Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Broken Heart

Twins 0 - The Evil, Ugly Chicago Baseball Team 1

TEUCBT wins Central Division

It's hard to win a pennant, but it's harder losing one. ~Chuck Tanner
Ok, so I don't know if I'm more sad or mad. I mean, we never expected to get this far, right? But it just tougher to take because we were oh so close.

I asked Nick Blackburn to pitch well, and he was awesome - heroic even. And so was Mijares. And Nathan. Turns out, I needed to remind the rest of the team to hit, and run, and score and stuff. I forgot Nick doesn't get run support. For that little oversight, I'm sorry. Really, really sorry.

I suppose I could go all Mark Buehrle and say "they'll go one and done in the playoffs" (or whatever it was he said about the Twins in 2004), but that would just sound bitter right now. Even though everyone knows it's true. I mean, the Rays are pretty much (rightfully so) the darlings of baseball. They and the Cubs.

I'm looking forward to the playoffs and World Series. Go Rays!

And, I'm looking forward to watching this group in 2009. They'll just all that much better, right?

Oh, and hey, Joey won his batting title. Good for him.

Dear Nick,

This is a personal note to Mr. Nick Blackburn:

Hi! How are you feeling? Relaxed? Confident? Good.

I just want to take a moment to give you a little encouragement. Now, I realize we've been through a lot together this season: I've called you Eeyore, which, it turns out, I didn't really mean; I've offered to let you tryout to be my baseball boyfriend, which didn't turn out so well; and subsequently, I broke up with you. We've both had our ups and downs.

But I don't want you to think about any of that tonight. Instead, I want you to think of Ozzie. Yes, Ozzie. I want you to think about what he said about you and how very wrong he was. I want you to take his bullsh*t (because it was pure bullsh*t - he knew it when he said it) and use it to fuel the competitive fire in your belly. And when you see the "black out" in the stands, I want you to remember that they're doing that because they're afraid. Afraid of you. Afraid of the Twins. Afraid of the Twins Way.

So, put on your big-boy pants, man up, cowboy up, be an idiot, leave your head in your locker - whatever it takes. Remember Cuddy's shirt:
162+ No Excuses - Prove Them Wrong!


Sunday, September 28, 2008

Let's Go Tigers!

Twins 6 - Royals 0
Royals win series 2 -1
Indians 1 - White Sox 5
Indians wins series 2-1
Twins hold .5 game lead.

So now we wait. And watch. And cheer for another team to help out.

In that spirit:

Let's Go Tigers! [clap, clap, clap, clap, clap] Let's Go Tigers! [clap, clap, clap, clap, clap]...

A Favor?

This is a message to the college-aged Royals fans we met in Kansas City:

Hi, guys. How's it going? Hey, remember how when we asked you if you hated it when the Twins came to town and you said that you liked the Twins, it was the White Sox you hated? Remember that? Well, if that's true, would you mind terribly telling your team that it's ok to lose today? You could say that you'll still love them, and that it's for the greater good of the division. I mean, since you hate the White Sox, you really don't want them to take the division, do you? Any help you can give the Twins would be greatly appreciated.


Friday, September 26, 2008

The Afterglow

Wow! I'm still pretty stunned about last night's game. I'm even having a hard time remembering what happened.

But it's sure great to be in first. There's still a bunch of work to do, and we still need a little help from the Indians, but I have faith.

Well, I have faith now. In about the sixth or seventh innings last night, I gave up. I must have looked absolutely forlorn when mini-bro asked me if I was ok. I said, "it's over. The season is over. This is it." He said, "aww. Don't give up. You know, like the Journey song -- Don't Stop Believing." Then he started to sing. Cute. I know he was just being silly to try to cheer me up, but he may be on to something.


So I get to work this morning and am greeted by none other than Mr. Negative P. Jerkass, who says, "why are you getting so excited? Do you actually believe the Twins will do anything if they make the playoffs?" Aw, shut up and let me have my fun, will'ya? Pthththth.


I just love how D-Span and Go-Go are largely responsible for the comeback and win. It's the least they could do after their little *ahem* misplay *ahem* in the outfield in the fourth. Nothing like going from goats to heroes, huh?


