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B Richard
08-17-2012, 12:01 AM
Do nice guys always finish last?

It goes without saying that the Twins have experienced success in the last decade or so. Sure, no rings, but 6 division titles in the last 10 years isn't anything to scoff at. As I'm sure all of you remember, however, the Twins always failed to string wins together, losing their last 5 ALDS appearances by a collective (2-15). Ouch. That actually hurt to type. 4 out of the 5 appearances the Twins fell to the Yankees in brutal fashion, again as I'm sure everyone here is aware. The Yankees always seemed to have the Twins number, throttling our poor Twinkies even during the regular season. I'm sure we could all agree the Twins' biggest "nemesis" over the past decade has been the Yanks. Why? I'm sure countless statistical studies could be undertaken to get to the bottom of this, as well as the simple answer "they scored more runs." I'd like to briefly explore a more qualitative than quantitative answer to this question...

We all know the stereotypes associated with the Midwest- kind, neighborly, gentle people who are nice and welcoming. I myself was raised in the Midwest and am proud of where I come from. I go to school out east in Philadelphia and have encountered many people, some of whom have backwards notions about our region. I won't labor with details, but suffice it to say that I've encountered many people who thought they could walk all over me just because I hailed from the Midwest. True, the East and Midwest have different cultures. As I sat and thought about it, baseball teams have their own unique cultures as well (not necessarily mirroring their respective regions).

The Twins have their own culture. We embrace control pitchers over swing and miss guys. Joe Mauer is a homegrown guy who is married to his high school sweetheart. The Twins aren't about flash. Over the last decade, our payroll has been traditionally in the lower half of the league.

The Yankees hit homeruns. They are dangerous and flashy. Derek Jeter leaves one night stands with gift baskets of signed memorabilia (no really, google it). The Yankees strike hitters out. They land big free agents.

The Yankees are like that girl at the bar with dark features and a voluptuous frame you would love to... er, spend the night with. The Twins are like that quiet and wholesome girl with true understated beauty you've known for years and would consider marrying. Each has its merits.

Do nice guys (or girls) always lose to the Yankees in the ALDS? I appreciate the Twins culture for what it is, but I would personally like to see a change in culture. No, I'm not calling for a Red Sox-esque beer and chicken approach, nor am I calling for the Twins to welcome convicts and bad attitudes to the team. The Twins culture needs some fire from its players rather than just its manager. It's hard to articulate exactly what I want, but I just wish the Twins had some swagger. Let's see some guys get tossed every once in awhile for arguing calls (not in a Brett Lawrie like fashion though). Let's see some strikeouts. Let's see some attitude.

I love the Twins for what they are, but I can't help yearning for that mysterious element that the Yankees have shown over the past ALDSes against us. Maybe I'm wrong, but a shift in culture could inject new life into an organization that hasn't cracked the ALCS in some time.

What are your thoughts? Feel free share your ideas, even if you do think I'm absolutely wrong. It wouldn't be the first time...

Thanks

glanzer
08-17-2012, 08:09 AM
I remember I proposed a similar idea a few years ago on a Twins blog or comment thread somewhere and was pretty much beaten down by the opposition. No one seemed to think there's a psychological or non-raw-statistics approach to identifying why this team was so poor in the playoffs. While I'm not so sure it has anything to do with being too nice, I do think that playing the mighty Yankees time and time again got in the team's heads... at the very least, it got in Gardenhire and the coaching staff's heads and they projected some uneasiness onto the players. So in theory I agree with what you're saying.

JB_Iowa
08-17-2012, 08:24 AM
I've always looked at it a little bit differently. You imply that Gardenhire has some fire -- and I think that's true but while he shows flashes of fire from time to time, his managing style is best characterized for me as "taking the long view". Not panicking when you are down and working hard over the long season. And come to think about it, that's pretty Midwestern, too.

Power pitching (and power hitting aside), I agree that the playoffs require a different psychological approach than the regular season. Is that the SOLE cause for the Twins dismal playoff record in the last 10 years (I'd like to say recently but its not so recent anymore)? Of course not. Does it play a factor? My answer is yes. So count me as another one who shares some of your sentiments.

diehardtwinsfan
08-17-2012, 09:11 AM
some of those teams flat out choked (2006 and 2010 in particular).... I could have seen either one losing their series, but to do so in the manner they did tells me something else alltogether. But the teams they have consistently put together don't help. Teams like the Yankees now how to beat pitch to contact guys. They won't walk many guys, so you know you will get strikes. Just sit on your pitch and the hits will come...

