team playoff was created by the big boy conferences (including the B1G) to guarantee themselves MORE access to the national title, not less. Undefeated teams from big boy conferences aren't getting shut out by a selection committee.

The other thing to remember when talking SOS is that you're talking about the next 4 seasons (2017 and beyond are pretty wide open for non-con right now). I'm a huge Gopher homer, but I don't see a scenario where the Gophers are going to be good enough to be national title contenders in the next four seasons. I'd settle for being competitive for a conference title first (crawl before you walk). If Kill were to continue to go with no BCS opponents in 2017 (would require dropping Oregon State in '17-'18) and beyond then the idea that a good but not undefeated Gopher team could be kept out of a 4 team playoff might be something to be more concerned about.

Posted on January 8, 2013 at 10:50 AM by GoAUpher Highlight this comment 406

The idea of the Gophers football program competing for a national title is pretty funny. This year's recruiting class is bringing in a whopping zero players from ESPN's top 150 lol and you guys are bouncing around the idea of a national title

Posted on January 8, 2013 at 7:56 PM by ace Highlight this comment 407

I know it would take time; the Gophers’ schedule, particularly the non-conference games have always been scheduled several years in advance, so making the change would have to wait until their current commitments have been fulfilled. But I’d like to see them upgrade that portion of their schedule if only to hone their skills at challenging and, one can hope, defeating the current crop of more successful programs. Extra practices prior to any bowl game is fine, but I think the program and the players within could learn a heck of a lot watching what the big boys are doing and how they respond to what the Gophers attempt. It would take time, and it would be an arduous climb, but like body building, you develop your strengths through resistance training, keeping in mind the old truism, “No pain, no gain.”

Posted on January 8, 2013 at 8:05 PM by Winona Mike Highlight this comment 408

You've got to dream big, Ace.

Posted on January 8, 2013 at 8:06 PM by Winona Mike Highlight this comment 409

The importance of an undefeated non-conference schedule was made clear by this week's BCS game. ND was 13-0 and Alabama was 12-1 so ND was ranked number one even though all experts agreed Alabama was a much better team, an opinion borne out by the game's outcome. I realize ND is an independent, but their equivalent of the non-conference "cupcake schedule" is all the service academies. It's been 50 years since Staubach played for Navy and nearly 70 years since Davis and Blanchard played for Army.

Posted on January 8, 2013 at 10:03 PM by terry Highlight this comment 410

Lol...um, Ace, your reading comprehension skills need some work. No one is seriously entertaining the idea of a national title run. It's being brought up in the wider discussion of pros/cons to certain types of scheduling.

Posted on January 9, 2013 at 08:47 AM by GoAUpher Highlight this comment 411

Winona~
Fair enough. On that front they already have a BCS non-con for 2017 and 2018 with Oregon State. So we're talking 2019 and beyond with the future scheduling.

It's also pretty likely at this point that the B1G will be moving to 9 conference games which makes it even less likely we'll see the U schedule more than 1 BCS opponent per season.

Posted on January 9, 2013 at 08:51 AM by GoAUpher Highlight this comment 412

Got my spring training tickets. All is good.

Posted on January 9, 2013 at 10:51 AM by terry Highlight this comment 413

Big HOF vote results will be released in just under 2 hours. who you got?

I would put in Biggio (a lock with 3000+ hits), Morris (as purely a homer vote).

Bagwell, Piazza and Schilling get voted in maybe some other year.

Bonds, Clemens, Sosa all get less than 25% vote.

Posted on January 9, 2013 at 11:24 AM by DreDogg Highlight this comment 414

ESPN reports the HOF class is empty this year.

Posted on January 9, 2013 at 1:10 PM by jared Highlight this comment 415

Hi all--

With all this baseball chatter, I was considering a trip to Ft. Myers. I've never been for Spring Training, so would appreciate any tips (places to stay), duration (4 days/2 games), if renting a car is essential, etc.

Thanks!

Posted on January 9, 2013 at 1:16 PM by Paul Highlight this comment 416

That could be good for Morris next year (if writers feel like he got caught up in reaction to a scandal that he wasn't part of), or bad (because he'll be up against Maddux and Glavine -- arguably more hall-worthy).

This suddenly feels like a sad day for baseball.

Posted on January 9, 2013 at 1:20 PM by Rick 417

For what it's worth, I don't have any idea how I personally would have voted. Sometimes I think the latter day "outrage" over steroids is a little over the top. We all knew what was going on at the time, and for the most part, we didn't care.

That's not to excuse it, of course. The long-term damage that these drugs can cause are well known.

Maybe the Hall of Fame is past its usefulness to a game which has become so complicated. Or maybe the Hall itself should be deciding who gets in (kind of like they decide which hat a player will wear).

I don't know. The whole thing is just, well, sad.

Posted on January 9, 2013 at 1:30 PM by Rick 418

Jayson Stark is asking a similar question.

Posted on January 9, 2013 at 1:38 PM by Rick 419

Paul, a couple spring training tips. If you are flying, compare the cost of flying to Orlando and renting a car there versus flying to Fort Meyers. It's a couple hour drive, but sometimes the difference in air fares can make it worthwhile. Sanibel Island is beautiful but pricey. We stay in a moderate-priced chain somewhere closer to the Lee County Complex. Get to the complex early both because of traffic and because that gives you a chance to walk around to the instructional fields before going into Hammond Stadium. Last year I got to watch Paul Molitor and Tom Kelly at the infield-only diamond work with Miguel Sano on the rundown play. Bring a lunch and tailgate. Don't be surprised if you run into friends from back home.

Posted on January 9, 2013 at 2:39 PM by terry Highlight this comment 420

The proverbial fog lifts in six weeks baby! SIX WEEKS!

Posted on January 9, 2013 at 6:09 PM by luke Highlight this comment 421

Thanks terry...exactly the type of tips and information I was looking for. Really appreciated! Cheers!

Posted on January 9, 2013 at 6:29 PM by Paul Highlight this comment 422

I would have considered voting for Biggio, Bonds, Clemens and Morris. I hope the people who turned in empty ballots didn't think any were worthy, rather than a "make a point" protest gesture, which could unfairly harm some otherwise deserving players.

Posted on January 10, 2013 at 05:07 AM by robin Highlight this comment 423

Since Morris got the shaft, is he still eligible on the regular ballot, or is it in the hands of the Veteran Committee now?

Posted on January 10, 2013 at 06:52 AM by luke Highlight this comment 424

Luke - Morris has one more year of eligibility on the regular ballot. If he doesn't make it next year it would be up to the veteran committee, but I doubt they would let him in.

Posted on January 10, 2013 at 08:15 AM by Stevie B Highlight this comment 425

Paul, airfare was cheaper for us going into Fort Lauderdale, then renting a car. Get to the park early and go to the instruction fields. TK and Molitor were always down there and were fun to watch and were very accessible. Tony O is always around and likes to bs. We went to Jet Blue, home of the Red Sox, very cool, worth the trip

Posted on January 10, 2013 at 9:35 PM by Paul Highlight this comment 426

I was browsing around and it looks like Spirit Airlines now has direct flights to Fort Myers for less than $300.00 roundtrip. That is very reasonable when comparing prices to last year.

You can usually save on rental cars by picking up at a local office away from the airport. Most of the time you can return the car to the airport for no additional charge.

Traffic is also horrific in the area. Plan to leave early. I've also had success using Plantation Rd instead of Six Mile Cypress. It will save you some time.

Posted on January 11, 2013 at 11:20 AM by FD Highlight this comment 427

Be careful of Spirit Airlines, their prices look good on first glance, but when they get done with all the add ons, (such as carry on's) you're back up with everybody else.

Posted on January 11, 2013 at 12:13 PM by trebor651 Highlight this comment 428

Has anybody seen the game times for the 2013 Twins schedule. Wow- quite a bit different than the last three seasons. Only 5 12:10 day games scheduled during the work week. Last year there were at least 10 I believe. I believe everybody was talking about how crummy the schedule was a while back,and that was even before the game times were announced, now I have to comment that everybody sure was right.

Posted on January 11, 2013 at 10:39 PM by Tom D. Highlight this comment 429

Looks like the Twins wised up. Those 12:10 weekday starts are an anamoly to the folks actually working for a living downtown, and not dicking around at the ballpark watching a AA team. Thanks MLB for listening to my suggestion for fewer Twins weekday games at TF.

Posted on January 12, 2013 at 2:09 PM by luke Highlight this comment 430

After watching yesterday's NFL playoff games, it's a stiff slap of reality in the face as to how far the Vikings are from grasping the Lombardi Trophy. Even with the best RB in the league.

Posted on January 13, 2013 at 08:37 AM by TheTruthHurts Highlight this comment 431

I didn't know Luke had such "pull" with MLB. I love the 12:10 weekday games. I have already put in for vacation on the days in my package that have 12:10 starts (I also work for a living Luke). Baseball in the sun, just like God and Abner Doubleday intended, is a joy. Time spent enjoying it is not time spent "dicking around".

Posted on January 13, 2013 at 08:47 AM by terry Highlight this comment 432

Why not schedule weekday games at 2:10 pm? Or even 1:10 pm? Why are they so indignant about 12:10 games? It ruins rushhour. My normal commute to my downtown office is 10 minutes, even in winter. When theres a weekday 12:10 game, it takes me an extra 15 minutes, just to get out of downtown. And believe it or not, I DID email MLB about those 12:10 starts. Whether the email had as much clout, but maybe it did...lol. I for one, am happy with fewer weekday games.

Posted on January 13, 2013 at 09:04 AM by luke Highlight this comment 433

I DID email MLB about those 12:10 starts.

You couldn't make this stuff up.

Rest assured, Luke, that the decision was probably based on considerations beyond whether they got your email. I'm just guessing here, but there might be a . . . oh, how shall I put this? . . . financial consideration involved.

But I'm sure the Twins will be distressed to hear that they've upset your commute. Maybe they could hold fans in the park after games until they're sure you're out of downtown.

Time for another email. (Please CC me on it.)

Posted on January 13, 2013 at 10:11 AM by Rick 434

Of course its financial Rick...lol. good grief.
I think it was Bobby Cox that once railed on the Cubbies in their lightless years. I cant remember if it was Cox or another manager. But in a press conference it was once said that 90% of America WORKS during the day, the other 10% waste it sitting at Wrigley Field. Weekday games are useless. Everybody knows this.
Even Kevin Costner said so in Field of Dreams...lol.

Posted on January 13, 2013 at 10:30 AM by luke Highlight this comment 435

Have you ever been to a day game at Wrigley? Fenway? Target Field?

Afternoon baseball is one of God's great gifts to the human spirit.

I have nothing against night games, but they come in a distant third behind early (12:00 and 1:00) and late (3:00 or later) afternoon games.

The essential message to the world is: Work and commutes be damned!

Posted on January 13, 2013 at 11:01 AM by Rick 436

Have I been to a day game at Wrigley or Fenway? No. TF? Yes. On the WEEKENDS.

Parking is already hard enough to get into in Downtown Minneapolis during the week without 30,000 Twins fans sucking up spots. Downtown traffic is already difficult enough during the week without 30,000 Twins fans putting extra congestion on already crowded streets at the most inopportune time of the day - afternoon rush hour.

This "getaway game" thing is a bunch of hooey IMHO. And whatever happened to Twilight games? Good grief, a ballgame starting at 4pm on a Wednesday afternoon in June isn't so bad, is it? You still have 3 hours of daylight by the time the game ends, and rush hour would be over by then.

The 12:10 gig would work well for a Sunday start or a Saturday start. 1:10 is good for a Sunday start. Go to Mass at the Basillica, walk over to the ballpark, perfect.

During the week, a 12:10 start just causes way too much congestion downtown. The Twins have been playing chicken with these 12:10 starts, especially early in the season because they're afraid people will freeze their Homer Heinies off during the night games in April and September.

I think it's about high time we got brought back to reality. We wanted the open-air ballpark (which is great. Still glad there's no roof). We got said open-air ballpark. You deal with it. Day games are great, sunshine, a cool breeze, the crack of the bat even sounds different during a day game - don't get me wrong. But be wise when planning them. Rant over.

Posted on January 13, 2013 at 1:06 PM by luke Highlight this comment 437

I park at Fort Snelling and take the light rail so I can attend those weekday games with a clear conscience, knowing I'm not taking Luke's parking place.

Posted on January 13, 2013 at 1:32 PM by terry Highlight this comment 438

Any day of the week, an afternoon game in a real ballpark is one of life's greatest joys. Television money has destroyed much of that.

Posted on January 13, 2013 at 2:36 PM by schweady Highlight this comment 439

Ray Liotta: "What's with the lights?"
Kevin Costner: "All the ballparks have them now, even Wrigley Field. The owners felt that more people could attend night games."
Ray Liotta: "(scoff) Owners."

Posted on January 13, 2013 at 8:25 PM by luke Highlight this comment 440

Boy, I am glad that baseball talk is back...even if it is to read Luke's obligatory addlepated remarks followed by replies of reason.

Posted on January 13, 2013 at 8:29 PM by tk Highlight this comment 441

I went to a weekday afternoon game at Wrigley Field when the Twins were there a couple years ago. Well worth the couple of vacation days I used to do it. Rode the 'El', wandered the park, met some amazingly nice people (it really is "the friendly confines!")

Target Field single game tickets go on sale February 16th. Although this year I might do most of my purchasing through StubHub, as this team will probably lose 90 games again this year and ticket demand will be down.

Posted on January 14, 2013 at 08:22 AM by F_T_K Highlight this comment 442

When does Luke leave work?? I thought one reason for the 12:10 start time rather than 1:10 or 3:10 was to avoid afternoon rush hour (get fans to their cars by 3:30)...

I park near the ballpark, so afternoon games can be a hassle (higher prices, etc.), but scheduling a few 12:10 starts adds variety. And I'd rather go to a day game in April when it's sunny and 50 degrees than a night game when it's 38.

Posted on January 14, 2013 at 09:26 AM by BR Highlight this comment 443

"We got said open-air ballpark. You deal with it." Luke

Yes Luke, you deal with it. Afternoon games and all, traffic patterns, parking, whatever. Are you going to start a petition that the new Vikings palace will not be allowed to host Monday Night Football games?

Skipping out on work to catch a baseball game is always a great thing, and Target Field has greatly enhanced the Minnesota version of it.

Posted on January 14, 2013 at 09:27 AM by Stevie B Highlight this comment 444

Tom D - by my count there are 8 weekday afternoon, non holiday dates with 12:10 start time. That doesn't include the home opener (Apr 1)and Apr 3 that have 3:10 starts. July 4 also has a 1:10 start.

Uh oh, there goes Luke's blood pressure.

Apr 4
Apr 23
May 15
Jun 20
Aug 1
Aug 14
Aug 29
Sep 12

Posted on January 14, 2013 at 11:36 AM by Stevie B Highlight this comment 445

Tom D.,

In looking at the schedule, I counted 8 dates M-H with 12:10pm starts, outside of 3:10pm OD and 12:10pm 4th of July.

Posted on January 14, 2013 at 11:51 AM by tk Highlight this comment 446

Looks like I should have refreshed my screen before adding my comment...

Posted on January 14, 2013 at 11:52 AM by tk Highlight this comment 447

One would THINK the concept works, BR, but it does not. A 12:10 start usually releases the hostages at around 3pm. First shift at hospitals gets out at 3. First shift at F500 companies ends about 3-330 pm. Thus begins rush hour at 3pm and usually lasts until 6pm.

SO, add the downtown employees to the 35,000 hostages getting out of the Twins game, you have a big mess.

Think for one moment how things could change if they moved a weekday game forward or back one hour: a 11:10 or a 1:10 start. I think it would alleviate tons of problems. And lets face it, TF shows off real nice in the morning sun. Just sayin.

Posted on January 14, 2013 at 12:35 PM by luke Highlight this comment 448

I think it was Bobby Cox that once railed on the Cubbies in their lightless years. I cant remember if it was Cox or another manager. But in a press conference it was once said that 90% of America WORKS during the day, the other 10% waste it sitting at Wrigley Field.

It was the Cubs' then manager Lee Elia who made comments to that effect early in the 1983 season. He swore practically every other word. Here's some context. The Cubs, in the latest of a string of bad seasons, got off to a lousy start in April and got booed off the field by their own fans. This was in the era when Wrigley Field wasn't overrun by tourists and people looking to get drunk, so on a weekday afternoon the Cubs would get crowds of 20,000 instead of the sellouts that came later. It was much more of a true baseball crowd.

After the game Elia angrily took the fans to task for booing the Cubs players. Among many things, he commented that 90% of the people were working for a living and the other 10% came out to watch day baseball. Elia made it a point to praise his team as talented and giving everything they had and undeserving of such treatment, noting that he wouldn't be so forceful otherwise. Elia also said that if the fans wanted to boo, then they should boo him instead of the players. It's worth noting that although Elia didn't make it to 1984, the core of the team (Sandberg, Matthews, Smith, Bowa, Moreland, Durham, etc...) he so strongly defended wound up winning the NL East that season.

The tirade, especially the uncensored version, is on YouTube and is quite entertaining. I first heard it back around 2000 or so and laughed so hysterically I couldn't breathe for a moment.

Posted on January 14, 2013 at 1:55 PM by Jorge Highlight this comment 449

Those comments certainly need to be understood in context.

Frankly, I don't know what the hell Luke is talking about. Rush hour is rush hour, and the time it takes to get out of downtown varies according to so many factors that blaming a baseball game is a little ridiculous. Why not blame rain? Or sunshine on 394? Or a Tony Robbins seminar at Target Center? Or f-ing Elmo? (One of the toughest times I ever had getting into and out of downtown was because Sesame Street Live was at Target Center.)

I've tried a whole bunch of different strategies for getting to and from games at TF, at all of the various times. Getting out of TF is about as easy as can be, even when you park in the A ramp for a day game.

