Monday, August 31, 2009

Do I Make You Nervous?

The Grizzly Bear aka Nick Blackburn gets most of the props for tonight. Here's my theory Nick... the beard seems to be working... run with it while you can! Just make sure it doesn't get too unruly please or else you'll be going on "the list" for a trim :)

The rest of the props for tonight's game go to Mauer and Kubes. Both going 2 for 4, but those hits are what got us the win tonight. Also Cuddy has to get honorable mention with that diving catch that he made. I'd like to think Web Gem nod, but you never know with those guys, lol.

I thought the guys played smart ball tonight. They need to go out there and do it again tomorrow. One day at a time, one game at a time. We can't get ahead of ourselves.

Oh, I'd also like to thank Jason Bartlett and the Tampa Bay Rays for helping us out today and beating the Tigers. I was listening to the game today at work and it was nice to see Jason have such a good day. I miss him as a Twin, he was my original Twins crush.

Lastly, I'm beginning to wonder if I make Joe Nathan nervous or something (totally kidding, btw). But tonight when we came in, I muted the TV and turned my back to it and he went 1-2-3, Friday night when he was struggling I turned my radio off and like a minute later he got the last out and we won. He better get over the stage fright cause I'm not leaving early tomorrow night if he comes in, sorry Joe!

Tomorrow: The Twins are sending Jeff Manship to the mound against John Danks (12-8). Betsy and I will be at the game, probably being 2 of a few people that acutally know who Jeff Manship is and will probably have to tell those we're sitting by who he is (seems to be the norm when new guys pitch while we're there).

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Run Red Run!

I didn't have plans on even doing a blog today, but to be honest, as much as I pick on Mike Redmond and say that he needs to retire, he seems to bring a fair amount of fun to the team and the line up. We may not have the best record when he is playing, but I know he at least tries when he's at the plate.

Today was no exception. While he may be only 1 of 3 position players who were with the team at the start of the season to not have a home run, I can officially say I have never see Red Dog run so hard since I started watching the Twins than he did today going for that triple. Plus I think I got a kick out of it mostly because of the reaction Red got from the dug out when he reached, was priceless. It's always nice to see this team acting like a team, especially after the last few weeks when things weren't going right and every one was blaming everyone else.

Of course I wish I could find video to post to go along with this post because it was just too priceless, but of course I can't find one. And there aren't any pictures either. A decent play from Red, that doesn't happen very often and you can't find anything on it. Go figure!

Props to Nicky Punto too with that perfectly placed bunt during today's game too! I've missed seeing Nick being able to drop a bunt down like that, he's tried a little to hard this season to try and make those plays and it usually ends up being strike 3 or an out at first so it was nice to see a little squeeze play today from Punts!

Also since I did this post... Joe Nathan! Stop giving all us Twins fans heart attacks. Most of these games have been stressful enough as it is and then to have to worry if you're going to be able to go out there and get the save. Whatever the issue is, please get it out of your system by Tuesday when I am at the game, k? Perhaps we can even get enough run support to give you a few days off to maybe clear your head or something.

I think we were all breathing a sigh of relief when Joe finally got that last out.

I'd like to think a few of the guys read my blog last night and learned what it meant to capitalize since I was so nice to spell it out for them and give them a few pointers. It still leaves us 4.5 games outta first and a game and a half a head of Chicago, which is key with Chicago coming to town for a 3 game series starting tomorrow. Seriously though, does the Commissioner hate us that much that we have to play the Sox so many times this season? Not that I don't mind playing our rivals, but I'd like to see some other teams more often too, like Tampa Bay!

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Class Is In Session

The one thing that has always bummed me out with the Twins is whenever they are given a free pass, so-to-speak, they always seem to mess it up. Tonight is a prime example. Detroit lost 3 to 1 against Tampa Bay and the Sox were creamed by the Yankees, meaning the Twins had the perfect chance to gain some more ground on Chicago and close that gap between us and Detroit. Did we capitalize on it? Of course we didn't because that seems to be what the Twins do best.

