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Following the world of Minnesota sports, culture and good times.

Updated: 2015-09-16T22:44:43.581-07:00


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T-Jack jacks his knee.


Tavaris Jackson suffered some cartilage damage to his knee in practice on Thursday. He'll have surgery to repair it and Chili expects him to be out a month. Now the Vikes need to name someone the third string QB in case (god forbid) both B.J. and Brooks go down in the game.
Maybe Longwell?



  • Buster Olney runs down the reasons why Santana shouldn't be MVP. The main reason being that Cy Young should be good enough. Hopefully the voters will take notice to Justin Morneau's numbers and give it to him.
Why haven't more people noticed that Morneau has driven in more runs (125) than any Twin in history whose name wasn't Killebrew? Why haven't more people noticed that, since June 8, Morneau has hit .374, and knocked in as many runs as Ryan Howard (87 -- tied for the most in baseball)?
That, to us, is what an MVP front-runner looks like. And there isn't an ounce of disrespect to the always-spectacular, always-mesmerizing Johan Santana when we tell you what he looks like: The Cy Young shoo-in that he is. Period.

"I haven't been that amped up all season," Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said. "I was screaming at how hard Torii hit it, screaming at what a huge home run it was for us, and at the same time I was running around the dugout, screaming, 'Andy, Andy, get somebody up.' "
Pitching coach Rick Anderson's response was: "Who?"
Gardenhire was now in his office, waving his arms in imitation of himself, and said: "I told Andy, 'Somebody. Anybody. Crain. Yeah, get up Crain.' "

  • Pat Neshek gives his thoughts on his first Fenway Park games in the Majors and meets Peter Gammons.
When I was walking to the clubhouse I noticed that two guys were fixing up the roof of the concourse. It appeared that a giant piece of concrete gave out and fell to the ground. I walked under the guys and they told me to hurry up and go by because they didn't trust this spot. I found myself wondering if this place was safe or not. As I got nearer to the clubhouse I had to ask direction in order to find the clubhouse door because it was very confusing. Eventually I found a small white fenced in cage that was the entrance to the clubhouse. Inside was the smallest clubhouse in the league...smaller than most minor league clubhouses. The lockers were straight out of the old days, about a foot and a half wide, 6 feet tall with no space in between teammates. With all the September call ups, the clubhouse staff ran out of lockers and had to pair up a couple guys in one locker. I also heard stories that on the other side in the home clubhouse they had to buy wooden stroll out lockers and place them in the center of the clubhouse for all the new guys that came up in September.

News 9/21


For a little over an hour last night the Twins were tied for first place with Detroit. It was the first time Detroit hadn't held first place alone since May 21.

  • The Vikings and Twins will be fighting over the Dome if the Twins do win the AL and the ALDS goes 5 games.
  • Best wishes go to Wayne Hattaway, the retired clubhouse attendant and lucky charm that still travels with the team, was diagnosed with cancer of the chest this past week and will undergo surgery on Sept. 28

City Pages hearts the Twins


City Pages talks about the Twins "weirdest season ever".
Top 10 moments that Shook the Dome, even though a number of these moments didn't take place at the dome. I'm gonna hold on to this list. I have a feeling I'll have fun reading these 10 years from now. It's been a great year to be a first time season ticket holder.

(image) Long time Twins Fan Thomas Hodne talks about the Twins season and his experiences in baseball. If you've ever sat in Section 120 behind homeplate, you've seen this guy. He looks like a crazy Santa, he hasn't missed a game in 25 years, he hates Tom Kelly and he says the Twins are going to the World Series.

This team feels much better than either in 1987 or 1991. I was down there in spring training this March, and things weren't working out. But Gardy was juggling, and was trying to make the pieces fit. And Terry Ryan is sharp. Some of the players then weren't with this team, and those two could tell that. Every player is with this team now, and with each other. That's the biggest change that occurred. They're the best team in the major leagues. Not based on experience or big names, but as far as what they've done to pull themselves out of where they were.

