Sunday, May 15, 2011

Minor League Update 5/15/11

Rochester Wrap
Charlotte 2 Rochester 0 5inn

  • The Red Wings had their game with Charlotte ended after just five innings yesterday to drop to 14-20 on the year. Andy Baldwin got the start for Rochester and went 4.2 innings and gave up two runs on six hits along with a walk and four strikeouts to drop his record on the year to 2-3 and brought his era down to 6.68. Offensively, the Red Wings did not get much going against Charlotte starter and former major leaguer Jeff Marquez as they could only muster two hits in this one. Rene Tosoni went 1-3 at the plate with his seventh double to bring his average up to .286. Jeff Bailey also went 1-3 at the plate with his third double.

  • Today, the Red Wings continue their series with Charlotte as Anthony Swarzak gets the start for Rochester. Gametime is at 1:15 in Charlotte.

New Britain Bits

New Britain 6 Portland 3

New Britain 4 Portland 0

  • In game one Deolis Guerra got the start for the Rockcats and was much much better than he had been. Guerra went the first five innings and allowed just a run on two hits along with three strikeouts to raise his record to 3-4 and lower his era to 9.85. Tyler Robertson pitched the last two innings and gave up two runs on two hits along with two walks and five strikeouts. With the two runs allowed Robertson's era ballooned to 4.50 on the year. Offensively, the Rockcats were led by Yangervis Solarte who went 2-2 with his team high 14th double and 19th rbi to bring his average up to .362. Mark Dolenc went 2-2 with his 13th rbi. Chris Parmelee went 1-3 with his 11th double and 24th rbi along with two runs scored. Evan Bigley went 1-2 with his 10th double and 21st rbi and a run scored. Dan Rohlfing went 1-3 with his second double and drove in two runs.

  • In Game two Brett Jacobson got the start for the Rockcats and was good. Jacobson went the first three innings and did not give up a run without giving up a hit, but he did walk four batters along with two strikeouts. With the three shutout innings Jacobson saw his era lower to 2.78. Ryan Mullins made his return to New Britain by working three shutout innings of his own to pick up the win. Mullins gave up two hits along with a walk and two strikeouts. Santos Arias pitched a shutout inning of his own on one hit to lower his era down to 8.10. Offensively, New Britain was led by Chris Hermann who went 1-3 with his second homerun since his promotion and two rbi's to bring his total up to 10 with the Rockcats. Steve Singleton went 2-3 with his 13th double and eighth rbi to bring his average up to .295. Deibinson Romero also went 2-3 with his sixth double to bring his average up to .261. Chris Parmelee went 1-2 with a walk including his first triple of the year.

  • Today, the Rockcats try to stay in first place as they continue their series with Portland as Steve Hirschfeld gets the start for New Britain. Gametime is at 12:35 in New Britain.

Fort Myers Minutes

Fort Myers 4 Daytona 1

  • The Miracle came off a rough series with Dunedin to rebound last night to beat first place Daytona by a score of 4-1. Matt Schuld had his best start of the year last night for the Miracle in the win. Schuld went six innings and gave up a run on only three hits along with a walk and a career high nine strikeouts. Schuld improved his record on the year to 3-0 and lowered his era down to 4.22. Blake Martin then came on and pitched two shutout innings with four strikeouts to lower his era down to 3.20. Bruce Pugh pitched an impressive 9th inning to pick up his sixth save of the year. Pugh struck out all three batters he faced to lower his era down to 3.71. Offensively, the Miracle were led by Aaron Hicks who went 1-4 with his fifth double and 13th rbi. Steve Liddle went 1-3 with his third double. Brian Dozier went 1-4 with his fourth triple of the year. James Beresford and Nick Romero also added base hits.

  • Today, the Miracle continue their series with Daytona as Kane Holbrooks gets the start for Fort Myers. Gametime is at 4:35 in Daytona.

Beloit Business

Beloit 6 Quad Cities 4

Quad Cities 6 Beloit 2

  • In game one of the double header they got great starting pitching and held on for a good quality 6-4 win. Adrian Salcedo got the start and was very good once again for the Snappers. Salcedo went 6+ innings and gave up 4 runs although more importantly was that only two of them were earned along with two walks and a strikeout. It was not as good as some of his other starts but it was solid although you would like to see a few more strikeouts. Ryan O' Roarke then came in and pitched a shutout inning of work to pick up his first save of the year. With the shutout inning O' Roarke's era on year to a very good 1.76. Offensively the Snappers were led by Gunner Glad who went 1-3 at the plate with his fourth double and drove in his ninth and tenth runs of the year. Daniel Santana went 1-3 with his fourth double and his sixth stolen base. Wang Wei Lin, Jamaal Hawkins, and Nate Roberts each contributed a base hit in the win.