There's also an organizational flaw that only sets its sites on the playoffs... That's a step to a goal, but not the goal.

Oh, and was I the only one who first read that and thought it said "breaking the stethescope"?

Willihammer
08-17-2012, 11:38 AM
Yes, Minnesota fans just need to be more blowhardy and fratboyish. That, not having higher payrolls and better players and smarter front offices, is the real reason the Twins always lose to the Yankees.

DPJ
08-17-2012, 11:42 AM
Yes, Minnesota fans just need to be more blowhardy and fratboyish. That, not having higher payrolls and better players and smarter front offices, is the real reason the Twins always lose to the Yankees.

Word son!

nicksaviking
08-17-2012, 12:01 PM
Winners have a killer instinct; losers play not to lose. Winners ride their starters deep into games and push them past their pitch-count if needed; losers pull them after the 6th during a close game and let the outcome ride on the natually inferior arms in the bullpen.

MarshalltheIrish
08-17-2012, 12:24 PM
I completely agree! I too have strongly believed for awhile that the Twins need a change in attitude. It doesn't need to be radical, just a little more fire here and there would do. Their constant losses to the Yankees in the ALDS are a perfect example. There were times watching those (especially 2010) that it looked like the Twins just rolled over, and the Yankees just KNEW they would win in the end. I think overall this is an organizational problem, and while I believe the Twins should be overhauled pretty much from top to bottom (ownership, front office, coaching staff, pitching staff), it would be great to see someone at any level introduce that "spark."

MarshalltheIrish
08-17-2012, 12:26 PM
Of course, it would be just one component for the Twins to advance in the playoffs. First order is great starting pitching and a strong infield, for sure.

DPJ
08-17-2012, 12:27 PM
it would be great to see someone at any level introduce that "spark."

Any player that's showed a "spark" in the past has been shipped outta town for not falling into lines of "Twins Baseball"

B Richard
08-17-2012, 12:36 PM
it would be great to see someone at any level introduce that "spark."

Any player that's showed a "spark" in the past has been shipped outta town for not falling into lines of "Twins Baseball"


My thought being maybe it would benefit the organization to slightly change its philosophy

twinsnorth49
08-17-2012, 01:11 PM
it would be great to see someone at any level introduce that "spark."

Any player that's showed a "spark" in the past has been shipped outta town for not falling into lines of "Twins Baseball"

Voodoo talk, spark doesn't strike batters out or get hits, get real, this is pro sports, you're either good or you're not. You can jump around and scream like a jackass all you like, it doesn't make you a better player or win games.

one_eyed_jack
08-17-2012, 01:42 PM
Voodoo talk, spark doesn't strike batters out or get hits, get real, this is pro sports, you're either good or you're not. You can jump around and scream like a jackass all you like, it doesn't make you a better player or win games.

---This.

You know what wins games? Good starting pitching. Guys like Brian Duensing, Boof Bonser and Nick Blackburn may be good enough to get you wins against Kansas City in June. But when that's who you're counting on to beat teams like the Yankees in October, sorry, not happening.

All this stuff about the Yankees being in Gardenhire's head is just nonsense. I suppose the Giants won it all in 2010 because of Bruce Bochy's steely nature in the playoffs, not because they had a starting rotation full of aces.

JB_Iowa
08-17-2012, 01:53 PM
Voodoo talk, spark doesn't strike batters out or get hits, get real, this is pro sports, you're either good or you're not. You can jump around and scream like a jackass all you like, it doesn't make you a better player or win games.

---This.

You know what wins games? Good starting pitching. Guys like Brian Duensing, Boof Bonser and Nick Blackburn may be good enough to get you wins against Kansas City in June. But when that's who you're counting on to beat teams like the Yankees in October, sorry, not happening.

All this stuff about the Yankees being in Gardenhire's head is just nonsense. I suppose the Giants won it all in 2010 because of Bruce Bochy's steely nature in the playoffs, not because they had a starting rotation full of aces.


I didn't see anyone on this thread say that attitude ALONE would make the difference. The REAL QUESTION is whether the Twins could win in the playoffs EVEN WITH power pitching if there isn't ALSO an attitude adjustment.

A lot of us appear to believe that the Twins problems in the playoffs go beyond power pitching (or even power pitching and power hitting).