They'll win enough games to take Detroit and they'll win the division. And then onto the Series. It isn't easy, but I think they've got the talent and the coaches. They work closely together, and that's what makes the talent meaningful. More than that, it takes stamina and spirit to win the World Series. And this team has both. They won't quit. The spirit is really something to hold on to.

Magic Number 8


  • Twins are now just half a game out of first place. Their magic number is down to 8.
Boof vs Schilling tonight.

Sometimes the bear eats you.


  • La Velle E. Neal III does a pretty good human interest piece on Cuddy today. We learn how The Bear developed his love for his fiance and magic. It turns out that Cuddy is also an idea man and has an idea for a bar.
A bar named Fuel that would be designed with a gas station motif. A full-service area would sell cocktails. But a self-serve area would allow people to pour themselves beer from a tap shaped like a gas pump. "I just got mad when I'd go up and just wanted a beer and had to wait for 10 people to get mixed drinks," he said.
  • I've been trying to find the "We're Gonna Win Twins" song that they play at the dome, I haven't had any luck finding the old version, but here is a newer version that's really groovy.

Notes 9/19


The Twins start a series with Boston in Fenway tonight. Garza vs Wakefield. If the Twins go 7-6 for the remainder of the season, the White Sox will have to run the table and win every game left to make the playoffs.

Notes 9/14


  • The A's avoided a three-game sweep with a 1-0 victory at the Metrodome. The Twins haven't swept a first-place team during the month of September since 1989, when they won three games against the Blue Jays at the Metrodome.
  • The Twins have been shut out 13 times this season, one short of the club record set in 1990.
  • The Twins are setting up their scouting of potential postseason opponents, which will begin late next week.
    Former Twins manager Tom Kelly will dive into the Yankees, along with Larry Corrigan, a special assistant to Twins General Manager Terry Ryan.

  • The pitching rotation is still up in the air. Boof may be the #2 starter behind Johan. Either Garza or Guerrier will make the start on sunday against Cleveland.

Done for the Season


"I felt a little pop, and then it really hurt"

Saints fight Cats, Cat chokes Cop.


The Saint Paul Saints lost the American Association league championship last night to the Fort Worth Cats. Oh well, it's independant baseball. The bigger news is that after the game members of both teams went to the Half Time Rec in St. Paul to have some drinks. Apparently things got out of hand and a fight broke out between the teams. According to the Strib the "Police said 20 to 30 people were throwing punches in the bar when officers arrived about 12:15 a.m."
When police arrived on the scene the Saints were apparently saints and stopped fighting although one of the Cats players continued fighting and started choking St.Paul police officer, Cy Dargay. Poice spokesman Tom Walsh said the player, identified as Cats outfielder Kris Zacuto, had such a strong hold on the officer that he lifted him off the ground. He officers had to use batons on the player's arms and pepper spray to free Officer Dargay.

"Even after police had Zacuto off Dargay, the man continued to resist arrest, Walsh said. Police sprayed Zacuto with pepper spray and used batons to get him under control, Walsh said. When police had Zacuto handcuffed, he refused to walk to a squad car and officers had to drag him, Walsh said."

A number of other players were dragged to Detox and spent the night.
The officer that Zacuto was choking was actually scheduled to retire from the force today. What a great last night.

You don't mess with Chris Zacuto.

Objects In Mirror


The Twins are now just two games behind the Tigers for the AL Central and 1 1/2 games ahead of the White Sox after this weekend. Winning 3 out of 4 against the Tigers is pretty awesome. I was honestly expecting a 2-2 split. Barring a total collapse over the next month Johan sealed his Cy Young award.

Liriano pitched 4 scoreless innings on Saturday night in his latest rehab start. He walked one, struck out 4 and didn't give up a hit. He get's his first start back on Wednesday afternoon against the A's at the dome. His pitch count will be limited to 60.

Matt Guerrier will get his first start of the season on Tuesday against the A's. He's replacing Scott Baker in the rotation.
Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said this week that he's holding "tryouts" to see who would occupy the third and probably final spot in the postseason rotation behind all-stars Johan Santana and Francisco Liriano, provided he stays healthy. Rookie Boof Bonser is the front-runner after another solid outing Saturday.