  • In game 2 of the doubleheader it did not go as well for the Snappers as they fell to Quad Cities by a score of 6-2. Michael Tonkin got a spot start in the nightcap and was ok going three innings and giving up two runs on four hits along with a walk and two strikeouts to raise his era up to 6.98. Blayne Weller then came on and went two innings and gave up four runs although only two of them were earned. He also walked an incredible five batters along with a strikeout to take the loss and move to 3-1. Jose Gonzalez pitched the last two innings and did not give up a hit along with two walks and three strikeouts to lower his era down to 2.40. Offensively the Snappers were led by Wang Wei Lin who went 2-4 at the plate with his 11th rbi and brought his average up to .273. Daniel Santana went 1-3 with his fifth double. Andy Leer, Nate Roberts, Michael Gonzalez, Danny Ortiz, and Lance Ray each contributed a base hit, but the Snappers could not put it together to score runs as they left six guys on base in this one.

  • Today, the Snappers continue their series with Quad Cities as Andrei Lobanov gets the start for Beloit. Gametime is at 2pm in Beloit.

Sunday, May 15th

Twins Talk

Blue Jays 9 Twins 3 11 innings

  • For those of you that are expecting me to go negative about the Twins you are wrong because times like this test a true fan's meddle. All us Twins fans have been spoiled the last 10 years with 6 division titles in those 10 years. Most small to mid-market teams have peaks and valley's and right now the Twins are going through one of their valleys. Even though they likely won't return to postseason play for the 7th time in 10 years they can still have a decent season. Trust me it will get better as their is no chance they will continue to play like this. As they continue to get healthier and more confident they will win more and more. The problem is they have dug themselves such a hole it is probably too much to dig themselves out of. I will continue to watch and cheer for the Twins no matter how bad it gets and I encourage everyone to stay positive as it will get better.

  • Yesterday at Target Field the Twins lost their 7th game in a row this time in heartbreaking fashion to the Blue Jays. After leaving eleven guys on in the first ten innings the Twins bullpen imploded and gave up six runs on only four hits along with four walks to blow the game. Glen Perkins was the tough luck loser as he started the debacle and gave up a leadoff hit to Corey Patterson before departing. He got the loss thanks to Jim Hoey giving up a two run homerun to Jose Bautista. In a more positive thing Nick Blackburn got the start and was awesome once again. Blackburn went 7.2 innings and only gave up two earned runs on just five hits along with two walks and a career high eight strikeouts. Blackburn had a 3-2 lead going into the eighth inning before giving up a swinging bunt single to Yunel Escobar then something unfortunate happened. Corey Patterson hit a drive to right center that Denard Span even though he gave it all he had couldn't quite get to as it went off the tip of his glove for an rbi triple. With the three runs allowed Blackburn lowered his era on the year to 3.70. Matt Capps then came on and pitched 1.1 perfect innings with two strikeouts to lower his era to 3.93. Glen Perkins then came on and pitched a scoreless innings with a walk and a strikeout before giving up the hit and moving his record to 0-1 and upped his era to an unbelievable 0.92. Jim Hoey then came in and was awful as he did not get an out while giving up three runs of his own on only one hit along with walking two to increase his era to 9.72. Jose Mijares then came in and was worse yet as he faced four batters and gave up two hits and walked the other two along with giving up two runs to raise his era to 5.40. Alex Burnett got the last three outs to lower his era to 7.00.

  • Offensively they had thirteen hits, but were only able to push three runs across and that was the biggest reason they lost. When you leave 12 guys on base you are not going to win very many games. The Twins were led by Michael Cuddyer who went 3-5 at the plate with his fourth homerun of the year and his sixth rbi to raise his average to .248. Justin Morneau went 2-5 with his ninth double. Danny Valencia went 2-4 at the plate along with a costly error in the first inning. Denard Span and Trevor Plouffe also contributed two hits for the Twins.

