Friday, July 31, 2009

Alright Hamilton Weekend Note Desk

Greetings, and welcome to the AH Weekend Note Desk, your one stop shop for trade rumors and analysis. First, we'll go over a couple sports issues that, for one reason or another, we were reluctant to cover.

Big Dave on The List

It's sad because David Ortiz is likable. As Torii Hunter put it, "It's Big Papi, man." Most baseball fans look back scornfully on the two sawx world championships, but at the time, most of us were cheering them. Ortiz and the Red Sox finally stood up to the hated Yankees. Now, looking back through the lens of history, the titles of '04 and '07 aren't as cool because a) it turned their fanbase into douchetron 3000's, and b) Manny, Papi and probably Schilling were taking PED's.

And how about this list? I love the list. It's slowly, slowly leaking out to the public. It's gotta be driving Gene Orza nuts. The story of the list is almost as great as the list itself. It was born from a league-wide test, of which the results were to determine whether or not there would be regular steroid testing in baseball. It was supposed to be anonymous. After the results were compiled, more than 10% of the league had failed the test, and Selig and the owners were allowed to institute a regular testing program. The tests and the list were then sent to players union chiefs Donald Fehr and Gene Orza for destruction. However, Orza was so remarkably anti-testing, that he kept the 104 viles of piss to send around to labs in an effort to mark them false-positive. I can picture Orza (although I don't know what he looks like) in a lab coat in a dark musty laboratory, with viles of A-rods urine, muttering about players privacy. When the Barry Bonds perjury investigation came to the MLBPA offices, they subpoenaed The List. It's ironic because Orza kept the list from destruction to protect the players, and now it's being used against them. All that urine soaked information is being leaked by federal lawyers, exposing cheaters one by one. It's golden.

Favre doesn't un-retire again

Imagine all the time that was wasted by the media and Vikings fans thinking, writing, talking and masturbating about Brett Favre. It's been non-stop speculation for most of the summer. even created a whole section of it's website dedicated to the madness. So to see it all amount to nothing is pretty damn funny. I've seen at least five purple Favre jerseys around town. I laugh at those rubes.

I heard my friend Andy say, "I wish we got Jay Cutler." To which my response was, "Who is we?" The phrase "We," as used by sports fans, is interesting. I'm guilty, too. I always say stuff like, "We need to have a little chat with Punto." or, "We really hit the ball around last night!" I remember getting called out for use of the term while referring to the Penn State Nittany Lions when I was obsessed with their football team in the late 90's.

On Foul Balls
-From time to time, I hang out with a second grader. I get money in exchange for teaching this youngster a thing or two about living in a society; of which I am an expert. Luckily, this kid likes a lot of the same stuff I do - baseball, legos, Star Wars and not doing homework. I've taken him to three Twins games this season, and he's twice walked away at the end of a night with a baseball in his hand. We even got one autographed by Joe Nathan. It's pretty neat, but remember, it's my job to teach this kid about the rules of society. So I had a lot of explaining to do, particularly because I've only nabbed three baseballs in my entire life, so I wanted to the kid to know that, "this isn't how it usually works."

Indeed, adult spectators had simply handed the baseballs to him because he's a cute kid. I told him those are the rules, and that if he were to somehow get a second ball during the same game, he would have to give that to some kid less fortunate. I also told him that you can never ask someone for a ball, that they must choose to do so out of the goodness of their own heart. I explained that I always give a kid a ball, because adults don't need baseballs.

I didn't explain to him the disappointing set tribe of adults who don't follow any of these rules. Ballhawks. I don't really know how to describe the disdain I reserve for these guys who would never dream of giving a ball to a kid. Their only goal is to hoard as many baseballs as possible. They've even set up a competitive league. Here's how one ballhawk justified described his actions:

..some people choose to sell drugs to kids. Some people choose to abuse drugs, themselves. Some people choose to get all liquored up and drive their vehicles. Some people choose to be abusive to their wives and kids. Some people choose to rob, steal and cheat. Some people take the lives of others.

Some people choose to snag baseballs at the ballpark.

You know we live in a society!?!!