My preferred method, as I've probably said before, is by bus. They have to deal with traffic just like any other vehicle, but the impact on travel time is pretty much nil.

So, Luke, the ball's in your court. What route do you take out of downtown? And how is a game at TF different from any other big event happening downtown during the day?

Posted on January 14, 2013 at 2:44 PM by Rick 450

I'll be more concrete. I park near TF and take 94 east or Lyndale Ave S our of D/T most days. From 4:30 to about 6, it's typically backed up. At 4pm on non-Twins game days, it's fine. After 6, it's fine. So "rush hour" for me is about a 1.5 hour block of time between 4:30 and 6pm.

A 12:10 Twins game might make it a bit slower from 3:30 to 4pm, but not much. Regular, early-leaving commuters will still be able to get out with relative ease. And the overall impact is usually dispersed. Some fans will begin leaving D/T from those games around 3:30. Others will meander around the park. Some will hit the bars after the game and wait out rush hour.

I just don't think a 12:10 Twins game has a huge impact on rush hour traffic, in general. I'm sure there are some spots that could get congested, but if so, you just need to find another, more clever way out!

Posted on January 14, 2013 at 3:18 PM by BR Highlight this comment 451

If I can't bike to the game, my biggest beef with weekday matinee Twins games tends to be the limited parking options due to so many lots and ramps being either contract only or charging hourly instead of flat rates that make them unrealistic as parking options. That said, the parking situation by Target Field is still better than that by the Metrodome.

Posted on January 14, 2013 at 4:04 PM by Jorge Highlight this comment 452

Luke, I have gotten emails from the Twins when multiple events occur in the loop. Were you the brainchild behind that one in ensuring that we well informed?

I missed a game once when they had multiple events, can you send another email and ask if someone can send non attendees and email too, so I am not caught off guard! Man, could have really used those extra 10 minutes.

Besides, you are really brave in your thinking that the Twins will draw 35,000 on day games this year (outside of opening week)...

Posted on January 14, 2013 at 5:34 PM by tk Highlight this comment 453

I really think the Twins will be close to .500 this year. I might be the only one who thinks it, but we will see. I already been throwing to some high school players so baseball season is right around the corner. 68 days until my 8th graders report for their first day of practice!

Posted on January 14, 2013 at 8:37 PM by ole Highlight this comment 454

Ole, my son's little league winter clinics have begun so my glove is getting some work. Always good to feel the ball land in there. And I am reading "The Perfect Game," which is the story of the 1957 Monterrey Mexico Little League team. Great story.

Posted on January 15, 2013 at 08:14 AM by Stevie B Highlight this comment 455

Sorry it took so long to get here to comment guys...got caught in some wicked Twins Caravan related traffic. Anyone know who I can complain to?

Posted on January 15, 2013 at 08:18 AM by GoAUpher Highlight this comment 456

I am a traditionalist and like some of those afternoon games.

In a day in age where its all about money and tv ratings with so many night games, I like the occasional day games during the week.

It wasn't long ago when none of those day games were on TV, now most, if not all, games are on TV.

I can listen to the games while at work or else watch the replay on TV that night. No big deal to me. Day games also allow me to get things done around the yard/house when I would normally be sitting down watching the game on TV.

On another note, this has gone unnoticed, but there is no Opening Day ticket lottery this year. Obviously the ticket demand has fallen enough that the Twins feel there is no need to have a lottery. One of my friends heard the Twins had a renewal rate of 70% but the Pioneer Press stated 80% so obviously season ticket renewals are down this year regardless of what percentage. All single games, including Opening Day, will be on sale on Saturday, February 16.

Posted on January 15, 2013 at 10:04 AM by Mike Highlight this comment 457

I would like to think the Twins could get to .500 this year but there are just too many unanswered questions right now. Will be interesting how the depth chart and pitching rotation shape up after spring training. I expect big things from Mauer and Morneau. I expect Dozier to step up but I am not too hopeful with 3B (Plouffe) and the OF. Obviously they had to trade Span and Revere for some much-needed pitching depth. No Casilla or Baker to worry about in 2013!

I see the injuries continue with Nick Blackburn scheduled for wrist surgery tomorrow at Mayo Clinic putting him out 6 weeks. Not that Blackburn is a big loss, but he was expected to compete for a spot on the rotation.

Posted on January 15, 2013 at 10:30 AM by Mike (aka Mike) Highlight this comment 458

The decreasing number of games available on over the air TV has been a frequent topic of discussion and concern at this blog. Here's an item that quietly slipped under the radar this fall.

Effective 2014, when MLB's new TV contracts take effect, the number of regular season games on over the air TV will decrease by more than 50%. News Corp purchased the right to 52 broadcast windows (via regionalization it can air multiple games in a single window). Of those 52 windows, only 12 will air on Fox affiliates, down from the current weekly schedule of 26 windows in all. The remaining 40 windows, some on Saturday afternoon and others in prime time, will air on Fox Sports One. This network will be a reformatted Speed Channel that will launch this summer as a direct competitor to ESPN.

As a bone to fans, MLB will henceforth include games in this package within the Extra Innings and MLB.TV packages, something not presently the case. Fox and Fox Sports One will also have the right to stream all games within their collective 52 broadcast windows live on their websites to computers, tablets, and other mobile devices. Fox gets two LDS series, but can split games between Fox and Fox Sports One. Fox alone keeps the All Star Game, one LCS, and the World Series.

Posted on January 15, 2013 at 12:05 PM by Jorge Highlight this comment 459

In the olden days, I remember it was like pulling teeth to get WCCO Channel 4 to broadcast a home game. If they broadcast more than five home games a season, the station manager was probably paid off. Channel 9 was even worse.

I remember the olden days when MSC first started and Twins games (predominantly home games) were on PAY PER VIEW. It was really bad. And the Pay Per View thing went well into the mid 90s.

Televised sports have come a long way...thats for sure

Posted on January 15, 2013 at 5:31 PM by luke Highlight this comment 460

I remember the station carrying the Twins early on was WTCN 11. They televised 50 games a year, and that included only four home games. Early voices of the Twins included Ray Scott, Herb Carneal, Merle Harmon, Halsey Hall, Frank Beutel, and Joe Boyle in the booth. Not all at the same time.

Posted on January 15, 2013 at 6:10 PM by Winona Mike Highlight this comment 461

Before the advent of regional sports networks and the money available for rights fees became a legitimate revenue source, very few teams aired home games. Toss out a select few like the Cubs, White Sox, Mets, Yankees, and Braves, and most teams rarely ever put a home game on TV. When the Twins had their system of 50 games per year with only 4 home games, they the upper 50% of clubs for games aired until at least the mid 1980s. Most teams lived off of gate receipts and worried that too many televised games, especially home games, would kill attendance. When NBC showed Saturday afternoon baseball, the game was blacked out in the home team's market until the early 1980s.

Posted on January 15, 2013 at 9:47 PM by Jorge Highlight this comment 462

And don't forget Lynn Faris he was the father of a friend of mine. anybody else remember him,too.

Posted on January 15, 2013 at 9:49 PM by Tom D. Highlight this comment 463

If you want the whole sordid story, check out Center Field Shot: A History of Baseball on Television. It's exhaustive and fairly interesting, though I got pretty depressed reading the last few chapters.

Basically, and I realize that many of you know these things, the regional sports channels pay these huge amounts specifically to keep games locked on cable so that people keep subscribing. Without live sports, there's less and less reason to be a cable/satellite subscriber with each passing minute.

It's a total house of cards, and horribly anti-consumer, but deals like the Rangers, Angels and Dodgers got are so eye-popping that every team wants to get one before the model dies. This alone will keep the model running for the foreseeable future.

I'm one of those who refuses to spend $65 a month all year round to watch the Twins for six months plus get 150 channels I will never watch. I'd much rather pay $25 per month for six months each year (cable: $780, MLB.TV: $150). Frankly, the baseball teams are making a helluva lot more money off of me than any individual cable subscriber, but their management lives in a risk averse past which will not die easily.

It would probably take an act of Congress (quite literally) to fix the situation, and it will never happen.

Posted on January 16, 2013 at 01:02 AM by Rick 464

Anyone remember Bob Wolfe? He came with the team from Washington and only stayed for the 1961 season. He was an east coast guy and didn't get along with flyover land ... or his broadcast partners. If you've ever heard the radio broadcast of Larsen's WS perfect game, that's Wolfe doing the 9th inning.

Posted on January 16, 2013 at 07:43 AM by terry Highlight this comment 465

I better type fast before my f***ing phone taps out. Rick is spot on about the fees RSNs pay to be exclusive. FS Pacific just paid an ungodly amount to broadcast Dodger games. And where does that cost go? Consumers. Thus being anti-consumer.

Comcast gets their feet caught in the rat trap every so often...a couple years ago we were without FSN for a while because of user fees. Maybe Rick is on to something with the MLB Tv thing...lol

Posted on January 16, 2013 at 12:42 PM by luke Highlight this comment 466

The Dodgers and Fox Sports Net apparently agreed on a 25 year contract worth $6,000,000,000 late last year. However, MLB put the breaks on things due to concerns about how much of that money would have to end up in the revenue sharing plan. Long story short, someone at MLB thinks the Dodgers have their math wrong. Bud Selig’s office doesn't want the Dodgers cementing any deals until this issue is cleared up. It may yet be in the Dodgers’ best interests to take a different avenue. At this point, the Dodgers claim they are still open to either going with Fox, forming their own RSN or signing a deal with the new Time Warner Cable SportsNet that controls Lakers rights.

For 2013, the Dodgers will air most games on Prime Ticket, the brand name of one of the two FSN affiliates in the LA market. The other, Fox Sports West, has the Angels. The Dodgers also still have a contract with KCAL-9 to air around 50 games. Only the Cubs and White Sox have more games on over the air TV than the Dodgers, both teams doing so in part to preserve their places on WGN’s national feed. The Dodgers will go down to far fewer or no such games next season. The Braves, who have 45 games on WPCH in Atlanta as a legacy holdover from when that station was the local feed of WTBS, are considering taking those games to cable next year too. They already air on cable outside of Metro Atlanta.

Posted on January 16, 2013 at 2:46 PM by Jorge Highlight this comment 467

Is it easy for teams to create their own RSNs? The Twins and both of their attempts failed. MSC was swallowed by FS Net and their startup Victory Sports was a fail from the very beginning.

And across the country, existing RSNs were also swallowed up by FS Net. NESN and the Sunshine Network to name two.

Except for those rare occasions, YES and MSG Networks come to mind from New York, is it safe to say that only certain markets are blessed with being able to have their own RSN without being swallowed by monsters like ESPN or FS Net which are becoming more regionalized?

Posted on January 17, 2013 at 06:41 AM by luke Highlight this comment 468

NESN is majority owned by the Red Sox. You may be thinking of the local transition of Fox Sports Net to Comcast SportsNet. The former also airs Bruins games, while the latter has the Celtics.

Comcast's regional sports nets afford ownership opportunities to the local teams. For instance, the Phillies own a piece of Comcast SportsNet Philadelphia. The Astros and Rockets individually and collectively own more of Comcast SportsNet Houston than Comcast itself.

Victory Sports was a good, but brutally executed idea. The timing was all wrong. The per subscriber rate demanded by the Twins was too high. It was pre digital cable, so the carriers had less real estate on the old analog systems for new channels. The then ongoing stadium debate added an outside monkey wrench. For what it's worth, the Twins never had an ownership stake in MSC. The current FSN deal pays $29,000,000 per season, but I can't determine when the deal expires.

Posted on January 17, 2013 at 10:13 PM by Jorge Highlight this comment 469

Thanks for the info Jorge. This discussion on RSNs is interesting. How they operate is even more interesting.

On another topic, anyone making the trek to Twins Fest this year? I am still not sure yet. Is it this weekend or next weekend?

Posted on January 20, 2013 at 10:31 AM by luke Highlight this comment 470

I am planning on going to Twinsfest, it is next weekend. I plan on going on Saturday.

Posted on January 20, 2013 at 8:30 PM by Josh Highlight this comment 471

Apparently, some folks around the Twin Cities have nothing better to do with their lives than bitch about how someone knitted sweaters for the statues outside TF and didn't knit them for the homeless.

I am embarrassed for this city sometimes.

Posted on January 21, 2013 at 09:17 AM by DreDogg Highlight this comment 472

Hard to believe its already Diamond Awards week and Twinsfest week.

My wife and I are planning on heading down to the old Metrodome on Saturday. Not sure if I will buy anything but its always fun to browse and get into the baseball fever.

Opening Day is just 10 weeks from today!

Posted on January 21, 2013 at 09:39 AM by Mike Highlight this comment 473

DreDogg - I wondered how long it would take for someone to cry about that. Some things are as predictable as cold weather in January.

Posted on January 21, 2013 at 12:24 PM by Stevie B Highlight this comment 474

Today's LA Times said Time Warner Cable SportsNet now holds pole position for the Dodgers rights from 2014 onward, offering $7,000,000,000 over an undetermined length of time. Of that amount, around $1,000,000,000 to $2,000,000,000 would go to revenue sharing although how much still must be determined, the same hang up as with Fox Sports Net's offer. FSN also still has time to up the ante.

Posted on January 22, 2013 at 10:22 AM by Jorge Highlight this comment 475

Thats a crap load of zeros man! Hate to see what the cable bills are out there. $$$$$$$$

Posted on January 22, 2013 at 1:52 PM by twinfan Highlight this comment 476

Delmon to the Phillies - 1 year/$750,000 +

Posted on January 22, 2013 at 2:50 PM by gogotwins Highlight this comment 477

So now Ben will get to be on the receiving end of the "Go Fetch" play if Delmon should bring that act to Philadelphia.

Posted on January 22, 2013 at 7:07 PM by terry Highlight this comment 478

Nice paycut for twinkle toes! 6.5 mil to 750K! OUCH!

Posted on January 22, 2013 at 9:43 PM by twinkfan Highlight this comment 479

For anyone that cares...here is a link to the webcams for the interchange project. They're making progress!

Posted on January 23, 2013 at 10:41 AM by DreDogg Highlight this comment 480

What is the projected completion date for the interchange project?

Posted on January 23, 2013 at 11:58 AM by terry Highlight this comment 481

Liriano broke his right arm over the winter - might not be ready for opening day with the Pirates. Details on how he broke the arm? Not sure yet.

Posted on January 23, 2013 at 12:38 PM by ole Highlight this comment 482

Must be before the season, otherwise they have no place to turn the trains around. Are they taking out the current station in favor of this debacle?

Posted on January 23, 2013 at 2:57 PM by Duffman Highlight this comment 483

Do you have a better link Dre? The one you posted is broken.
speaking of progress, any new pics on the RF un-bleacher project?

Posted on January 23, 2013 at 6:20 PM by luke Highlight this comment 484

Update on the Interchange Project. Click my name for the presentation.

Posted on January 23, 2013 at 7:25 PM by Jeff Highlight this comment 485

Looks really cool. Thanks Jeff.

To the fine workers at Knutson Construction working on that, hats off to you for braving the cold this week. Sorry we couldn't have had better temperatures.

Posted on January 23, 2013 at 7:42 PM by luke Highlight this comment 486

Here's one for the "What The Hell" category: apparently the Rangers and Padres will play two spring exhibition games at the Metrodomes younger sister, the Alamodome in San Antonio. 280 ft to RF, 380 to LF. Why do they do this? Has NOBODY learned?

Posted on January 23, 2013 at 9:19 PM by luke Highlight this comment 487

Learned what?

Posted on January 24, 2013 at 03:22 AM by Duffman Highlight this comment 488

It's not like they are playing a regular season game there. Who cares what the dimensions are for a spring training game?

Great marketing move if they can sell tickets to it. The minor league park in SA probably holds not more than 10k. Not sure what the baseball configuration would be but imagine it would be at least 40k. They may not sell it out but they can put the "live" product on the field in front of a major metropolitan area of the same state.

Posted on January 24, 2013 at 09:02 AM by Stevie B Highlight this comment 489

Let's try this again. I didn't link directly to the web cam. This is the hompage to the interchange project. You will just have to find your way to the cams.

Posted on January 24, 2013 at 4:39 PM by DreDogg Highlight this comment 490

I mean who wants to watch a spring training game in frigid San Antonio outdoors?? LOL!

Posted on January 24, 2013 at 4:40 PM by twinkfan (aka twinfan) Highlight this comment 491

Duff, I meant "learned" in the degree that shoving a baseball diamond in a football stadium means compromise, and we have found at places like the Dome, SkyDome, The Trop etc, compromise just doesnt work in this game IMHO.

It feels like its a "novelty" game, like an NHL game outdoors at a 70,000 seat stadium, or an NBA game outdoors at a tennis stadium, and I think the "novelty" type game has worn a bit thin. Just an observation. And its not like San Antonio is vying for MLB expansion...so why are they doing it?

Posted on January 24, 2013 at 9:01 PM by luke Highlight this comment 492

Luke, it's not you are vying to make a point, so why do you keep trying?

Posted on January 24, 2013 at 10:40 PM by tk Highlight this comment 493

Duff, why dont you stop bitching and bellyaching about my comment, consider it an honest question, answer it in a civil manner or shut the hell up?

Posted on January 25, 2013 at 06:51 AM by luke Highlight this comment 494

The Rangers are looking to capture and/or keep fans in the San Antonio market. They compete directly with Houston for those fans and now both teams are in the American League so will be playing similar schedules. Most of those fans won't travel to Arlington too many times during the season but this is their chance to see a live game featuring some of their favorite MLB players. The larger venue gives more fans that opportunity.

It IS a novelty game and a spring training game. Nobody cares if the teams combine for 20 homeruns down the short right field line (in fact, the fans in attendance might enjoy it, at least for a time).

It's all about marketing the product.

Posted on January 25, 2013 at 08:25 AM by Stevie B Highlight this comment 495

tk is Duff now?