  • Today, the Twins finish their series with the Blue Jays as Brian Duensing gets the start and will be opposed by Brandon Morrow of the Blue Jays.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

looking ahead to 2012

I know some will say that I am jumping ship by looking forward to 2012, but we need to be realistic. Only the Twins of 2006 have come back from 10 games down and won a division title since 1917 so the odds are not very high that this team will make it back into postseason play this year. Do I think Cleveland will come down to earth some and that the Twins will play much better in the summer months well of course I do. Do I think it is possible for the Twins to make it back into postseason play yes I do, but a lot of things would have to go awful right for the Twins and a lot would have to go wrong for the rest of the divison as the Twins are in celler at 12-21 a whopping 10 games out of first. This question has to be asked whether the Twins are in the playoffs or if they aren't so I thought it would be fun to look at the decisions the Twins Front Office will have after the season barring a lockout that I think is very unlikely. I will go player to player and give his contract status and also what is status is with the team.

Joe Mauer- Their is no doubt the season may have turned out differently if Mauer had not gotten injured. He likely will be back by the first of June and hopefully puts up Joe Mauer numbers. Going forward a decision has to be made about whether to move Joe Mauer off of catcher. The Twins owe Mauer 7 years 161 million so Mauer will definately be back. My idea of what to do with him is the same thing I have heard others say and that is have him catch about 90 games with another 30 games at first base and 30 games as the DH. Whenever Mauer would play first I would have Morneau be the DH. I think a key to the Twins winning in the future is keeping Joe Mauer on the field and that is the best way to do it.

Justin Morneau- I still believe that Morneau will get it going and be the Justin Morneau Twins fans have come to expect. It is only 33 games into the season, but Morneau is only hitting .212 on the year. The bottom line is Morneau will be back no matter what because the way he is hitting right now no one would take the 28 million he has on his contract after this year. The thing about it is if Morneau comes back and hits the way he has in the past then the Twins need to seriously consider extending him. The 14 million per year is very managable on the payroll, however the injury risk with Morneau is great after missing great parts of 2009 and 2010 due to injury. With that being said if Morneau keeps hitting like this it will be a moot point.

Tsuyoshi Nishioka- Nishioka will be back in 2012 on the second year of a three year contract. We still don't know what we got in Nishioka after getting hurt so early in the season. I think with his arm strength Nishioka will be the second baseman in 2012 as he tries to build on this year.

Alexi Casilla- I think Casilla is spending his final year with the Twins if he even makes it through the year. Casilla has been given opportunity after opportunity to be a key player for the Twins, but he just has not been able to do it.

Danny Valencia- Valencia has been going through somewhat of a sophmore slump so far as has been consistantly in the .220's and .230's. He has driven in a team hight 18 runs though, but he has made some baserunning lapses and his defense has been inconsistant. However, he is the best 3rd baseman since Cory Koskie so he will definatly be back.

Delmon Young- Delmon Young has two things going against him. First he has missed quite a bit of time due to a rib injury. Second and probably most important he is making 5.4 million this year and due a jump to the 8-9 million range I look for the Twins to move him to try to acquire a shortstop and possibly bullpen help. Young's value is very high after his great season in 2010 so I look for them to captalize on it to get some good prospects especially with guys like Tosoni and Revere just about ready to start next season.

Denard Span- Denard Span has reestablished himself as a cataylst in the Twins offense at the top of the lineup. I still think he would be a better left fielder than a centerfielder, but am resigned to the fact that they will keep him in center for the next few years. The Twins have Span signed to a reasonable contract as long as he keeps his high on base percentage in 37-38 percent range. Span is owed 15 million over the next 3 years with a 9 million option for 2015 so it is very reasonable and at only 27 years old he is part of the solution in the Twins likely retooling operation.

Michael Cuddyer- This is a tough one for me as I value him as a person and he is solid, but his defense is detoriating and his price tag will likely be higher than I am willing to pay. At age 32 and making 10.5 million in the last year of his deal that is too rich for my blood. If he was willing to take half of that I would look to bring him back, but that is not going to happen. The writing is on the wall when the Twins would not talk to him about an extension in the offseason so I look for the Twins and Cuddyer to go their seperate ways this offseason.

Jason Kubel- Before the season I had my mind made up that 2011 would be Jason Kubel's final year with the Twins. However, he has looked like a different hitter this year by hitting close to .350 all year. He has not tried to hit homeruns and has got big hit after big hit. There is still 4 and a half months to go but he is starting to be in my plans. The more he has played in the outfield the more comfortable I have become with him in the outfield. At age 28 he is a younger version of Cuddyer and if he can continue to do ok against lefty's I would probably bring him back on a 2-3 year deal as a part time outfielder and part time dh.