When I was driving home last evening, I was listening to Dan Barreiro. He something about that if the White Sox lost the last game, Ozzie would spontaneously combust. I can totally see that happening, especially since that game was so dramatic. I didn't listen to Ozzie's post-game interview, so I can't be sure, but if he did spontaneously combust, I imagine it looks something like this.

Dear Dick Bremer:
I ordered you a case of Ricola to arrive to the booth before tonight's game. You most likely have a very sore throat; you yelled a lot during Thursday's game. You were very excited.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Speechless in Minneapolis

Twins 7 - Sux 6
Twins sweep the three game series
Twins lead division by 1/2 game

No words. I don't have any words. Maybe tomorrow I'll have words, but right now, I have a sore throat and tears of joy, but no words.

I do have my cool, blinged out broom from a while ago to celebrate the sweep of all sweeps.

I love these guys. I absolutely, positively **LOVE** these guys.
p.s. I really, really hope Kevin Slowey is ok!

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Trying to Relax Enough to Smile

Twins 3 - Whities 2

Whew! That was close -- too close. And if I have to check myself into the hospital later this evening because I'm suffering panic attacks, it's the Twins' fault. But don't think for a minute I am unhappy with this game.

So, because my hands are still shaking, I'll keep this short.

I have some random, and ironically not really game-related, thoughts.
  • First of all, as I've said before, I despise Mark Buehrle. He's ugly and he always says snotty things. I just thought I'd throw that out there.
  • I miss Corey Koskie. It's nice to hear from him.
  • Ok, so am I the only one who thinks that LNP got his teeth fixed -- like caps or something? It seems to me that he used to have kinda crooked teeth, but in that "thanks fans" commercial, they're perfect. Maybe I'm crazy; who knows?
  • I think Randy Ruiz and Jose Mijares are one and the same. One person playing two parts, like Hayley Mills in The Parent Trap. (Did I just show my age there? Ok, if you're under 30, change that to Lindsay Lohan.)
  • That catch that Go-Go made in the ninth was straight out of Angels in the Outfield.
  • I totally love the regular Joe Nathan much more than blow-the-save Joe Nathan. I think all 38 bigillion fans in the Dome agree.

Ok, I gotta go to bed now. All this stressing and worrying and fretting and agonizing and anguishing is tiring. I'll go and do some Joe Nathan breathing exercises.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Tweet Victory

Twins 9 - White Sox 3

Today on my Twitter page, I started following Joe Cowley from the Chicago Sun Times, just to get an opposing viewpoint. Kind of interesting.

If you don't know Twitter, it's kind of like micro-blogging. You get 140 characters (that's it) to answer the question "what are you doing?" The updates are called "Tweets," and you follow other people's Tweets. It's kind of a neat way to stay connected with folks, or to just follow a popular columnist, blogger, or candidate. I Tweet pretty much everyday. So, in that spirit, I thought I'd express my thoughts about today's game in Tweets.

My tummy is all in knots. Nervous much? And it's so loud in the Dome. I love it!

Hey! How come Vazquez gets that strike call and Baker doesn't. Seems a tad unfair.

Just realized I'm missing a teleconference for work. Yeah, right. Just watch them try to keep me from watching this game.

Woooooooooo! I'm alone in the house and screaming my head off. Nice homer, Kubes!

And Delmon gets a nice hit. BTW: I hate the phrase “good piece of hitting.” Bert just said it like four times in the last 30 seconds.

Good hit, Nicky. Crap Go-Go. Oh, well, nice base running Delmon.

Ok, AJ, how many freaking pitches are you going to foul off? Just miss one! Finally!

Hey! Bernard Berrian is a Twins fan! And I didn't realize he was so good-looking. Well, hello Bernard. :-)

Nice catch Alexi! But I don't think it's really a diving catch like Dick said. More like a bend over and fall down catch.

Kubes gets an “old man triple,” which happens when the outfielder who dives for the ball is too old to make the catch.

And a double by Delmon. I like his little toe dance to keep his foot on the bag and keep from getting tagged out.