I'm not sure if any of these guys on the team own a calendar or realize what month it's going to be in 2 days, but we're running out of time to do something to get into post season, cause the wild card ain't going to happen.

Boys, let me spell it out for you, everyone take a seat:

Let's start off with this: the definition of capitalize is as follows; "to take advantage of; turn something to one's advantage"

1) When the team you are chasing in the standings loses, you HAVE to capitalize on it. Meaning you HAVE to WIN.

2) When the team you are competing with for 2nd place loses, you HAVE to capitalize on it, again, meaning you HAVE to WIN.

3) When you are giving an opportunity to do something great, you HAVE to WIN.

Do you see a pattern here? All you have to do is win and be consistent with it and the rest will fall into place. I don't understand why it's so hard for everyone to figure out.

Enough about that depressing game and onto today's fun festivities with Betsy and my nephew, Skyler. Joe Crede and Denard span were signing at the two Best Buy locations in Eden Prairie. We hit up Joe Crede first with hopes that we would be able to get over to see Denard when we were done. Denard's signing started at 11 and Joe's was at 11:30. Okay, first off, the TV does not do Joe Crede justice. He is gorgeous in person but very quiet, which we all seemed to know about anyway.

Then we headed out of there and over to see Denard, who is by far the nicest person from the team that I have ever met (Cuddy I'm sorry, but you are a close second!) He is so humble and so friendly it's unreal. He was giving Betsy and I a hard time because we were laughing at something Skyler did. He promptly looked at Skyler and told him to stay strong.

Skyler and Joe Crede (you couldn't tell Skyler was excited to meet him at all waiting in line)

Denard and Skyler (Skyler promptly told my brother when I dropped him off that Denard was his new favorite player)

Hopefully we can do something good during tomorrow's game before Chicago comes back into town.

Tomorrow: Timmy (12-7) against Kevin Millwood (10-8). You know what you need to do tomorrow Timmy. Go out there and DO IT!

Friday, August 28, 2009

Holy Trades Batman!

So I wasn't home for the game tonight, so I can't comment on much of it other than this:

1) Brian Duensing = amazing performance tonight! 8 strikeouts in 7 innings? Not normal for a guys making only his 3rd major league start. I had to laugh though, Betsy sent me a text while I was out saying that Brian got a hair cut, the only reason I found that funny, had to do with the conversation in the comments of this post. Apparently he listens well and the job isn't even mine yet!

2) Joe Nathan = Damn it man! How many time did I have to scream at my radio that you only had to face 3? And then I turn it off and you get the final out. You're on deck for the hair cut line ;-)

3) I'm sad that Crede is going on the DL (I will make sure and tell him that in the morning when Betsy and I see him) But at the same time, we get our White Sox killer back in time for that series starting Monday!

Welcome back Jose!

So with all that outta the way, apparently the Indians took Yohan Pino from Triple A Rochester to complete that trade. But now we have two more....

Jon Rauch from the Diamondbacks and apparently Ron Mahay from the Royals. I always hate it when trades are done and it's "for a player to be announced later". I'm one of those people that sits on pins and needles hoping it's not one of my guys. More than likely it will be someone from Triple A or even Double A, but you just never know.

I just find it funny that Smith is trying to make all these changes now. Where were they months ago? At the rate he's going we're going to be playing ball in September with a totally new starting rotation and bull pen. I heard there is one more trade in the works, but nothing has really been said about it online anywhere.

Here's to hoping all this actually helps and doesn't hurt us in the end.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

He's Back

I didn't say what I was thinking in last nights post due to my lovely superstition, but I guess I could have said it because it really didn't matter this time around. Blackie just wasn't on top of it tonight... again. Our bats were lacking, but we had some beautiful plays from our defense. My nephews reasoning for Blackburn sucking so bad, "He must be drunk." This is coming from a 8 year old, mind you. Perhaps he could have used a few drinks to calm his nerves or something.