CDog
08-17-2012, 02:15 PM
In many/most cases, I would guess that the comments and thoughts that "they looked beaten" or "you could just tell the Yankees knew they would win" or anything of that nature is a reflection of the feelings and attitude of the observer much, much more than that of the observed.

B Richard
08-17-2012, 02:54 PM
Voodoo talk, spark doesn't strike batters out or get hits, get real, this is pro sports, you're either good or you're not. You can jump around and scream like a jackass all you like, it doesn't make you a better player or win games.

---This.

You know what wins games? Good starting pitching. Guys like Brian Duensing, Boof Bonser and Nick Blackburn may be good enough to get you wins against Kansas City in June. But when that's who you're counting on to beat teams like the Yankees in October, sorry, not happening.

All this stuff about the Yankees being in Gardenhire's head is just nonsense. I suppose the Giants won it all in 2010 because of Bruce Bochy's steely nature in the playoffs, not because they had a starting rotation full of aces.


I didn't see anyone on this thread say that attitude ALONE would make the difference. The REAL QUESTION is whether the Twins could win in the playoffs EVEN WITH power pitching if there isn't ALSO an attitude adjustment.

A lot of us appear to believe that the Twins problems in the playoffs go beyond power pitching (or even power pitching and power hitting).

I'm happy at least someone gets it. It was never suggested that an attitude adjustment alone was the remedy, but I guess it's easier for some to jump to conclusions.

Willihammer
08-17-2012, 03:10 PM
I'm sure that arguing more balls and strikes calls will really help Mauer hold that .416 OBP. In fact, look around the league at guys who argue balls and strieks and almost always they are the guys leading the league in strikeouts. Ike Davis comes to mind (there's a Minnesotan with *attitude*).

Sometimes its best to keep your head down and shut up.

Nick Nelson
08-17-2012, 03:15 PM
In many/most cases, I would guess that the comments and thoughts that "they looked beaten" or "you could just tell the Yankees knew they would win" or anything of that nature is a reflection of the feelings and attitude of the observer much, much more than that of the observed.

Yes. Well said.

twinsnorth49
08-17-2012, 03:16 PM
Voodoo talk, spark doesn't strike batters out or get hits, get real, this is pro sports, you're either good or you're not. You can jump around and scream like a jackass all you like, it doesn't make you a better player or win games.

---This.

You know what wins games? Good starting pitching. Guys like Brian Duensing, Boof Bonser and Nick Blackburn may be good enough to get you wins against Kansas City in June. But when that's who you're counting on to beat teams like the Yankees in October, sorry, not happening.

All this stuff about the Yankees being in Gardenhire's head is just nonsense. I suppose the Giants won it all in 2010 because of Bruce Bochy's steely nature in the playoffs, not because they had a starting rotation full of aces.


I didn't see anyone on this thread say that attitude ALONE would make the difference. The REAL QUESTION is whether the Twins could win in the playoffs EVEN WITH power pitching if there isn't ALSO an attitude adjustment.

A lot of us appear to believe that the Twins problems in the playoffs go beyond power pitching (or even power pitching and power hitting).

I'm happy at least someone gets it. It was never suggested that an attitude adjustment alone was the remedy, but I guess it's easier for some to jump to conclusions.

It's certainly the central theme of your post, one followed up on by a few others. It's that part I'm addressing.

B Richard
08-17-2012, 03:35 PM
I'm sure that arguing more balls and strikes calls will really help Mauer hold that .416 OBP. In fact, look around the league at guys who argue balls and strieks and almost always they are the guys leading the league in strikeouts. Ike Davis comes to mind (there's a Minnesotan with *attitude*).

Sometimes its best to keep your head down and shut up.


Sometimes it's best to read the original post in its entirety. I'm not specifically complaining about Mauer, nor am I advocating that everyone argue calls ad absurdum. The core of my post, what I was attempting to elucidate for everyone, was that in recent years the Twins have seemingly lacked a winning attitude/ mental approach. It was almost as if there just wasn't the fire. It would be easy to confuse my point and believe I'm suggesting that "attitude" is the only thing wrong with the Twins now. Far from it, quite obviously.

I strongly believe in statistics, but to suggest to that the best teams on paper always win is downright foolish.