Squeeeeeeze! With a head-first slide even. But Bert honey, it's “element of surprise,” not “ultimate of surprise.”

My oh my! The third run of the inning, and there's still only one out. How crazy is the Dome now? Oh yeah, the second steal of the inning.

With two on and no out, that knotty tummy thing is back. Whew, one out, now two. Crap, now bases loaded for AJ. Yes yes! Whew!

Oh hey, new White Sox pitcher. He totally looks like a high-school jock. And Joey welcomes him to the Dome with a double.

Awww! They're replaying Gardy chewing out Alexi for not covering second in the previous half inning. I hope he isn't too tough on him.

Cool! Justin now holds the Twins record for doubles.

Tidy one-two-three innings from Scott Baker are much more calming on my tummy.

What a cute little juggle catch by Scotty. I'm glad he saw the humor in it.

So when the crowd chants “MVP,” does Justin say to himself, “yeah, that's right, they're talking about me”? Nah, he's too humble.

Oh yeah! Back to back homers, baby!

Beauty of a double-play there, Nicky. And, what? Delmon hustled to make a running catch? Wow, this game must really be inspired.

Ahem, j-bro just switched the TV to Playstation “just for a second” like 10 minutes ago. Hurry up and finish, will ya'?

Hah! A fan on the field. So so so stooopid. And so so boooring for those of us watching TV. How long do we have to look at Thome's face?

Well, if I have to watch a Griffey home run, it's not so bad when we're still leading by six after it.

Wow, that was tons of fun. This made the knotty tummy thing totally worth it.

This means it's mathematically impossible for the Sox to clinch at the Dome. Not like they're going to clinch at all.

Oh, on a non-baseball note, Wednesday is “National Punctuation Day.” Celebrate responsibly.

Monday, September 22, 2008


Today my favorite non-baseball blog, Cake Wrecks, and baseball converged to create this hilarious entry: Why We Need More Male Cake Decorators.

Besides the obvious, it is just soooooo wrong on so many levels. First of all, speaking as a frosting lover (more so than a cake lover), that much green frosting is just gross. It looks more like Easter basket grass than baseball field grass. Imagine what everyone's lips and teeth are going to look like after eating it. I also love how there's a baby-blue colored Yankees logo behind (presumably -- it's hard to tell) home plate (it's a little hard to see, but it's there). And, as the blog author points out, the red stripe around and the doily underneath are just wrong, I tell you, wrong.

Now there are plenty of sports that I don't like or know too much about (*ahem*-NBA-*ahem*), but if I were making a cake of one of those sports, I'd be sure to look at a picture or something to make sure I got it right. In fact, if I were making a baseball field cake, I'd still look at a picture just to be sure. But I'm willing to bet that a vast majority of people, fans and non-fans alike, would be able to draw a somewhat accurate diagram of a baseball field without looking at a picture.

It's truly sad that there are folks out there who are so completely clueless about the great game of baseball. Sad, indeed. They should start a support group or something.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

The Two Minute Warning

Friday: Twins 1 - Rays 11
Saturday: Twins 2 - Rays 7
Sunday: Twins 4 - Rays 1

Twins split series 2-2

Ok, so I took some time off, for the most part, from the Twins this weekend. It wasn't necessarily intentional. I spent Friday evening watching j-bro play high school football (the results of that game were not good), and I spent Saturday afternoon celebrating the birthdays of some very good friends. Then, I got free tickets for the Vikings game Sunday, so I took mini-bro to that.

The Vikings game was a blast! Gus did alright, better in the second half. And the defense was awesome. All in all, it was a great time.


Keeping with the football theme, I'd like to remind the Twins that it's the Two Minute Warning, the opponent is leading the game, and you have the ball. It's time to march down the field and score a touchdown to take the lead. It's time to man-up and play smart. Don't fumble, don't lose yards, and don't come up short. The crowd is behind you; make it worth it.