Jim Thome- The clock seems like it is running out on Thome as a player as a 41 year old it seemed like his bat was slow even before he was injured. Here is hoping he can get the 9 more homeruns he needs to get to 600 so he can walk away into the sunset as this will be Jim Thome's last year in a Twins uniform.

Drew Butera- Drew Butera is an ok backup catcher as he is fine defensively, but he absolutely can not hit. With my plan for Joe Mauer the Twins are going to need a better hitting backup catcher. Nothing against Drew Butera, but hitting .112 is just not going to get the job done so I don't look for him to be back.

Carl Pavano- I don't know if this is a early in the season thing, but Carl Pavano has looked really old as of late. Being that they owe him 8 million next year it is going to be difficult to move him but I look for the Twins to find a taker to make room for Kyle Gibson in a Twins uniform

Nick Blackburn- That was another bad contract for the Twins as Blackburn is due 11 million the next two years after this season. His pitching has been so up and down that the Twins could not move him even if they tried.

Francisco Liriano- Liriano is such a tease as his no hitter would attest to, but he is so inconsistant you can't give him a long term contract. I would make him available and see what kind of offers you can get and if a team really values him I would jump on it. I don't think the Twins are going to get the kind of offers that they want so I look for Liriano to be back.

Brian Duensing- Duensing has been a pleasant surprise for the Twins and since he is signed so cheap he definatly will be back and possibly be signed to an extension.

Kevin Slowey- With so many other holes on the team keeping Slowey is not something that should be done. They need to move him and get the best package that they possibly can.

Joe Nathan- I feel bad for him, but Joe Nathan is not getting the job done and their can be no loyalty when it comes to business. Nathan has had a great Twins career, but it will come to an end after the season.

Matt Capps- Capps is not a dominant closer, but he does get the job done so i would give him a nice 3 year deal to continue closing for the Twins.

coming off Books
I have aproximatley 40 million coming off the books after this season in the moves that I have laid out so that should be plenty to become a better team.

Tentative 2012 lineup with additions that i am suggesting
C- Mauer
1b- Morneau
2b- Freddy Sanchez
ss- Nishioka
3b- Valencia
Lf- Revere
Cf- Span
Rf- Kubel
Dh- Mike Napoli

Steve Singleton

1. Span
2. Revere
3. Mauer
4. Morneau
5. Napoli
6. Kubel
7. Valencia
8. Sanchez
9. Nishioka

Pitching Rotation
1. Liriano
2. Baker
3. Gibson
4. Duensing
5. Blackburn

Michael Wuertz

Let me know what you think if you disagree with me or agree with me I would love to know what you think. You can either leave a comment in the comment box or shoot me an email at

Monday, May 9, 2011

Can the Twins rebound?

The bottom line is the Twins are not playing very good right now as their 12-20 record would attest to. It is not very hard to figure out why though as they are missing Joe Mauer, Delmon Young, Jim Thome, and Tsuyoshi Nishioka who combined for 55 homeruns and 246 rbi's in the 2010 season. Granted none of the guys just mentioned were off to a very good start in 2011, but you know they are going to come around. The biggest reason for concern though is the start of the pitching staff in Carl Pavano and Francisco Liriano as they both have era's over six. This is not something that should be sneezed at as we are five-six weeks into the season and you would think that you would know what you got at the top of your rotation. If it was not for Scott Baker and Brian Duensing the Twins would be in much worse shape than they are and that is saying something as the Twins currently trail Cleveland by 9.5 games. Another problem has been the dismal performance of Justin Morneau. Currently Morneau is only hitting .202 on the year after being a .284 career hitter including hitting .300 three times. The thing with Morneau is none of us know what he is going through as he suffered a serious brain injury last year and he was not able to work out this winter due to the concussion. He did not swing a bat for over 8 months so is it that big of a surprise that he is not hitting. I think we all myself including were expecting too much too soon for Morneau. This was a very serious injury and I am sure he is just thankful that he is even playing. A judgement on him can not be made over 32 games and those that have given up on him are going to be wrong. With all those things that have gone wrong so far in 2011 the important thing is there is still 130 games to be played so it is too soon to give up on this team. The question is what do the Twins need to do to get back in the race.

