Game 2: Kansas City at Minnesota

Starting the season with a win, as opposed to the recent standard "L" is so much fun, I was disappointed the Twins didn't play yesterday. Instead, I watched the Wild clinch home ice for the playoffs and the Timberwolves hang with the  Warriors for about 2 quarters before the Splash Brothers blew the thing up.

So, with limited optimism for this season, and with the understanding that Spring Training results mean next-to-nothing, basically all I have to point to today will be historic results.*

The last time the Twins opened the season with a win, 2008, they proceeded to lose the next three games in a row. After 10 games, they were 5-5 and ended the season at 89-74, good for 2nd in the Central (losing Game 163 to Chicago ... booo!)

The last time they won multiple games out of the gate was a decade ago - 2007 - when they won 3, had a couple days off, lost a game and then basically traded wins & losses on their way to a 6-4 start. They went 79-83 and finished 3rd in the Central.

In 2010, the Twins lost their opener, and then pulled off 5 wins in a row, and 7 wins out of the first 10 games. They finished the season with 8 losses in the last 10 games. They still won the Central, but were swept by the Yankees in the LDS and have not returned the playoffs since.

Whatever - I certainly like the idea of a 2-0 start to an 0-2 start. Though I'd argue the Twins are pitching-poor if Hector Santiago is your #2 starter, I certainly wouldn't mind if he can get back to the 2015 version of himself (32 games started, 180.2 IP, 8.1 SO/9, 3.59 ERA, 105 ERA+, 1.256 WHIP).

The Royals counter with Ian Kennedy on the mound.

*Historic results also mean nothing ... but what else am I going to talk about?

97 thoughts on “Game 2: Kansas City at Minnesota”

  1. Hector Santiago career ERA+: 103
    Ervin Santana: 101

    Starting pitching is only getting better!

    BTW, Ervin leads the AL in IP (tied), WHIP, ERA+ and wins (tied of course). That's after every AL ace starter has already pitched, barring injury that forced teams to push their ace back in the rotation to start the season.

  2. The sad thing is that I would take an end result that's the same as any of the three years you mentioned.

    1. I almost thought he wasn't actually running. He wasn't in the KC broadcast's frame until after the throw arrived.

  3. Have y'all been to the Budweiser deck? Highly recommended. We have our own bar, food, bonfire and bathrooms. I knew that going in, but it's still awesome.

    1. Bonfire? This sounds like something that would happen at New Comiskey. Fueled by disco records as is traditional in Chicago.

      1. Guaranteed Rate Field is a cookie cutter stadium. I can't really think of one distinguishing feature and I've been there many times. I'll be there on Saturday, actually.

        1. It's not exactly cookie cutter, but if you want a distinguishing feature, it's CONCRETE. Lots and lots of it. Like someone finished their basement, but left the foundation as the outer walls.

  4. Double plays are Santiago's best friend (because his arm would probably fall off without them).

    (Guhh, I sound as whiny as Dick)

  5. I assumed this would be a 1pm game, so I'm joining late. Apparently the MLB app didn't see fit to notify me the game had started.

  6. Dudebro who robbed the kid of a foul ball and then acted like hot stuff to his buddies reminds me that Minnesota has its share of jerks.

        1. I'm not sure what part(s) the "sadly" modifies, so I'll just assume you like stealing from kids as a hobby.

            1. I thought maybe you were lamenting that your children weren't with you. That seems like something you'd do.

          1. My guess is he's said he won't be able to get an easy foul/home run ball, He might have to work for it!

      1. He was wearing Twins gear. I'm trying to think of a neighboring state he'd be from that doesn't slander a fellow Citizen.

  7. I forgot to mention a week or two ago I was at the LCS and the ballgame on had the Mariners' TV crew. In the booth was former Twins' Rule 5 Ryan Rowland-Smith, an Australian, who's currently a free agent. LCS owner thought it sounded like a golf broadcast, with Ryan's quiet English accent, but I thought he sounded very intelligent and could make an outstanding broadcaster someday.

    *Local (baseball) Card Shop

      1. Bonfire area is completely crowded. Also, the Milkmaid doesn't want to go over there because she knows she won't come back. The bathroom breaks have been nice and toasty, though.

        1. Assuming you're well-hydrated, Moises Alou could probably give you some tips on ways to keep your hands warm...

    1. You know you've got a pretty special hitter when he gets beat by a pitch and hits it high off the wall for a triple. Sano was not trying to drive that ball to right field.

    1. There have been two little warm patches in the game, and one lasted the length of that half-inning. That was doubly nice.

      The other was during the kiss-cam.

  8. I had to come in from the car following a meeting, but waited until Mauer finished his at-bat to do so. I get into the office and knock out a few quick things, and then open up the MLB app on the phone to a 9-1 Twins lead.
    .
    .
    .
    They keep that up, you fellas may not see much of me this season.

  9. Twins are tied for the fewest runs allowed through the first 2 games of the season in Twins history. The other teams to do it were the '03 Twins, who opened against the woeful Tigers, and the '61 Twins in their first 2 games after the franchise moved to Minnesota. They shut out the Yankees in New York on Opening Day (yes, the '61 Yankees) and presumably after a rainout or 2, went to Baltimore and gave up 2 runs in a win over the Orioles. That Twins started their existence at 8-2 but finished the season at 70-90, which actually be an 11-win improvement for this Twins team over last year.

    1. I'm quite pleased that you are able to say this, but then I started to realize that this is something you've never actually been able to say after games have been played.

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