Posted on January 25, 2013 at 08:32 AM by GoAUpher Highlight this comment 496

Hard to believe it was 5 years ago this week that we were all dissecting and analyzing the ballpark model on this very blog.

I always enjoy looking back at the archives and construction photos.

Posted on January 25, 2013 at 10:25 AM by Mike Highlight this comment 497

Regarding the use of a domed stadium and the short fence in San Antonio, it's on an exhibition basis over a weekend. No one is advocating playing Major League ball there long term. It's not a big deal. San Antonio is heavy Dallas Cowboys territory, so it makes sense that the Rangers want to dig in there as well, especially with the Astros in such sorry shape.

The Dodgers played an exhibition at the Coliseum in 2008, their first game there since leaving for Dodger Stadium after the 1961 season. For that game the left field fence was only 201 feet away although the fence was topped by a 62 foot high screen to keep things somewhat sane. The Dodgers didn't even play a left fielder, counting on the shortstop to field balls of the screen, shifting all three outfielders to center and right.

The team claimed it sold 115,000 tickets which is utter fiction due to the number of seats in the building. Even letting fans on the grass behind center and right field fence in front of the peristyle end couldn't make up the numbers, but it probably drew in excess of 93,000 fans and was considered a fun, one off experience.

Posted on January 25, 2013 at 12:15 PM by Jorge Highlight this comment 498

Mike- I agree I love looking at the old pics myself.

Posted on January 25, 2013 at 12:33 PM by luke Highlight this comment 499

Another former Twins pitcher is injured. Clink link to find out how Pavano injured his spleen! You would never guess!!

Posted on January 25, 2013 at 2:10 PM by ole Highlight this comment 500

Linked through my name is a collection of pictures by a Detroit photographer named Thomas Hagerty. This set of photos is of him and his friends attending Tigers games from around 1975 to 1980. There are some great shots of Tiger Stadium along with his buddies that really capture the era.

Posted on January 25, 2013 at 4:20 PM by Jorge Highlight this comment 501

Jorge,
I don't know how this is going to work since I've never tried to include a link in this manner. But here's information on how the Dodgers arrived at that 115,000 attendance figure.

Posted on January 25, 2013 at 6:12 PM by Winona Mike Highlight this comment 502

So some of you smart folk have to explain this interchange project to me. I assume we are moving the Target field light rail station to the north there and putting it on a platform over the ampitheater steps? What are those steps going down to? Basically 5th st. N.? The Northstar rail line?

If you look through the pictures, it is also unclear to me where the "bike bar" (some type of outdoor-ish eatery) is envisioned. I guess I'm just disoriented by the current renderings.

I personally like this type of civic investment, so I'm interested. I don't think people are going to be using it much in January like the rhetoric seems to hope, but I hope they are successful.

Posted on January 26, 2013 at 1:55 PM by Lincster Highlight this comment 503

Any thoughts on the dispute over spacing for baseball vs closer seating for football in the new stadium project? It's a front-pager in the Sunday Star-Tribune.

Posted on January 27, 2013 at 08:50 AM by robin Highlight this comment 504

It certainly was an interesting story, but who among us is really surprised to find out that the Vikings care a lot more about how their stadium works for football than baseball?

Truth be told, that's how we got the Metrodome configuration in the first place -- the Vikings not really caring about accommodating baseball.

The more I read about the Vikings project, the more it stinks. There's almost NO upside to it. I'd be OK if the whole thing unraveled (led by the stunning, but not unexpected, failure of electronic gambling) and we got a mulligan on it.

Posted on January 27, 2013 at 1:01 PM by Rick 505

Screw Gophers baseball! I'm on team Vikings on this one! No gives a crap about college baseball!

Posted on January 27, 2013 at 1:33 PM by Forgot my name here Highlight this comment 506

OK a) if the amateur ballteams in this town don't like it, they can quit. The season starts in February, deal with it. Norwood Teague can put the kabash on the Rodent's baseball program. No foul on that one. The Vikings are building that stadium for FOOTBALL. It's their stadium. Amateur baseball in this town be damned.

b) how many Big Ten schools have baseball programs? Far as I know, ALL of them do. I don't hear the Michigan Wolverines bitching at the Ford Field folks because they cant play baseball in there. I don't hear the Indiana Hoosiers bitching at the Lucas Oil Stadium folks because they can't play baseball in there.

Honest to God serious, this state has absolutely no balls. I mean that literally and figuratively. We suck and we've proved it at least three times this week alone. Good God, if Teague wants a baseball program, then do it - but don't do it at the price of reconfiguring a FOOTBALL stadium for your pussy college sport. Besides, how much revenue does Rodent baseball generate, seriously?

To the Vikings: Build the stadium the way YOU want it. Do NOT, and I mean DO NOT in any way, shape or form, cowtow to these amateur baseball knotheads. This is YOUR stadium, build it to YOUR specifications. This is why we appropriated $565 million for a ballpark across town. Baseball is played there. Period.

And Rick, this stadium deal does not, as you euphemistically refer to it, "stink". There is plenty of upside to it, and this amateur baseball thing is it. High schools and colleges will have to ditch their baseball programs because, well, they were stupid enough to fund a sport in a state where, MOST years, it cannot be played outdoors in the first couple months of the season in the first place.

And, if the compromise on no baseball configuration at US Bank Stadium (hey, keeping with this "People's Stadium" gig, how about we call it the "People's Temple"? haha), results in a discussion on a Twins compromise to put a retractable roof on TF, I will personally storm into DSP's office and defecate on his marble-laden desk.

Rant over.

Posted on January 27, 2013 at 1:36 PM by luke Highlight this comment 507

How could anyone hope this thing unravels because of the stupid Gophers baseball team! What an asinine statement, Rick! If anything should unravel it should be the Gophers baseball program! We had a chance to kill 2 birds with one stone by building a NFL caliber stadium on the Y of Campus, but Mase didn't want it! Screw the U Of M and their demands!

Posted on January 27, 2013 at 1:40 PM by Forgot my name here Highlight this comment 508

Well Rick, you poked a stick into the hornets' nest that is Viking- fandom. Hopefully, the face-painted crowd will have calmed down by the time pitchers and catchers report in a few weeks.

Posted on January 27, 2013 at 2:15 PM by terry Highlight this comment 509

It's been while since I poked the football crowd...

Posted on January 27, 2013 at 3:22 PM by Rick 510

No longer can the pitcher fake a throw to third and then throw to first. This will be considered a balk unless the pitcher steps off the rubber. It is suppose to speed up the game.

What do all think about the rule change.

Posted on January 27, 2013 at 7:15 PM by Leroy Highlight this comment 511

Hardly seems like a major contributor to the length of an average game.

Posted on January 28, 2013 at 08:01 AM by schweady Highlight this comment 512

Lincster: I believe they are expecting some sort of Hotel/Developement in the north corner of the lot. They would then put the Bike Bar on the lower level.

Posted on January 28, 2013 at 09:44 AM by DreDogg Highlight this comment 513

Luke, the game does worked in the Metrodome for nearly 30 years, same with the Skydome. Just because you do not prefer it does not mean it doesn't work.

Posted on January 28, 2013 at 11:52 AM by Duffman Highlight this comment 514

One would think there could be a way to have some type of retractable/removable seating feature for a portion of the lower bowl to accommodate a baseball configuration? We see that at the Metrodome and we have seen it in arenas that host multiple events.

As far as sightlines for baseball, who cares. There will be a whole 500 people (or less) at most of those college/amateur/high school games. They should just be fortunate to have an indoor facility that accommodates baseball. Baseball is meant to be played outdoors, plain and simple.

It's ridiculous that the college baseball season even starts in February. They either need to have a southern season and a northern season or else start the entire season later.

On the other hand, the Vikings could have avoided this entire mess if they would have simply paid for 100% (or a majority) of the costs and did everything their way. They could have had their own place up in Anoka County or Arden Hills. We all know the Vikings and the NFL have the money, but they know these stadiums are not good investments otherwise we would see a lot more of these projects privately financed.

If you want to ask the public/taxpayers to contribute to the cost of the facility, than you better expect the public and taxpayers to have a say in the design which means baseball will need to be accommodated.

I just hope they find a way to figure it out and do it right the first time around so we don't have another Metrodome II.

Posted on January 28, 2013 at 12:17 PM by Mike Highlight this comment 515

Went to Twinsfest this weekend and took my annual stroll through the "pro shop" and as usual, lots of overpriced merchandise and lots of "clearance" items including an abundance of Nishioka, Span and Revere shirts.

I found it interesting how they had a bunch of architectural renderings/schematics for sale from both Target Field and the previous ballpark proposals over the years, including the original retractable roof concept we saw in 1997 as well as the retractable roof concept from 2003-2004. They were very large and on that foam board type of material that is about 1/4" thick. Not sure what they were selling for but probably pretty expensive.

Even the nameplates from the Target Field clubhouse were on sale for $75 each...Anyone want a Joe Vavra nameplate for $75?? You had your opportunity at Twinsfest! I realize they are an exclusive item, but come on, $75 for a plastic name plate?

Posted on January 28, 2013 at 12:24 PM by Mike (aka Mike) Highlight this comment 516

Mike- great synopsis. Enough said.
Duff- I would like to know what exactly you think "worked" at the Dome. Odd ground rules, a curtain that covered 8,000 unuseable seats that I can only guess was peed on several tomes based on its color. A roof that opponents absolutely detested, again based on its color, The Dome worked? *Gag*. No it didnt.

And the only thing the SkyDome has that the Dome didnt was the hotel in center field, so people could watch others "making the transaction" if they got bored with the ballgame.

Posted on January 28, 2013 at 12:30 PM by luke Highlight this comment 517

The retractable seats at the Metrodome offer a bigger baseball outfield when folded back, but the area beneath them when put in football position is essentially useless. In a new stadium the Vikings would want that space for many possible uses such as function rooms, player facilities, concessions, storage, and so on.

This may seem cold, and I honestly sympathize with college and high school teams worrying about a short right field line, but this concern should go to the back of the line. These teams, not even via the state's share of the funding, are not equity partners in this project. They're not impctful tenants due to generating little to no revenue for the facility. These baseball teams are the equivalent of a cousin who crashes on your couch occasionally when passing through town. That cousin doesn't get to choose what color carpet you put in the living room or which light fixture you install by the front door. On that basis, these teams shouldn't get a meaningful say in a design element that significantly affects the Vikings and their fans.

Posted on January 28, 2013 at 1:07 PM by Jorge Highlight this comment 518

I wonder if anybody makes one of those temporary pressurized domes (like they put over tennis courts and football fields in the winter) big enough for a baseball field. It seems like the demand is there and maybe the Sports Center in Blaine could accommodate such a thing.

Admittedly, that's probably not cheap -- kind of like building a mini-Metrodome -- but maybe a deal could be struck to give the Vikes exactly what they want if they kick in a couple million to help put such an alternative together.

Posted on January 28, 2013 at 1:20 PM by Rick 519

More than likely, the areas under the sideline seats are being looked upon as a source of revenue. My bet would be that the Vikes, like the Saints, the Giants, and the Cowboys, would prefer to have exclusive clubs behind that seating for those fans on the lower level sidelines. Assuming that, there would be little if any desire on the part of the Vikes to sacrifice that potential revenue to accommodate a handful of amateur baseball games.

Posted on January 28, 2013 at 1:34 PM by Winona Mike Highlight this comment 520

I should add that I agree with Jorge that the Vikes are building a football stadium which really shouldn't have to accommodate baseball. In fact, it would be crazy of them to give up that potentially revenue-producing space for some sort of retractable seating. It's even crazy to make them adjust how close ANY of the seats are to the playing field.

But I also agree with the Stadium Authority that if the public is paying half the cost, they have some rights to decide how to use the place when it isn't needed for professional football (which, for the record, is 97.26% of the time).

It's the inherent conflict between these two things -- each of which I wholeheartedly agree with -- that is just one of the reasons the whole deal stinks.

(Poke.)

Posted on January 28, 2013 at 1:44 PM by Rick 521

I'd rather get rid of the U of M and other baseball programs, and use the stadium for a MLS team when their isn't football going on screw the amateur baseball, especially in February, dumb!

Posted on January 28, 2013 at 2:11 PM by Forgot my name here Highlight this comment 522

We should implode Target Field since the Pohlads are to cheap do open their checkbook. (Poke back, I was all for getting a Twins stadium, but if Rick is gonna be such a prick about it when I was harassing legislators to get Target Field done eff it! BLOW UP TF!)

Posted on January 28, 2013 at 2:17 PM by Forgot my name here Highlight this comment 523

Tell me something good about the project, other than the fact that it "saved" a team which wasn't in any danger? The more I learn about it, the more stupid it all seems (sorry, but I can't find a more appropriate word).

Target Field, meanwhile, is being paid off ahead of schedule because the funding source was so well-designed. And the libraries are staying open longer. And baseball fields across the Twin Cities are being renovated. And there's money left over! (Oh, and it could host football if necessary, and gets used by all kinds of baseball programs at every level, and can host concerts.)

(And, please, this isn't about football vs. baseball or Twins vs. Vikings or even Rick vs. "Forgot my name here".)

Posted on January 28, 2013 at 2:36 PM by Rick 524

Dayton pushed the Vikes' stadium as a "people's stadium." That was the political selling point for many stakeholders and legislators. The basic intent ws to insure that the facility would be available to and useful for a wide array of groups, throughout the year. Otherwise, why work to find a half billion dollar subsidy?

When told that the Dome was being demolished as part of the new stadium plan, my 13 yo son's first response was, "That's stupid. Why not just build it somewhere else and keep the Dome. Tearing it down is just a big waste." Which is indisputably true. And if you compound this by mistake by making it impossible for high school and college baseball teams (not just the U, people) to use the new stadium, you're just compounding the error.

Compromising the football mecca design to accommodate baseball is not a good business decision, but it's the basic bargain that the Vikings agreed to. Many of us will be more than a little ticked if they get too pi$$y about it now. Hire good architects. Make it work.

Posted on January 28, 2013 at 4:38 PM by BR Highlight this comment 525

Rick- I had the same thought as you did, about a Tennis Dome-style structure, maybe seating 3,000-4,000 up at NSC or another suburban locale...I think it would be a good solution.
And I like Forgot's idea- we need MLS in Minnesota.

Posted on January 28, 2013 at 5:12 PM by luke Highlight this comment 526

Upon research, apparently there is a tennis-dome style baseball facility in Rosemount. Irish Field I believe its called. Looks pretty cool.

Posted on January 28, 2013 at 6:34 PM by luke Highlight this comment 527

In Cleveland they are thinking seriously about putting a geodesic dome structure over the top of Cleveland Browns Stadium. I saw a picture of the proposed set up-oh my, the dome would be gigantic. Apparently the technology is there to do this type of thing. But it would be the first time anybody has tried it I think.

Posted on January 28, 2013 at 8:18 PM by Tom D. Highlight this comment 528

Kansas City had tried unsuccessfully a couple times to put a "rolling roof" over Kauf and Arrowhead. I liked the concept and the thing was gigantic. Jefferson County voters voted it down two or three times. Not sure if KC has dropped the idea or if they will bring it back for another vote sometime in the future.

Posted on January 29, 2013 at 06:49 AM by luke Highlight this comment 529

The city of Plymouth (the Fieldhouse) has a facility similar to Rosemount's Irish Dome as well. They use it for soccer, lacrosse and other sports. Our little league uses it for winter clinics. However, to play an actual high school/collge baseball game in there would be tough as the roof is not nearly high enough for pop ups and fly balls. It appears Rosemount uses theirs for fast pitch softball games as well, but I don't think the high fly ball is very common in that sport.

Think about how far below ground level the Metrodome is and then the roof above ground level. It would take more than just a "ground cover" dome to allow full scale baseball games under a seasonal dome.

Posted on January 29, 2013 at 09:06 AM by Stevie B Highlight this comment 530

I agree that the project was billed as a people's Stadium and should host a variety of sports/events, I just don't think that Baseball should be one of them.

Why not try to fit it for track and field? Then it can look just as dumb on football game days as the LA Coliseum.

Posted on January 29, 2013 at 09:17 AM by DreDogg Highlight this comment 531

PEDs in baseball raises its ugly head again. Cheaters have always been and always will be......Are cheaters just the ones who get caught?

Posted on January 29, 2013 at 2:22 PM by unknowntwinsfan Highlight this comment 532

I'm pretty sure the rolling dome in Kansas City is a dead issue. No one wanted to pay for it and neither set of fans cared to sit indoors. The dome also would only have acted as a cover rather than creating a climate controlled environment. Both stadiums have undergone significant renovation since that project's rejection. The renovations, particularly a large luxury box/club tier on one side of Arrowhead, above the stadium's rim, likely precludes a future rolling dome or at least the proposed design.

Was the Vikings stadium a good deal or a bad one? The jury is still out to the extent we don't even have a design yet nor has any ground been turned. Not everyone favors the location or the funding mechanisms. In the end, that's what could get done and I don't blame the team, city, and state for going ahead rather than waiting for a second chance that may or may not have come, or may have been worse. As for the Los Angeles possibility, 2012 was never happening and likely not 2013 either. However, that market won’t be dark forever and at least this area settled the Vikings stadium issue before it had a chance to become a legitimate and poisonous factor.

Posted on January 29, 2013 at 4:15 PM by Jorge Highlight this comment 533

Jorge-:you are spot on about KC. The reasons you cited are pretty much what I remember hearing. I know the roof possibly would have gotten a Super Bowl and Final Four there. KC still could have a shot at a Super Bowl even without the roof, barring of course on the success or failure of next years Super Bowl at MetLife Field in New Jersey...outdoors.