The first and last thing that needs to happen is for the Twins to get healthy especially Joe Mauer. The Twins can not and will not win without Joe Mauer. He is the biggest contributer for the Twins and they need him. When Joe Mauer is well Joe Mauer the Twins have the capability to beat anyone and get on a run of great play. It was obvious that Mauer was not right early in the season so just as important to getting him back is getting him back when he is healthy. With Drew Butera, Steve Holm, and now Rene Rivera holding down the catching position that has been an automatic out. Getting Mauer back would take the pressure off of everyone else. Getting Delmon Young back will be big as he is coming off a career year in 2010 and adding him just deepens the lineup. Getting Nishioka back really stabalizes one of the worst positions in all of baseball in middle infield whether he plays second or short. Really a key to things is getting the players healthy.

The biggest thing that needs to improve if the Twins can rebound is the pitching staff. Other than Scott Baker, Brian Duensing, Glen Perkins, and Matt Capps the pitching staff has been awful. That has to change or there will be no turnaround. Francisco Liriano's no hitter hopefully will be the beginning of a turnaround because he has way too much talent to keep pitching like that. Carl Pavano won't pitch like he did last year, but he is a much better pitcher than he has shown lately so he is a key to getting back. The bullpen needs to become more consistant as they move forward. Joe Nathan, Alex Burnett, Jose Mijares, Jim Hoey have all been so inconsistant and they need them to develop some consistancy. Another area that needs to improve is their defense as it has shoddy at best. A great part of past Twins teams has been their defense and it has not been good this year. A big part of it has been the changing of players with all the injuries so it could help with the return of health. If some of these things happen its possible for the Twins to get back in it. The Twins dug themselves quite a whole and probably will need Cleveland and Kansas City to come back to the pack some, but the Twins can't worry about them they need to get healthy and put together some better play. If those things happen I really believe that the Twins could be in a pennant race again this summer.

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Pitcher and hitter of the month for April

I don't have time to write any comments about my choices for each of these awards, but Ill put the winner and their April stats along with another choice that could have won the award and let you decide if I made the right decision. If you have another name that you would like to nominate let me know that too by leaving a comment in the comment box or shooting me an email to

Scott Baker- 1-2 3.16 era 5 starts 31.1inn=6.1 per start .239 OBA

Brian Duensing-2-1 2.91 era 5starts 34inn= 6.8 per start .264 OBA

Glen Perkins- 0-0 0.75 era 11games 12 innings .225 OBA

Hitter of the Month

Jason Kubel- .351 avg 2hr 10rbi 9 doubles .392/.511/.903 stat line .278 vs leftys/.365 vs rightys

Denard Span- .298 avg 1hr 5rbi 4 doubles and a triple .354/.385/.739

Rochester Red Wings

Pitcher of the Month

Kyle Gibson- 0-1 3.15era 4 starts 2oinn= 5inn per start 4bb 21k .221oba

Scott Diamond- 1-1 3.48era 4starts 20.2inn=5.1inn per start .208 opponents batting average

Hitter of the Month

Trevor Plouffe- .282 avg 6hr 13rbi's 4 doubles and a triple 11 runs scored .344/.590/.934 stat line.

Ben Revere- .293 avg 0hr 5rbi's 2 doubles, 7 stolen bases 10 runs scored .330/.315/.645 stat line

New Britain Rockcats

Pitcher of the Month

Cole Devries- 0-0 0.00era 7 games 4 saves 14.2inn 3 hits 1bb 21 strikeouts .063 OBA

Steve Hirscfeld- 1-0 2.05era 4starts 22inn= 5.5 per start 5bb/18k .190 oba

Hitter of the Month

Yangervis Solarte- .359 avg 2 homeruns 12 rbi's 9 doubles and a triple, .367/.577/.944 line

Joe Benson- .295 avg 2homeruns 12 rbi's 8 doubles and a triple .360/.500/.860 stat line

Fort Myers

Pitcher of the Month

Kane Holbrooks- 0-4 2.43 era 5 starts 29.2 inn=5.84 per start .248 OBA

Dakota Watts- 0-1 3.12era 5 saves 8 games 8.2 inn .273 OBA

Hitter of the Month

James Beresford- .325avg 0hr 8rbi's 2 doubles and 8 runs scored .353/.350/.703 stat line

Danny Rams- .338 avg 1hr 10rbi's 4 doubles and 2 triples .392/.500/.892 stat line

Beloit Snappers

Pitcher of the Month

Adrian Salcedo- 1-1 2.78 era 4 starts 22.2 innings= 5.55 per start 6bb/19k .259 OBA