Things are looking up again. With Liriano's awesome 4 innings in Rochester on Saturday, here's hoping he can go back to the July Liriano and if the Twins can keep hitting and we can slip in to the playoffs.

Buster Olney writes on his ESPN Insider blog that Johan Santana is deserving of the MVP.
The Minnesota Twins are 81-59, the wildcard entrant if the playoffs started today. They are 22 games over .500.

Johan Santana has made 30 starts this year, and in those games, the Twins are 25-5. He's 17-5 himself, and Minnesota has won every game in which Santana got a no-decision; if he hasn't won, he's given them a chance to win.

Let's review. When Santana starts, the Twins are 20 games over .500. When anybody else starts, they are 56-54, basically a .500 team.

When Santana starts, the Twins are as unbeatable as the '27 Yankees. When anybody else starts, they are a non-playoff team.

But he also says if the Twins don't make the playoffs he probably wouldn't vote for him.
The Twins are 3-1 when he has started against the White Sox, 3-1 when he has started against Detroit. His record in the second half of the season is 8-0; the Twins are 11-0 in his starts since the All-Star break. Francisco Liriano went down and since then, Santana has hoisted the rotation onto his shoulders. He's got four starts left, in all likelihood, and it's conceivable that the Twins will have a perfect record in the games he starts in the second half.

Without Santana pitching as well as he has, the Twins aren't even part of the playoff conversation.

If the Twins don't make the playoffs, I wouldn't vote for Santana; there are good candidates -- no slam-dunk candidates -- with other teams. Jermaine Dye with the White Sox, the Yankees' Derek Jeter, Travis Hafner and David Ortiz. Justin Morneau has had an incredible season, getting a huge hit in the Twins' high-pressure victory last night. You can make a good case for Joe Mauer.

Pitching Matchups for this weekend


Tonight - 7:10
RHP Scott Baker (4-7, 6.55 ERA) vs. RHP Justin Verlander (15-7, 3.27)

Friday, 7:10
RHP Matt Garza (1-4, 5.88) vs. LHP Wilfredo Ledezma (2-2, 2.38)

Saturday, 6:10
RHP Boof Bonser (4-5, 4.83) vs. LHP Nate Robertson (12-11, 3.93)

Sunday, 1:10
LHP Johan Santana (17-5, 2.84) vs. RHP Jeremy Bonderman (11-7, 4.02)

Every one of these games is going to be playoff caliber baseball. I'm almost glad I'm going to Dylan tonight so I don't have to deal with the stress of watching Baker pitch.

Swear at me Bert.


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In case anyone missed it. Here's the incident from Sunday's game where Bert Blyleven swears on live TV. I don't see what the fucking problem is.

Not Guilty


Jeff Reardon was found not guilty by reason of insanity for robbing a jewelry store in Florida last winter. In the robbery Reardon had no gun, and his penmanship was so awful that the store clerk told him she had trouble comprehending it. She would later say she thought the bearded robber was a deaf mute. He turned himself in later with $170 from the store.
Here's wishing Reardon the best of luck in getting his life back together after the loss of his son. Hopefully he'll be back in the dome next year for the 20th anniversary celebration of the 1987 World Series.

News 8-25-06


Francisco Liriano backed up from 60 to 90 feet on Thursday, making 25 throws as he attempts to come back from shoulder and elbow problems this season. The Star Tribune reported that Liriano needs a few more days of pain-free throwing before trying off a mound.

Looks like Thome will miss all three games of the Twins/Sox series this weekend. It must be a pretty bad hamstring injury if he's going to sit these games out. How long would it have taken him to injure that hammy on the dome turf?

The testing for Amphetamines
this year doesn't seem to have had as much of an effect on gameplay as some people thought. Teams have just added espresso machines and using supplements from GNC.
"Sugar-free Red Bull," said Minnesota Twins designated hitter Rondell White, when asked what players were using for an energy boost this year. Maybe the cause of Rock's poor hitting this year can be tied to his coffee not being "leaded" anymore.

