Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Lonely Twins fan in the Windy City

By Tom Daymont

I never thought it would be this hard. When I first moved to Chicago, the Twins were in the exciting time of the year known as the post-season. Every game of the (albeit short) series with the Oakland A's was televised nationally. I got just enough exposure to the Twins to make me feel like the recent 400 mile move was closer than Subway is to Taco Bell.

Shortly after the Twins' amazing comeback story had ended, my life went back to normal. The excitement and controversy around Rex Grossman, Tank Johnson and the rest of the Bears Motley Crew, kept my mind off of most of the less exciting Minnesota sports. Also, due to the setup of the NFL schedule and the television practices of Fox, CBS and the like, many of the Vikings games were televised in Chicago. I felt content getting most of Minnesota fix from the internet and cable sports shows.

That was until April rolled around.

The spring is the most exciting times in sports. March Madness is underway and Spring Training is almost over. It's a time when every team has the potential to make the playoffs (except the nationals andthe royals) and before half of the starting pitchers go on the DL. The anticipation was palatable.

Looking forward to watching the twins, I checked the TV schedule. Oh good, opening day vs. Baltimore is on ESPN.

"It's not so bad here," I naively think to myself. "I can be a Twins fan in Chicago."

As I watch Santana mow down the pathetic Orioles. I check the TV schedule, "Great! The next series is against the White Sox, I can watch all three (little did I know, that number would be cut down to two. Thank you cold weather.)

With the help of another ESPN televised Monday night game against the Yankees, I watched four out of the first six Twins games. Things are looking up.

Then came the drought.

The next month or so came without a televised game to the windy city. I cannot afford Extra Innings, and do not have southern exposure. GameDay Audio can only do so much for a homesick fan. So, I began scouting out places where I could catch a game.

I found a bar that boasted MLB Extra Innings on its copious supply of flat screens. The sign said that any MLB game would be available to any fan that wanted to watch, given that they make a purchase. I thought for sure this would be my second, well maybe third home.

I made the two minute walk to the establishment on a Thursday night, ordered five $1 tacos and a Bud Light. I then politely asked the server if the barkeep could turn one of the TVs to the Twins vs. Seattle game. As I dug into my reasonably priced tacos, I was visited by the manager. I was informed that because the White Sox were playing and the Cubs Post Game was on (THE POSTGAME?!?), they could not afford to have one TV out of dozens dedicated to a team that does not suck. I was disgusted. I quickly consumed my tacos and walked out the door.

The problem isn't just the lack of televised games, it's the unbelievable amount of White Sox A-holes walking about. The other day I was trying to find a hotel downtown to meet up with some people. I asked a group of bellhops at another hotel. They told me to go a few blocks east, towards the lake. As I was walked farther and farther away, I began to suspect I was lead askew. I asked a woman the same question and she pointed me the exact way I came from. As I walked by the three uniformed bellhops a second time, I sarcastically said, "Thanks for the directions", to which the shortest one replied, "Well, maybe if you weren't wearing that hat", I took the cap off my head and realized I was wearing my 59Fifty Twins hat, a apparently I had committed a faux pas in the direction asking community.

While this sort of treatment sucks, it does not compare to the lack of Twins our good friend Tony Francis Rezac is experiencing over seas. I just want to remind all Minnesotans, do not take for granted the fact that you live in, and are, surrounded by all things Minnesota Twins. Be Thankful for that.


haasertime said...

i said this in 2005 and i'll say it again. i would rather the yankees win the world series than the white sox. i'm not sure how i feel about the cubs. i think i hate them too even though they hate the white sox. people in iowa love the cubs, and i hate iowa. and most cubs fans hate the twins cuz they are so stupid. we've played the cubs a total of something like 9 times EVER

Daymonster said...

Cub fans aren't that bad. Most of them (the ones that know anything about baseball) have respect for the Twins. I go to quite a few games at Wrigley and I get lots of compliments on my "sox suck" shirt.

It's hard to hate a team that so consistently underachieves as the Cubs do. But, Haas brings up a good point. I never thought of the "Iowa loves the Cubs, I hate Iowa" rationalization. I do hate Iowa….. Fine. Cubs Suck.

Oh also, right outside my apartment is this advertisement for the Sox. So every morning on the way to work I get to see a smug picture of AJ and his stupid chubby face. God I hate the White Sox.

the Dutchie said...

the city has such potential.

TwinsWin83 said...

As much as I hate the White Sox I find it hard to hate AJ. When he was with the twins he was badass and was the first Twin in a long time that would start some shit and not be afraid to back it up. He was part of the teams that brought respect back to the team and organization league-wide and bled red and blue while he was here. I always thought the Twins shoulda kept him and moved Mauer the 3rd base where he could play and hit every day as well as avoid the wear on a body that a catcher major league catcher must indure. Either way its hard to see him and a good guy like Erstad wearing the black and white pinstripes because the White Sox represent all that is wrong about baseball, and it all starts and ends with their illiterate and ignorant head coach.
As for the Cubs, any team that spends that much money on players (i.e. Yankees) is not worth cheering for.
I dont know how you deal with not having the twins on the tube though Tom, I told my fiance that I dont care if we cant find jobs anywhere else but we are not going to live somewhere that doesnt have FSN North. Win or lose the games are just a part of our everyday lives from April until October if we're lucky.

haasertime said...

potential? why would you put such an odd cryptic statement on here? potenetial for what? for a new arena football team? i thought they already have one.
for a movie about two brothers trying to get their blues band back together to save an orpahanage? great idea lets work on it.

i agree on the AJ thing. hes great to have on your team, but a bitch to play against. he played for us first, so i know what its all about. i am forever indebted to that solid group of '02 twins.

Daymonster said...

Fuck AJ.

I hated him when he was with the Twins (slightly less, but hated none the less).

I can support, Jones, Mientkiewicz, Koskie, and even Ortiz (why, oh why did he play so little and suck so much with the Twins).

But not AJ. Not AJ.

tfrezac2002 said...

I've maintained since the 01 season that AJ was the best player on the team when he was with the Twins. I hate the Chi-Sox, and have become less interested in AJ's carreer, but when he was playing in the Dome, I was his biggest fan.