Posted on January 29, 2013 at 5:34 PM by luke Highlight this comment 534

We were at KC for a Twins game in July '05 and found the rails in the parking lot for rolling the roof between Kauffman and Arrowhead. Seemed like the idea was abandoned long before then, based on the condition they were in.

Posted on January 29, 2013 at 7:41 PM by schweady Highlight this comment 535

@ Dredogg -- thanks! That helps, I couldn't place it on the plaza/green.

Different topic. Morneau entering his contract year. I keep saying we have to let him go, but then I get reminded of his half year at Target Field before the concussion: In 2010, Morneau was hitting .345/.437/.618 (1.055 OPS) with 25 doubles, 18 homers and 56 RBI.

TF wasn't too big for him either. Well, I hope he has a great year and makes the Twins' decision difficult. What fun to watch him from his wake-up call in 2007 (?) until his concussion. I want to get back to just enjoying Justin.

Posted on January 30, 2013 at 11:17 PM by Lincster Highlight this comment 536

I'm with you on that one, Lincster. When Morneau is 'on', he's a power threat in the middle of the lineup and makes everyone around him better.

Unfortunately, when he's 'off', I fear for his safety at the plate and in the field.

/fingers crossed/ he's healthy and productive this season.

Posted on January 31, 2013 at 08:32 AM by F_T_K Highlight this comment 537

"how many Big Ten schools have baseball programs? Far as I know, ALL of them do."

Wisconsin has not had a baseball program for at least 20 years.

Posted on February 1, 2013 at 5:24 PM by TheTruthHurts Highlight this comment 538

Thanks TTH...wasnt sure. I assumed all 12 schools had baseball. Dont follow college baseball enough to care, really...lol.

When do pitchers and catchers report? I'm tired of cold and winter, I am in need of some spring training news.

Posted on February 1, 2013 at 6:03 PM by luke Highlight this comment 539

BTW, Rick...did you attend Twins Fest this year and if so, will you regale us with a new post on what I believe would be the final Twins Fest at the Dome?

Also, since the days are finitely numbered for the Disgrace on Puckett Place, do you think the Vikings will have a housecleaning sale similar to what the Twins did after they left?

Posted on February 1, 2013 at 9:28 PM by luke Highlight this comment 540

I think now that we will start seeing 20k crowds its ok to talk tailgating??? Or no?

Posted on February 2, 2013 at 5:22 PM by Mazaratirick Highlight this comment 541

One of the things at the Fest -----

Remember the "All Metrodome Team" from a couple of years ago? The Twins did a limited (5,000 sets, limit 8 per order) edition medallion set and offered it for sale with the usual starting time, etc. It was a complete bust, the Twins were still pushing it several weeks later and even, I believe, into the next season. You cab still find the order form ($75 plus $15 shipping) - and even the ballot - on the web. Now, all of a sudden, there are many sets listed on the Bay to be had relatively cheaply. Seems they were in grab-bags this year.

Posted on February 2, 2013 at 5:42 PM by Ben Highlight this comment 542

You are right Ben, I was told that every grab bag this year had an All-Metrodome Team medallion set. Not bad for $15.00 considering you got an autographed item as well in each bag.

That promotion was definitely a bust for the Twins in 2009.

They must limit the number of grab bags for sale now because the last two years, they have been "sold out" by the time I got there on Saturday early afternoon. In years past, they would always have grab bags for sale throughout the entire weekend, including Sunday.

Posted on February 3, 2013 at 12:36 PM by Mike Highlight this comment 543

Rick, I'm going to guess your review of tonight's SSB was a thumbs down. Besides the gratuitous ending being entirely meh, I thought it was wa-a-a-a-y too slow.

Posted on February 3, 2013 at 9:36 PM by fiesta Highlight this comment 544

The SSB tonight reminded me of the episode of "The Simpsons" in which "Bleeding Gums" Murphy played a 15 minute rendition of the national anthem before a Springfield Isotopes game.

Posted on February 3, 2013 at 9:56 PM by terry Highlight this comment 545

Terry - that was my thought as well. I heard this morning that set a record for the longsest SSB in SB history.

Posted on February 4, 2013 at 09:30 AM by Stevie B Highlight this comment 546

I am not a fan of Ticketmaster, BUT headed to Atlanta in April - Braves tickets went on sale this morning at 9:00 through Ticketmaster. I wasn't put in a wait room - took about 5 minutes to order the tickets I wanted and I was done at 9:05. A little more for fees, but it was well worth it. The Boston wait room is probably the worst I have experienced. I know supply and demand have a lot to do with it, but I also think it is the ticketing systems some of the teams use.

Posted on February 4, 2013 at 10:34 AM by gogotwins Highlight this comment 547

When I ordered spring training tickets this year, the Twins site asked for my account number and password. I put in my STH account number, but when I entered my Twins account password, it rejected it. Turns out they wanted an MLB password that I was assigned last year when I signed up for At Bat 12. I of course had no clue what that was. Finally got the tickets, but not until experiencing some serious frustration.

Posted on February 4, 2013 at 10:58 AM by terry Highlight this comment 548

"how many Big Ten schools have baseball programs? Far as I know, ALL of them do."

Wisconsin has not had a baseball program for at least 20 years.

The Badgers dropped baseball for budgetary reasons in a move that was and remains hugely controversial among many associated with the school. The team had existed for about 100 years prior to getting the axe. Joel Maturi worked in the Wisconsin athletic department at the time as either the number two or number three person in rank. He argued strongly in favor of retaining baseball and deeply felt the resulting backlash. Wanting to avoid a repeat of this scenario played a big role in boosting non revenue sports at the U of M along with his determination that school never drop an existing sports program.

Posted on February 4, 2013 at 11:08 AM by Jorge Highlight this comment 549

Fitting the bad economics of college baseball into an overall Athletic Dept financial plan that complies with Title IX is not easy, particularly for northern schools. The teams are relatively large, their early season travel needs are extensive and expensive, they bring in very little revenue, and their seasons don't jive well with the school year (they don't finish until after most schools let out). It's not hard to see why schools - even a huge school like Wisconsin - would drop baseball. Even Cal Berkeley planned to eliminate baseball until private fundraising saved it.

Posted on February 4, 2013 at 12:34 PM by BR Highlight this comment 550

College Baseball should be a more popular sport than it is. And I suppose at ASU, Pepperdine and LSU it wildly popular. But is seems the marketing department behind NCAA Baseball is lacking. Sure, they market the hell out of Omaha, ut that seems to be it.

And the bat thing still bothers me. At least they have the new BBCOR standard. The ball speed coming off of the bat was getting way out of hand.

Posted on February 4, 2013 at 1:01 PM by DreDogg Highlight this comment 551

in far more important news, please make sure to contact your legislators soon and tell them to support sen. reinert (d-duluth) and sen. miller's (r-winon) sunday alcohol sales legislation this session.

time for mn to come into the 21st century when it comes to off-sale alcohol retailing policy and practice. not having off-sale purchases on sunday is well......just really, really stupid and pointless. their bill would not force retailers to be open on sundays, it would simply provide them with the option to be open if they wanted to be. all other completely scripted and bogus arguments against this bill such as 6 days of sales spread across 7 days, etc. (and all provided verbatim of course by the bar/liquor store lobbyists from the mlba and mmba and used across the country) are false and irrelevant.

also make sure to sign the official online petition at mnbeeractivists.com. a link to the petition is include. click on my username to access it.

but make sure you contact your legislators in support first.

thanks and cheers!

Posted on February 5, 2013 at 01:24 AM by Betaband Highlight this comment 552

btw - virtually every other state in the country allows sunday off-sale alcohol purchases. including every state and province surrounding minnesota. and they get millions of minnesota sales tax dollars from our citizens on sundays.

if sunday off-sale works, and liquor stores haven't gone out of business in masse in those states, then it can CERTAINLY work in minnesota too.

good night.

Posted on February 5, 2013 at 01:26 AM by Betaband Highlight this comment 553

So much for this non-political forum...

Posted on February 5, 2013 at 12:28 PM by tk Highlight this comment 554

It's not hard to see why schools - even a huge school like Wisconsin - would drop baseball.

Especially in the climate Wisc. faced in 1990, when their football team wasn't bringing in revenue on par with the likes of Ohio St. and MI, and their basketball and hockey teams were playing in antiquated facilities.

But times have obviously changed in Madison since then. Has there been any serious thought to bringing baseball back?

Posted on February 5, 2013 at 12:46 PM by Expectorate Highlight this comment 555

Vote Quimby!!!

Posted on February 5, 2013 at 3:09 PM by Duffman Highlight this comment 556

tk - i don't see too much political in my post. beer, liquor and wine shouldn't be political in the first place. nor should the commerce of it be wrongly held hostage by politicians receiving campaign donations from the liquor store and bar lobbies who just want to maintain their monopolistic sales status quo and avoid any real retail competition.

why u mad buddy?

Posted on February 5, 2013 at 5:00 PM by Betaband Highlight this comment 557

If they allow alcohol sale on Sundays, can we buy cars as well? I think there is still a moratorium on that.

Posted on February 5, 2013 at 8:15 PM by luke Highlight this comment 558

Beta,

It may just be me, but I just fail to see the connection to this forum and the need to contact my Rep/Sen about alcohol commerce.

Posted on February 5, 2013 at 11:53 PM by tk Highlight this comment 559

TK - I agree. Now if this was a Vikings Stadium forum, then the connextion would be clear(Just kidding. Kind of.).

Baseball is getting closer by the day, although it feels far away, especially since I have been shoveling my driveway everyday for the past week. On a positive note, I didn't hurt my spleen doing it.

Twins have a number of players in the top 100 prospect list. Maybe brighter days ahead? (Clicky linky)

Posted on February 6, 2013 at 1:20 PM by ole Highlight this comment 560

Dang, not an ESPN Insider!

Posted on February 6, 2013 at 2:20 PM by tk Highlight this comment 561

@tk here are the top 5 from ESPN insider:

1. St. Louis Cardinals
2. Minnesota Twins
3. Tampa Bay Rays
4. Houston Astros
5. Chicago Cubs

Here's the excerpt pertaining to the Twins:

"The Twins placed more players on my top 100 (seven) than any other team, only one of whom was initially signed by another organization, and they added a former top-100 guy, Trevor May, in a trade this offseason. Their system is particularly strong in center field, enough that they're working on converting Eddie Rosario to second base, and has more power arms with a chance to start than it has at any point in the past decade.

The major league team is down, and isn't going to turn it all around in a year, but there's a lot of talent coming around which the Twins can build another contender."

Posted on February 6, 2013 at 2:43 PM by ace Highlight this comment 562

Twins get there first break...Swarzack, 2 ribs....horseplay with teammates during Twinsfest. Took almost 2 weeks to go public.

Posted on February 6, 2013 at 10:21 PM by tk Highlight this comment 563

The Twins are loaded with good prospects who aren't too far away. Hicks should be a solid lead-off hitter - he profiles like another Denard Span. Sano's a middle order bat. (Buxton could be as well, although he's going to need more time.) If Arcia's switch to 2d works, his near-MLB-ready bat will play big there.

The real guesswork is at pitcher, though. Diamond and Worley are rotation-worthy guys but not high end starters. Can Gibson give them a Radke-like performance (not ace quality, but reliably good)? We need to see the new guys, Meyer and May develop and play well in the upper minors before getting too excited about what 2014-16 might look like.

Posted on February 7, 2013 at 09:27 AM by BR Highlight this comment 564

Jim Souhan made a good point this morning about the lack of patience of what he calls "The Nouveau Twins Fan". I'm a "Veile Twins Fan" and I for one am going to enjoy watching these prospects develop over the next few years.

Posted on February 10, 2013 at 11:34 AM by terry Highlight this comment 565

Correction - "veiel".

Posted on February 10, 2013 at 12:15 PM by terry Highlight this comment 566

I am really looking forward to Target Field gates opening again. This snow shit has got to stop.

Posted on February 10, 2013 at 5:46 PM by luke Highlight this comment 567

Luke, it snows here in February and March. That's all; carry on.

Posted on February 11, 2013 at 09:24 AM by tk Highlight this comment 568

The bobbleheads are returning in 2013 with a Josh Willing"hammer" bobblehead on May 10 and a Mauer/Morneau double bobble on July 19.

Posted on February 11, 2013 at 11:43 AM by Mike Highlight this comment 569

Does anyone have pictures or a link to the RF area that is being converted to high tables and bar stools? As an outstate guy, I have not seen anything lately.

Posted on February 11, 2013 at 1:42 PM by ole Highlight this comment 570

The Ballpark Authority has some pictures up on their site. Looks very nice.

Posted on February 11, 2013 at 2:15 PM by Rick 571

"The bobbleheads are returning in 2013 with a Josh Willing"hammer" bobblehead on May 10 and a Mauer/Morneau double bobble on July 19."

It will be interesting to see pics --- both bobbles have been done already.

Posted on February 11, 2013 at 3:13 PM by Ben Highlight this comment 572

well tk - we DID go "snowless" in March 2010. And Albert Gore has consistently told us about a phenomenon called Global Warming, I'm still waiting for that one.

Article in the Downtown Journal today quoted a member of the MSFA regarding the Humpty Dumpty. Sounds like the Dumpty's days are more finitely numbered than we thought. Construction schedule is too tight and the 2013 season will be the Purple's last at the Dump. Get your crowbars ready kiddos...and take a couple blue seats home with ya.

Looks like it's going to be slim pickin's for two years at TCFBS with parking problems and ticket receipt shortages galore.

Posted on February 11, 2013 at 5:27 PM by luke Highlight this comment 573

Rick, I'm surprised with no photos were taken from behind the section facing towards home plate.

Posted on February 11, 2013 at 7:20 PM by tk Highlight this comment 574

STH presale begins today. I just noticed that they have raised the maximum number of opening-day tickets that you can buy from 4 to 8. Looks like they may be worried about not selling out an April 1 baseball game in sunny Minnesota.....

Posted on February 12, 2013 at 11:07 AM by ClarkAddison Highlight this comment 575

Getting additional tickets during the presale events has become an easy and convenient process. Picked up 4 additional opening day tickets for some family members and once again found that I was locked out and couldn't buy additional games. Simply called the ticket office and they were able to get me tickets to all of the additional games that I wanted right behind my existing season tickets.

Imagine that, I can bring friends and family to select games and we can all sit together. Definitely advantages to having two 90+ lose seasons. I wonder how many game we can win this year without reverting back to the old days of people purchasing tickets for the sole purpose of re-selling them?

Posted on February 12, 2013 at 11:15 AM by minn55441 Highlight this comment 576

The Twinkies will have no problem selling out an April 1 home opener.
This state needs to get some balls and man up. Detroit, St Louis, Chicago, et all can do just fine in early spring with outdoor ballparks and sell out their openers.
We can too. Time that Twins management either puts up or shuts up about early and late season games.

Posted on February 12, 2013 at 12:41 PM by luke Highlight this comment 577

Presale update: I just got in and out pretty quickly. No big shopping list this year, just opening day. As of 2 pm I could not get 4 seats together in Skyline View or Field View. Did get four together in Home plate view 321. There were seats available in left field upper deck as well. Didn't check any of the spendier sections.

Posted on February 12, 2013 at 2:22 PM by ClarkAddison Highlight this comment 578

Another interesting tidbit: This morning there were 1,421 tickets for opening day for sale on Stubhub. Now there are 1,934. Do you suppose there are - gasp - ticket speculators among the season ticket holders?

Posted on February 12, 2013 at 4:15 PM by ClarkAddison Highlight this comment 579

Our presale time opens up tomorrow am. Will give an update of my findings, if i remember.

Posted on February 12, 2013 at 5:36 PM by Jared Highlight this comment 580

I could not get 3 tickets together for opening day in field view or skyline view at 2:00. Disappointed in the Twins for changing the limit from 4 to 8 tickets. Lots of groups of 8 available in field view and skyline view on Stubhub. 117 tickets available in section 305. I'll be even more disappointed if the Twins release more tickets for opening day on Saturday in field view. What is the advantage of being a season ticket holder?

Posted on February 12, 2013 at 7:50 PM by gogotwins Highlight this comment 581

"For lo the winter is past, the rain is over and gone; the flowers appear on the earth; the time of the singing of birds is come and the voice of the turtle is heard in our land." A quote from the book of Solomon with which Ernie Harwell would begin the first broadcast of spring training each year. Seemed appropriate with the camps officially opening this week ... even though one glance out my window tells me the winter is not past.

Posted on February 13, 2013 at 08:55 AM by terry Highlight this comment 582

"Ticket Insurance"?????

Posted on February 13, 2013 at 09:49 AM by Ben Highlight this comment 583

10 minutes prior to my presale start time: website says "sale starts at 10am. Please try again later."

6 minutes prior to start time: waiting room.

Posted on February 13, 2013 at 09:55 AM by jared Highlight this comment 584

Half-joking: Did the team do wind studies on the new "awning" covering the new seating in RF? Will it become the new thing to blame for lefties?

Posted on February 13, 2013 at 10:02 AM by DreDogg Highlight this comment 585

Start time: Waiting Room.

While I wait, I was perusing the site and landed on this page.

Wasn't too long ago that we were that close to outdoor baseball, yet so far away. I noticed in the comments that I had mentioned I just purchased a new DSLR and from then on my ninja legacy is cemented.

Interesting timing as I have just upgraded to some "serious level" gear. Vikings ninja shots just got that much more awesome.

Posted on February 13, 2013 at 10:12 AM by jared Highlight this comment 586

So here is my report from Pre-Sale: Pairs (and even singles) are hard to come by behind home plate in certain places, upper level, lower 1B side in most sections. 100 level outfield seats are very hard to get singles or pairs, might be a walk up ticket buyers dream though for those new RF bleachers and Overhang seats. There are quite a few pairs and singles in Grandstand and LF 300 level.

I held a lot of different pairs and singles until I picked our seats, not all at once but a couple of pairs/singles at a time while searching for my preferred seats.

