72 thoughts on “May 27, 2011: Pondering”

  1. Did anyone watch/go to the Harmon memorial last night? I watched (most of) it on TV. The crowd didn't look too big, but I guess there were four to five thousand there.

    1. I watched quite a bit of it, and thought it was quite well done. The best parts were Mudcat Grant singing "What a Wonderful World" and the old clips of Harmon hitting home runs, usually accompanied by Herb Carneal's calls.

  2. I went to bed with three minutes left, thinking the Bulls had secured a win. Nope. Miami closes on an 18-3 run and moves into the Finals. Miami/Dallas. Heat have home court and two of the best young players in the game. Dallas has Dirk, the best performer in the playoffs to date.

    I think Miami is going to win it.

    1. I think Dallas will be getting every call this series. I can't imagine the NBA wants to see Miami win a title so soon after the decision. Then again, this might be exactly what the owners want, in a way forcing the issue, as a motivation for a lockout. I'm not sure. Dallas is far deeper than Miami but Miami might have the two best players.

      It is Mark Cuban versus the Decision. David Stern must be ecstatic!

      1. I bet Stern is ecstatic (really). The Celtics and Lakers are out, but ratings have been terrific, anyways. Plus, in terms of ratings, who do you think he'd rather have, Dallas or OKC? Plus, Miami isn't Chicago in terms of market size, but they are rock stars, even if you don't like them. People will watch. Oh yes, people will definitely watch.

        1. America is going to unite rooting against the Heat, no question. I'd think the ratings this season might even be higher than last years LAL/BOS finals.

          1. I'm over the LeBron thing... Carmelo Anthony cured me of that. I really, really, really, really, really want to see Stern hand the trophy to Cuban, though. Really.

            1. As an aside, do you think there would have been nearly as big of an uproar if LeBron James had said, "I'm taking my talents to MSG?"

              No, of course not. There would have been wailing and gnashing of teeth in Cleveland, but LeBron would have been praised for doing the smart thing at the 4ltr, right? It appears that leaving Cleveland for Miami was a smart thing, basketball-wise. The Decision was stupid and maybe the celebration in Miami was stupid, but if they win the Championship and a few more, well, I think he'll eventually get a pass for being a tin-eared doofus, especially when you think about some things that other dudes have done.

              1. I don't know if you remember but when I was out in Minneapolis last summer we discussed Lebron and poetential destinations. After we discussed what a great fit he would be for the Wolves I mentioned how I thought he'd be going to the Knicks. I thought with D'Antoni, MSG, the spotlight, it just seemed too perfect.

                If my memory serves me correctly, you were saying how he should go to the Bulls.

                Can you imagine Rose--Wade-James-Noah+1? That team would have been unstoppable.

                1. The Miami thing will work out, but I think LeBron and Wade with Rose and Noah would have been even better.

                  1. Better talent, but who would have taken the role Bosh was willing to take? Plus, I can't imagine LeBron going to Chicago and being forced to live under the legacy of Jordan. He doesn't want to constantly hear about six rings.

                    1. I agree with your point, but he's still going to. Look at Kobe, that reference has been following him around like the Pig Pen cloud since 2000.

      1. If it goes the same way as the last one, I will quit the NBA. I can't stomach another series of Dwayne Wade wildly crashing into everything he can see in the lane and shooting 150 free throws per game.

        1. You say that now, but you'll be back to watch the trainwreck, er, I mean the 2011-12 Wolves.

          1. Of course, but the whole time I will adamantly insist that its because Kevin Love is good.

  3. I watched it. Even with a 12 point lead, I didn't have the feeling it was over. Then Miami scored 6 quick points and I said here we go. The Bulls got absolutely steamed rolled those last 3 minutes.

  4. Let's try to guess which Twins player said this:

    "I have nothing against guys going to [elite] training facilities in the offseason, but I see guys coming to spring training in July shape, in midseason form.

    "I'm not going to say you should come in out of shape, but by the time it really is July, your body has been in top condition for six or seven months. Your body thinks it's November.

    "I train my rear off in the offseason, but I don't do the types of stuff that other guys do. I think it's possible to overtrain and over-cook your body."

        1. That quote makes no sense when you think about the fact that these injuries have come in April and May (their bodies think it is July or August!). But then again, the author of the column from which it is was pulled usually makes no sense.

      1. Nope, but I'm going to file this article and specifically the quote below under the same category as "never heard of a stress reaction."

        The technical term for baseball's waiting room is "the disabled list." For some of these injuries, a better description might be "the enabling list."

    1. I'm proud of myself. I saw the "57 comments" link and did not click it. I still clicked your link to the article, though, so baby steps I suppose.

    2. I recently saw a article on soccer players (Damned if I can remember where to find it again) that made the same argument for over-training, that essentially modern off-season training regimens don't give players' bodies enough time to recuperate because they're essentially at their highest level year-round.

    1. That was a fun video to watch. Except that is shows our AA team is better at executing rundowns than the major league club.

  5. Saw this on MLB Trade Rumors:

    the consensus around the game is that the 2011 draft features a better collection of prospects than usual.

