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Game Thread: Twins vs. Tigers, 5/23/18 @ 12:10PM CT

Minnesota Twins Talk Today, 01:03 PM
  Good morning and welcome back to another Game Thread experience!  It's an absolutely beautiful day here in Minneapolis....
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2018 Vikings Off-Season Thread

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Article: MIN 6, DET 0: Lynn Shows Will to Win

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Article: Twins Daily Roundtable: Top Prospect Timelines

Twins Minor League Talk Today, 11:26 AM
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Miller: Twins DFA Hughes

Minnesota Twins Talk Today, 11:17 AM
In a tweet a few minutes ago Phil Miller says the Twins have DFA Phil Hughes.
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Recent Blogs


Scouting Target Field’s Biggest Games of 2018

It may be the middle of February, but this is a big week for baseball. The Twins held their first official pitchers and catchers workout today and single-game tickets go on sale this coming Saturday. Here’s a look at some of the biggest promotions and noteworthy opponents coming to Target Field in 2018.
Image courtesy of Bruce Kluckhohn-USA TODAY Sports
Before we get into the individual games of note, I just wanted to pass along some information regarding the tickets and packages that are currently available.

Opening Day
Tickets are already available for the home opener, which is Thursday, April 5 at 3:10 pm CT vs. Seattle . The cheapest ticket is $20 for ballpark access (standing-room only). The first 30,000 fans will receive a Twins Hoodie.

Season Tickets
The cheapest package is the Pick 10 Plan, which costs $220 per seat for Home Plate View (behind home plate, upper deck). But the cheapest 20-game package is just $260. That’s for Field View seats (upper deck, along the foul lines, furthest from home plate), but with so many great standing areas at Target Field, this represents the best value in my mind. Of course, there are also other flex plans, weekend plans, 40-game and full-season packages. A lot of people would argue that tickets are often cheaper on the secondary market, but there are some perks that come along with being a season-ticket holder.

Spring Ballpark Pass
At this time, the Spring Ballpark Pass is not being offered. The Twins unveiled this new opportunity in early March of last year, so it’s entirely possible its return will be announced at a later date. I did a breakdown of the pass here at Twins Daily and eventually talked myself into buying it. For $99 flat – no additional fees – you got a standing-room only ticket for all the April and May home games other than Opening Day (30 in total). I think I “only” attended 13 games, but it was definitely a worth-while investment.

Again, single-game tickets are available at 10 am CT this coming Saturday. Actual pricing is unknown at this point, but as in recent years there will be tiered/demand-based pricing. Here are some of the noteworthy promotions this season:

Bobblehead Days
Friday, June 1 vs. CLE: Max Kepler
Friday, June 22 vs. TEX: Byron Buxton
Friday, July 13 vs. TB: Eddie Rosario
Saturday, Aug. 4 vs. KC: Johan Santana

The Kepler, Buxton and Rosario bobbleheads sit together to form a “nothing falls but raindrops” sort of bobblehead mural. The Santana bobblehead will be handed out on the same day as his Twins Hall of Fame induction ceremony. I expect the demand for these, as always, will be very high. Bobbleheads will only go to the first 10,000 fans in attendance for those games.
Attached Image: BuxtonBobble.JPG
Other Noteworthy Promotions
Friday, April 13 vs. CHW: Dozier & Buxton Gold Glove T-shirt
Saturday, April 14 vs. CHW: Twins plaid flap cap (sort of a trapper hat meets baseball cap)
Saturday, April 28 vs. CIN: Twins cap
Tuesday, May 22 vs. DET: Star Wars T-shirt (there will be another Star Wars promo available via a special theme night ticket)
Saturday, July 7 vs. BAL: Twins “Flash” Cap
Friday, Aug. 3 vs. KC: Johan Santana Hall of Fame pin
Saturday, Aug. 18 vs. DET: Jack Morris Hall of Fame night
Saturday, Aug. 25 vs. OAK: Jim Thome Hall of Fame night
Friday, Sept. 28 & Saturday, Sept. 29 vs. CHW: Twins stocking hat

It’s pretty cool that the Morris night coincides with the Tigers being in town. It’s a bit of a head-scratcher as to why the team couldn’t line up Thome’s celebration with a Cleveland series.