The Twins signed Dennys Reyes to a 2 year contract extension today. Reyes, 29, is 4-0, 0.96 (37.1 ip, 4 er), allowing 24 hits with 7 walks and 36 strikeouts in 43 appearances (all in relief) this season. He has an opponents' batting-average-against of .185 (24-13), first-batters-faced are batting .143 (6-42) and he has stranded 31 of 36 (86%) inherited runners, the fourth best percentage in the Major Leagues.

Willie Eyre has been lights out with a 1.76 ERA over the last month. Turns out it may be a cause of his ADHD medication.
"We all know the issue with the medicine he takes," Gardenhire said. "He's kind of had to play with that to get it even and that has probably helped him."

Eyre takes medication for Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), which was diagnosed a couple of years ago. Eyre said he's recently increased the dosage he takes daily. His brother, Cubs lefthander Scott Eyre, takes the same medication.

Updates 8/24


Matt Garza got his first Major League win last night in Baltimore. Six innings, one unearned run, one walk and one strikeout. Garza lowered his ERA more than five runs to 6.59.

Boof vs Anna Benson's husband tonight.

Liriano could be limited to pitching out of the bullpen.
Gardenhire said Liriano, who hasn't pitched since Aug. 7 because of mild soreness in his elbow and weakness in his shoulder, would have to build up to throw around 80 pitches before being considered ready for the rotation. If there's any sort of setback, Liriano likely will be shut down for the season.

Rondell White came off the DL today. Josh Rabe was sent down to Rochester, but will most likely be recalled in 10 days when the rosters expand.

News and Notes


Liriano played catch tuesday before the game.
Liriano said he felt fine on Tuesday and plans on playing catch every day. The Twins are focused on getting Liriano's arm stretched out and feeling strong before he starts throwing bullpen sessions or pitching from a mound. Once the bullpen sessions begin, then the team will begin to think about how they can use him for the remainder of the season, Gardenhire said.

The Twins broke attendance records at the dome over the last 10 game homestand.

The New Ballpark Commissionwants you to keep your ideas for the new stadium coming.
Ballpark Ideas of the Week – 1.) A giant, old scoreboard. The kind where someone has to manually change the numbers. 2.) A Skyway Café above/behind center field. People could eat and watch the game. 3.) An underground viewing area behind the backstop. Open during batting practice, then covered during the game.

Twins update 8-18


Francisco Liriano said that his shoulder is starting to feel stronger. The pitcher is expected to have his medical examination on Sunday, and Liriano's next step in his rehab will be determined by the results of the exam.

The Twins have drawn crowds of 40,000-plus seven times this season. It's the most crowds of that number since 1992, when they had 17. It sounds like after this weekend the Twins will be at 10.

Scott Baker threw 6 2/3 scoreless innings, allowing just four hits, as Triple-A Rochester beat Syracuse, 5-0, on Wednesday.

Not much to say here. Huge series this weekend.
Garcia vs Boof tonight.
Garland vs Bradke on Saturday.
Vazquez vs Johan on Sunday.

Make sure you go to Acme tonight after the game and laugh at JJ doing his stand up.

The phone's ringing dude.


JJ and I went to the Vikings game last night and it was a blast. Sitting behind the Vikings bench we were not only entertained by T-Jack's first plays as a Viking, but by all the people who have jobs in the NFL. I would like to officially throw my name in the ring for the job that has you sitting on a crate waiting for a phone to ring. I'm not completely sure what that guy's whole job description is, but I have the feeling he's not very good at it. During the game last night the phone from upstairs rang twice. The first time he missed it and the kids that hand out Gatorade had to answer it. The second time thankfully he was there because the coaches must have had some important notes for O'Sullivan.
So Mr. Wilf and Childress, I'm free on sundays and I won't wander around and miss calls from the booth. Give me a chance. (image) Note the guy in the yellow security jacket, his job was to watch the table with the phones for the guy who's waiting for the phone calls. I want that job.

Waiting outside the dome last night, we also spoted Boof, Garza and Tyner trying to get in to the Twins offices. Later on they were on the scoreboard during the game. Standing on the Raiders sideline. I only have one suggestion for Boof, get rid of the goatee and go back to the moustache. Please?(image)

Twins news


Killebrew wants Morneau to join the 40 home run club.