    Didn't give any attribution, but if true, then hopefully the Twins can do well with the two supplemental picks for losing Jesse Crain and Orlando Hudson. This gives the Twins three of the first 55 picks (30, 50 and 55). The Twins will have taken three players before anyone else in their division has taken two. The White Sox don't even have a first-round pick because of signing Adam Dunn, but they have the 47th pick because of losing J.J. Putz.

    1. The depth of the 2011 draft has been a talking point for a few years now. That's a big reason why the Rays have ten out of first 60, including three back-to-back picks (31 and 32, 41 and 42, and 59 and 60). The Jays also had a few moves for the sole purpose of earning picks.

      1. The Jays also had a few moves for the sole purpose of earning picks.

        Oh, what I wouldn't give for the Twins to have a GM as shrewd as Alex Anthropolous.

  6. It's a good thing I don't believe in signs, because while trying to save every penny for the move(s) in July, our secondary car, and the only one that's been running for the last six months, blew up today. Well, the engine did.

    This move is determined to be the hardest thing that ever happened to me.

    1. I totaled our secondary car (well, some old guy driving the wrong way on the freeway did) less than a week before my wife was moving to SoCal to take a teaching job. The car wasn't worth what was left on the loan, but the insurance agreed to pay it off to avoid a lawsuit. Still, I got no money out of it other than not having to make the small payments on it. My wife drove down as scheduled and I kept the rental car provided by insurance until we settled, then I took a bus to Everett, WA, (we were living in Post Falls, ID) and borrowed a minivan from my in-laws. My wife taught for three weeks and found a rental house, drove back to Idaho when her class was off track for three weeks and we moved to SoCal. We rented a truck and a dolly and towed our main car. We drove to Everett to return the van and then drove to SoCal with two of us, our cat and large dog, who we doped up, in the rental truck. That was an interesting summer of 1999. Once I got a job, then we got a second car (actually we got a new Saturn and used the other car as the secondary car).

        1. She was hired less than a week before the accident. We were just fortunate that her class went off track three weeks after the year started. Of course, it would have been better if her class started the year off track, but it certainly was better than having to wait six or nine weeks. Her principal let her stay in her house for free for those three weeks, so it worked out pretty well. This also was her first year of teaching anywhere, so she's starting a new career, living in a strange house with her boss, who she didn't know before moving in (the interview was in Idaho with a recruiter back in the days of class-size limits) 1,000 miles from her husband and she spent much of her weekends house hunting. I didn't have much to complain about.

      1. I agree with Spooky, that is one convoluted move. And on a semi-related note, I have been to Post Falls, ID.

    1. Soooooo, I'm not off to Tejas just yet. My flight out of DSM was delayed to the point I couldn't have made my connection in Denver. So it was go to Denver, get put up in a hotel, and get a flight from there, or sleep in my own bed and get up at 4AM and go back to the airport and be in Austin by 10. I took Door #2.

  7. So much for having a shortstop that can hit. Now the Twins have Casilla back at shortstop. Wasn't he moved as much for his defense as his offense? Plouffe, we hardly knew you. Oh well. The lineup still looks better with Cuddyer at second, Kubel in right and Thome DHing. Butera is catching. Maybe we can have him sacrifice with one out. If you insist on having a player in there that hits like a pitcher, at least treat him like one. Torii batting cleanup and playing right field. No Vernon Wells. Is he hurt? Newly acquired Russell Branyan is DHing for the Angels.

    1. I just wish Gardy would settle on a couple of guys, whoever they are, put them in the middle infield for six weeks or so, and see what they can do. Jerking guys in and out of the lineup, making somebody the starter only to bench him three days later, helps nothing. Make a decision, mark it, and give it enough time to see if it's the right one or not.

      1. Agreed. We need to see what Plouffe can do right now while Nishi is out. LEN3 said the other day that Plouffe was just getting a day off but was expected to be back for Wednesday's game, but he had Wednesday off, the off day yesterday and now today. He was slumping and messed up in the field at a critical juncture on Monday, so he probably needed a day off, but this looks like he's just getting benched now. Tolbert hasn't looked great at shortstop either, so I wonder if putting Casilla back in there means Gardy is seeing how he responds to a utility role. He certainly has done better offensively in a part-time role in the past. I can't imagine he could be worse than Tolbert and he's out of options. Casilla at least has a ton of speed off the bench and plenty of opportunities to pinch run if Cuddyer is going to be mostly at second and Thome mostly at DH.

  8. Did anyone mention that with Slowey going on the DL, we have Hoey back in the bullpen? That's got to help, right?

    1. He could actually be an improvement. His results have been awful, but that could be attributed more to SSS at just 8 1/3 innings. He's been lights out in Rochester and his walk rate with the Twins is better than Nathan, Burnett, Hughes and Dumatrait and his K rate is better than Capps, Burnett, Swarzak and Dumatrait. Hoey at least has the stuff that makes me think if he can just have decent command for a night he might be able to get through without blowing it.

      1. It would probably be good for Hoey to not be thrown into extremely high leverage situations right away. Gardenhire needs to realize he doesn't have Crain and Guerrier out there, and at least try to build the kid's confidence up.

        I can't completely hate Hoey since he's a dead ringer for one of my friends.

        1. All he has is kids, Nathan every other night and Capps. His best bet is to find the best matchups and hold your breath.

          1. I'm not sure Dumatrait and Hughes (and probably Hoey too) qualify as kids any more. Just organizational flotsam.

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