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  1. "Infield fly, if fair" sometimes isn't fair

    When I first started as an umpire, the infield fly call gave me a bit of trouble. The first infield fly call I ever made was in error, as there were 2 outs. I never made that mistake again.

    Subsequently, umpiring in teenage leagues, these fly balls that were catchable with "ordinary effort" often weren't caught regardless of effort. Instead of leading to a unfair double play, the Bad News Bears would in panic throw the ball into the woods to try to make up for it. Too ...

    Updated 07-25-2013 at 01:45 PM by PSzalapski

  2. 20 Twins Trades: The Pierzynski Bonanza!

    Originally posted at Kevin Slowey was Framed! I also reviewed the Dave Gassner trade, which you probably remember because Shannon Stewart and Bobby Kielty were involved. You can read it here.

    The 2004 season marked two important Twins milestones. First, the team was coming off of playoff runs in consecutive seasons for the first time in over thirty years. Second, the Baby Jesus, Joe Mauer was primed for his MLB debut. As a result of the second milestone, the Twins were looking ...
  3. Umpire’s Error Jeopardizes Minnesota Twins' Chance at Sweep in Los Angeles

    After a drama filled game on Tuesday evening in which the Minnesota Twins rallied to beat the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim in 10 innings, the teams were back at it Wednesday afternoon with the Twins having a rare opportunity to sweep a road series. The game was an old-fashioned pitcher’s duel throughout the game, but it was a blown call by an umpire that ultimately stole the show in the Twins’ 1-0 defeat.

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    The Twins had runners on first and ...
  4. Twins Minor League Report (7/24): Vargas Saves the Day

    Since the Twins were playing on the West Coast, their afternoon game with the Angels went into the early evening in the Central time zone. Minnesota won the first two games of the series before things got a little dicey on Wednesday. Jared Weaver looked excellent on the mound but a bad infield fly call might have cost the Twins a chance to sweep the Angels.

    With Joe Mauer on paternity leave for three days, Drew Butera was called up from Rochester. He has spent the entire season at ...
  5. If Twins Play In CA, Does Anyone Remember What Time? (Twins at Angels 95-97)

    Behind the Maps (Twins 4 Angels 2 – Game 95)

    Putting the Twins on a West Coast road trip is like keeping something in your glove compartment. No matter how much you swear you won’t forget this time, your mind goes blank when it counts.

    California time victories are nice to find between smashes of the “snooze” button on my cell phone. It’s like getting a nice letter, except no one mails anything anymore. Even the junk mail people gave up the ghost years ago.
  6. Trending up is Mike Pelfry

    On May 31rst, Mike Pelfry started the day with a 6.85 Era. On that day he gave up 3 runs in 5.33 innings. Not very promising but it was better than what we were getting out of him. Back then we were clamoring for him to get demoted or designated for assignment. Including that start and everything else since then through today, he has averaged right at 6 innings per start with an era of 3.47. His peripherals have improved too as he has 31 k's in 49.33 innings and he has issued 13 walks with ...
  7. Jered Weaver vs. Career Minor League Players...

    Not a chance...

    Well, Mike Pelfrey gave the Twins a chance today, as their most seasoned hitter was on paternity leave, but c'mon, can't we at least field a major league roster?

    It's fun to see two or three position prospects try to make a major league roster. Aaron Hicks, Chris Hermann and perhaps Pedro Florimon fit the prospect label. But Doug Bernier, Clete Thomas and Chris Colabello hardly fit the prospect mold.

    Here's a chart showing the disparity of ...
  8. Twins Birthdays--July 24

    Also posted at wgom.org

    Cotton Nash (1942)
    Mike Adams (1948)

    First baseman Charles Francis ”Cotton” Nash had 13 at-bats for the Twins from 1969-1970. A tall man (6’6″), he was born in Jersey City, went to high school in Port Charles, Louisiana, and attended the University of Kentucky, where he starred in basketball as well as baseball. He was nicknamed “Cotton” as a child because of his bright blond hair. He was signed by the Angels as a free ...
  9. Afraud, Steroids wrecked my generational great players.

    by , 07-24-2013 at 11:12 AM ("And we'll see ya' ... tomorrow night.")
    So, PED's is the hot button in baseball right now, and I finally had to have an opinion on this. I think I am becoming more opinionated now than ever. I think Bud Selig did the best job he could ever do turning his head to the use of steroids in baseball that you could ever do. First thought was during the Sosa, McGwire years baseball didn't even test for PED's, HGH, and steroids. Why am I to blame these guys for using something that wasn't illegal in baseball? Was what they used illegal by ...
  10. The Nobel Prize, Steroids and You

    (This little diatribe is originally posted and possibly more clearly formatted at our other website: Peanuts from Heaven)

    In what will come as no surprise to anyone who reads my writing regularly, I don't like math. I much prefer words (hence the whole teaching English and writing-a-tonnage-of-words-for-my-own-amusement-thing), but I know that math has a valuable place in the world.

    That's why I read London based magazine The Economist (well, that and the snarky ...
  11. Twins prepare for trade deadline

    Will Justin Morneau be in a Twins uniform in August?On a gorgeous Minnesota July afternoon, Jack Goin, the Twins’ manager of major league administration and baseball research, sits in the Target Field broadcast booth high above the playing field. Down below, the Twins are take batting practice and a variation of infield warm-ups that happens behind protective screens at every base. There is controlled chaos with batted balls going every which direction. The team is preparing for that evening’s game.

    Goin, ...
  12. Twins Minor League Report (7/23): Sano, Buxton homer

    The second half of the minor league season is well under way. Some of the Twins affiliates are trying to find their way into the playoff race. A few of the farm teams are trying to fight through some injuries and keep players on the field. It will be an interesting couple of months leading up to the playoffs.

    Earlier on Tuesday, a roster move had to be made to fit Nick Blackburn into the rotation for Rochester. His promotion from Double-A meant another pitcher had to go the opposite ...
  13. Reviewing Rotation Reinforcements in Rochester

    If it wasn't obvious before his latest poor performance, it certainly seems obvious now that Scott Diamond is in line for a demotion from the Minnesota Twins rotation. Since pitching well in his first five starts back in April and May, the lefty has gone 2-7 with a 6.65 ERA, 1.73 WHIP and 28/24 K/BB ratio in his past 13 turns.

    It would be one thing if he were showing signs of improvement, but that's not the case. In his last three outings, Diamond has surrendered 16 hits, 10 walks, ...
  14. Kernels roster changes but results don't

    With just 40 games remaining in their regular season schedule, now seems like a good time to step back and take a look at the state of the Cedar Rapids Kernels.

    It's almost laughable to even question whether or not the affiliation switch from the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim to the Minnesota Twins has been good for Cedar Rapids. Of course it has, by pretty much every measurement.

    The Kernels have already qualified for the Midwest League postseason by virtue of their ...
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