Twins Throw Clubhouse a Bone

Yesterday on this blog, we discovered the only reason for Billy Smith to make a trade: To appease the sissies in the Twins clubhouse. Today, they landed Orlando Cabrera, hardly a great player, simply to show the fans and the players that the front office wants to win.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

No trade = No problem

Some people are bummed that the Twins are staying relatively quiet for the MLB Trade Deadline, but here's why I'm not. For one, this team has too many glaring needs which involve 2 middle infielders, starting pitching help, and another arm in the bullpen. But the main reason why I don't care about coughing up valuable prospects to rent a player is because we do not have an Ace in our rotation. We have 5 large question marks. The age old saying is that pitching wins championships. Then I got to wondering when the last time, if ever, a team has won a world series that did not have a true number one starting pitcher. Here's what I gathered thanks to

Below is a list of world series championship teams and their respective ace/s:

2008 - Phillies - Cole Hamels
2007 - Red Sox - Josh Beckett
2006 - Cardinals - Chris Carpenter
2005 - White Sox - Mark Buehrle
2004 - Red Sox - Curt Schilling/Beckett
2003 - Marlins - Josh Beckett
2002 - Angels - Jarrod Washburn
2001 - Diamondbacks - Schilling/Randy Johnson
1998-2000 - Yankees - Roger Clemens/Andy Pettite/etc.
1997 - Marlins - Kevin Brown
1996 - Yankees - David Cone/Andy Pettite
1995 - Braves - Greg Maddox/Tom Glavine
1994 - Would've been Expos - Pedro Martinez
1992-93 - Blue Jays - Juan Guzman/David Cone
1991 - Twins - Jack Morris
1990 - Reds - Jose Rijo
1989 - A's - Bob Welch/Dave Stewart
1988 - Dodgers - Orel Hershiser
1987 - Twins - Frank Viola
1986 - Mets - Doc Gooden
1985 - Royals - Bret Saberhagen
1984 - Tigers - Dan Petry/Jack Morris
1983 - Orioles - Mike Boddicker
1982 - Cardinals - Joaquin Andujar
1981 - Dodgers - Fernando Valenzuela
(edit)1980 - Phillies - Steve Carlton.

(edit)So it has been at least 30 years since a team has won a world series without an Ace in it's rotation. Simply put, this looks really bad for the Twins' 2009 world championship hopes. Yes we are right in the middle of a playoff chase, we have two of the best hitters in baseball and arguably the best closer, and I know anything is possible, but history doesn't lie.

I still believe Liriano, Baker, Slowey, and possibly even Blackburn have the potential to be Ace-level pitchers some day, but it just isn't happening this season. Why give up a good prospect or two for a possible rental player that won't help you win a world series? If the Twins would have acquired a Sanchez or a Cabrera, then the talent we would have given up would be lighting it up for the Pirates/A's/whoever in a couple years, and everyone would be calling for Bill Smith's head for making the trade in the first place.

Now, before we get all gloomy, I have (for a couple years now) predicted that 2010 will be the year of the Twins. We have stud pitching in the minors who should be on next season's roster in:

Rob Delaney (bullpen help)
Jeffrey Manship (rotation help, could easily become ace material)
Anthony Slama (bullpen help)

Not to mention the possibility of Duensing or Swarzak solidifying the back end of the rotation.

Danny Valencia (3B in AAA Rochester) was rumored to be what the A's were asking for in the Orlando Cabrera trade scenario. As much as I like Crede, he simply isn't coming back next season, and a Brian Buscher/Brendan Harris platoon at third base is not the answer.

Everything should be falling into place for 2010, except that middle infield dilemma. (I cry a little inside when I watch Jason Bartlett get base hits, but meh)

This team's gonna pull in an extra 20 million dollars in payroll from the Target Field revenue. In 2007 this team's payroll was at $71.4 million. To begin the season, and haas correct me if I'm wrong, was 58.2 million. I know Joe's extension is going to put a nice dent in the wallet, but acquiring somebody of any value in the offseason is very doable.

here is a list of possible free agent middle infielders next year

I know people want to win now, especially considering the Twins are in a playoff race, but they just don't have the pieces necessary to win, and giving up 5 times what you got in the Santana trade to get Roy Halladay would be illogical. 2010 ladies and gents.

Oh and if there are available, affordable middle infielders on the market and this organization doesn't pull the trigger, then well, the Pohlad's are gonna have some explaining to do.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Perkins Says Arm Feels Good Following Solid Outing

Gardenhire unhappy with Perkins again

Twins starter Glen Perkins is once again drawing the ire of his manager after admitting his arm has felt fine lately. The revelation comes after the lefty pitched seven quality innings against the division rival White Sox. It's especially annoying to Gardenhire, who criticized Perkins publicly for complaining about a shoulder injury after a poor outing last week in Oakland.