PopRiveter
08-17-2012, 03:44 PM
My observation: the Yankees haven't shown any "fire" or "spark" while winning all those playoff games. They have been clinical and precise. They have been incredibly professional. They simply paid top dollar for tremendous talent and then excercised that talent.
It is why I hate them. They are as far from "fun" as a sports team can be. It's like watching a group of the world's best lawyers sue your beloved family business.
Yankees are cold, clinical, boring professionals whose victories take all the "fire" and "spark" out of a game that should be magical.
Don't you dare suggest turning a real mlb team into a clone of this evil corporation.
Touched a nerve here.
:angry:

B Richard
08-17-2012, 03:49 PM
Voodoo talk, spark doesn't strike batters out or get hits, get real, this is pro sports, you're either good or you're not. You can jump around and scream like a jackass all you like, it doesn't make you a better player or win games.

---This.

You know what wins games? Good starting pitching. Guys like Brian Duensing, Boof Bonser and Nick Blackburn may be good enough to get you wins against Kansas City in June. But when that's who you're counting on to beat teams like the Yankees in October, sorry, not happening.

All this stuff about the Yankees being in Gardenhire's head is just nonsense. I suppose the Giants won it all in 2010 because of Bruce Bochy's steely nature in the playoffs, not because they had a starting rotation full of aces.


I didn't see anyone on this thread say that attitude ALONE would make the difference. The REAL QUESTION is whether the Twins could win in the playoffs EVEN WITH power pitching if there isn't ALSO an attitude adjustment.

A lot of us appear to believe that the Twins problems in the playoffs go beyond power pitching (or even power pitching and power hitting).

I'm happy at least someone gets it. It was never suggested that an attitude adjustment alone was the remedy, but I guess it's easier for some to jump to conclusions.

It's certainly the central theme of your post, one followed up on by a few others. It's that part I'm addressing.

Absolutely not, I thought it was clear from the outset that my musings were merely qualitative in nature. We could all come up with far more tangible ways the Twins could improve, but I just wanted to step back and touch on something I thought others might find interesting. I'm slightly surprised with some of the forthcoming responses from this community

Willihammer
08-17-2012, 04:12 PM
I would argue that as far as players go, the Yankees and Twins on field conduct is pretty similar. In fact, if you factor in managers and coaches, the Yankees might be the lowest key team in the league.

But hey, maybe if Gardy did a little more running-in-place a la Ron Washington, when Darin Mastroianni is trying to stretch a double into a triple, Darin'll just magically run faster. Culture trickles down from the top, right?

Don't Feed the Greed Guy
08-17-2012, 04:15 PM
Hey all,

Since this is a qualitative analysis, not quantitative... I'd like to offer four examples of grit that separate the Twins of 87 & 91 from the teams of the 2000's:

1. The Big Hrbowski launches Gant off of first in game two of the 1991 series.http://twinsdaily.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcSMIt4S4_YKLvaqfleXkaXk1qqFQsoVQ CL_t5kGppOm9kWf0jS_g2Z-gQ
2. Puckett's speech, game 6: "Guys, I just have one announcement to make: You guys should jump on my back tonight. I'm going to carry us."

3. Mad Jack Morris pitching 10 innings in game 7, "In the immortal words of the late Marvin Gaye, 'Let's get it on!'"

4. Dan Gladden--how's that for a character guy? Check out this blog on The Dazzle Man's fight with Steve Lombardozzi: http://twinsfanfromafar.blogspot.com/2011/06/clubhouse-fights.html

That's character, IMHO. The 2012 Twins clubhouse could use some of that.

Kobs
08-17-2012, 04:48 PM
Is it 2010?

twinsnorth49
08-17-2012, 09:04 PM
Hey all,

Since this is a qualitative analysis, not quantitative... I'd like to offer four examples of grit that separate the Twins of 87 & 91 from the teams of the 2000's:

1. The Big Hrbowski launches Gant off of first in game two of the 1991 series.http://twinsdaily.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcSMIt4S4_YKLvaqfleXkaXk1qqFQsoVQ CL_t5kGppOm9kWf0jS_g2Z-gQ
2. Puckett's speech, game 6: "Guys, I just have one announcement to make: You guys should jump on my back tonight. I'm going to carry us."

3. Mad Jack Morris pitching 10 innings in game 7, "In the immortal words of the late Marvin Gaye, 'Let's get it on!'"

4. Dan Gladden--how's that for a character guy? Check out this blog on The Dazzle Man's fight with Steve Lombardozzi: http://twinsfanfromafar.blogspot.com/2011/06/clubhouse-fights.html

That's character, IMHO. The 2012 Twins clubhouse could use some of that.