As much as I don't wanna say it, you have Frankie who's pitching sucked ended up on the DL, same with Glen... my friend asked me tonight what kind of excuse the Twins were going to use to put Blackburn on the DL. I don't think they can afford to put him on the DL. Who the hell is left in Rochester that can come up? Dickey could come back, but that would make sense and we all know the Twins GM isn't smart. I just wish this team could capitalize every once and awhile. Tonight would have been the prime opportunity to gain some ground on Detroit and be above Chicago, but no, we let it slip right through our fingers.

Our biggest downfall tonight and who I blame the entire game on, just because I can and I want to... the home plate umpire just so happened to be Todd Tichenor. For those that don't know or don't remember (which I'm sure everyone does) he is the idiot that kicked both Gardy and Red Dog out of the game against Boston one inning and than kicked Varitek and Francona out an inning later.

Just for those that need a little reminder of what the idiot looks like.

Tonight's game was just bullshit with him behind home plate and apparently last night at 1st base as well. Tonight was more missed calls and then he kicked OC out for slamming his bat on the ground. I'm sorry, I didn't know it was a crime to show some emotion after a MISSED call. I've watched quite a few games that I've seen players slam their batting helmets on the ground or throw their bats and I haven't seen them get kicked out. I wanna know what the Twins did to Tichenor that he hates us so freaking much.

I'm giving Alexi props for his amazing plays tonight out in the field. That flip to OC was amazing! Number 1 Web Gem for sure on that one. Great job Alexi. This is the Alexi Casilla I have missed lately. It's nice to see him getting back to his old self and showing us all what we saw last season when we needed it the most. His bats been moving pretty good lately too, which is always a plus.

Biggest props of the night though have to go to Cuddy. He has been such an asset to the team this season. Filling in at 1st, making amazing plays in right and then filling in at 2nd tonight with OC being ejected. He's an all around amazing player and the Twins are really lucky that we have him here for a few more years. Since he has put those injuries aside from last season he's turned into the Cuddy I have always loved.

A couple last minute items: Joe Crede get better! I wanna see you play more this year and I wanna see you in Eden Prairie on Saturday :)

Lastly, every one make sure you check out Besty's blog for our adventures from Tuesday night's game. It's complete with pictures!

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

How Do You Like That One?

So I was all set to leave the game tonight after the 9th inning even if the Twins didn't get a walk off hit. I know, I know, before some starts yelling, you never leave a Twins game early, but I'm seriously still trying to catch up from sleep from this past weekend in Kansas City. This game seemed to take forever tonight, perhaps it was just because Betsy *thanks again Betsy* and I were at the game. Who knows.

What I do know is a lot of fans were getting a little restless with out sucky pitching. Does it surprise me, no, cause I was getting pissed off with it. I don't wanna say anything bad quite yet about the new guy. Could it have been nerves, yes, but I doubt it. Humber should have never been brought back up here. Way to walk in runs, you loser.

Luckie Strike (Sarah) asked me when I was going to pay up on the Skittles I've promised Cuddy... I was thinking the next Unplugged. That way he has time to add to his collection or I can take some away when he sucks lol Someone needs to hold me to this so I don't chicken out!

Now for the real star of the game.... get ready for it.... ready.... am I really going there??

Yes I am.

Delmon Young!

That's right. After all the shit I have talked about him through the season, tonight I am loving him (partly because with his walk off base hit I could go home). I wanted them to win so bad that I was fighting with myself if I was going to stay for the extra innings or not so thank you Delmon for letting me come home knowing that the game was over and that we won!

Keep the momentum going guys. We're tied for 2nd with Chicago... you CAN do this! Nickie... remember how to throw strikes and we shouldn't have a problem, k?