Speaking of the rest of the season, I don't know if I'm going to watch the White Sox series. I don't know if I can handle the stress. I fear that I might take things a little too seriously. If things don't go well, I won't be responsible for my actions. I might even yell at the kids and kick the dog -- I don't even have a dog, so who know what I'll kick. None of this is good. Unfortunately, I don't have anything going on that would be sufficiently interesting enough to distract me. I suppose I could go shopping or see a movie or clean my house or something, but I don't know if any of those would work. What to do, what to do?

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Celebrating the Little Things...

Twins 11 - Rays 8

Twins 1 1/2 Games Back

Well, wasn't that nice? Ok, the starting pitching kinda sucked (read: really sucked), but there were plenty of other things to smile about. Yay! With the homers, and the swinging away in a bunt situation, and the solid relief pitching, and the not giving up, and the coming from behind, and the insurance runs, and the easy save, and the showing another team what it's like to cough up a lead in the ninth, and the Sox losing, this was a good day. Woot!

There are so many super-heroes tonight:
  • Kubel's homer
  • Humber's relief pitching
  • Joey and Delmon with clutch hitting
  • Alexi's homer
  • Everett's crazy "I think I'll just bunt here - Psych!"
  • Nathanator is back to normal

I liked this game. More like it, please, but with better starting pitching.


Check this out. My friend and colleague, Julia, drew this caricature of me. Isn't it great? I'm not really as cute as this picture (Julia is, but I'm not), but I love it.

Thanks Julia!

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Blame It on the Sleeping God (a story)

Twins 9 - Indians 12 (11)

What a wild game -- down and up and back down again. It's as if the Baseball Gods were goofing around with it. Hmmm......

The Baseball Gods have a get-together on Mt. Doubleday to celebrate the last full moon of the season. The God who looks over the Yankees, Steinbrennerus, is crankier than usual. Colangelo, the God who looks over the D-Backs, approaches Steinbrennerus to chat.

Colangelo: Hey Steinbrennerus, how's it going this year? I hear the Yankees aren't going to make the playoffs. What's up with that?
Steinbrennerus: Aw, hell. It's those stupid Rays. Ever since they dropped the "Devil" from their name, they have all this...spunk. I hate spunk.
C: Why don't you mess with them and make them lose?
S: I wish I could, but Espn, the Supreme High Commander of All Sports Gods, has taken a liking to them. I need to keep him happy. He's been giving the Yankees ballpark a whole bunch of coverage on his little cable-tv project. And I'm going to ask for more coverage next season when the new park opens. So I'll just leave the Rays be. But I am feeling a bit vengeful this evening. I think I want to mess with somebody. Who else has spunk?
C: Well, I hear the Twins are surprising a lot of people by hanging in their pennant race.
S: The Twins, huh? Who watches over them?
C: Um, I think Pohladus does.
S: That old fart? Ha! Do you know he's richer than I am, but he won't spend it on his team? That just bugs me. Oh, this will be perfect. Where is he?
C: He's asleep over there. He's been there since Saturday. I guess he powered the team's bats in a double-header, but he overdid it and hasn't recovered yet. In fact, I doubt he even knows they lost two in row to rookie pitchers.

Steinbrennerus walks over to where Pohladus sleeps.

S: Hey Pohladus, you SOB! Wake up! I'm gonna mess with your team.
Pohladus: Huh? What? Wait, you can't do that. They're in a pennant race.
S: Just watch me. Who's starting tonight? Liriano? Heh heh. I give Liriano "Failure to Locate".

Just then, a thundbolt reaches down into the Progressive Field bullpen where Franciso Liriano is doing his pre-game warmups.

P: Aw, crap. I'm too old for this.
S: Ha! I give Punto "Throwing Error".
P: [sighs] Fine, I'll play your little game. I give the Twins bats "Hitting".
S: I give Justin Morneau...
P: Hey, you can't touch him. He's MVP material. It's in the rules.
C: Yeah, Steinnie, he's right, you can't touch him.
S: Fine. I give Delmon Young "Swing At Everything".
C: Dude, he already has that. It's chronic.
S: Oh, right. Ok, I give Carlos Gomez "Liner to Third for Double-Play".