Logan Darnell- 1-1 2.78 era 4 starts 22.2inn .148 OBA

Hitter of the Month

Danny Ortiz- .377 avg 6hr 15rbi's 7 doubles and a triple with 16 runs scored .429/.768/1.197

Oswaldo Arcia- .352 avg 5hr 18 rbi's 8 doubles and a triple with 18 runs scored .420/.704/1.124

Twins Organization Pitcher of Month for April: Cole Devries

Twins Organization Pitcher of Month for April: Danny Ortiz

Stream of Consciousness

Hello everyone my name is Travis Aune and I am the author of Travis Twins Talk a blog I have had for a couple of years and sometimes the information is constant, but because I am also a college student sometimes it is not as constant. I have finals this week and then graduate on Friday with an Associates before I move on to get my Bachelors so I guess I am trying to explain why my posts have not been as often as other bloggers. That does not mean I am any less of a Twins fan because I am a huge Twins fan as I never miss a game along with Co-hosting Twins Minor League Weekly every Monday and Thursday night with Seth Stohs at 10pm central. I still try to read some other Twins blogs and listen to podcasts when I have an opportunity and I can honestly say that the amount of negativity surrounded the Twins blogging community and on Twitter is making me sick to my stomach. Twins fans should be ashamed of themselves right now. Are the Twins playing like we are accostumed to them playing right now of course not, but the amount of whining and complaining by so called Twins fans is unbelievable. I remember the 2000 season when the Twins threw guys like Matt Kinney, Sean Bergman, Hector Carrasco that was a bad pitching staff. They counted on position players like Matthew Lecroy, Jason Maxwell, Chad Allen, and last but not least Butch Huskey. That right there was a bad team, but in the darkness their was a glimmer of light as guys like Torii Hunter, Jacque Jones, Christian Guzman, Corey Koskie, Brad Radke, Johan Santana were getting their start. I remember that season all too well as day after day I sat and watched them compete their best every night and lose every night. The reason I continued to watch as a Twins fan is I knew things would get better as the Twins had a plan and that plan led to six division titles in nine years along with two mvp awards, multiple silver slugger awards, a manager of the year award, and most importantly hours and hours of enjoyment for Twins fans.

Now we are in 2011 the Twins are 12-19 and 9.5 games out of first, but instead of hearing about how can the Twins can get back in the race all I hear is about how this person sucks and that person should be replaced. Cmon guys this is the Twins they have given us so much enjoyment through the years and when they have a little bit of trouble you all jump ship and go negative. The thing I have always prided myself about being a Twins fan is we always stick by our team even when things are not going well. Right now it feels like I am cheering for the Yankees as every time they lose a game people are bitching that it was someones fault and someone should be benched, sent to the minors or released. Do I wish guys like Mauer, Young, Nishioka, and Thome were playing right now of course I do, but they are not so it doesn't help to bitch instead we should be cheering for guys like Butera, Tosoni, Revere, Hughes, Casilla to do well and not bitch everytime they get an out that they should be benched. The final two points that I feel I need to make is one, the Twins have had more success than just about any organization in baseball the last 10 years and we should trust that they will figure things out because the negativity is really getting sickening. Some nights I go on Twitter and all I see is this player sucks and that player sucks and it makes me sad. Justin Morneau didn't play for 8 months and had a very serious brain injury so I think we can give him a benefit of more than 31 games before we want to throw him overboard. All he has done for the Twins I think he has earned the Patience of Twins fans. I for one get frustrated sometimes when the Twins can't hit a pitcher, but the big picture is the Twins will figure it out they always do. Will they go to the playoffs again who knows, but its fun to find out. My final point is all the negativity towards manager Ron Gardenhire I think is the dumbest thing in the world. This is Gardy's 10th year as a manager and has taken teams to the playoffs six of those years and finally won the manager of the year award last year after many years he should have won it. Seems like the team goes through adversity every year and with Gardy's steady hand they find a way to make it through it a stronger team. The fact that some blame everything on Gardy is so stupid that I should not even answer that. So Gardy goes from the Manager of the Year to someone that should be fired that is so ridiculius. Mark my words the Twins will be in contention in August and all these tribulations will make the team stronger and more tight knit. I am going to get off my soap box now and just encourage before being critical look at the big picture and trust that the Twins know what they are doing as they haven't had a bad 10 year period and I for one am so thankful that the Twins give me hours of entertainment every week and makes me fall further in love with the great game of baseball every day. God Bless