Monday, August 24, 2009

Sitting On Pins And Needles

So I've noticed this lately and Betsy has pointed it out too, the guys have a tendency so make us sit on pins and needles and then come out in the 6th or 7th innings, rally and win the game when it's all said and done. Which, I don't care how we win them as long as we win them so we still stand a chance of making it to October. As many times as I've said I've given up on this team, I just can't do it.

I think a lot can go back to last season when we were in the run for the title, yes Gardy did tell the team they needed to sweep Chicago, but at the same time they needed to take it game by game and that's what they did. I honestly believe they need to do that this season too. Yes we are further back this season than last, but we need to capitalize when we have runners in scoring position, etc.

We just need to take it one step at a time and this past weekend and tonight's game are steps in the right direction.

Span-man was on top of his game tonight in left field. That catch was amazing and while on one hand I think it's hilarious he ended up in the bull pen, I did not think it was funny that he literally ran into Jesse. LOL We have enough of our pitchers on the DL, we don't need to add to it. Although that could have made for a great article on the Twins site, "Crain on DL with concussion from Span"

For those that missed the play or just wanna see it again go here: Span runs it down

Tomorrow we get to see what the newbie can bring to the table... remember the only game that is accepted is your A game so you better bring it :-)

A Fantastic Weekend

So my fun filled weekend in Kansas with our beloved Twins (and my best friend) is coming to a close as I am making the nine hour car ride back to Minnesota in about 6 hours. It was nice getting to see them play ball like they are supposed to play, although I was a little worried about Saturday's game only because our pitching staff seemed to be coming apart at the seems, but all in all it was a fantastic weekend filled with outdoor baseball.

Believe me folks, for those that have never been to Kauffman Stadium, I suggest if you want to take a vacation to watch our boys play ball, I suggest Kansas City. It was a beautiful weekend for outdoor baseball and if Target Field is half as good at Kauffman is we'll be in for a treat when our new stadium opens up next season.

The view from our seats both Saturday and Sunday were amazing, the people were super friendly (not rude at all considering we swept their team) and the Twins fans that showed up were unreal! Lot's of cheers for Mauer at every at bat and those of us that were there on Sunday gave Cuddy a nice standing ovation for his home runs (I owe him 3 bags of skittles after my two games).

I know a lot of fans were saying Cuddy couldn't play first, but I think he did an amazing job filling in for Justin during his absence. Between his fielding and his homeruns... it was almost like Justin was there instead of back home in Minneapolis trying to get better.

It was a great weekend filled with good friends, good baseball and all around, it was just what the doctor ordered (sorry my team beat your team D)

Now onto pictures :-) These are from Day 1:

Day 2:

Hope everyone enjoyed!

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Doctor's Orders

Justin, get over that inner ear infection you have quick! I wanna see you play this weekend :-) I'll bring you some chicken soup or something when I come down, lol. I wanna see the normal crew this weekend, k?

Thanks to Betsy and every one's tweets I was able to keep up with the game since I was gone for a good chunk of it. I was a little concerned when I heard that they were warming up Manship so early again, but I was pleased when I got home and found out that Timmy was able to make it 6 innings and leave with the lead, plus also win number 11 on the season. Good job Timmy! And another fine comeback lead I might add, those guys do have a way of keeping us on our toes lately, don't they?

I also heard our favorite Weeble did very well tonight against those darn Rangers. A nice solid 2+ innings! And LaVelle said it was his best outing this season, very nice Jose!! I did manage to catch the 9th and see Nathan get save number 31 on the season, I do love watching that man pitch!

Tomorrow night we have Swarzy pitching. Remember your A game Anthony! I wanna see you pitch like you did the first night I saw you against the Brewers.

Friday I am making the long car ride to Emporia, Kansas (I'm starting there to see a friend and than back up to KC Saturday morning) to watch our guys take on the Royals in beautiful Kauffman Stadium. I'll be there both Saturday and Sunday, I promise to do all the Twins Blog girls proud while I am there!

