Wednesday, March 31, 2010

The Committee, Jennifer Grey, Sue Nelson, and other notes

- Rather than just assign one person to replace Joe Nathan as closer, the Twins got creative and formed a committee. Most people seem to agree that this approach can't last long; they'll either promote one of the current guys to closer or trade for one. Until then, we 'll have to come up with a collective name for Neshek, Guerrier, Crain and Rauch. Gardy's Party? The Committee?

- How do you pronounce Guerrier? I've always said Gerr-AIR. But people on the radio seem to say, Gerr-EAR. The latter sounds stupid, but not as stupid as when people pronounce the X in Teixeira.

- There are a couple aspects of Twins baseball that would drive the SABRmetricians nuts right now. First, the unquantifiable reasons for the impending and unavoidable demise of Gardy's Party. Bill James advocated Grady Little's decision to go with the closer by committee on the Red Sox in '03, but it failed spectacularly. Those relievers are just more effective when they know their specific role. Secondly, there's the nagging question: why do teams regularly win more at home? Deadspin's Will Leitch wrote a nice piece about the Twins move to Target Field:

But the one place in baseball that was an actual home-field advantage was the old, outdated, ugly Metrodome. It was the place where visiting outfielders couldn't see fly balls, where there were hefty bags, where fans could create a cacophony that echoed and rattled in upon itself.... The Metrodome was terrifying and stupid and outdated and totally wrong for baseball, but it's difficult to deny it wasn't a considerable advantage for the Twins...
It's not like the Twins will be absolutely horrible this year just because they play in an unfamiliar environment (as much as an outdoor baseball stadium can be unfamiliar to baseball players.) But it'll probably cost them a few wins; maybe more or less, depending on how the field plays.

- You know who plays Target Field nicely? Sue Nelson. The Twins organist was settling in to her new perch at the Gophers game last Saturday while plunking out such hits as, BUM-bum-bum-buum...BUM-bum-bum BA-BA-BA BUM-bum and some other things you'd recognize easily. They brought her old organ (eww) from the Metrodome and threw it up in the Twins Pub, which is crazy to me. The Twins Pub is a sparse and dark space on the upper deck concourse. As the name suggests, they sell beer while offering protection from the elements. Sue likes visitors, but this is a bit much. It's only a matter of time until someone spills their beer all over her fancy musical instrument. Between all the jack-offs like me talking to her, and the fact that she couldn't see the field at all, she seemed pretty frazzled. Twins: fix this.

Also making the move from the dome to TF is the wonderful scoreboard messages known as Twins-O-Grams. Remember Jennifer Grey from Dirty Dancing and Ferris Bueller's Day Off? She must have felt pretty lucky to be one of the first people ever honored with a Twins-O-Gram:

Congratulations! You should have never got that nose job.

- Over the past few days, Gardy and the rest of the Twins brass have been busy finalizing their roster. One of the last undecided roster spots was the backup catcher. Gardenhire wanted Wilson Ramos, who is totally awesome. But Bill Smith doesn't want to Start The Clock, so he installed Drew "invisible bat" Butera as the official Joe Mauer back-up. This post at Call the the 'Pen captured my sentiments exactly.


Twins vs. Cardinals. The Great Pujols and his band of St. Louis baseball players visit Target Field for an exhibition on Friday and Saturday. The game starts at 5pm on Friday, but come down early for the revealing of some Twins statues on the plaza. Also, it's going to be nuts downtown.


soup said...

50th? They grow up so fast.

Nice post. Lots of good nugets.

Anyone else see Span foul a ball off of his mom's face?!?!

TwinsWin83 said...

'The Committee to Plan Saves' ?

Honestly what are the odds that Span hits a screamer off any fan? Then what are the odds that that fan is his mother? Maybe he should go buy a powerball.

I think a good nickname for Geurrier would be "Ger-Bear."

TwinsWin83 said...

Get it? Grrrrr Bear.

Erica said...

Props to the hard-working organist. Thank God she doesn't play Hava Nagila every other at-bat (I'm looking at you, Miller Park music man).

I can't imagine being an organist for 30,000 fans. I've screwed up for small church services and felt like a doofus- imagine hitting a wrong note during "CHARGE!" Sue must have nerves of steel.

Anonymous said...

I did see that. And with mothers day coming up. Geez.