From my past history, it is very likely that these sections have some seats being held over for Saturday and even released every few days up to gameday. So dont get discouraged. Find some that you can live with and look for those "to die for" seats in the event they become available.

Posted on February 13, 2013 at 10:40 AM by jared Highlight this comment 587

I was in the waiting room about five minutes. Then had several minutes of frustration because I misread an "I" as an "l" in the MLB password (not the STH password). Finally got in and got two good seats for much too high a price, but opening day comes but once a year. My regular seats are in a much more modest neighborhood and much more economical.

Posted on February 13, 2013 at 11:16 AM by terry Highlight this comment 588

Lol Dre. Yeah...how long will it be before they start complaining about that? Or complain that it palls too large of a shadow.

That reading from song of solomon 2:11 is one of my favorites. Even God celebrates when winter is over.

Posted on February 13, 2013 at 12:45 PM by luke Highlight this comment 589

Jared what did you buy?

Posted on February 13, 2013 at 2:24 PM by jctwins Highlight this comment 590

terry,

I read your message on my phone and your "I" (upper case i) looked completely identical to your "l" (lower case L). In other words, that's a pretty easy mistake to make, and a pretty dumb character to include in randomly-generated passwords.

My own password-generation code excludes those two characters as well as "1" (one), "O" (upper case o) and "0" (zero) -- to avoid just such confusion.

Posted on February 13, 2013 at 2:25 PM by Rick 591

(For clarity, calling the password-generation algorithm "dumb" -- not you, terry!)

Posted on February 13, 2013 at 2:26 PM by Rick 592

Haven't seen this mentioned yet, but the Twins have issued me a "Sweet Spot ID Card" for being part of a STH group. It's good for 10% off concessions at "participating Target Field® venues".

Not sure exactly how much that includes, but I'm hoping it at least includes the mini-donuts! (And I don't mean those lousy pre-fab ones that are sealed in a cup...I mean the real ones out behind right field.)

Posted on February 13, 2013 at 2:33 PM by Rick 593

I should add that the real story with such a card is that I'm just a very small-time member of the group -- a truly tiny dot -- and my name certainly isn't on the account. But for the first time, the Twins seem to be acknowledging that members of STH groups other than the organizer should get some actual benefits beyond just the ticket prices.

It's a small thing, I know, but until now all of the STH benefits accrued to the person whose name is on the account, and only to other members if that leader decided to share them (which our leader is very generous about, but certainly wouldn't have to be).

Basically, the Twins never really seemed to know or care about other members of groups, but now they do. I'm sure my name has now been added to the list of potential future STHs, and I'll probably start getting mailings (and our leader did offer everyone the chance to opt out of having their name forwarded to the team). Smart marketing.

I realize that 10% is only going to save me $0.50 on a bag of donuts -- which, at a rate of one bag every other game over the course of maybe 12 games, only comes to $3.00 for the whole season -- but that's still a nice little perk to get from a team which has the potential to stink up the stadium.

Here's hoping it doesn't throw volunteer concession stand workers for a loop. (Come to think of it, maybe those will be the non-participating venues, which means my State Fair booth items -- which are always served by fundraising volunteers -- will not get the discount. That would be a drag...)

Posted on February 13, 2013 at 2:44 PM by Rick 594

Rick ---

I believe your leader is responsible for your largess - I seem to remember getting a message from the Twins asking to whom "Sweet Spot ID Card(s)" should be sent.

Posted on February 13, 2013 at 3:00 PM by Ben Highlight this comment 595

Rick,

Did you get any other STH benefits? I always feel like my groups benefits are TOTALLY wasted and never used. My leader even works for the Twins! It's sad really...

Posted on February 13, 2013 at 3:30 PM by CSG Mike Highlight this comment 596

Anyone know if they're selling RF Patio tix individually, or just to groups?

Posted on February 13, 2013 at 3:43 PM by BR Highlight this comment 597

Re: the 10% discount... They allowed the STH to ID up to 3 additional people to get a discount card. Very sensible. As to what it applies to, I was under teh impression that ALL concessions were covered, as well as merchandise at the Majestic Pro Shop and New Era stores. 10% ain't much, but if it applies to beer, I'll save at least $10! (No, not per game.)

Posted on February 13, 2013 at 3:45 PM by BR Highlight this comment 598

Ben,

I believe that everyone in the group (a couple hundred people) got a card -- unless they didn't want the Twins to have their info.

As for other benefits, CSG Mike, I don't get (or ask for) very much. I know that our tickets get us into the Metropolitan Club if we want. I did get free TwinsFest tickets and a calendar. Since I don't pay very close attention to such things, I don't even know what other benefits might be available.

Posted on February 13, 2013 at 3:52 PM by Rick 599

BR,

Our group may be an exception. I know that it's the largest group the Twins have, and we had Dave St. Peter and Paul Molitor as special guests at our draft party this year.

Still, this is the first year we've all gotten such a discount card. Is that perk new or has it been around a while?

Posted on February 13, 2013 at 3:57 PM by Rick 600

Rick, I knew you were applying the word "dumb" to the chosen characters in the password. Believe me I was saying it was dumb too - probably with a few words mixed in that would have been better left unsaid on Ash Wednesday. The person who puts a lower case "L" or an upper case "i" in passwords is probably the same guy who comes up with those camouflaged hieroglyphics you have to decipher to prove whatever it is that proves.

This is the first year I'm aware of for the 10% discount card and I was able to get three others in addition to my own.

Posted on February 13, 2013 at 4:47 PM by terry Highlight this comment 601

This is from the e-mail I received about the "Sweet Spot" Discount:

*Some restrictions apply. Discounts available for Twins Regular Season home games only. Not valid for the purchase of Twins tickets and on select merchandise items. 10% discount does not apply to Suite and Hospitality food and beverage purchases.

So, does that mean the discount does not apply to any beverage purchase throughout the stadium, or just "Suite and Hospitality" beverages.

Frankly, I'd be surprised if this discount applied to liquor purchases. Pleasantly surprised, but surprised none the less.

Posted on February 13, 2013 at 6:45 PM by Expectorate Highlight this comment 602

Barry Alvarez may have just saved the fate of the future of Gopher football. No more losses to North Dakota State! That's Bucky -- always willing to help a brother out.

Posted on February 13, 2013 at 7:56 PM by TheTruthHurts Highlight this comment 603

JCTwins - My budget didn't allow for the top end toys but what I got is a great step forward.

I started with a Canon 450D (Rebel xSi), kit 18-55mm (f/3.5-5.6) lens, Sigma 70-300mm (f/3.5-5.6) lens, 50mm (f/1.8) and some other inexpensive accessories, off-brand gorilla pod, tripod, remote shutters, etc.

The new rig consists of: Canon 7D, 17-55mm (F/2.8) IS lens, Canon 70-200mm L (f/2.8) non-IS, BG-e7 battery grip and some new remote triggers, higher end compact flash cards, other accessories.

The new setup has faaaar superior low light performance, better optics through the entire zoom range and simply put allows for far greater performance for the things I currently shoot and the new stuff I am going to try. I could be happier (IS version of the 70-200, 24-70mm instead of the 17-55mm, and a Canon fisheye) but I am very happy with what I was able to get on my budget.

I have taken it out twice (section dance team competition in Faribault and a basketball game/dance performance). Already noticeable is the faster focus response and the awesome lack of noise at high ISOs. The first "real" test will be Friday to shoot my Fiance's dance team as she coaches them at state jazz. The school might be giving me their press pass to shoot from the court. If not I will be in the first couple rows. If anyone else is going friday (I am not sure if i will be there Saturday for kick) and wants to chat or shoot their kid I will be on the AA side in the Holy Family superfan t-shirt, pretty easy to spot me. Stop on by.

Wow that was long, hopefully it makes sense. I will stop now.

Posted on February 13, 2013 at 9:22 PM by Jared Highlight this comment 604

" ----- a discount card. Is that perk new or has it been around a while?"

The 10% deal is new this (upcoming) year.

Posted on February 14, 2013 at 12:30 AM by Ben Highlight this comment 605

You're speaking my language Jared. E-mail me. Unless this board wants to witness a long photography conversation, which it probably doesn't now that P&C's have reported.

Posted on February 14, 2013 at 10:57 AM by jctwins Highlight this comment 606

Rick,

This page has the STH benefits: http://minnesota.twins.mlb.com/min/ticketing/sth/gen/benefits.jsp

You must be a part of the Detlefson group. I saw Dave St Peter tweet about it. I think he said 200+ members? WOW! I'd love to know how that works and where the seats are?

The benefits I think get wasted in my group are pre-sales, publications, discount card, view Twins bp, fantasy bp (and other experiences), etc. I really think they just go down the drain.

Posted on February 14, 2013 at 2:35 PM by CSG Mike Highlight this comment 607

Question- after two consecutive 90 loss seasons, when will the $4 General Admission Cheap Seats return?

Posted on February 15, 2013 at 06:52 AM by luke Highlight this comment 608

Vikings Stadium to be built by Mortenson! Great news! They have done great things locally. Target Field, TCF Bank Stadium and Xcel Energy Center to name a few...

Rendering in late March or April.

Ground breaking in October.

Sweet!

Posted on February 15, 2013 at 11:05 AM by CSG Mike Highlight this comment 609

Good news indeed that Mort got the contract.
Bad news courtesy of MSP business journal: Running Aces in jeopardy as some horse owners want it shut down. That sucks.

Posted on February 15, 2013 at 12:32 PM by luke Highlight this comment 610

Dave St Peter just tweeted "Target Field's Town Ball Tavern is among the ballpark's most popular venues. Working on plans to further enhance space. More to come."

I wonder what they could do to the space? I wonder if they are ever going to start having regular non gameday hours?

Anyone heard anything?

Posted on February 15, 2013 at 3:17 PM by CSG Mike Highlight this comment 611

Here's a real sneak peak at some early schematics for the Vikings stadium.

Posted on February 15, 2013 at 4:02 PM by Rick 612

As for the Town Ball Tavern, I'd do two things: more and bigger TVs, and adjustments to the acoustics. It's too damn noisy in there.

Posted on February 15, 2013 at 4:04 PM by Rick 613

Crap. So they caved.
Three things will not change then a) they wont be able to have clean artificial turf, there will always be the faded baseball markings AND sandpit divots for the bases B) accordion seating isnt going anywhere apparently...they will have a section similar to whats at the Dump. C) we are getting our THIRD baseball/football combo stadium. *sigh. Vikings Stadium fail.

Posted on February 15, 2013 at 4:39 PM by luke Highlight this comment 614

Full run down of the changes at Twinsdaily.com. Summit taking over as sponsor and exclusive beer at Townball, and Fulton being added in the 141 corner. Some other items laid out over there, too. Nothing groundbreaking, but definitely some adjustments.

Posted on February 15, 2013 at 5:01 PM by jctwins Highlight this comment 615

Couldn't agree more about the acoustics in the Town Ball. A great place to meet and talk before the game, but when you can't hear what your companions are saying it takes a lot of the fun out of the meeting and talking.

Posted on February 15, 2013 at 5:16 PM by terry Highlight this comment 616

Luke, it's possible that the Vikes' stadium will have more than one field that gets rolled out, depending on the event, much like cowboys Stadium has. Let's keep our fingers crossed.

Posted on February 15, 2013 at 5:45 PM by Winona Mike Highlight this comment 617

Winona, I totally forgot about Cowboys Stadium, yes they do have a couple different sets of turf, one for Cowboys, Cotton Bowl and the HS Footbal. Yes, lets hope the Vikings spring for the same thing.

Posted on February 15, 2013 at 6:10 PM by luke Highlight this comment 618

Reposting, original thread in link:

There is still some things in flux, but there are a few things that have been decided for sure.

Concession stand 141 (I don't remember what it was) is being converted to a bar, and will carry Surly, I believe Fulton, and other craft beers. Most of the beers offered there will not be available anywhere else in the stadium (that means the surly cart is going away, and no more fulton in Townball Tavern)

There will be a few more walleye food items, and all walleye in the stadium will now be shipped fresh to Target Field, instead of that iffy frozen stuff they've used before.

Fried Pickles will be available in many more locations, including townball tavern.

Milkshakes will be available in Hrbeks and Townball Tavern. Midway through the season they will assess their popularity, and at that time they may consider adding alcoholic milkshakes to the menu.

There will now be "skinny" mojitios available in Hrbeks and Townball Tavern, as well as several other new speciality drinks.

Finally, Townball Tavern will now be officially sponsored by Summit. It's unclear if the name will change, but they will have several types of Summit on tap at all times, as well as several food items made with summit. Unfortunately, this also means that Fulton (and possibly a few other varieties of beer) are being booted out of that bar. They are still hammering out the final details, so look for an official announcement sometime in the beginning of March

Haven't heard anything about getting rid of the dance-off or any other programming stuff yet, but I'll let you know if I do.

Posted on February 15, 2013 at 7:23 PM by jctwins Highlight this comment 619

Jc...my favorite part of that rundown was "alcoholic milkshakes". On the behest of a potential third consecutive 90+ loss season, they will be needed.

Posted on February 15, 2013 at 8:53 PM by luke Highlight this comment 620

This may be the most Luke-esque statement I have made on this site:

Good lord those designs are awful.

Football, looks decent. Baseball, awful. I understand that its not the Twins playing there anymore but God that is brutal.

Home plate is all of 15 feet from the backstop. Seating around the plate is ridiculous. Seating in the outfield (if that many people show up) is atrocious. If you are sitting in left center kinda in that rounded notch where the seating stops you would be facing shallow left field! I understand the Dome was like that but I don't believe it was to that degree, correct me if I am wrong. The location of the 3B dugout is terrible. We wouldn't avoid needing another "Baggie". "Batting tunnels in storage space" or "parking space"? Really? The field at the Dome baseball field didn't seem to be this squeezed into a football space.

I understand the need to make it "more than a 12 event facility" but when you make these kind of awkward adjustments the primary purpose of the facility suffers. I pray that this place doesn't come out like these. I don't know what it is but I am starting to hate the idea of baseball in Vikings Stadium more and more as time passes.

Maybe I am joining Luke in diving off the deep end, i dont know.

Posted on February 15, 2013 at 9:17 PM by Jared Highlight this comment 621

Re: Baseball configuration.
Why can't they just angle the field like they did at BC Place in Vancouver? Are they not smart enough to figure this out? Who cares about sight lines for baseball. Only 500 peaple show up for Gophers games anyway.

Posted on February 15, 2013 at 5:31 PM by J2K Highlight this comment 622

I'm with you, Jared. Those schematics are brutal. The whole idea of making this a multi-sport venue is whacked. We're spending a billion dollars for a f-ing football stadium -- the best one possible, we hope. Add baseball and it becomes neither fish nor foul, no matter how clever you are. You compromise the primary purpose to shoehorn in an ill-advised -- and essentially a footnote -- second use. (I also couldn't help but notice that the overall shape of the facility was the ever-familiar plain oval. Let's hope they find an interesting way to dress it up.)

We have this problem here in Minnesota that we tend to do big things in a sort of half-assed way. That's why the beauty of Target Field and TCF Bank Stadium was such a pleasant surprise.

So, if this is the direction they're headed, we could very well find ourselves singing some Meat Loaf: Two out of three ain't bad.

Posted on February 15, 2013 at 10:11 PM by Rick 623

Jared- welcome to the dark side. DUH baseball does NOT belong in a football stadium.
"Squeezing" baseball into Minnesotas new football palace is...well, it's a football stadium for Gods sake. I am glad baseball at US Bank Stadium looks "awful".

Posted on February 15, 2013 at 10:12 PM by luke Highlight this comment 624

J2K - I am with you on the lack of necessity for good sightlines for Gophers/Amateur baseball. But the fact of the matter is you never know what events will be there and utilize that configuration (or **GASP** the Twins needing it for a game for whatever reason) and the potential for having to sit in those seats with those sightlines for that configuration no matter who uses it is awful. But again, in all likelihood that should (we hope) be few and far between.

Then, like I said, having to make those (stupid) configuration accomodations makes the primary purpose suffer greatly. The Vikings wanted out of the Metrodome situation and while they aren't sharing with the Twins anymore, they are still pretty much getting A BRAND NEW ...Metrodome 2.0. Or more appropriately a glorified Metrodome renovation with an even more stupid baseball configuration.

Posted on February 16, 2013 at 11:10 AM by Jared Highlight this comment 625

jctwins,

Thanks for the added info. Converting the concessions at Sec 141 is right behind the new RF adjustments. Actually, looking at the map, I believe sec 141 is the "lost" section due to the upgrades. It looks like this used to be a Taste of Twins Territory stand. I think this could be very smart, it creates a reason to stay out on the plaza.

Posted on February 16, 2013 at 11:34 AM by CSG Mike Highlight this comment 626

I like Summit fine but will miss my Fulton at Town Ball. Hope 141 isn't the only place that will carry the Fulton, that's quite a hike from my seats.

Posted on February 16, 2013 at 12:42 PM by ClarkAddison Highlight this comment 627

And Jared calls me stupid for making essentially the same comment. Now he sees the Demon of the Metrodome finding its way into our new football stadium. I dont mind basketball being a secondary purpose for the stadium, but baseball is a no-no.

All this beer talk makes me want a really good brew right about now.

Posted on February 16, 2013 at 4:46 PM by luke Highlight this comment 628

Looking at those event level preliminaries, it appears the Vikings will have some field level suites to sell. However, thanks to the need to accommodate a handful of amateur baseball games a year, the Vikings won’t have them on both sides of the field, which are the prime location for such things. So right away, before the plans have even been released, the Vikings are losing out on tons of potential revenue because we here in Minnesota like to think we’re smarter and more practical than everybody else, and so we’ll build yet another stadium that does lots of things, but none of them well.
People’s Stadium indeed! By trying to shoehorn baseball into this new stadium, we’re only hastening the day when, once again, the Vikings come knocking, hat in hand, looking for another stadium. Haven’t we learned anything? This was supposed to be it. This was supposed to be the last stadium we build for the Vikings. It should have been tailored to their needs, both now and as far into the future as we can currently imagine. But no, we’re going to have to watch as our elected leaders pressure the design team to put together more half measures to protect their collective backsides.