Someone from off-stage calls out to Steinbrennerus to inform him the Yankees are losing again. Steinbrennerus exits to go watch over Yankee Stadium for awhile.

P: Good. Got rid of him. I give the Twins bullpen "Effectiveness".

Pohladus sits down again and begins to doze off. Steinbrennerus returns.

S: What? They took the lead? This is no good. Quickly, I give Grady Sizemore "Home Run to Tie". Ok. now I have time to think of what to do.
C: Got any ideas?
S: Yeah, you know how everyone says that Joe Nathan might be the best closer in the game?
C: Yeah. So?
S: Well, I hate that. My man Mariano Rivera is the best closer in the game. I know...I give Joe Nathan "Rusty Arm."
C: Um, I don't think you can do that. Pohladus gave the bullpen "Effectiveness".
S: So? Who's he going to tell? He's asleep over there.

To Be Continued...

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Get Away Day Blues

Saturday (1) Twins 12 - O's 2
Saturday (2) Twins 12 - O's 6
Sunday Twins 3 - O's 7

Twins take series 2-1

Another opportunity to sweep a team we should sweep, and another loss. As I was marching around the house and grumbling about the game, Dick-n-Bert were talking about the upcoming Cleveland series. Which got me thinking that it seems like they lose a lot of games where they have to head out to another city after they're done (known as "Get Away" days).

So I decided I'd figure it out to see if I was right. I've got nothing else to do between loads of laundry on a rainy, crappy Sunday afternoon.

First of all, I define Get Aways as games when the team travels right after them. And, I've read/heard from the newspaper and radio/TV guys that they travel right after the game even if the following day is an off-day, so I counted those too.

Here's what I came up with:

Ouch. It's worse than I thought.

So what's up with that? Are they too busy thinking of their next series to concentrate on their current game? Are they worrying if they forgot to pack their iPods? Are they suffering a collective bout of agoraphobia? Who knows?

The good news is that there are only two Get Away days left in the regular season (well, three if you count the last day of the season, which we may have to do if they need to play a tie-breaker). The bad news is that if they should happen to make the playoffs, Get Away days happen like every other game. They really, really, really need to reverse this trend if they make the playoffs.


And, adding to the feeling of someone sneezing in our face, it looks like the Bad Guys are going to win both their games today, putting the Good Guys 1 1/2 games back. Ick.

[Edit] I, currently, at this moment, ♥ Marcus Thames for tying the White Sox - Tigers game with a fat grand slam. It's a whole new ball game. Go Tigers!

[Edit 2] Scratch that. Dewayne Wise just hit a fat grand slam to go ahead again.


High-Five Goes To... Carlos Zambrano for tossing a no-hitter against the Houston Astros. Oddly, he did it in Milwaukee (thanks to Ike), so it must have felt more like a home game even though the Cubs were the visiting team.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Well, What Do Ya Know...

Twins 7 - Royals 2

Nick Blackburn starts AND the batters score more than two runs? In the same game? Really? And the White Sox lose two games in one day? There must be some stars/planets aligned into a TC tonight. And I like it. I hope they stay that way for the next six weeks or so.

I'm totally diggin' Blackie's slightly scruffy look. Just don't let it get too out of hand, honey.
Oh, and Go-Go, you're totally off my "bad list" for tonight. I really liked that catch. And that RBI. And that triple.
Wild mad props to the Blue Jays for beating the White Sox twice today. It's the least they could do to make up for sweeping us last week. Here's hoping they complete one more sweep.

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Digging Through My Kitchen Drawer

Friday: Twins 10 - Tigers 2 (Yay!)
Saturday: Twins 4 - Tigers 6
Sunday: Twins 5 - Tigers 7
Tigers win series 2 of 3

Ok, I'm not quite ready to stick a fork in the Twins, but I am looking for the fork.

I know that they're not out of the running mathmatically, but it sure doesn't seem like they're playing like champions. We really needed to sweep the Tigers, and there's no reason that we couldn't do that at home, but that didn't happen. Add that to the fact that the Angels let the White Sox have two games, and the slipping has begun.