"To pitch a good game, and then come out and say, 'well, you know, my arm feels pretty good.' It's just not how you do things. A pitcher should be honest with his staff, especially when it comes to his health. We had to let him know that."

Following Perkins rough start at Oakland, and subsequent admission of aggravation, he was sent to renowned should specialist Dr. Lewis Yocum. After a series of tests, Dr. Yocum told the club there was nothing wrong with Perkins.

Now the Twins plan to send Perkins back to L.A., to see if the specialist can pinpoint the cause of Perkins' health and comfort. Still, Gardenhire won't be happy with Perkins until he keeps his mouth shut.

"I don't want to hear Glen Perkins talk anymore. You pitch a good game and say your shoulder feels good? We'll send him to Los Angeles after every start, as long as he shuts up and pitches."

Twins announce Target Field Countdown Dignitaries

Dan Gladden was chosen to ceremoniously remove a large number "3" in left field Monday night, officially marking 32 games left at the Metrodome. The number 32, of course, was Dan Gladden's uniform number during his five years in Minnesota. The following former players will have the honors for the remainder of the season:

31 - Chad Allen (Greg Gagne was unavailable)
30 - Brian Buchanan
29 - Rod Carew
28 - Bert Blyleven
27 - Charley "Shooter" Walters
26 - Al Newman
25 - Randy Bush (Doug Mientkiewicz was unavailable)
24 - Tom Brunansky (Matthew LeCroy was unavailable)
23 - Willie Banks
22 - Brad Radke
21 - Mike Trombley
20 - Lew Ford
19 - Scott Erickson
18 - Don Baylor
17 - Les Straker
16 - Frank Viola
15 - Tim Laudner
14 - Kent Hrbek (beer in hand)
13 - Mike Pagliarulo
12 - Brian Harper
11 - Chuck Knoblach (Tom Kelly escort required for journey into left field stands)
10 - T.K.
9 - Gene Larkin
8 - Gary Gaetti
7 - Greg Gagne (Denny Hocking rumored)
6 - Tony Oliva
5 - Pedro Munoz, with Roy Smalley
4 - Chip Hale (Paul Molitor too cool)
3 - Harmon Killebrew
2 - Pat Meares
1 - Alex Cole
0 - Junior Ortiz (unconfirmed)

Monday, July 27, 2009

Sid: Smith Working Phones

Sid Hartman is reporting that Twins GM Billy Smith has been talking on the phone recently, presumably in an attempt to help the Twins win baseball games. Details are sketchy, but this much is sure: Bill Smith is talking. On the phone.

Because Sid forgot to mention the four W's and H of journalism, we'll attempt to break it down for you, the reader.

Bill Smith talks on phone

Smith on the phone. It's the biggest Fat-Guy-Talks-on-Phone story since the Taft/Livelinks scandal of 1929.

Presumably, Billy Smith is making phone calls from the Metrodome. Wouldn't it be great if all 30 GM's started a fantasy baseball league, with all their own players? They could make trade proposals from their blackberry's.

Sunday morning. Hopefully before and after, as well.

"to try to improve his team with the addition of a pitcher and/or a righthanded hitting second baseball."

Introducing a second baseball into the field of play. I like it. I mean, it certainly wouldn't hurt our chances. If we have Morneau hang onto one baseball all game, he could touch first with it every time the first baseball is in play. It would really help our pitchers out. Oh, and it's a righthanded hitting baseball? He'd have a tiny strike zone, ensuring a walk almost every at-bat. Inserting the hitting baseball between Mauer and Span would help shore up that weakness.

Smith on one end, unknown baseball folks on the other. Who would he have to give up for a decent player? And what would that decent player's name be? Orlando Cabrera is someone's name, but Sid has probably never heard of him.

From wikipedia:

The device operates principally by converting sound waves into electrical signals, and electrical signals into sound waves. Such signals when conveyed through telephone networks — and often converted to electronic and/or optical signals — enable nearly every telephone user to communicate with nearly every other worldwide.
Some Italian got screwed out of his invention because he let his patent expire. That sucks.

How else would Billy Smith talk to his peers? Probably like a polar bear plunge: briefly and coldly. That's why they call him "Mr. No."