Posted on February 17, 2013 at 05:41 AM by Winona Mike Highlight this comment 629

Got Winona in my corner too. I told yall it was a bad idea.
I dont get the allure of field level suites. I would think it would be nearly impossible to see anything down there, because all the equipment plus a few hundred coaches and lines of players block any view of the field you have. You would be looking at a whole bunch of feet.

I wonder if the concept is similar to the Budweiser Roof Deck...the field suites are expensive gathering places for corporate wigs and capitalist pigs, the ones who care little about football. They are just down there to catch tiny pieces of the game. "Casual observers" as we call them, just like those on the Roof Deck.

I hope this baseball thing doesnt crimp too much of the Vikings style, but looking at those early schematics, it will.

Posted on February 17, 2013 at 07:52 AM by luke Highlight this comment 630

I suppose field suites would offer occupaants a nice, close-up view of the cheerleaders.

Posted on February 17, 2013 at 08:15 AM by Winona Mike Highlight this comment 631

I think this whole idea of baseball in a "FOOTBALL" stadium is just absurd and besides were the gophers and high school baseball ever stakeholders in the stadium negotiations. Looking at those early concepts just makes me want to puke, why can't the gophers just play at their new Seibert Field or better yet Target Field a stadium built just for baseball what a novel concept. We here in Minnesota always have to do something backwards.

Posted on February 17, 2013 at 09:55 AM by NewGuy Highlight this comment 632

Everybody needs to calm down, and stop fretting over the baseball element of this building. The state agreed to foot half the bill for this thing because this new stadium would reproduce the functionality of the Metrodome. As outdated as it is the dome is, it's still a civic resource that is utilized by thousands of ametuer athletes from Feb-April, and to leave them high and dry so the Viking can maximize their revenue defeats the purpose of the "people's stadium". Also anybody who's ever attended these events knows that the sight lines for outfield seating is meaningless because not enough people attend. These games have maybe 100 people in attandence along the dugouts, so there is no need to worry that your not facing the infield when sitting in right field.

What's being sacrificed to accommodate the thousands of athletes who get to play the game they love, and the hundreds of small schools that cannot afford travel to warmer climates keeping they're baseball programs afloat is one sideline worth of club/field level suites. If the Vikings didn't want to be forced into finding another way to recapture that revenue they should have payed for the entire stadium.

Posted on February 17, 2013 at 10:32 AM by Jp Highlight this comment 633

Jp does have a point to a degree. Look, how about this - is there any way they can take the Teflon off the Dome before I set off the C-4 plastic explosives next March and somehow find a way to put it over Seibert Field?

Yes I understand that the Dome is a community resource, and well it should be. BUT, I do think that the main purpose of the stadium is coming at the price of the "reproducing the functionality" of the Dome.

I have an idea: How about the Vikings build a new practice facility somewhere, perhaps the Arden Hills site, make it big enough to accommodate a ballfield, put a tennis-dome style roof over the place and a couple thousand bleachers. Hey they could even transplant the old dot-matrix scoreboard from the Dome into the place.

Newguy is right, we're always doing stuff backwards, and it usually comes at the cost of "functionality". Met Stadium was done that way, the Dome was done that way and now, Rick Prescott Field on the former site of the Metrodome. Gotta stop somewhere.

Posted on February 17, 2013 at 12:48 PM by luke Highlight this comment 634

Indeed. The Vikings have the option of procuring land and building a stadium on their own.

Posted on February 17, 2013 at 12:51 PM by Ben Highlight this comment 635

I don't understand the arguments that the primary functionality of the building is being compromised. The seats along the sideline in question will either retract or be removeable. The only thing that's lost is the ability to build a champions club style area underneath those seats, because that area will house the seats that are temporarily removed/retracted. Understandably the Vikings want as many club areas as possible, but that alone isn't reason enough to push aside the needs of ametuer ball players.

What this will do is force the Vikes to think out of the box and think of an innovative way to create a similar club area. Why not build a fantasy football focused sports bar underneath the upper deck stadia? Take out that concourse and fill it with TVs tuned to the other big games, and hire an attractive wait staff to serve $10 and the Vikes will make a killing. Forcing the Twins to think outside of the box led to TF becoming the beautiful, innovative park it is, let force the Vikes to do the same.

Posted on February 17, 2013 at 2:53 PM by Jp Highlight this comment 636

$10 beers, not just $10

Posted on February 17, 2013 at 2:54 PM by Jp Highlight this comment 637

I suppose jp DOES have a point. Lucas Oil Stadium is a good example. LOS does have sections of retractable seats on the sidelines that when pulled out, make way for a larger set of modular seats they put in for basketball games. Therefore, they might have the same problem as far as a club lounge or such beneath those seats. I do believe they have field level suites on the end-zones...but don't quote me on that.

But again, I still have a problem with the fact that other indoor stadiums in this region, i.e. LOS, Ford Field, Ed Jones Dome in St Louis don't make compromises for baseball, but Minnesota does. Why we feel the need to fit it into yet another indoor football stadium meant for the Vikings is what gets me.

Sure, they can think outside of the box and come up with something unique. But I fear that it won't be as good as it COULD be, if it was a football-specific stadium. I fear that in light of the compromises they have to make for amateur ball, whatever the Vikings will come up with will look cheap, makeshift and temporary - because it seems to me that's what it would have to be, so they can move it easily to make whatever changes necessary to accommodate baseball in February.

Posted on February 17, 2013 at 3:46 PM by luke Highlight this comment 638

Meatloaf, you mean the guy who butchered "America The Beautiful" His credibility has gone to Hell since that incident, well since endorsing Romney in the first place..

Posted on February 17, 2013 at 8:51 PM by Forgot My Name here Highlight this comment 639

I am certainly not fretting over the situation, merely stating, that in my opinion, the these preliminary designs are pretty stupid and metrodome had a far better configuration for multiple uses.

JP, losing out on a champions club style level is still losing out on a club style level and while having it only stands to pad the Vikings pockets, there is a fan experience loss there as well which is a contributor to overall loss of functionality. As much as we meager folk might talk down our noses about those who would spend the money to enjoy said space, we would still jump at the opportunity to experience it and in many cases whenever possible.

Adding a baseball configuration may not directly affect football playability/functionality as we see it from our butts in the seats but also remember that there is literally functional space lost. Concourses, circulation, storage, concession space (more than just the retail fronts), restroom facilities, team shops, added handicapped accessibility, team offices, locker rooms....The potential for that space is huge and when you take away that space, all those things get pushed and squeezed into ridiculous places.

That's the risk you take though. It does force the Vikes to be innovative but in my opinion innovative the Vikes are not. Heck they seem to still be hanging on to a "retractable roof" as a possibility. They usually group that with "or a retractable feature" but frankly anything retractable at this point really is a waste and I think most everyone knows this by now. Hopefully, someone in the meetings from the designers is innovative and sees "some" of these. I am sure they have good reasoning for the choices made in these designs that we may never hear.

Again, I personally am not going crazy over it, maybe others are, I am just stating some obvious issues that people would have to contend with that stand out to me as being a bit ridiculous.

Posted on February 18, 2013 at 09:55 AM by jared Highlight this comment 640

I should say Re: Club Levels

Given a reasonable opportunity (that didn't bust our wallets, say a "nicely discounted ticket") we would still choose to experience it. We may not go back because of budget limitations but others will want to experience it once as well. That one visit may convert them to be that repeat visitor and they may bring their friends and frankly thats all it takes. That is still a loss.

Posted on February 18, 2013 at 10:02 AM by jared Highlight this comment 641

When judged by quantity of baseball played, the Metrodome is still the most useful facility in town. The Gophers host 23 games there in February and March. The MIAC plays 57 and the NSIC plays 67. That's 147 baseball games over two winter months. Surprisingly, the dome still hosts far more baseball than all other sports combined.

I'm among those who are skeptical of making allowances for baseball at the new stadium. But I think it's worth noting that a massive amount of baseball could occur there, at a time of year when the only other option is outsourcing it all to facilities in warmer climates. Something to consider.

Posted on February 18, 2013 at 10:51 AM by Rich Highlight this comment 642

Forcing the Vikings to put retractable seating all along one sideline is borderline insane. The space beneath the permanent stands which could be built there instead would likely be revenue-generating, which means one of the main purposes of the building (financial) would be significantly undercut.

That said, I also agree that the "people's stadium" needs to be a Metrodome replacement in many ways -- baseball included.

Frankly, I can't reconcile those two things.

I go back to the clear need for another all-weather baseball facility somewhere in the metro. The Vikings should offer to pay for it -- say at $10M or so, whatever the hit they would take by being forced to build a convertible configuration.

And Meat Loaf's power ballad credentials are utterly without question. (Like all other media personalities, however, his political credibility is a few notches below "relevant". And his SSB credibility? Ay caramba!)

Posted on February 18, 2013 at 11:52 AM by Rick 643

Baseball generates revenue also. The Metrodome costs $500 an hour to rent. If they charge a similar amount at the new stadium they'll make several million dollars over the life of the facility by renting it out for baseball. Not disagreeing with you Rick. Just trying to paint a more complete picture.

Posted on February 18, 2013 at 12:16 PM by Rich Highlight this comment 644

Agreed, Rich, that the financial picture is complex.

But unlike club revenue, I don't think that rental revenue would accrue to the Vikings. It would more likely go to the Authority. And it's hard to imagine rental revenue offsetting the revenues of a sideline club area.

Posted on February 18, 2013 at 12:50 PM by Rick 645

Single game tickets have been on sale now for over 48 hours and you can still get plenty of tickets for Opening Day and every other game on the home schedule.

Hard to believe it was just one year ago when the Twins had a "lottery" for Opening Day tickets.

So far, my decision to not renew my season tickets is looking like a good decision. It's kind of nice to pick and choose tickets on a single-game basis without having to worry about the financial hit that comes with season tickets. I will say however that the home schedule is terrible this year as we discussed last fall. Only one weekend home in July and three weekends home in September.

Posted on February 18, 2013 at 1:10 PM by Mike Highlight this comment 646

Hopefully the April Fool's joke will be on all those who bought "extra" opening day tickets hoping to make a profit.

Posted on February 18, 2013 at 1:28 PM by gogotwins Highlight this comment 647

Here's a Strib article (click name) on the "muted" demand for Twins tix. They only sold 50,000 on the first day of public sales. That seems really weak to me, given the number of good seats and games available.

Posted on February 18, 2013 at 2:35 PM by BR Highlight this comment 648

Terrible schedule. Terrible team. Terrible ownership. Terrible front office. On and on. Nice stadium though.

Posted on February 18, 2013 at 2:38 PM by Ben Highlight this comment 649

Terrrible home schedule. 15 home games in April??, One weekend home series in July??? Only 2 in August also. September with 16 home games! Boys will be lucky to hit 2mil. Worst home schedule I have ever seen.

Posted on February 18, 2013 at 4:45 PM by twinfan Highlight this comment 650

I was shocked to see the July schedule. Only 9 home games???

The genius schedulers apparently don't realize that July is the month in Minnesota where people are most inclined to go to a ballgame...

I'm also perplexed by the last week of May, when we play two in Milwaukee and then immediately two here against them. This can't have been by design, can it?

Posted on February 18, 2013 at 6:04 PM by Rick 651

Rick, I think you're greatly underestimating the cost to build and maintain an indoor baseball facility. Baseball requires a massively tall roof compared to any other indoor sport. To build a fixed roof facility would be expensive (10s of millions) and to cover an existing field with a lighter teflon like material that needs inflation would be expensive to maintain (fans to inflate, heating 100k+ sq ft without insulation) all while you have a vacant building almost capable of doing the same job sitting downtown. In addition to the cost to build and maintain a separate field you're creating another, presumably much cheaper, indoor facility smaller events or card shows can rent, taking away more events from the new stadium which was sold as a multi purpose venue that will be occupied 300ish days a year.

Wouldn't it be significantly cheaper to ask the Vikings build an offsite storage facility, and convert some of the planned storage areas into suites/clubs? I agree the Vikings won't accept losing the revenue they could gain by not having to accommodate baseball, nor should they. There are new and innovative ways for the Vikings to capture revenue, they just need to figure out how to do it.

To build this massive facility to the exact needs of a 2013 NFL team is exceptionally shortsighted. No sport is more threatened by TV and other media than the NFL. In 20 years the new fad might be 25K seat venues with another 35k tickets sold as SRO with entire upper decks or other areas converted to bar/restaurant space like Hrbek's or the Townball tavern. In that hypothetical universe this new building will become obsolete to it's primary revenue generating tenant as quickly as the Metrodome did, regardless of it's ability to accommodate baseball.

Posted on February 18, 2013 at 6:55 PM by jp Highlight this comment 652

jp,

I like that kind of thinking. Some of the newer stadiums are already essentially pay-per-view auditoriums for those in the upper decks. Creating stand-alone "event sites" could certainly be an innovation waiting for a bold owner to embrace it.

And you're right in that I really have no idea how much it would cost to build and maintain one of those golf/tennis/football domes big enough for baseball. But a quick search yielded this page listing a cost of $5 to $15 per square foot. So my napkin math yields a cost of $1.8M for a dome 350 feet square at $15 per square foot. (I'm sure there's more to it than that, of course. But I know there's some cheap land available in Arden Hills...)

The idea of a billion dollar facility being used so infrequently is grotesque, to say the least. But I'm torn between that and the idea of spending a billion dollars and not getting the best football stadium possible.

Posted on February 18, 2013 at 9:54 PM by Rick 653

As far as the scheduling, I think perhaps MLB is tired of the Twins playing chicken with the elements early- and late-season that they basically said "outdoor ballpark, deal with it. Everyone else does."

Seriously, I love the smell of green grass, and the sunshine and the crack of the bat that doesn't echo off of concrete walls like it did at That Other Place, but inclement weather - especially in these parts - brings that teeny extra element to the ballgame. I say, bring it on.

Posted on February 18, 2013 at 9:55 PM by luke Highlight this comment 654

Rick,

Regarding the Milwaukee series, I think MLB scheduled all the "rivalry" interleague games with the 2 home/away format, back to back and on those dates. I think it is a major failure by mlb with the games on weekdays and many kids still in school. I was thinking of taking the trip to Milwaukee this year but it won't happen now.

Posted on February 18, 2013 at 10:00 PM by Stevie B Highlight this comment 655

Wait -- are you telling me that all of the really cool rivalry series are going to be held in this format on those specific days?!?!?

Dumbest. Thing. Ever.

Posted on February 18, 2013 at 10:16 PM by Rick 656

Yep, just verified it by looking at the daily schedule for May 27-30. All the games are 2 home/2 road and played over 4 days. I guess it does start on Memorial Day, but with many of them being night games it would still require a day off of work and/or school to take a road trip. I don't know if this is a one year plan with Houston making the switch to the AL or if it is necessary because of the constant interleague series being played.

Posted on February 18, 2013 at 10:32 PM by Stevie B Highlight this comment 657

The Petri Dish in Milwaukee. Not exactly a place I would be excited about going to. TF is way better and, doesnt have a roof the size of Manhattan.

Posted on February 19, 2013 at 06:44 AM by luke Highlight this comment 658

Sure Milwaukee isn't the greatest ballpark ever built. But it is the fun of a roadtrip, taking the kids to a ballpark they haven't visited before, tailgating in Milwaukee, etc.

Life doesn't have to be all negative, you know?

Posted on February 19, 2013 at 09:21 AM by Stevie B Highlight this comment 659

In 20 years the new fad might be 25K seat venues with another 35k tickets sold as SRO with entire upper decks or other areas converted to bar/restaurant space like Hrbek's or the Townball tavern.

Indeed; we've seen some of this already, on a smaller scale. In the last 2-3 years almost 15,000 seats have been removed from FedEx Field's upper deck to make room for "party decks" and suites.

Posted on February 19, 2013 at 10:03 AM by Expectorate Highlight this comment 660

Target Field might be the better overall venue than Miller Park but the atmosphere at Miller Park beats Target Field hands down. I will say that Target Field has made the warehouse district and the plaza gameday atmosphere more exciting downtown, but Minneapolis has a long ways to go to catch the atmosphere in Milwaukee.

From the tailgating/socializing in the parking lot to the sausage races and beer barrel polka, its a great family outing just a 4-5 hour drive from Minnesota.

The Twins-Brewers rivalry series' have been some of the most anticipated games in recent years with high ticket demand in both Milwaukee and Minneapolis. Why? Because the fans like to travel that 4-5 hours to watch their favorite team on the road.

Just like Kansas City, I am amazed at how many Twins fans continue to drive down there even after the opening of Target Field. Why? Because baseball fans like to travel and see their favorite teams play on the road. Especially when you can make the drive in 4-6 hours.

I am not saying Miller Park is the greatest stadium ever built, but its a great road trip (only 4 hours for me) and a great atmosphere and experience.

Posted on February 19, 2013 at 10:55 AM by Mike Highlight this comment 661

Doesn't everyone agonizing over fitting baseball inside the new Vikings stadium or hoping for a separate, domed baseball facility gnash their teeth daily over the illogical placement of this new facility and the requisite demolition of the Metrodome?

Posted on February 19, 2013 at 11:13 AM by schweady Highlight this comment 662

During the Arden Hills fever I remember reading the Metrodome couldn't stayed financially viable without the Vikings, so it's fairly safe to assume we'd be dealing with this controversy no matter which site was picked. I was a big proponent of the FM site, but now I'm at peace with the Metrodome site. Whether you like it or not this state has and continues to invest heavily in light rail, and it was imperative to make sure this facility helped to justify that investment. My biggest fear at the start of this process was a poor mans Cowboys Stadium in AH, so even if the dome wasn't my choice for location I'm still thrilled its downtown.