I know, I know, there are still a lot games left, and anything can happen. But I just don't like the trend I'm seeing lately, especially with the bullpen. This recent habit of coughing up leads must end now if we're to have any hope at all.

Where have you gone, Pat Neshek,
Our territory turns it's lonely eyes to you.
What's that you say, Mr. Anderson?
Sidearm Pat has left and gone away,Hey hey hey.
[apologies to Simon & Garfunkel]

Boy, do we miss Pat-Pat or what? Twins fans aren't used to watching the wheels fall off the bullpen game after game. And I think I can speak for all of Twins Territory when I say that we don't like it. We want the good old days when we could actually rely on the bullpen, when we knew that a lead in the seventh was as good as a win, and when being behind by a couple in the seventh wasn't a problem.

So, guys, for tomorrow's off-day, I want you to sleep in, relax, go fishing or golfing or whatever you like, watch the Vikings game (but don't take it too seriously), then come back with renewed champion attitudes that I know you have, and knock off a bunch of wins in a row. I can't find my fork in that messy drawer; I don't want to need it.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Someone Hold My Hands Down...

so I don't scratch out my eyeballs out of frustration.

Twins 0 - Jays 9
Jays sweep in 3, and the season series in 6

I blame myself for this mess. You see, I have these ratty old Twins jammies. I've learned over the years that if I don't wear those jammies on Sunday nights, the Twins have a bad week. On weeks when I failed to wear them that Sunday, the following bad things happened:
  • Corey Koskie signed with the Blue Jays (I was on a flight home from Germany)
  • All of 2005 (thinking they were getting too ratty to wear anymore, I failed to believe the their powers)
  • Francisco Liriano blew his elbow (too busy to do laundry on that Sunday)
  • Torii signed with the Angels (again with the too busy to do laundry thing)
  • This week (I failed to properly plan for the Labor Day weekend at the lake)

Who can argue with results like this? When I realized that I may have messed up this week, I tried reasoning that because the Twins had Monday off, it would be ok. Apparently I was wrong. And, because it's a weekly thing, I can't make amends until this coming Sunday night.

I don't know what to do. About three weeks ago, I thought I would be ok settling for the "well, at least they did way better than I thought they would" attitude. I was wrong.

I Want The Division Championship, Dammit!

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Anybody Got a Tums?

Twins 4 - Jays 5 (11)

Scratch that; I need a Prevacid. And a Xanax. And a massage. And a shot of tequila.


And could it have been any uglier? Or gut wrenching? Or heart breaking? I think not.

I have a chart of how I would like to see some trends for the rest of the season...


I think I know the problem here. Everywhere I go on the web, I see an article about how great the Twins are. Well, that's pretty un-Minnesotan; we don't like a whole lot of back patting. Maybe if everyone starts doubting them and saying how there's no chance they'll win the division, they'll start playing better and winning. I think they play their best when they're playing as underdogs.

Of course, I can't bring myself to write anything negative, because it wouldn't be sincere. So we really need another blogger to step up and announce that they're terrible. Then maybe they'll start winning like crazy again.

Any takers?

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Enough With the Sputtering of the Momentum Already

Sunday: Twins 12 - A's 4
Monday: off
Tuesday: Twins 5 - Blue Jays 7

I think it would be really cool if the Twins won two or more games in a row. I forget what that's like. Seriously, they haven't done that since the beginning of this road trip. I would really, really like to see that again.

Fortunately, the White Sox don't have a lot of momentum going either. However, how long can that last?

Part of me wants the team to shift its attitude now that September is here. It's time to get serious. These games really matter. On this day that I turned my calendar, put away my white capris, and sent my kids off to their first day of a new school year, my first impulse is to expect a new seriousness from the team.

But the more I think of it, the more I think they shouldn't change much at all. The games always mattered. The boys have done pretty well by just having fun and not doing too much. After all, that's the Twins way. So, if it ain't broke, don't fix it.

So, guys (especially pitchers), try to relax, have fun, and keep doing what you've been doing. Forget it's September; pretend it's still June. If you do that, the momentum will take care of the rest. Oh, and don't be afraid of first place...it really is a pretty cool thing.