IMHO we could use that SKILL more.

B Richard
08-17-2012, 09:41 PM
Hey all,

Since this is a qualitative analysis, not quantitative... I'd like to offer four examples of grit that separate the Twins of 87 & 91 from the teams of the 2000's:

1. The Big Hrbowski launches Gant off of first in game two of the 1991 series.http://twinsdaily.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcSMIt4S4_YKLvaqfleXkaXk1qqFQsoVQ CL_t5kGppOm9kWf0jS_g2Z-gQ
2. Puckett's speech, game 6: "Guys, I just have one announcement to make: You guys should jump on my back tonight. I'm going to carry us."

3. Mad Jack Morris pitching 10 innings in game 7, "In the immortal words of the late Marvin Gaye, 'Let's get it on!'"

4. Dan Gladden--how's that for a character guy? Check out this blog on The Dazzle Man's fight with Steve Lombardozzi: http://twinsfanfromafar.blogspot.com/2011/06/clubhouse-fights.html

That's character, IMHO. The 2012 Twins clubhouse could use some of that.

IMHO we could use that SKILL more.

IMHO I'll take both. /thread

asmus_ndsu
08-17-2012, 11:34 PM
I think leo durocher said it all:

"What are we at the park for except to win? I'd trip my mother. I'd help her up, brush her off, tell her I'm sorry. But mother don't make it to third."

twinzgrl
08-18-2012, 12:38 PM
Should have found a way to keep Torii--he had the spark and leadership that these guys are missing.

one_eyed_jack
08-18-2012, 02:49 PM
A lot of this "winning attitude" stuff is just people who either buy into hype created by the national media and their manufactured postseason story lines or think that life imitates sports movies.

When a team wins, you hear all about some rah-rah speech before the clinching game. But they don't tend to report the fact that the eventual loser was addressed in the same manner, so a lot of fans jump to the silly conclusion that the pep talk was the difference.

Don't Feed the Greed Guy
08-18-2012, 07:44 PM
A lot of this "winning attitude" stuff is just people who either buy into hype created by the national media and their manufactured postseason story lines or think that life imitates sports movies.

When a team wins, you hear all about some rah-rah speech before the clinching game. But they don't tend to report the fact that the eventual loser was addressed in the same manner, so a lot of fans jump to the silly conclusion that the pep talk was the difference.

Sure, there is hype. The job of the media is not to "create" the hype, but to report on what happened in the clubhouse, AND on the field. There is no hype if there isn't production. The speech makes for great story, but the performance IS the backbone of the story. The grit and character of individuals who rise to the occasion--that's where a qualitative examination of character can't be registered in a quantitative examination of statistics.

It's sort of like the gaffe our President (and I am a staunch supporter of President Obama) made when he said, "you didn't build your business, the government did." Well, to follow your line of reasoning, Puckett didn't hit the home run, or make the catch against the plexiglass. The media did.

BD57
08-18-2012, 08:51 PM
So disagree with the idea that the 2006 team "choked."

Mid season, our playoff starters were going to be Santana, Radke & Liriano. THAT would've been a powerful threesome.

By playoff time, two of them were gone - Liriano was out completely, Radke's arm had fallen off. Everything was premised upon Johan winning game #1 - and he got outpitched.

No shame or "choke" in that.

glunn
08-18-2012, 09:09 PM
Hey all,

Since this is a qualitative analysis, not quantitative... I'd like to offer four examples of grit that separate the Twins of 87 & 91 from the teams of the 2000's:

1. The Big Hrbowski launches Gant off of first in game two of the 1991 series.http://twinsdaily.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcSMIt4S4_YKLvaqfleXkaXk1qqFQsoVQ CL_t5kGppOm9kWf0jS_g2Z-gQ
2. Puckett's speech, game 6: "Guys, I just have one announcement to make: You guys should jump on my back tonight. I'm going to carry us."

3. Mad Jack Morris pitching 10 innings in game 7, "In the immortal words of the late Marvin Gaye, 'Let's get it on!'"

4. Dan Gladden--how's that for a character guy? Check out this blog on The Dazzle Man's fight with Steve Lombardozzi: http://twinsfanfromafar.blogspot.com/2011/06/clubhouse-fights.html

That's character, IMHO. The 2012 Twins clubhouse could use some of that.