Billy Smith can talk all he wants, but until he gets that second hitting baseball, no one around here will listen.


Friday, July 24, 2009

Creative Wedding Intro (if you're in 4th grade)

I like originality. I appreciate creativity. Unexpected surprises are fun. However, when the creative, original and unexpected phenomenon involves the use of aggressive auto-tune.

I'm talking about the video that has blown up in the past couple days, especially in these parts since it happened in St. Paul. Apparently, it stirs positive emotions deep within the soul of the viewer. Just read this description from a marketing blog:

Watch it. You might cry. You may get up and dance. You may break into instantaneous giggle fits. You may even be slightly horrified. But while you’re watching and tapping your feet, notice the look in the attendees’ eyes. Hear their laughs. Look at the faces of the bride and everyone else involved. Feel what’s happening in that room.

That’s what happens when you do something people aren’t expecting. When you don’t allow yourself to get caught up in the pomp and circumstance of it all. When you finally stop taking yourself so seriously. When you embrace the moment, remember what life used to feel like and go for it.

Hey, that's building some pretty lofty expectations for a youtube video. Let's watch:

Let me compose myself for a second. I have something in my eye. Not.

Sunglasses. Indoors. A top 40 dance club anthem with auto-tuned vocals. Really terrible dancing. I'm embarrassed. This is something high school students would come up with.

If dancing badly to bad music while wearing bad sunglasses gets you an appearance on the Today Show, the producers should check out Brothers or Drink on Thursday night. They'd have guests for life.

It's not actually that terrible of a video, but I'm just struggling to see how this thing went viral, and is changing people's lives. The aforementioned blog description is one example, along with some comments on the youtube site:

WOW WOW WOW! I actually got up and danced around the bedroom in my underwear. LOL You guys rock and thank you so much for the laugh. You put a smile on so many people's face by posting this. Thumbs Up!!!!! And to think when I watched this is was feeling down and kind of Blah. :)

OMG I cried so hard! That was so amazing, I love it!!

Get a life, folks.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Angels Stream of consciousness

The Twins are in Anaheim tonight, ready to take on the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim in Angels Stadium of Anaheim.

- The Angels enter the series with a record of 55-38, in the surprisingly strong AL West. The Twins come off a wacky series in Oakland, in which they gave up 32 runs in three games to a terrible A's offense.

- Twins third baseman Joe Crede and pitcher Glen Perkins are in the L.A. area as well, visiting the doctor. It's certainly good news that the shoulder specialist is on the west coast!

- I have hardcore bloggers block. All I can think about is that stupid Slumberland commercial where they replace saxophone players half-way through. I'm going crazy. I feel like Tim Taylor when he's trying to explain something that he knows nothing about and starts making irrational metaphors.

- Welcome back, Jesse Crain. Calling him up is going to be a great boost for this team. This is just like making a big trade.

-It only costs $400 to rent the Metrodome for one hour. That's only a little more than $22 bucks per person, provided there are 18 people.

- It's nice to see the artwork and sculptures coming right along for Target Field. Harmon Killebrew and Rod Carew put on their old uniforms to pose for The Most Narcissistic Artist Ever. From his website:

Sculptor Bill Mack has no mentors. There is nowhere to go to learn his sculpture techniques. No one teaches his sculpture technique. Sculptor Bill Mack works in such a rare art form that coming up with a name to describe it has been only slightly less arduous than creating the art itself. Bill Mack sculpture simply put is emotional elegance defined in sculpture.

Monday, July 20, 2009


Isn't it cool how retro the Ranger's Ballpark in Arlington looks? Just kidding. It looks ridiculous. I've never been there, but on TV it looks like the different sections are in a competition to look the most retro.

As it has been pointed out:

The stadium is a mismatched collection of counterfeit parts: You can make out
bits of Camden Yards (the red-brick exterior and general air of ye olde ballpark), Tiger
Stadium (the home run porch), Yankee Stadium (the frieze), Fenway Park (the
out-of-town scoreboard, since removed, that was built into the left-field wall), Comiskey Park (the arched
), Ebbets
Field (the quirks of the outfield dimensions, in this case wholly artificial).

I like the history of baseball as much as the next guy. But when your ballpark purposely obstructs views and has unnecessary quirks in the outfield as an offering to the god of baseball history, it's just fraudulent.