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Short and Sweet

That was probably the most nerve-wracking game I have watched yet this season. It was nice to see the team come back and rally after losing our DH in the first inning (I'm more concerned about Kubes only because that was the same knee he's already had surgery on) and seeing GoGo get hit twice, um hello?! I'm pretty sure he should have been able to go to first after getting hit for the 2nd time.

Anyway onto the positives from the game:

1) Nathan getting to do with Nathan does best :)
2) Joe having a multi home run game
3) Denard going deep
4) Cuddy proving Bert wrong yet again!
5) Seeing a pretty good rally by the guys


Joe Mauer for MVP... enough said :-)

Monday, August 17, 2009

Sending Out An S.O.S

I never wanted to give up on the Twins, but at this point it's a game by game type thing. I mean when you have a team that can't even win against a team that's 16 games outta first place, the white flags should be waving. I think K-Bro put it best when she said the Twins were CTD. I keep hoping for a miracle, like perhaps the Tigers and the Sox just roll over and play dead and let us take the division lead, but that will never happen. Even when those two teams have an off day and lose, we can't seem to capitalize on it.

I keep hearing all this talk about Mauer and his 14 game hitting streak, which I think is awesome don't get me wrong, but one guy can't carry this team, it's not fair to him. For the longest time it was Justin that seemed to have to take that roll and now it's Joe. This is a team effort starting with our starting pitchers, which at this point leave a lot to the imagination. You can't expect guys that are only used to working one maybe two innings a night to have to pitch pretty much the whole game because our starters don't want to do their jobs.

What happened to the team from last season? I hate watching this team fall apart before my own eyes, but that's exactly what's happening.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

WTF Was That?

The luck of the Cuddy shirt has officially ran out. It is now 4 for 5 =( I also think it had to do with my mom going, whenever she goes to the games we lose. I'm not letting her go anymore this season! I however will be making the trip to Kansas City next weekend when the guys are down there. I am leaving Friday morning (early) and will be going to the games on Saturday and Sunday. I hope I can bring them some luck on the road. But first they need to win tomorrow and win the series against the Tribe and then we're off to Texas to take on the Rangers.

All I have to say about today's game is; what happened to the team from last night that shut the Tribe out 7-0? What happened to the wonderful pitcher I saw in his first major league start against the Brewers? It's really frustrating when they had such a great game last night and then crapsville today. Ugh.

With that said... onto the pictures:

Look, no hands!

"Look Mom, I can fly!"

Duensing, Krappel, and the newbie Jeff Manship :)

Everyone else is so serious and you have Duensing, blowing a bubble.

Just for you Betsy ;-)

Friday, August 14, 2009

Zip, Zero, Zilch

Timothy Scott Baker way to remember what the hell the A game was tonight! That was a beautiful performance tonight, the shut out what just an added plus. I was so nervous watching the 9th inning, all I wanted was the shut out at that point since Nicky has been so close before and lost it. I'm just glad Timmy managed to get it tonight and hopefully give the team the confidence they need to go out there and do it again tomorrow afternoon.

Everyone during tonight's game kept saying it's Swarzy tomorrow, but the Twins site says TBD, is it wrong of me to hope I get to see Duensing pitch in person again tomorrow? He seems to know what he's doing, I know Swarzy does too, so it's tough to figure out who I wanna see. I was trying to figure out who would be pitching when I'm down in Kansas City next weekend, but with everything TBD because our rotation is so screwed up, I have no idea who I'll see and probably won't until Friday night when I get down there!

Oh, random, I had to laugh during the argument between Wedge and the home plate Ump tonight. Seeing how I only started watching games on a pretty regular basis half way through last season, I haven't seen an argument get that heated during a game before. I was waiting for the fists to start flying! That was unreal to be honest, I think I lost count on how many times someone used the "F" word, lol.

I wonder if that will get Wedge suspended for a couple games?