Posted on February 19, 2013 at 12:21 PM by Jp Highlight this comment 663

Another idea for amateur baseball: How much would it cost to add a retractable roof to the new St Paul stadium for the Saints? Does the scheduling work with only 2 baseball stadiums (TF and StP)? Remember Midway will be demolished soon too.

Posted on February 19, 2013 at 2:01 PM by CSG Mike Highlight this comment 664

Baseball is meant to be played outdoors under the sky, plain and simple. If you are a northern team than you should not be expecting to play baseball outdoors until April. It's ridiculous that the NCAA starts the baseball season in February. How about having a later season for the northern teams or simply pushing the entire schedule back a few weeks?

What do the college and amateur baseball teams do in other northern states such as Iowa, Wisconsin, Michigan, Illinois, Indiana and Ohio? There are no NFL domes in any of those states to host baseball. As far as high school baseball is concerned, most HS teams play games at the Dome for the sake of playing games in the Dome, the experience and nostalgia. MSHSL baseball season does not start until mid-March with most games starting the first week of April. So an indoor baseball venue is not really needed for high school.

Say what you want about a "people's stadium" but the fact of the matter is that its a NFL football stadium. Let's do it right the first time and avoid a Metrodome II.

Posted on February 19, 2013 at 2:48 PM by Mike (aka Mike) Highlight this comment 665

Mike - a lot of teams use the Metrodome for those early season games. The MSFC web site notes that the dome is host to 275 college games scheduled this spring. Some of those games start as early as 6 am so that the full day can be used for baseball. Teams travel from the Dakotas, Iowa, etc to play here. It isn't the best place to play but what else are they going to do? The NCAA won't be changing the calendar since they stay fairly close to the academic calender for all sports. The dome gives these teams a chance to play

Posted on February 19, 2013 at 3:37 PM by Stevie B Highlight this comment 666

point well taken Mike.
I have a very hard time putting the Metrodome and the word "nostalgia" in the same sentence. Really? The Dome - nostalgic? Wrigley, The Fen, Dodger Stadium...sure, nostalgia all over the place. The Dome in Minneapolis that everybody hates? Not so much...lol

Posted on February 19, 2013 at 4:31 PM by luke Highlight this comment 667

Iowa High School Baseball is played in the Summer. Practices usually start in late March, early April and games being played May to the end of July.

Posted on February 19, 2013 at 7:09 PM by PNB19 Highlight this comment 668

Leaving for Florida this week. If you want knowledgeable insight, stick with LaVelle Neal. But if you just want the impressions of a "Joe Fan" who enjoys this site, I'll send some. Looking forward to seeing some of the young prospects.

Posted on February 19, 2013 at 7:18 PM by terry Highlight this comment 669

I like LaVelle just fine, but I'd love also to hear the unvarnished, unfiltered version. Please let us know what you see, terry!

Posted on February 19, 2013 at 9:25 PM by Rick 670

Looks like MLB instituted a new fee for selling on StubHub and changed a few other policies. See email from StubHub below.

In the example below, when the seller sets a price of $50, there are $15.77 in fees. Buyer pays $7, Seller pays $8.77. So the ticket costs buyer $57, seller gets $41.23, and StubHub gets $15.77. That adds up to fees of 27.6% of the price paid. Nice little business.

I've used StubHub to sell off my excess tix and been grateful for it, but but it's getting harder to recoup the full price paid. But still it's fairly nice to have a reasonably functioning 2nd hand market. I use stubhub to go to ball games when I travel and it's nice to always be able to get a ticket somehow in advance.

-----

You're receiving this email because you sold Minnesota Twins tickets on StubHub last season. We recently renewed our partnership with Major League Baseball Advanced Media (MLBAM) and are now allowing all sellers to list their tickets for the upcoming season. However, there are some important changes we need to tell you about.

Twenty-seven of the 30 MLB teams will have a cancel/reissue barcode integration ("MLB integrated teams") with StubHub in 2013 and the Minnesota Twins are one of the teams continuing its relationship with StubHub.

MLB transfer fee and minimum list price

For all 2013 home games for MLB integrated teams, there will be an MLB transfer fee of $1.50 per ticket, which will only apply if your tickets sell. In the sell flow, you'll see the MLB transfer fee as a separate line item. For example, if you list a ticket for $50.00, the first $1.50 will go to the MLB transfer fee and your payout will be $41.23, which is 85% of the remaining $48.50.

There will also be a minimum list price for all 2013 Minnesota Twins games of $3.00 per ticket, which is inclusive of the $1.50 MLB transfer fee.

Product and technology updates

What the buyer sees is what the buyer pays: Typically on StubHub, once a buyer selects the tickets they want to buy, the buyer is assessed an additional 10% fee right before they purchase their tickets. However, for 2013 MLB games, we're changing the way we show ticket prices on our site and will include the buyer service fee in the ticket price for all 2013 MLB games. It's important to note that including the buyer service fee in the ticket cost will impact the price of your tickets the buyer sees on the event page, but it won't alter your payout.
Buyer ticket delivery: We're also changing the delivery fee buyers pay to collect their tickets for home games for MLB integrated teams. The delivery fee will now be $2.00 per ticket for all 2013 home games for MLB integrated teams, in place of the previous delivery charge assessed at checkout. Like the service fee, the delivery fee will be included in the ticket price on the event page.

Here's an example of how it will work:
If a seller sets a per ticket cost of $50.00, that listing will show on the event page for $57.00, which includes the ticket cost ($50), buyer service fee ($5) and buyer delivery fee ($2). It's important to keep this in mind when pricing your tickets and looking for them on the event page.

We're looking forward to a great 2013 MLB season. Please reach out to us if you have any questions.

Posted on February 20, 2013 at 10:42 AM by ClarkAddison Highlight this comment 671

Wow! Stubhub is going to like their payments for low cost tickets. If my math is correct this is how a $3 ticket breaks out. ($3 is minimum price)

Ticket price $3.00

Buyer pays $5.30
Stubhub recieves $2.53
MLB receives (?) $1.50
Seller receives $1.28

Posted on February 20, 2013 at 11:34 AM by CSG Mike Highlight this comment 672

More examples (assuming my math is correct)

Ticket price $10.00

Buyer pays $13.00
Stubhub recieves $4.28
MLB receives (?) $1.50
Seller receives $7.23
-------------------------------
Ticket price $25.00

Buyer pays $29.50
Stubhub recieves $8.03
MLB receives (?) $1.50
Seller receives $19.98
-------------------------------
Ticket price $75.00

Buyer pays $84.50
Stubhub recieves $20.53
MLB receives (?) $1.50
Seller receives $62.48
-------------------------------
Ticket price $100.00

Buyer pays $112.00
Stubhub recieves $26.78
MLB receives (?) $1.50
Seller receives $83.73

Posted on February 20, 2013 at 11:37 AM by CSG Mike Highlight this comment 673

And remember this is PER ticket!

Basically you could lose anywhere from 25% to 75% of what the buyer pays to fees... Ouch!

Posted on February 20, 2013 at 11:46 AM by CSG Mike Highlight this comment 674

Wow, those changes are pretty harsh.

I wonder if this represents Opportunity for someone willing to create a secondary hub for the secondary market. (TC Traders redux, anyone?)

Posted on February 20, 2013 at 12:10 PM by Rick 675

walking the skyway from my exec position at Old Republic to my car, I passed by TF today, and damn near got a tear in my eye. I miss the place being open. That is going to be pretty f'ing awesome in the summer walking back to the car at 3:30 or so and watching people pile up on the plaza for a 7:10 start (or the end of a *gag* weekday game). I cant see much from that skyway though. The third base side of the Terrace and Legends Club seating is about it...no field action :(

Posted on February 20, 2013 at 4:34 PM by luke Highlight this comment 676

"We're long past the point where we can wonder if the Twins have a preference for a specific kind of pitcher. Of course they do. "

Posted on February 20, 2013 at 8:07 PM by TheTruthHurts Highlight this comment 677

Driving home last night on 94 / 394, I could see that all the ballpark lights were on, including the scoreboard with an "Opening Day" graphic.

Anyone know what was going on? Maybe just testing the various systems after having them turned off for several months?

Posted on February 21, 2013 at 08:39 AM by F_T_K Highlight this comment 678

OD tix still available at Twins site (and everywhere else).

Posted on February 21, 2013 at 10:26 AM by Ben Highlight this comment 679

OD still available almost a week after they went on sale? WOW! In previous years they were sold out within hours.

They did say that 50,000 tickets were sold last Saturday. That's just over 1 game worth. Add in the approx 19,000 FSE and you can figure out pretty quickly that there will be some EMPTY games this year.

I look forward to finding cheap lower level seats in the second half. I have a feeling I might make it to 20 games this coming year.

Posted on February 21, 2013 at 10:44 AM by CSG Mike Highlight this comment 680

Perhaps not - when all those hot new arms start tearing up MLB tickets will become hard to get.

Posted on February 21, 2013 at 11:03 AM by Ben Highlight this comment 681

F_T_K Lights may be have been on for the Twins special airing tonight on channel 11 at 9pm. Seems early to me to be talking about the ballpark & team on a Thursday February night. I got the dvr set to go anyway.

Posted on February 21, 2013 at 11:47 AM by NotMendoza Highlight this comment 682

Got two tickets for the April 3rd game yesterday. Paid 23 dollars a piece for two skyline deck seats. Anyone else ever sat there? Seems like a pretty good spot to sit for only 23 dollars. Oh by the way I got them at the Ridgedale Pro Shop. Hopefully the weather will be at least decent.

Posted on February 21, 2013 at 6:35 PM by Tom D. Highlight this comment 683

Sat there in 2010. Good seats; nice view of the city.

Posted on February 21, 2013 at 9:39 PM by Winona Mike Highlight this comment 684

Well, I wouldn't worry too much about opening day, even if there are a few seats open. The 1966 Twins, coming off their World Series appearance the previous year, open the MLB season on Tuesday, April 12, at the Met. They draw 21,658, with Mudcat beating the KC Athletics in a game time of 1:45! The Wednesday and Thursday games draw 5,556 and 5,274 respectively. So, the 2013 Twins will draw more on opening day after two disastrous seasons than the American League defending champs drew the their opening series.

Times have changed....

Posted on February 21, 2013 at 10:23 PM by Lincster Highlight this comment 685

Sid mentions the baseball dimensions for the new stadium. Sounds like they'll do.

Posted on February 22, 2013 at 09:14 AM by DeePee Highlight this comment 686

Oh and the baggy (or something probably like it) is back! :/

Posted on February 22, 2013 at 09:18 AM by DeePee Highlight this comment 687

Nothing big but...

Channel 11 aired a Twins spring training special and noted that Captains Deck will be no more, it will carry a different name come Opening Day...Summit anyone?

Posted on February 22, 2013 at 12:55 PM by Jeff Highlight this comment 688

Aw, no more Captain Morgan prowling the concourse (for chicks) with the Morgan girls? But that takes away so much from the gameday experience...

Posted on February 22, 2013 at 1:11 PM by jared Highlight this comment 689

I should say:

There were a handful of extended encounters (of the many pass-by encounters) at least that I experienced the captain and either the guy was playing the sleazy pirate ship captain role a little too well or he had his game on full court press and he was looking to score. Not sure why, all he had to do was turn around. The Morgan girls looked like the kind of women his character would fully enjoy on the island of Tortuga (as portrayed in the Pirates of the Caribbean movies).

Posted on February 22, 2013 at 1:21 PM by jared Highlight this comment 690

What ever happened to opening up on the road the first 10 days or so? FCOL! April 1st?? Really?? Could be 35 and snow or could be 75! We shooting for March next year??? Better be some decent April weather with 15 home games. Mid 20's for crowds sounds about right. The strive for 75!!! My prediction for this year?

Det 95-67
Tribe 82-80
KC 80-82
Chi 78-84
Twink 71-91

Posted on February 22, 2013 at 3:31 PM by twinfan Highlight this comment 691

We will all be fine, twinfan.

One of my favorite ball games ever was Opening Day at Wrigley Field in 1982. They had to clear snow off the field to play. The game is mentioned in the article (about Fergie Jenkins) linked to my name below. I was one of the people lobbing snowballs into the bleachers from the rooftops along Sheffield Ave. The cops came and told everyone to cut it out, so everyone (rooftops and bleachers) started throwing snowballs at the cops instead.

The earth will keep rotating around the sun, the snow will melt, and we'll have some nice summer ball games. There are 81 of them, don't sweat it if its a little chilly at a couple of them.

Posted on February 22, 2013 at 3:44 PM by ClarkAddison Highlight this comment 692

First, I have no qualms about the Twinks schedule this year. None. April 1 is fine with me.
Second, the Baggie, and the mention thereof damn near makes me want to vomit...right on John Andersons face.

Posted on February 22, 2013 at 5:47 PM by luke Highlight this comment 693

Went to the Tigers-Braves game yesterday and the old baseball truism was borne out; the pitchers were ahead of the hitters at this stage. Neither team had a hit until the 6th inning. Detroit had their "A" lineup in for half the game. If I knew how, I'd post a picture. Going to Fort Meyers next week.

Posted on February 23, 2013 at 08:20 AM by terry Highlight this comment 694

so Rick - when can we expect a new post?

Posted on February 24, 2013 at 2:39 PM by luke Highlight this comment 695

For the first time I will be attending opening day! No school that day since it is part of our spring break, which means no coaching my 8th grade baseball team either. Jared - any advance forecast for April 1st?!?! (Just kidding!) Got my ticket last night, so I am set!

Posted on February 25, 2013 at 08:53 AM by ole Highlight this comment 696

Ole, I've been conducting a faux campaign for years to have Opening Day declared a national holiday. Get downtown early; it's one giant carnival on Opening Day. Lots of people attending "their grandmothers' funerals" to quote Spencer Tracy in "Woman of the Year".

Posted on February 25, 2013 at 10:21 AM by terry Highlight this comment 697

How many times can your grandma die?!? :)

Posted on February 25, 2013 at 11:31 AM by Stevie B Highlight this comment 698

Well accuweather does go out 25 days. And they show no temps out of the 30's the whole time. Might be playing outdoor hockey till mid March. Last year we had 4 days in the 80's in a row around St Pattys Day. Ole Larry Boy better get the snow blowers ready and start heating the turf! Will old Larry have the guts to cut a different pattern this year? Now that we don't have outfielders complaining about how the ball comes off grass anymore maybe so? I doubt it though!

Posted on February 25, 2013 at 2:33 PM by twinfan Highlight this comment 699

accuweather isn't that accu on the weather. 25 days out? For God's sake, up until two days ago, they thought we were going to get six inches of wet snow today messing up our commutes. Yesterday, according to the Pioneer Press, the weather terrorists "took snow completely out of the forecast" for today. All went south. Kansas City got pummeled instead.

In about two weeks, it'll all change, the jet stream will shift and a low pressure system they didn't even see coming will suddenly pop up. That's usually the way things happen around here.

Will they activate the French Fry lights at TF on April 1? Probably. Will you need a 1987 WS Champs sweatshirt? Likely. But baby, we have outdoor baseball and after being locked up in that sardine can with plastic seats and a pillow on top for so long, I don't care what the weather will be like on April 1.

Posted on February 25, 2013 at 4:52 PM by luke Highlight this comment 700

I take offense to Luke calling us weather terrorists. For a guy who's career goal is to be in public relations, you sure have an interesting approach. But I guess on here it doesn't have to be all spin and rainbows to make your company look good.

Posted on February 26, 2013 at 08:25 AM by jared Highlight this comment 701

The only PR work Luke does is making sure his bedroom floor is clean so his mom can vacuum once a week!

Posted on February 26, 2013 at 11:52 AM by JoJo Highlight this comment 702

Luke, which flavor of paint chips are your favorite?

Posted on February 26, 2013 at 2:51 PM by TheTruthHurts Highlight this comment 703

He may be a poor PR flack, but we have to give Luke credit for having a malleable mind. It wasn’t so long ago that he fretted that Target Field wasn’t going to be built with a roof, and now he despises domes. So vehemently, in fact, that he personifies the old adage, “There’s no zealot like a convert.”

Posted on February 26, 2013 at 3:55 PM by Winona Mike Highlight this comment 704

I am in the title insurance industry not public relations.

Posted on February 26, 2013 at 8:27 PM by luke Highlight this comment 705

"Us" Jared? Lighten up...even Paul Douglas uses that term.

Posted on February 26, 2013 at 8:30 PM by luke Highlight this comment 706

Don't try to hide behind "Lighten up". By this point in time its pretty easy to tell when you are being a douche that has no clue.

It's already bad enough weather people across the globe are already so negatively stereotyped as "getting paid all that money to be wrong all the time" and reminded about that stereotype nearly every minute of everyday. I know first hand the shit pay 99% of meterologists receive. Now we got you running your mouth calling us "terrorists". Of all things, terrorists. Far as I am concerned, that's the lowest of the low and I know damn well the only reason most everyone (including half-wits like you) watches the weather casts is because you know that you couldn't even come half as close to getting a forecast to verify.

Some of even the simplest equations would send your pea-brain into meltdown mode. One of my professors once explained to me during a moment of frustration that our formulas are already so complex, yet if we tried to do similar forecasting on Jupiter (a planet so much larger and infinitely more complex) to even a third of the certainty, that would pretty much give us the ability to forecast weather on Earth with ridiculously high levels of certainty over unheard of lee-times. We are essentially predicting the future, giving you 5 of the 6 powerball numbers as many as 7 days in advance and you are going to bitch that wasn't close enough? We do, what stock traders can't with a high degree of certainty, without forcing the markets hand.