So, I'm glad Target Field is awesome. Because let's be honest, it could have not been very good and we would have been happy. Anything other than the Hubert H. would have been an improvement and, therefore, satisfactory.

Target Field raises your "retro" with a "unique." Yeah, we're doing the exterior of our stadium with mother f****** limestone. What are you gunna do about it? It's from Minnesota, it looks awesome, and it's never been done before. What.

There, of course, is more awesomeness to TF than this blog can handle. So if you are interested, make sure you check out the Twins Ballpark 2010 link on our page.

In TB2010's last post it talked about seat prices. They look pretty good, but obviously quite a bit higher than the dome. I know the dome sucks to watch baseball in, but...boy those seats were cheap. Perfect for a poor college student.

Now tickets are a bit more expensive, but who cares!!!! I mean, do you really have to pay back student loans?

Friday, July 17, 2009

What the hell did we do in the off-season?!?!

The All-Star Break is dumb. Just a few more hours until Twins baseball resumes. Hang in there, people.

Until then, here's some stuff

- If you ever wondered how many degrees of separation there are between Paul Molitor and Kevin Bacon, the answer is four (or fewer, maybe):

Molitor was in the made-for-TV movie sensation Falling For You with Jennie Garth. He really poured himself into his dynamic character "Jogging Cop." His devotion paid off. He was both believable as jogging and as a cop. Anyway, Garth was in The Last Cowboy with Lance Henriksen who was in Scream 3 with Neve Campbell who was in Wild Things with Bacon.

Wait, made-for-TV movies don't count in the Bacon-degrees-of-separation game? They should.

- Did you know President Obama was at the All-Star Game!?!? You would think that such a die hard White Sox fan would know that it's Comiskey Park not "Cominskey Field."

- I find all old-timey baseball fascinating. Ty Cobb is no exception. He certainly belongs on any list of the most dangerous men in sports. This 1930 radio interview is great. First, I love how Southerners in the 1930s talked. There's a lot of good stuff in the interview, but my favorite part is when he talks about his off season work out (4:24).

To summarize Cobb's off-season workout: eat two meals a day and walk a lot with heavy shoes.

You guys hear Mauer and Zach Greinke exchange pleasantries after Greinke's inning? It was something like:
M: Nice job
G: That's 2-0.
M: I know. We did the futures game. You threw good.
G: You should do it for the Royals.
M: Ha, well it's better catching you than trying to hit off you.
See, Mauer's a nice guy. I would have told Greinke "Piss up a rope. The Royals suck."
- Some robots are good (Roomba). Some robots are military robots that could feed on dead bodies (Energetically Autonomous Tactical Robot).
- In even more startling robot news, now Monkeys can CONTROL ROBOTS WITH THEIR MINDS!!! This is a slippery slope, my friends. Sure they start out by "reach(ing) out to grab, and turn a handle." Next: poop throwing robots.
- Heh. This guy got charged $23 quadrillion for a pack of cigarettes.
- Hey, you guys want to kill some doves? Of course, you do. And who doesn't? Well friend, you're in luck. You can go to Argentina and shoot as many Eared Doves as your heart desires. Is there anything more American than spelling "USA" with the dead carcases of another country's doves?
Didn't think so. Happy Friday everyone.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

First Half Review: AL Central Shipwrecks

Cleveland Indians - Lusitania - The Lusitania was an English ocean liner that was torpedoed by a German sub in 1915. The killing of 1,198 passengers helped change public opinion against Germany, and helped set the stage for The Great War. Likewise, Mark Shapiro and Eric Wedge thought they could sail to the top of the AL Central without problems from the rest of the division. They made small upgrades by adding Kerry Wood and Mark DeRosa, but ignored warning signs about their lack of starting pitchers, and ultimately, were shot down. Like the Lusitania, the horrific sinking of the Indians won't come without repercussions. Cleveland will realize the changes that need to be made, and have a much stronger second half.

Kansas City Royals - Edmund Fitzgerald - The Royals are taking on water, with a payroll $70 million dollars more than Dayton Moore's wallet weighs empty. They're a lot like the Edmund Fitzgerald - people know of them, but they don't know them. If it wasn't for that song, no one would know the tragic story of the shipwreck, and if the Royals didn't play the Yankees twice per season, no one would know how bad they are. It's no big loss when Kansas City sinks, because only 29 people care.