Promos for the Kiddos
Sunday, April 8 vs. CHW: T.C. T-shirt
Sunday, June 24 vs. TEX: Play Ball cap
Saturday, July 14 & Sunday, July 15 vs. TB: Back to School item
Sunday, Aug. 5 vs. KC: T/C/ pillowcase
Sunday, Aug. 19 vs. DET: Twins backpack
Sunday, Aug. 30 vs. CHW: T.C. trapper hat

One thing I noticed about this year’s home schedule is the lack of games on major holidays. The Twins will not be in town for Mother’s Day, Memorial Day, Father’s Day, Independence Day or Labor Day. Here are what I would consider to be some of the marquee matchups at Target Field this summer:

Other Noteworthy Games
Houston Astros: April 9-11
The defending World Series champs will be the second team to visit Target Field in 2018. Being a series during the week in April, this should be a great opportunity to see the Twins face off against some top competition early in the season. The Wednesday game (April 11) will be at noon. Seems like a good opportunity to pull a Ferris Bueller’s Day Off. The first 10,000 fans will receive a Twins magnet schedule at all three games of the series.

Toronto Blue Jays: April 30-May 2
I know what you’re thinking, “Blue Jays? Seriously!?!?!” Yes, seriously. The fans of Canada’s team travel well, and always seem to pack Target Field when they’re in town. This series is during the week, so that may prevent a lot of Jays fans from making the trek. There’s a different vibe in Target Field when a good percentage of the fans are pulling for the road team. It can be embarrassing, infuriating even, when a road team gets a nice ovation or chant going, but that makes it all the more sweet when the Twins stop ‘em out.

Milwaukee Brewers: May 18-20
The Twins host the Brewers for a weekend series, which should draw a lot of Sconnies into town. Personally, I think it’s was nice how the Brewers being in the National League has made this more of a friendly rivalry. It should be fun weekend as long as everybody leaves their football gear at home. A border battle t-shirt will be given out at the Friday night contest.

Los Angeles Angels: June 8-10
Shohei Ohtani, Mike Trout and the Angels are coming to Minnesota for a weekend series in June. Ohtani could be the biggest draw in baseball by then, or he could be playing in Triple-A. It’s anybody’s best guess, but this still seems like a big-time series, either way. A lot of the 2018 projections are forecasting both the Angels and Twins to be battling for an AL Wild Card spot. Albert Pujols is chasing 3,000 career hits, but he enters the season just 32 hits shy of that mark. If healthy, he should reach that milestone before the Angels come to town, but that’s a big if for the 38-year-old.

Players Weekend: Aug. 24-26 vs. OAK
The Twins were in Toronto for the inaugural Players Weekend last season, so this will be the first time it’s hosted at Target Field. On Friday night, the first 10,000 fans will receive “player’s weekend mystery nickname” T-shirts. Not sure what that means, but it could be fun. Saturday is the Thome Hall of Fame celebration.

New York Yankees: Sept. 10-12.
The Yankees will be in town on 9/11, which is a Tuesday. There will be a special remembrance at Target Field that evening. The Yankees are always a big draw, but I’d suspect the outfield seats and concourses will be a little more packed than usual with fans hoping to snag an Aaron Judge or Giancarlo Stanton home run.

And Don’t Forget About the Gophers
If you’re starved for baseball and unable to make the trip down to Fort Myers, don’t fret. The Gophers start their U.S. Bank Stadium schedule Tuesday, Feb. 27 against North Dakota State and then host South Dakota State the next evening. That following weekend, March 2-4, is the DQ Classic/Big Ten-Pac 12 Challenge. The Gophers, Illinois and Michigan State will be representing the Big Ten against Arizona, UCLA and Washington of the Pac-12.

