Tagged: link dumps

OK, I’m back now

My hard drive is now fixed and seems to be working just fine.  I’m really glad this happened now and not during the semester, since it would be very, very difficult to get any work done without my laptop.  I’m also really glad I decided to back up all of my important files, otherwise I would have lost everything and would basically be screwed.  In the meantime, a lot of important stuff happened while I was gone:

The Twins win the series!

twins87.jpgI mean the weekend series against the Cardinals.  You know, I too find the fact that St. Louis is so unapologetically a baseball town to be quite endearing.  I do like football, and I am a Vikings fan, but even I have never understood why the Vikes are so beloved in this town.  Unlike the Twins, the Vikings have never won anything important and, if anything, actually have a reputation for choking in big games.  They haven’t brought us anything more than shame and embarrassment, and yet people love them more than any other sports franchise in this state.  Go figure.

Sadly, the Pioneer Press laid off 11 people, including Twins’ beat reporter Phil Miller.  The Press’ Twins’ coverage was pretty minimal at best, now I guess it’ll be non-existent.  Which is just one more reason why I have always preferred the Star Tribune.

Justin Morneau homered in three straight games, one of which was this lovely shot that landed in the fountain at Kauffman Stadium.  He came out of yesterday’s game against the Royals with a groin injury, but it doesn’t sound too serious and he should be back in the lineup tomorrow night against the Tigers.  As of right now, there is no need for a “F*ck!  There goes our season!” post.

The Twins actually got pretty banged up during the series finale in Kansas City.  Mike Redmond had to come out after he got hit in the arm with a foul tip, and apparently he has a bruised forearm and might be out of commission for a bit.  Nick Punto also had to leave the game with back stiffness, after Jose Guillen tried to take him out on a questionable play.  Um, Guillen does realize that taking out Punto actually kind of helps the Twins, right?

The Sean Henn experiment is over, let the Brian Duensing experiment begin.

The Marian Gaborik era is over, let the Martin Havlat era begin.

The Wolves sort of did the NBA equivalent of taking a bunch of wide receivers in the draft.  Actually, I think that the Wolfies did the right thing, for once.  It makes sense for a team as devoid of talent as the Wolves to take the best available talent in the draft, since it will take more than one draft to fill all of the holes on the roster.  The Wolves will probably have to address most of their needs through trade, and now they actually have the assets to do so.  Of course, if the Wolves are still only winning 25 games five years from now, I will be writing an entirely different post.

Michael Jackson, well, it’s no secret that he had a lot of problems.  But if there is a more perfect pop album than Thriller, I have yet to hear it.  And it spawned the greatest music video of all time.

Oh, yeah, I guess Minnesota finally has a new senator.  Meh.  I guess now is as good a time as any to post this video:

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Zzzzzz…..

tommy.jpgSunday’s series finale against the Astros was essentially two hours of my life that I will never get back.  I think I passed out fell asleep on the couch around the fifth inning or so.  The Twins had to go with their C-squad lineup since Justin Morneau was out, Jason Kubel got sick in the middle of the game, and Denard Span won’t be back at least until Thursday.  I guess one run on two hits is about all that can be expected of a lineup comprised of all the worst hitters on the team.  Glen Perkins didn’t have a terrible outing, the Astros got a bunch of lucky breaks in the first inning that scored three runs, but he also walked as many batters as he struck out and benefited from some run-saving catches by Carlos Gomez.  So, I guess I should be glad that one of the most boring 4-1 losses I’ve ever witnessed could have easily been more like the most boring 5-or-6-to-1 loss I’ve ever seen.

In an effort to make moves for the sake of making moves address the bullpen issue, the Twins have called up Bobby Keppel and DFA’d Luis Ayala.  Yes, cycling through replacement-level relief pitchers is exactly the sort of bold vision and creative thinking from the front office that will bring us straight to the top of the division.

By the way, it’s been almost a year since Bill Smith said about the dumbest f***ing thing I’ve ever heard a GM in baseball say.  This, ladies and gentlemen, is the man in charge of your Minnesota Twins.

Yeah, Harold Reynolds said something dumb about OPS or something, too.  I think he was just trying to point out that OPS isn’t perfect and shouldn’t be the decisive factor in determining a player’s worth, albeit in a semi-literate way. He’s actually right about that.  I dunno.  I guess it doesn’t bother me that much when analysts don’t seem to have a basic knowledge of stats and how they work because HAROLD REYNOLDS ISN’T RUNNING MY FAVORITE BASEBALL TEAM.