Minnesota Twins - USS Monitor - The Civil War Ironclad USS Monitor changed the face of naval battle by making shrewd trades and developing young talent. Impervious to enemy fire, (at least until the playoffs) the Twins set the standard for other organizations. However, the design was so fragile that one wrong move would send them under. Choppy seas and one small, but crucial design element (TB trade) sunk the Twins. The Monitor was still a revolutionary ship. The blueprints are there. Can Billy Smith realize his error, tweak the design and build a great ship?

Chicago White Sox - Bismarck - The White Sox sunk our favorite battleship in game 163 last season, now we want revenge. The Bismarck is the most feared ship in the division, made of pure evil, and built to destroy. Sink the Bismarck.

Detroit Tigers - Titanic - Sure, the Tigers are on top now. Built several years ago at a large cost, they're just bulky and immobile now. Guess what, Tigers? Iceberg, dead ahead!

Monday, July 13, 2009

Joe Mauers Rap Song

Michael Cuddyer spilled the beans, embarrassing the pants off Joe Mauer by revealing that he raps. He claims no one will ever hear the recorded rhymes, but we've managed to grab a yellowing notebook page on which the following words were written.

Socializin' and speaking was never my forté
But I learned all I need from my dad's Hit Away
Ya know I could have gone and played football at Florida State
But hometown guy, playin for the Twins, yeah it was fate
Now I play in Minneapolis underneath a dome
I hit bombs, write rhymes and rock my sideburn comb
I put a studio in my house so I can work on my flow,
but when I'm stumblin on my words, I just say, 'ya know'

A sweet swing in the spring, you know I'm Joe Mauer
Takin on all comers in the summers, and now I've got power
Still playin ball in the fall, hittin homers by the hour
If you didn't know then, by now ya know I'm Joe Mauer

Millions of marriage proposals every night is what I gets
and I'm not sure the occupation in which I'll have more hits
Ya know it hasn't always been money and fame
I had to go thru hell before garnering this acclaim
and my road to the top has never been told
I never got no movie like 8 mile road
Middle class S.T.P, and a private catholic school
You think that sounds easy but I think that you're a fool


Tons of natural talent won't get you to the top
unless you're workin' hard, you'll be a Delmon - flop
I wasn't built to withstand this kind of prominence
I've had to block it out to maintain that dominance
I'd strike out once and I was on the front page
Ya know that ain't too easy at such a susceptible age
And through all that I became a better man
Ya know I could hit .350 with just a frying pan


Caption Contest

I just saw this jewel of a picture of the M&M Boys livin' it up in St. Louis last night. They were asking for captions over at the Star Tribune but 99% of the submitted answers were terrible and I thought we here at AH! could do much better.

I'm sure Mauer lost some kind of bet and was forceably dragged out on the town with the Molson-King Morneau. Either way it's kind of nice to see the two out instead of at home doing puzzles and creating new scrapbook pages like I assume they do during most of their free time. If you take a good look at the picture I think it's safe to say Justin is a couple sheets to the wind.

So let's have it. What are your best captions to go along with this fine photo?

The Not too early for Halloween Costume Ideas Post

I know its only July but I was drinking adult beverages Saturday Night and thought of a great costume for the upcoming Halloween Holiday. I'm going to be David Lee Roth as the bus driver in the Hot For Teacher Video (0:36):

But the kicker is that I'm going to sneak into the background of every group of hot, naughtily-dress females who are taking photos of themselves, and do the patented David Lee Roth "Woooahhh!" while grabbing my hat. (as demonstrated 2:46 seconds in to his California Girls Video)

Sneaking in or "Crashing" hot chicks photos was inspired by the greatest blog post ever created.

What are you going to be for Halloween? Might as well start brainstorming now, because, before you know it, you'll realize that Halloween is tomorrow and you'll have to settle for something really lame.

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Second Half Questions: The Bullpen

Now that the season has reached the half-way point, it means it's time for Alright Hamilton to break down the team's weaknesses and strengths while putting together a plan to improve the team. Because we're a sports blog, and that's what we do.

It's more fun to focus on a specific weakness than heap praise on a strength, so let's just jump right into it. The bullpen.