If you’re interested in learning more about the setup at U.S. Bank Stadium, I wrote about baseball’s debut in the building for Twins Daily last year. Also, Seth has had a few of the Gopher baseball players as guests on his podcast. Here’s a link to the most recent episode, which featured senior third baseman Micah Coffey.

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10 Comments

Random thought...very surprised MLB scheduled a 12 game home stand in early April...not the best place for a 12 gamer.Good piece thanks for the time in putting it together.

What do you do with a bobble head once you acquire a bobble head? I ask that as someone who has probably 10 of them packed somewhere in a storage unit.
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Tom Froemming
Feb 14 2018 03:08 PM

 

Random thought...very surprised MLB scheduled a 12 game home stand in early April...not the best place for a 12 gamer.Good piece thanks for the time in putting it together.

It's 10 at Target Field and then two in Puerto Rico. Cleveland also has 10-straight home games before the PR series, I wonder if maybe that's to satisfy something in the CBA about travel/special events outside of the US.

    • ThejacKmp and Danchat like this
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Carole Keller
Feb 14 2018 05:23 PM

 

What do you do with a bobble head once you acquire a bobble head? I ask that as someone who has probably 10 of them packed somewhere in a storage unit.

I only have 2 of them, plus the Gardy gnome ... and I have them on display with a couple of baseballs, one signed by Tony O, and an old-time hat and a batting helmet signed by Hunter, Jones and Stewart. That's pretty much it for memorabilia. I'm not a collector ... I just happened to come by those things. But I think you need to build a high shelf around the perimeter of your living room or game room, and start putting them up one by one ... of course that means you will have to collect them for the rest of your life.

    • Vanimal46 likes this
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Tom Froemming
Feb 15 2018 09:23 PM

From the team's press release:

"Early access to single-game tickets will be available exclusively through MLB.com's Ballpark app starting Feb. 16 at 10:00 a.m."

I also noticed the lack of home games on holidays - if they were in town for the Fourth of July I would definitely be going to that game, not that I'm complaining to get the day off but not much else you can do with a Wednesday in the middle of the week. At least they are playing somewhere, I remember in 2000 they were off on Memorial Day. Not on the road, just off. I was outraged...and considering I remember the year it clearly has scarred me for life. :-) 

 

Looking forward to watching some Gopher baseball again this season at US Bank Stadium. Definitely eat before you go, I was there for the X Games last summer and the food was even more overpriced than Target Field and not nearly as good. 

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ashburyjohn
Feb 16 2018 12:52 PM

I also noticed the lack of home games on holidays

I think that is a decades-long "tradition" for this team. I've heard it explained under various rationales.

Concur with above, great article.

One point:

Is it me, or is it rather telling they feel the need to offer a giveaway on the home opener?

Shouldn't that already be a sellout?
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John Bonnes
Feb 16 2018 02:24 PM

 

Concur with above, great article.

One point:

Is it me, or is it rather telling they feel the need to offer a giveaway on the home opener?

Shouldn't that already be a sellout?

 

It's continuing a tradition now, I think. They started doing that, I think, two years ago, and it definitely helped with selling out the home opener even after several years of crummy teams. They're continuing, I think, because it worked. But if they have a few good years in a row, I can see them going back to something like they used to do - fridge magnets or posters - and saving sweatshirts for another game. 

 

Concur with above, great article.

One point:

Is it me, or is it rather telling they feel the need to offer a giveaway on the home opener?

Shouldn't that already be a sellout?

They used to give away magnet schedules for the longest time.Now they give away hoodies and every season I get irate about not having my magnet schedule.A magnet schedule just seems like no brainer marketing to me.On the very first day of the season the team says, "Here is the rest of our schedule!Check it out and plan to visit the ballpark again!"Nowadays, the opener sells out and there is a sharp drop off in attendance after that.They now give them out during the second home series after that attendance has already dropped off.Seems like a missed opportunity to me.

 

I freely admit that I have an irrational anger towards this issue.  

 

Edit:Kind of ninja'd by Bonnes...