It's already hypocritical enough that people like you have the gall to so quickly write us off as wrong, yet still watch us nearly every day of your human lives to find out what the weather will be like. What you apparently don't know is the extreme time and effort required by these people just to get a degree. Then many of them get their AMS seal which is arguably one of the toughest and most rigorous certification tests there is.

I am not even anywhere near a PR job and I know that PR 101 says that only the people who have a right to speak, can, and if you don't know what the hell you are talking about, you sure as shit better keep your damn mouth shut. All that without even mentioning comparing something you have absolutely no clue about, to terrorists. God help any PR firm that decides to hire you and even consider giving you anything more than a job at the copy machine.

Posted on February 26, 2013 at 10:07 PM by Jared Highlight this comment 707

Ok- point well taken. Of course that particular reference was made by a local media outlet making fun of "over predicting". Thought you would at least get a smile out of it. Guess not. Sorry to offend Jared.

Posted on February 27, 2013 at 06:07 AM by luke Highlight this comment 708

Apology accepted. Which local media outlet was using it and in what context? I don't understand the comparison of "over predicting" (whatever that means to them) to terrorists. Something tells me this was said one way and received an entirely different way.

Posted on February 27, 2013 at 08:33 AM by jared Highlight this comment 709

Who uses Paul Douglas as an example. That guy is douchy enough to have been fire from WCCO, which is saying something.

Posted on February 27, 2013 at 08:34 AM by Duffman Highlight this comment 710

Accuweather still has no days even making 40 degrees the next 25. Get out the flame throwers Larry!

Posted on February 27, 2013 at 09:32 AM by twinfan Highlight this comment 711

My guess is that the last dozen or so posts are EXACTLY why Rick created this site.

Sheesh.

Posted on February 27, 2013 at 10:05 AM by BR Highlight this comment 712

Duffman- Paul Douglas is generally an exception rather than the rule. However, I do happen to know more of the non-public knowledge of why he was terminated from WCCO and it wasn't due to his apparent douchiness. I say apparent because in my meetings with him, he was always cordial, inviting, knowledgeable and instructive. He treated me and my colleagues with respect. Although, I can see how he can come off in a douchey manner. So douchiness is in the eye of the beholder. I won't go into it any further than that.

Posted on February 27, 2013 at 10:12 AM by jared Highlight this comment 713

This is a weird diversion, but I have nothing but respect for Paul Douglas. He has always been an innovator in how weather information is presented on television and in other media, and he's quite wealthy as a result. I'm not sure it's common knowledge, but his company created the software used by many TV meteorologists. My hunch is that the guy wouldn't have to ever do another forecast if he didn't want to.

And maybe it's just me, but April 1 is still more than a month away, making it just a tiny bit premature to be consulting weather forecasts.

In my meteorological fantasy, which I still choose to enjoy until something more concrete comes along, I'm quite sure it will be 70 and sunny out at TF that day...

Posted on February 27, 2013 at 10:21 AM by Rick 714

Well speaking of opening day, I got curious about how sales were going and I noticed today that the "view seat map" option is on at the Twins ticket sales site. I'm not sure that option was available for selecting seats during the presale. But it is now, and I count 992 seats available from the Twins - although there may be seats not released yet. Best selection down the left field line in 125-127. Also 101. Nothing left in the outfield.

So 992 tickets left there. over 4,300 tickets available on StubHub today, with prices falling daily. Will it be a sellout? Or rather, Twins have a good chance selling all the tickets, but will there be 39,000 people in attendance?

Posted on February 27, 2013 at 10:56 AM by ClarkAddison Highlight this comment 715

Removing snow at TF!

Posted on February 27, 2013 at 11:08 AM by Paul Highlight this comment 716

Fellow BPMersplease accept my sincerest apologies for my comment. I was repeating something I had heard on a radio bit. Of course it was a poor choice of words and obviously weather folks are not the scum that that particular comment suggests. Like Rick daid, folks like Paul Douglas are very gpod at what they do and the science they chose for their profession.

Posted on February 27, 2013 at 12:33 PM by luke Highlight this comment 717

Dan Barriero of KFAN and formerly the Star Tribune is the innovator of the term weather terrorist, and has been using it for several years. His assertion is the weather guys in town over exaggerate the impact of routine weather phenomenon into something worthy of fear and excessive preparation. He particularly likes to mock terms like "weather event" to describe a dusting of snow, or relatively new terms like "heat index" and "wind chill factor", which in his opinion were invented to over emphasize typical weather temps. Overall it's a fairly dumb bit that gets old fast, but apparently his listeners love it because he leans on it more and more every year to fill airtime.

Posted on February 27, 2013 at 12:41 PM by Jp Highlight this comment 718

I take no offense to the term weather terrorists, Luke. Please continue to use that term.

Posted on February 27, 2013 at 12:43 PM by DreDogg Highlight this comment 719

Wouldn't it be great to have a media outlet where you can basically say whatever you want and people will drool and laugh and repeat and amplify your "witticisms" out into the real world?

Oh, wait -- that's called a "blog" (talk radio = verbal blogging without the chance to edit or reconsider).

Although, I do give thanks that nobody appears to be drooling here.

Well, not laughing either.

Or repeating or amplifying anything I say...

Uh...

*fetal position*

Posted on February 27, 2013 at 1:27 PM by Rick 720

Sorry to detour this rabbit trail back to baseball topics - I don't think anyone has mentioned the new broadcasts on 96.3 FM.

It's only a spring training game today but I can hear it on my radio at work! So long AM1500, I won't miss you. Nice clear FM signal, I can listen at home and work, or even on my mp3 player.

Posted on February 27, 2013 at 1:37 PM by Stevie B Highlight this comment 721

So 96.3 is broadcasting spring training games too? Are they doing all of them? Is there a broadcast schedule of these games somewhere?

Posted on February 27, 2013 at 2:50 PM by jared Highlight this comment 722

According to 96.3 website (click name for link) they are broadcasting all ST games. The schedule is on this link as well.

Posted on February 27, 2013 at 3:09 PM by Stevie B Highlight this comment 723

Setting aside the substantial radio upgrade (which is very welcome), if you have MLB.TV you can actually watch the games live! (At least those that are broadcast. Not all of them are.)

Posted on February 27, 2013 at 3:18 PM by Rick 724

Weather "events" bring viewers to the screen. The snow storm in KC was "unprecedented" according to the media and yet many examples over the years prove this to be not true. 24/7 cable and local news, The Weather Channel, websites, newspapers, and more all realize that a "STORM OF BIBLICAL PROPORTIONS!!!" sells. They'll do their best to make something our parents shrugged their shoulder's at seem scary and convince us it demands our attention. Terrorists.

Posted on February 27, 2013 at 6:23 PM by James T Highlight this comment 725

I'm in Fort Meyers and it's reassuring to see Luke is still saying provocative things to stir the pot and Duffman is still doing his Angry White Guy shtick.

I was impressed with Hicks today. He had a couple hits and showed a strong outfield arm. He also got down to first very quickly, making a routine ground out into a close play. Correia couldn't get his breaking ball over and with a fastball at 87-88, the results weren't pretty. A strong throw from Parmalee resulted in an of assist. I told you last week you should rely on Lavelle Neal instead of me.

Posted on February 27, 2013 at 6:41 PM by terry Highlight this comment 726

I, for one, appreciate Paul Douglas for being a true class act. When my stepdaughter was 10 or 11--and had a keen interest in meteorology--we wanted to encourage her interest in science before junior high pressures were brought to bear. I sent Paul a photo she had taken of mammatus clouds and asked if we could ever bring her to WCCO to meet him.

He invited us to a 10pm newscast, showed us around while we shadowed him doing the rooftop promo, and let my stepdaughter sit at the desk next to Don & Amelia while he did the weather. Afterwards, he showed us the weather center and pulled a bunch of daily maps off the wall for her, recognizing her interest.

While she didn't pursue meteorology--going into mechanical engineering instead--she still fondly remembers that experience. I don't care how much money he's earned or if some people find him "douchey" or if it only snows 2 inches when he predicted 3-6. Anyone who shows that much respect for others is tops in my book.

Posted on February 27, 2013 at 8:31 PM by fiesta Highlight this comment 727

Can't stand any of the local weatehr people. they are all just a bunch of alarmists. My favorite though has got to be WCCO radio.

WCCO: "We're breaking into the twins game for a live report from Elmer in Mound, MN! Elmer can you tell us what you see out there?"

Elmer: "Well I'm standing in my back yard and it's pretty dark out (it's 9:30 at night) and it looks like it might start raining any minute."

WCCO: "Fascinating stuff Elmer"

I shit you not this used to happen several times a summer. It used to love when someon would slip by the screener and ask what the hell they were thinking interrupting the game with that nonsense.

No offense to anyone in the weather industry but there's a big difference between helping to prepare for weather and sensationalizing it like the media does here.

Posted on February 28, 2013 at 3:30 PM by moda Highlight this comment 728

A WCCO Radio classic is having four different callers or emailers will report seeing a tornado in Coon Rapids, quite obviously the same tornado seen from different vantage points. Erring on the side of caution, the WCCO host will then hysterically announce that there may be as many as four tornados in Coon Rapids.

Posted on February 28, 2013 at 5:09 PM by Jorge Highlight this comment 729

Shocked - SHOCKED!

Posted on February 28, 2013 at 7:34 PM by TheTruthHurts Highlight this comment 730

Well - Gov. Dayton says he's not worried. Quote Dayton: "We'll be working with legislative leaders to solve it, and we will solve it."

If I can cut through the political vernacular in that statement, I think by "solve it" that means that the taxpayers pay more. Is that a fairly accurate assessment?

I think it was Seattle, when they were building Safeco Field for the M's, they did something similar, they included lottery revenue from a "sports-themed" scratch off game that was projected to earn x amount of dollars per year for 30 years.

Well, in the first year of the lottery game, it came up something like $300,000 short of projected revenue. What happened? They went back to the state and more general fund (let's call a spade a spade, TAX) dollars were put into it. :/

Clicky for an article from KOMO (it's from 1999) about it.

Posted on February 28, 2013 at 7:48 PM by luke Highlight this comment 731

Watched Rod Carew working on bunting with some guys wearing uniform numbers in the 70's and 80's. A couple of the players were chuckling and conversing about something other than bunting. Carew shot them a look and said "this is serious". When a Hall of Famer talks, you listen.

Posted on February 28, 2013 at 7:51 PM by terry Highlight this comment 732

Maybe it's time to take a second look at Chris Coleman's idea of a $.02 tax on drinks statewide. With the Dems in control, a TAX might actually pass...

Actually, I'd prefer a $.05 tax, with the extra $$$ going to a legacy amendment-style committee to fund sports facilities projects statewide: Wade Stadium in Duluth, various hockey rinks, etc

Posted on February 28, 2013 at 8:30 PM by Mr Bandgeek (aka Bandgeek) Highlight this comment 733

I dont understand why this is coming up again. They knew this months ago.

Posted on March 1, 2013 at 08:48 AM by moda Highlight this comment 734

The electronic pulltabs thing is hardly a surprise. Contingencies were written right into the law, including Vikings-themed scratch-off games and various in-stadium and merchandise taxes. In some ways, the contingencies are better for everybody than the electronic gaming.

This issue is like a lot of stadium politics. The real story, which isn't being told yet, is that nobody -- including most of the legislators who voted for the bill -- believed those numbers in the first place. They just needed something which covered funding gaps on paper and those numbers did it, despite their wacky fantasy nature.

It was talked about openly by stadium critics in the run-up to the deal, but legislators are just humans, and wanting to believe something is way more important than whether it's actually plausible. Once you want to believe something, you can only see evidence which supports it, and you dismiss anything which argues against it. This is called Confirmation Bias, and it's something humans do remarkably well, despite the fact that it bites us in the ass all the time. (We never seem to remember that part.)

Confirmation Bias is a big part of the fuel for stadium deals, you know. Thankfully, this time the bite in the ass may not be so bad after all.

Posted on March 1, 2013 at 1:50 PM by Rick 735

I guess let me say, I don't know Paul Douglas at all, never met him. May be the nice guy in the world for all I know. I guess the reason for my perception of him as douchey comes from reading his weather article in the Trib every day for two years. Mostly it stems from his hypocrisy in regards to global warming. When it suited him, he would claim certain weather was due to global warming, but then if it did not fit the global warming narrative, he would claim it was just the weather and global warming was about the climate, not day to day weather.

Which ever way you lean on global warming, it does not matter. Douglas inconsistency on the subject was striking and lead to my opinion of him.

I guess looking like Pee Wee Herman didn't help either.

Posted on March 1, 2013 at 1:53 PM by Duffman Highlight this comment 736

I know Mancini's has them, other than that, does anyone know where these electronic pulltabs are at? (If I am eating at Mancini's I won't have any money for pull tabs.)

Posted on March 1, 2013 at 1:55 PM by Duffman Highlight this comment 737

Looks like the traditional flyovers may be a thing of the past at sporting events...those are one of my favorite goosebump moments, and it could have been one of the few moments this year at TF...click name for link

Posted on March 1, 2013 at 3:48 PM by tk Highlight this comment 738

just saw that on Yahoo tk. truly is a shame to see them go.
One of my favorites was the flyover during Super Bowl XXV, during the Gulf War.

Posted on March 1, 2013 at 4:57 PM by luke Highlight this comment 739

I’m glad someone got around to the Pee Wee Herman observation. I’ve always thought there was a striking resemblance. As far as hypocrisy goes, just being hypocritical would make every human being on the planet qualify as a douche. In ways little or large, everybody operates with some measure of hypocrisy. I think if Paul Douglas were told he was a hypocrite and a douche, he might respond, “I know you are, but what am I?”

Posted on March 1, 2013 at 6:16 PM by Winona Mike Highlight this comment 740

Sunshine Factory in New Hope has the pulltabs but in all the times I have been in there nobody seems to ever be playing them. Most prefer the paper kind instead.
Also looks like one of our new pitchers didnt do so well today looks like it could be another long year.

Posted on March 1, 2013 at 6:29 PM by Leroy Highlight this comment 741

Let's keep talking about the weather or maybe pull tabs. That's cool. But they're removing snow from the field at TF. Game on (soon)!

Posted on March 1, 2013 at 10:14 PM by Paul Highlight this comment 742

Snow removal at TF? Old news. Comment 716...lol

Posted on March 2, 2013 at 07:09 AM by luke Highlight this comment 743

Global warming is a phenomenon characterized by long term temperature trends over large geographic areas, not short term localized changes occurring within those broad temporal and geographic parameters. That may be where the perception of "hypocrisy" comes from. In any event, it would be nice to talk about something, e.g. baseball and ballparks, instead of the weather. Do we have to act so Minnesotan?

Posted on March 2, 2013 at 09:51 AM by terry Highlight this comment 744

Mike, I guess my point was he broadcasts his hypocrisy in the paper on a daily basis, and formly on TV.

Sure Terry,

Any full season ticket holder get their season tickets yet?

Posted on March 2, 2013 at 12:00 PM by Duffman Highlight this comment 745

No ST tix yet. Didn't they send a e-mail about "mid-February" delivery?

Posted on March 2, 2013 at 12:12 PM by Ben Highlight this comment 746

I wonder if the delay in sending out season tickets is result of the "fiscal cliff" hearings earlier this year? Chuckle chuckle.
I mean, its the same reason the IRS says tax refunds are a tad late this year.

Posted on March 2, 2013 at 12:47 PM by luke Highlight this comment 747

That is what I thought.

Posted on March 2, 2013 at 12:52 PM by Duffman Highlight this comment 748

O'Gara's in St. Paul has electronic pull tabs, but I know of no other venue that does besides the previously mentioned Mancini's.

Posted on March 2, 2013 at 3:51 PM by Jorge Highlight this comment 749

My guess is that more tickets are going to be released still. My former ticket rep is still calling me. I am thankful the Twins had back-to-back awful seasons, as I am now moving out of state and I am not stuck with tickets.

Posted on March 2, 2013 at 10:35 PM by tk Highlight this comment 750

Has anybody bought the 2013 Baseball Prospectus book? I read the online sample and it looks like my favorite part, the team summaries, are shorter and lamer than ever. The two that I read were so boring. The book was barely worth the money last year, and it doesn't look like this year is an improvement...

Can anybody recommend a better publication to help me in my annual March preparation? I'm not into getting the stats or number projections (which are available basically everywhere), but more the team-by-team, division-by-division stories.

Posted on March 3, 2013 at 12:11 AM by Rick 751

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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.


Looking through the transit hub



Click to enlarge.






These openings will facilitate access to the catwalks which run throughout the canopy.






Concept drawing for the fan/player appreciation wall. (Click to enlarge.)



The Carew lounge was all ready for some corporate event.



Main concourse, looking south toward the area behind home plate.






Packed SRO beneath the notch.



A Hrbek tribute wall marks the end of the Carew side of the club






The view through a construction "knothole".



These stairs will go up to the centerfield pavilion.



Condiments! (complete with faux limestone on the cart -- nice touch)












This was from January 19, 2007, when it looked like wonderful things might never happen here.









Looking toward the Farmer's Market site from the balcony of the 573 Club at TF



The service entrance area in left-center, now with bench seating



Note reflected sunset (7:30 PM). Could be a worry...









The overhang as seen through the unnumbered gate












Walkway construction is progressing



Plaza overview from the A ramp



This is where the main ticket office will be.



Big Dog












The Carew gate ticket windows have grown a small awning.









Lots of work has gone into detailing the fronts of these decks. That is a little thing, but a NICE little thing. (HRP View)



Jose Alvalade XXI Stadium in Lisbon, Portugal has towers much like I'm imagining to hold up our canopy while also making a bold statement on the horizon









Here are some less intrusive things things you can actually get at the ballpark.






Here's a closer look.



Imagine this!



From the roof of the Minnekahda building (courtesy Bruce Lambrecht).





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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