The path between Rochester and the Metrodome is as worn out as a 47-year old stripper, and the Twins are still no closer to solving their problems. They've had twelve different pitchers throw at least one inning in relief:

Joe Nathan
Jesse Crain
Matt Guerrier
Juan Morillo
Jose Mijares
Luis Ayala
Bobby Keppel
Craig Breslow
Brain Duensing
Sean Henn
Philip Humber

While reading those names, I get the same foggy remembrance, (hey I remember that guy!) as I do when I look at mid-nineties Twins rosters. The funny thing is that Gardenhire and Anderson have done a decent job piecing this thing together, turning the weakness from glaring to noticeable.

Solution time

What if I told you the Twins already own the rights to a relief pitcher with an outstanding history? You'd probably be intrigued. If you're not, you'd have already stopped reading. And if you genuinely think I have an acceptable solution, you should stop reading anyway, because you're going to be disappointed. This man has thrown 12o major league innings, sports a 2.91 ERA and has 142 strikeouts to just 37 walks. That's right, it's Pat Neshek. He was almost an All-Star just two years ago.

Neshek would be a great addition, as he would give the Twins a true eighth inning guy, the much needed bridge to closer Joe Nathan. The vegan would probably take the role from decidedly non-vegan Jose Mijares.

It's too bad he can't pitch this year on a count of his 0ff-season Tommy John surgery.

Continuing the in-house solutions, let's take a look at the minors. What if I told you there's an arm pitching in Rochester with a major league resumé, playoff experience and a great fastball?

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Detroit tigers stream of consciousness part two

With the All-Star break just one week away, it's officially time to take the standings seriously. Where do you think the Twins stand in the American League Central? Hmmmmmmm well let's think.. they've played pretty well, they have three All-Stars, but they haven't fared well on the road. Considering how bad the other teams are in the Central, the Twins are probably in first place. A quick check of Star Tribune should prove me right. Luckily, for us non-SABR members, the newspaper lists the teams in order of their win percentage.

OK here we go.


How are they in first place? I could have sworn they were at the metrodome just last weekend and the Twins made them look silly. This division is really bad.

Let's do a stream of consciousness on the division leaders, the team that we're going to stalk and kill just like....Tigers.

Last time we did this, Soup told told us he imagines Detroit as a prison colony, from which Kurt Russell must escape. I imagine Detroit as a post-apocalyptic 80's hair metal video in which gangs of hot prostitutes (inexplicably wearing caveman garb) rule the streets. Not unlike the video for Lick It Up by KISS. The only problem with this imagination of Detroit, is that it actually makes me want to go to Detroit. For I too, would like to drink hyper-color booze from gas cans with a caveman prostitute and Vinnie Vincent.

I'm annoyed with John Gordon. Hey, what else is new!?! He always puts this large, lip smacking pause between "Magglio" and "Ordonez." It's like he was so worn out by the word Magglio that he had to take a deep breath before saying his last name. Now I understand that the last sound in his first name and the first sound in his last name are the same. So he can't say it all fast like it's one word: Maggliordonez. But it would be less annoying.

Speaking of goofy ways to say Tiger names, how about Fernando Rodney? If I were a broadcaster, I would purposely sneak in as many mispronunciations as I could think of. Like Fermando Dadney. Or Ferardo Nadney. Ferneedo Rooney. Say them aloud.

Tiger Stadium is all torn down. The city council claimed they gave some group plenty of time to raise the money to save it, but, they couldn't "just have a half-demolished building standing around indefinitely."

Monday, July 6, 2009

Meet Zach Miner

Hey, you guys!

It's me! Detroit Tigers relief pitcher Zach Miner! I know what you're thinking, "Hey, Zach! this is a blog for Twins fans. Get out of here!" But just because our teams are rivals doesn't mean we have to be enemies. So let's be friends, K?

As newly made friends, let's get to know each other. I'll go first. I like watching movies. I like international soccer matches and sandwiches. Ice cream sandwiches! :P

Here is a video of me at a Italy - Brazil soccer (they call it football) match with an ice cream sandwich.

Brrrrrrrr!!!! It's so cold, you guys! But feels so good, though. The ice cream tickles my face like my neighbor, Mr Nettervold. Are you guys ticklish? I hope so.

Hey, you guys wanna go to DQ? Let's do it. Let's go to DQ and eat ice cream sandwiches! Wait, let me ask my mom if it's okay.

...JK, you guys! She died in a car accident in '97. This is going to be so fun! I might get a cool treat and a hot eat cuz they have both. Probably cheese balls.

You're the best new friends ever.

Thursday, July 2, 2009