I agree. It is unclear to me who are the clubhouse leaders, or even if there are any.

I also endorse the Derek Jeter custom of giving memorabilia to his one night stands -- that one cracked me up. But I would suggest that the married players just give jewelry.

J-Dog Dungan
08-18-2012, 09:14 PM
Not sure if you guys saw a post by some website recently, but i read somewhere that Cuddy said that when they played the Yankees, they went in expecting to lose.

one_eyed_jack
08-18-2012, 09:25 PM
It's sort of like the gaffe our President (and I am a staunch supporter of President Obama) made when he said, "you didn't build your business, the government did." Well, to follow your line of reasoning, Puckett didn't hit the home run, or make the catch against the plexiglass. The media did.


---Huh? I don't see how following my line of reasoning gets you anywhere near there.

glunn
08-18-2012, 09:38 PM
[QUOTE=one_eyed_jack;47018]

It's sort of like the gaffe our President (and I am a staunch supporter of President Obama) made when he said, "you didn't build your business, the government did." Well, to follow your line of reasoning, Puckett didn't hit the home run, or make the catch against the plexiglass. The media did.

If you indeed support Obama, you will be glad to learn that this was not a gaffe and he never said: "you didn't build your business, the government did."

Here (http://www.wbur.org/2012/07/26/obama-you-didnt-build-that)is EXACTLY what he said:

"If youíve been successful, you didnít get there on your own. You didnít get there on your own. Iím always struck by people who think, well, it must be because I was just so smart. There are a lot of smart people out there. It must be because I worked harder than everybody else. Let me tell you something ó there are a whole bunch of hardworking people out there. If you were successful, somebody along the line gave you some help. There was a great teacher somewhere in your life. Somebody helped to create this unbelievable American system that we have that allowed you to thrive. Somebody invested in roads and bridges. If youíve got a business ó you didnít build that. Somebody else made that happen. The Internet didnít get invented on its own. Government research created the Internet so that all the companies could make money off the Internet."

The people who are twisting what Obama said are trying to mislead the voters.

glunn
08-18-2012, 09:42 PM
Not sure if you guys saw a post by some website recently, but i read somewhere that Cuddy said that when they played the Yankees, they went in expecting to lose.

I just found a story that looks like what you are talking about -- here is the link (http://www.cbssports.com/mlb/blog/jon-heyman/17995079/hunter-cuddyer-admit-twins-were-psyched-out-by-yankees).

This makes me want a different manager.

Don't Feed the Greed Guy
08-19-2012, 06:10 AM
[QUOTE=Don't Feed the Greed Guy;47051][QUOTE=one_eyed_jack;47018]

It's sort of like the gaffe our President (and I am a staunch supporter of President Obama) made when he said, "you didn't build your business, the government did." Well, to follow your line of reasoning, Puckett didn't hit the home run, or make the catch against the plexiglass. The media did.

If you indeed support Obama, you will be glad to learn that this was not a gaffe and he never said: "you didn't build your business, the government did."
If youíve got a business ó you didnít build that. Somebody else made that happen. The Internet didnít get invented on its own. Government research created the Internet so that all the companies could make money off the Internet."

That's a gaffe, it offends the human capacity to innovate. I completely agree with 90% of President Obama's extended quote. Thank you for publishing the whole thing and making the Republican rubes on this website swallow the whole story. But I think our President opened himself to unnecessary criticism, and that's what's disappointing.

I've got a Republican friend who quit a cozy job working for IBM to open up a small craft brewery. He chased the dream, and keeps gettin hosed by the local government in order to get his business off the ground. The hours he works are crazy. But he loves his job, and is gearing up to work even harder in order to meet growing demand--a 5x expansion of his brewhouse. On behalf of my friend Gregg, President Obama's quote was offensive. And Gregg has good reason to be offended.

Getting back to baseball, that's where individual achievement meets team--whether that's government, public schools, little league coaches, parents, etc... Baseball, unlike almost any other team sport, depends upon individual achievement. The batter has to leave the dugout and stand alone in the batter's box. The pitcher holds the ball until he has to hand it over to the manager. When the individual takes one for the team, it's called a "sacrifice." But for the most part, baseball is played on a big green field, with plenty of room for individual achievement.