Vote for Morneau to win the Hank Aaron Award.

Liriano will have a throwing session today.
(the session) will consist of light tosses from 60 feet, with a chance he'll back out to 90 feet. Twins pitching coach Rick Anderson said the session will last for just a few minutes as they check to see whether there's any pain in Liriano's elbow. Liriano is in the middle of a shoulder and elbow strengthening program in an effort to return to the lineup. He's out indefinitely, but the club quietly is hoping he will return at the end of the month.

La Velle E. Neal III, breaks down all the Replacements and call-ups that have helped the Twins continue winning this year.
"I'll be honest: It's kind of a unique situation," Twins catcher Mike Redmond said. "All the years I was in Florida, no one ever came up to the big leagues. We might bring up a pitcher here or there if someone got injured, or a position player to sit on the bench. They never played.



G.R. takes back all the mean things he said about Morneau early in the season.

Aaron Gleeman breaks down the Twins history of 30 HR hitters and throws out this little tidbit that I didn't know was possible.
In the entire history of baseball, a .320-40-140 season has taken place only 38 times, including just 10 times over the past 50 years. In other words, not only is he about to re-write the Twins record book, Morneau has a chance to place himself in some pretty rarefied air well beyond the team's power-starved history.
Morneau is also on pace to hit 145 RBI's, which would be the most in Twins history.

If you're watching the Vikings preseason game on TV, watch for JJ and myself sitting 3 rows behind the Vikings bench. 40 yard line. Looks like T-Jack will be getting plenty of snaps tonight.
Childress said Sunday that Jackson will play the final portion of the second quarter and all of the third as the Vikings open the preseason against Oakland at the Metrodome. Jackson will be the third of the Vikings' four quarterbacks to see action. J.T. O'Sullivan will handle the fourth quarter.
O'Sullivan was listed ahead of Jackson on the first depth chart issued by the Vikings, but this appears to be an indication that has changed.

News and notes 8/9/06


It's official. Liriano was placed on the DL retroactive to August 8. Boof get's another shot. He'll be in Detroit tonight.

Matt Garza is just the new guy.

Don't forget tomorrow is Singles Night at the dome and Joe Mauer sideburn night.
Get there early.

The Twins have a number of appearances scheduled for the next couple of weeks. Among the highlights are these:

Mike Redmond will be at the Rock Bottom brewery on Thursday August 17 for the "Catcher in the Rye" promotion. Anyone have any idea what this is? I will for sure be there though.

Also on the 17th, Cuddy hosts his Baseball Unplugged with Matt Guerrier and Joe Nathan at Brits Pub from 7-9pm. Hopefully i'll be able to hit both.



Matt Garza was recalled and will join the Twins in Detroit tonight. Mike Smith was sent down to make room. So much for Radke's back up tonight. Maybe if Neshek has to come in they'll let him pitch more than 2 innings.



This isn't what was supposed to happen. The Twins lose big again to the Tigers and now Francisco Liriano is out indefinately.
In a quiet postgame clubhouse, Liriano, 22, seemed on the verge of tears, and his voice crackled as he described the pain, pointing to the inside of the elbow this time, beneath the muscle and possibly in the joint.

Not good news for Liriano's ROY bid and the Twins wild card chances. Here's hoping he's back soon.

The Twins are still sticking with Mike Smith to start on Friday. Although Gardy and Ryan are set to talk about the Twins pitching problems this morning. Matt Garza is scheduled to pitch on Wednesday in Rochester. Let's hope that Mike Smith mullet has some special powers in it.

Bradke goes tonight against Nate "Stupid Glasses" Robertson. Eric Gagne called, he wants his steez back.

Joe Nathan was named DHL Deliver Man of the Month of July.
Nathan was a perfect 9-for-9 in save opportunities in July, and allowed just one earned run in 12 games en route to amassing a 0.75 ERA for the month. The Twins closer struck out 19 batters over 12 innings as he helped the Twins to close out the month with a stellar 18-8 record.