Brother, can you spare Brad Pitt $50 million to finance the Moneyball movie?  Columbia has suspended production on the project, citing problems with the script.  It’s probably just as well.  I can’t imagine that a film based on the use of advanced metrics to identify undervalued skills (like drawing walks) and help a small-market team remain competitive in the era of free agency would be compelling to anyone other than baseball nerds.

Don Fehr is stepping down after more than 20 years as president of the MLBPA.  I actually have kind of mixed feelings about this.  He did play a central role in the whole steroids mess by resisting PED testing for years (and then failing to have the results of the 2003 tests destroyed, as he was supposed to).  However, I don’t think there has ever been a stronger advocate for the rights of players, and without his leadership the MLBPA would now be about as powerful as the NFLPA.  It was, after all, Fehr who successfully took on the borderline criminal tactics employed by the owners to screw players out of their money, and I’m sure guys like Mark Teixeira and C.C. Sabbathia are grateful for that.  Unfortunately, it was probably his unwavering opposition to MLB and the owners that kept him from having those initial test results destroyed, and the ensuing PR nightmare has ultimately screwed over the very players he fought so hard to protect.

Because Other People Write Better Than I Do: Link Dump

The Twins open a four-game series against the A’s tonight in Fremont Oakland.  There’s a pretty good scouting report on the White Elephants here.  I’d like to believe the Twins will take the series (really I do), but the way things have been going lately, they’ll probably be lucky to avoid being swept.

It’s no secret that the Twinkies have had trouble scoring runs outside the teflon confines of the Metrodome.  At least now we know why.

Tom Glavine isn’t happy that the Braves released him, and is considering suing to recover the $1 million signing bonus he would have received if he made the active roster.  I guess it’s understandable that Atlanta would rather give its most prized pitching prospect a job instead of a 43-year-old with arm problems (especially since his performance has been less-than-stellar the past couple of seasons), but one has to wonder why they even bothered to re-sign Glavine in the first place.

Glen Perkins was roughed up in his first rehab start, surrendering five runs on six hits, including a couple of home runs, in four innings.  So he’s basically picking right up where he left off before going on the DL.  Um. so how healthy is Glavine, then?

The Nats are planning shell out big bucks to sign this year’s can’t-miss pitching prospect Stephen Strasburg in the first round.  Will Strasburg be the one to save the franchise from itself?  Of course not, this is the Nats.  They can’t do anything rightNot even fireworks.

Speaking of can’t-miss prospects, Alan Schwarz notes that there really is no such thing.  At least not where pitching prospects are concerned.

I am a huge hockey fan.  I should be excited about the Stanley Cup Finals.  But watching Detroit (probably) win its second consecutive cup, and 12th in team history, is just sort of anticlimactic.  At least we get some good Jersey Fouls out of it.

Real Baseball Starts Monday

  • The end of an era

Monday is Opening Night and  Francisco Liriano is scheduled to pitch against the Mariners’ Felix Hernandez.  This will be the final home opener at the Metrodome (yay!).  The Twins are having all kinds of promotions to celebrate the final season at the Dump Dome.  There will also be new (alternate) home unis, which are throwbacks to the inaugural 1982 season:

twins3.jpgI really like these a lot.  I actually kind of wish they would make these the permanent home unis.  They’re so much nicer than the grey pinstripes:

Thumbnail image for Carlos Gomez bunting.jpgOr these hideous vests:

Thumbnail image for punto_vest.jpgI haven’t decided if I want to write a tribute to the old Dump Dome.  It’s not as though I’m really going to miss it.  It has to be the ugliest ballpark in history:

metrodome.jpgBut then again it has been host to some of the greatest moments in Minnesota sports history.  I guess I could write about that.  Or I could just be lazy and put up links to other writers who have already done the work for me.  Maybe I’ll do both!

  • In other news:

Justin Morneau might miss the opener, too.  Is anybody going to be healthy enough to play on Monday night?

The Twins finalized the 25-man roster today by reassigning Matt Tolbert to Rochester.  If the injury bug keeps biting the team though, he probably won’t be down there very long.

The Twins certainly aren’t the only ones facing injury issues.  Carlos Silva is going to love that.

Carl Pohlad was often a ruthless businessman, but he was also a decent human being.

Will Gary Sheffield hit his 500th home run as a Met?  At least he won’t be able to accuse Jerry Manuel of being racist.

Seth Stohs has a good interview with Glen Perkins.  Kevin Slowey had a Q&A session with Tim Dierks at mlbtraderumors.com

Eric Belanger was not amused at this April Fool’s Day prank.  There is a good picture of it here.

I love Cal ClutterbuckHe’s cute.

Dammit.  Oh, and you’re welcome, Bears fans.

At least Mikko Koivu always makes me happy: