Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Minnesota's Day in the Spotlight

Sick of all the Target Field praise? Then you've come to the wrong place. Most Minnesotans seem to agree that it's a beautiful ballpark. But what if we're wrong? Is it possible that it's a terrible place that we can't objectively analyze because we're inferior? We'd better see what others are saying.

CBS: Target Field a gem Minnesota fans can treasure for generations

True story: One morning around 7:30 last summer as Target Field was still under construction, Gardenhire fed baseballs into a pitching machine aimed straight at the right-field wall. It was the Twins' very own test kitchen. General manager Bill Smith was on the field with Gardenhire observing, while St. Peter and former GM Terry Ryan were stationed in the right-field stands with gloves shagging the balls that went over the fence.
FOX: Twins hit bull's-eye with new park

Now, I’ll admit to liking the Metrodome more than most. I appreciated its quirks. I loved all the noise when the crowd smelled a comeback. Last year’s epic Game 163 had the energy and emotion of a state title game taken to the umpteenth degree.

But it was time for a change, and I was never surer of that than on Monday.


ESPN: Twins can get used to the outdoor life

Another issue is that outfielders can no longer say they lost a fly ball against the dirty Teflon roof or in the lights hanging from the ceiling. Ex-Twin Marty Cordova would have been at a complete loss, though he probably could have claimed he lost the ball in the sun. "You can use that now," center fielder Denard Span said. "You couldn't use it for 30 years here, but you can say 'I lost it in the sun' again. That's still not a good excuse, though."

New York Times: First impressions of Target Field

There are four advertisements on the outfield walls, but otherwise there’s a refreshing lack of ads. There are several spots where the Twins could have shoehorned billboards, but they did not. The resulting solid colors are visually calming. Love it.
USA Today: Twins christen Target Field with 5-2 triumph over Red Sox

"It looks like the field was just dropped in from the sky," says Frank Viola, the Twins' former Cy Young Award winner and ace of their 1987 World Series championship team. "It going to be cold some days, and there may be some rain, but am I going to miss the dome? Absolutely not.

"Minnesota in the summer is the most beautiful place in the world."
Yahoo: Twins' new playground a Minnesota state fair

No longer are the Twins content to scrape along as what commissioner Bud Selig called the “model franchise,” an allusion to their ability to do more with less. They are the smart, charming, fun teenager who just needed a new car to bring him out of his shell, and now that they’re driving a Bentley, there’s no limit to what they can achieve.

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Those were pretty glowing reviews. It was definitely a strange feeling watching that game yesterday. I just can't grasp the fact that I'll be going back again and again. It's the Twins ballpark. It's in Minneapolis. Weird.

The game itself was relatively boring, despite the Twins great team and their famed opponent. I guess that's understandable considering the last three games I saw the Twins play (against the Royals, Tigers and Yankees) featured extremely high drama. No one was just soaking in the atmosphere or staring at the skyline during those games.

I was quite pleased with the music; they must have read Alright Hamilton last week. They played The Hold Steady's Constructive Summer after a run-scoring play, played The Time's Jungle Love during the 7th inning-stretch and The Trashmen's Surfin' Bird, to which a red-headed kid delighted the crowd by ROCKING OUT on the jumbotron.

Also, here's the Homer Hanky they handed out. It's also been added to the Homer Hanky Database.

3 comments:

haasertime said...

who took those pictures? They're not credited!

melissa said...

That little kid was SO funny, I hope that ends up on YouTube somehow.

haasertime said...

yes. That was great.

btw, if you were there, make sure you check this out:

http://www.gigapan.org/profiles/27615/

find yourself!