2013 Game 149: Twinkies at Pale Hose



I was at the store the other day and noticed that, after a bankruptcy forced hiatus, Twinkies are back. I may be late in making this observation as I lead a pretty oblivious life, but I'm taking it as a sign that next year the Twins will rebound and have a great season. Because unreasonable hope has kept me going for about half a century now, and I'm just too old to give it up.

On the hill tonight we have Liam "Hard Luck" Hendriks (1-2, 5.25 ERA) looking to get some run support from the Twins offense, versus Erik "The Winless Wonder" Johnson (0-2, 4.66 ERA) for the White Sox in a completely meaningless game for either team or their fans. So, you know...go Pirates!

Play ball.

63 thoughts on “2013 Game 149: Twinkies at Pale Hose”

  1. Meaningless? This is The Battle For Fourth Place! (As Douglas Adams once observed, capital letters are always the best way of dealing with things we don't have a good answer to).

        1. Okay, so you're looking for longer term failures. Let's see... Swarzak's started 28 games with a 5.79 ERA. JC Romero sucked pretty bad as a starter, too. I'd have to do some digging to find a better comp, I guess.

    1. He's just 24. Through his first two seasons, Frank Viola was 11-25 with a 5.38 ERA 5.7 K/9, 3.5 BB/9, 1.5 HR/9. That was through 56 starts. Liam is only halfway to that but is a year older.

  2. Swarzak is 7.1 innings from getting 100
    Grady should put him in and let him finish the game
    I am cheering hard for this 100 relief innings.

  3. Tell me that Gardy didn't bring in a reliever to face two batters in the first inning and then brought in another reliever to start the second inning.

    1. Tonkin is not a long reliever. My guess is that De Vries is not used to relieving, so he figured let Tonkin get out of the mess and let De Vries start the second inning as if he was starting.

      1. These are important considerations when the club is down 7-0 in the bottom of the first and 20+ games out of first place.

  4. Joe Posnanski ‏@JPosnanski
    Nick Punto just slid head first into first base on a single to centerfield. So many things to be said, so little time.

    1. greatest thing ever.

      rob neyer on the job.

      What made this so ridiculously interesting was the utter insanity of the thing, because you see Nick Punto's ground ball bounded into center field ... THERE WAS NO PLAY AT FIRST BASE.

        1. You must remember this?

          SCOTT ULLGER (coach, Minnesota Twins): first time he slid headfirst into the bag, I thought about saying something. But, really, is it a coach's place to say something about that? I don't know.

      1. What better time to do it when there isn't a play?
        Don't have to worry about answering to "it slows you down" or anything.
        Good form.
        Oh, but when he got up, he first pivoted towards fair territory! They could tag him out!

        1. At least he seemed to be slightly embarrassed, like he realized it was ridiculous.

          Small steps.

          Like, Punto-sized steps.

  5. Ron Gardenhire was alone in his office. He looked up at his framed picture of Casey Stengel. "Casey," Gardy exclaimed, "I'm about ready to give up!"

    "You gotta lose 'em some of the time. When you do, lose 'em right," said a voice.

    "Casey?" Gardy exclaimed, "Is that you!"

    "Yep," said Casey Stengel, "and this team has shown me more ways to lose than I even knew existed."

    "So what should I do, Casey? What's the answer?"

    "The secret of successful managing is to keep the five guys who hate you away from the four who are undecided," said Casey.

    "I don't think the players hate me," Gardy said. "They just don't play very well. Maybe I should be tougher on them. Impose a curfew or something."

    "Being with a woman all night never hurt no professional baseball player. It's staying up all night looking for a woman that does him in. You gotta learn that if you don't get it by midnight, chances are you ain't getting it, and if you do, it ain't worth it," Casey said.

    "So maybe I'm being too strict?"

    "They say some of my stars drink whiskey, but I have found that ones who drink milkshakes don't win many ballgames," said Casey

    "You really think that would help, Casey?" asked Gardy.

    "Never make predictions, especially about the future. There's three things you can do in a baseball game. You can win or you can lose or it can rain."

    "Thanks, Casey. I was wondering if anybody here can play this game, but you've really made me feel better. Any final advice?" asked Gardy.

    "Remember this: without losers, where would the winners be?"

    We'll just have to settle for 77-85!

  6. Race to the Bottom, 2013. It's humorless and relentless: another grim season ending with a run to near historic futility (and if you consider the three year run, it is historic).

    Losses Seasons
    102 1982
    99 2011
    97 1999
    96 2012
    94 1997
    93 2000
    92 1983 1998
    91 1986 1993
    90 1961
    89 1978
    88 1990 1995
    86 1971
    85 1985 2013
    1. Twins have 280 losses over the last three seasons.
      What's the worst before that?

      1997-1999: 283 losses
      1998-2000: 282 losses

      Any more than that and it precedes the move West. The Senators lost 290 or more over three consecutive seasons 4 times (well, 5 if you count 1903-1906 twice):
      1955-1957: 295 losses
      1947-1949: 291 losses
      1907-1909: 297 losses
      1904-1906: 295 losses
      1903-1905: 294 losses

      1903 was a 140-game season, the rest were all 154-game seasons (although there were often ties and unplayed games due to weather keeping the total number of games above or below 154).

      The best winning percentage in any of those 290+ loss runs was .369 (1947-1949).
      (Wait! That's not a percentage!)

      The 2011-2013 Twins have a .408 record.

      Hey! Gardy is at regular-season win 996!

      1. Oy. He's going to get win #100 near the end of an atrocious season? That's unfortunate.

        Of course, the Twins would actually have to win four more games this season.

    2. I don't think I like this game.

      376 losses from '97-2000; an average of 94 per season.

      293 losses from '11-2013; an average of ~98 per season*
      288 losses from '11-2013; an average of ~96 per season.**
      280 losses from '11-2013; an average of ~93 per season.***

      Historic Futility

      *total if they lose out the season.
      **total if they lose 8 of their remaining 13 games.
      ***total if they win out the season.

      1. I have a spreadsheet that shows it all. Maybe I should make it a Google doc. The Twins have had more losses than the post-move average for a 2 year period, and 3 year period, and the 4-10 year periods. They need 12 losses (unlikely) to get to above the 11 year average.

        1. ...I don't want to see that spreadsheet. Using the small amount of data from your "Race To The Bottom: 2013" was depressing enough. Well, maybe to see how many wins/winning seasons will be necessary to reverse the trend...it could be fun interesting instructive depressing horrific.

          Nevermind, my first instinct was correct.

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