Curt Schilling's bloody sock is about grit. The media just happened to take the picture. http://nbcsports.msnbc.com/id/6948862/

Teddy Roosevelt's great "Man in the Arena" quote is what each of us can take to our line of work, and the love of our family, country, or even our favorite baseball team. Because baseball is a fanciful microcosm connected to what all of us do, day in and day out. Some ballplayers show a qualitative grit that captures our imagination, and inspires us. And then there are the disappointments: the cautionary tales of a Kevin Slowey, or a Danny Valencia, or Tsuyoshi Nishioka--or even the sad tragedy of Puckett's eye, and the tailspin that followed.

Baseball entertains us, while inspiring us too. That's why I love the game. Getting back to the point, I think the Twins lack the guy who cries out "You guys should jump on my back tonight. I'm going to carry us." (and we could use some quality starting pitching, too!)

"It is not the critic who counts: not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles or where the doer of deeds could have done better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood, who strives valiantly, who errs and comes up short again and again, because there is no effort without error or shortcoming, but who knows the great enthusiasms, the great devotions, who spends himself for a worthy cause; who, at the best, knows, in the end, the triumph of high achievement, and who, at the worst, if he fails, at least he fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who knew neither victory nor defeat."

President Theodore Roosevelt
Citizenship in a Republic,
Speech at the Sorbonne, Paris, April 23, 1910

Don't Feed the Greed Guy
08-19-2012, 06:32 AM
And, to sharpen the point, check out Joe Christianson's blog, "Postgame: Mauer takes another walk, but the Twins needed him to swing": http://www.startribune.com/sports/tw...166676076.html (http://www.startribune.com/sports/twins/blogs/166676076.html)

There's more in the article, but here's the point about qualitative performance vs. quantitative statistical analysis:

"I didn’t have time to ask Mauer about his plate appearance, but I’m just going to say this: He has to have more urgency to swing the bat there. His otherworldly .414 on-base percentage is a big reason for whatever success the Twins have had offensively this year. But sometimes, a guy making $23 million per year needs to take it upon himself to take his shot.

one_eyed_jack
08-19-2012, 07:10 AM
That's a gaffe, it offends the human capacity to innovate. I completely agree with 90% of President Obama's extended quote. Thank you for publishing the whole thing and making the Republican rubes on this website swallow the whole story.



---Did you get lost on your way to Daily Kos? This is a forum for discussing Twins baseball.

one_eyed_jack
08-19-2012, 07:35 AM
Not sure if you guys saw a post by some website recently, but i read somewhere that Cuddy said that when they played the Yankees, they went in expecting to lose.

I just found a story that looks like what you are talking about -- here is the link (http://www.cbssports.com/mlb/blog/jon-heyman/17995079/hunter-cuddyer-admit-twins-were-psyched-out-by-yankees).

This makes me want a different manager.

---Come on folks, don't we know better than to take Jon Heyman seriously? If the guy had done any actual research instead of just fishing for quotes to fit a narrative, he would have found out that the situation described by Hunter never actually happened (http://www.baseballprospectus.com/article.php?articleid=16289).

Also, Hunter was long gone by the '10 series, which is really the only one that Cuddyer could seriously make the "no talent disparity" claim about.

Heyman made the exact "psyched out" claim about the Twins previously, e.g. here in 2010 (http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/2010/writers/jon_heyman/10/11/girardi.yankees/index.html) and here in 2009 (http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/2009/writers/jon_heyman/05/20/trade.market/1.html), and was merely looking to validate it. It's no accident that he went first to a known blabberer in Hunter, then got confirmation from Cuddyer, who is too diplomatic to publicly challenge a former teammate on something like that. It's really an opinion piece masquerading as a report.

Lew Ford had a very different take (http://www.platoonadvantage.com/2012-articles/april/lew-ford-on-the-twins-and-torii-hunters-accusations.html) on the whole thing.

twinsnorth49
08-19-2012, 10:28 AM
[QUOTE=glunn;47073][QUOTE=Don't Feed the Greed Guy;47051][QUOTE=one_eyed_jack;47018]

Curt Schilling's bloody sock is about grit. The media just happened to take the picture. http://nbcsports.msnbc.com/id/6948862/



Curt Schilling's bloody sock was about theatrics. The great baseball soldier who bravely gutted it out to carry his team to victory!!

It made me barf when I had to watch it and it makes me want to barf now, it was pure Hollywood, the mainstream media pumped it up for the WS viewing audience and they ate it up. All that was missing was Johnny Cochran doing the play by play.