04-10-2012, 05:46 PM #41
Seth you have touched on something I have been ruminating about this season given the less than auspicious showing of our lads. What kind of a fan am I or am I even a fan? As disgusted as I have been with the the moves the team has made, the "money ball" analysis I read and the state of the "business of baseball" I question what it is that brings me back each year. Then I started to think, it's not so much that I am a fan or a patron or a follower of the Twins, it's that the team and baseball is just part of my soul. I think back to how the Twins have been a part of my life.
From my earliest memories of sitting in the boat fishing with my grandpa listening to Halsey Hall and Herb Carneal on the transistor radio to my first summer college job on the night shift listening to Lymon Bostock beating the Angels in the 9th to being at the store buying a video camera to film the arrival of our adopted daughter and stopping to watch the celebration in Texas when they won the division (and later bringing that 6 month old baby girl to a cold St. Paul street to watch the World Series Victory parade to teaching my daughter and son to emulate Bob Casey's call Kirrrrrrrrbyyyyyyy Puuuuuuckeeeetttttt to hearing some of the last words of my dad in the hospital through his oxygen mask say "Morneau's up" I have concluded the Twins are just a part of me.
I don't know if I can rate myself a 1 or a 10, and I don't know if it matters. All I can say is that even after yesterday's home opener debacle, it just came to me to say to my son "Hey Mike, you want to go to a ball game on your birthday Friday, just you and me?" And you know what? He said "sure Dad". In thinking about this topic, the scene from Field of Dreams keeps popping into my head, that maybe it has nothing to do with being a 1 or a 10 "fan" it's that baseball and our Twins are just a part of you...
"Ray, people will come Ray. They'll come to Iowa for reasons they can't even fathom. They'll turn up your driveway not knowing for sure why they're doing it. They'll arrive at your door as innocent as children, longing for the past. Of course, we won't mind if you look around, you'll say. It's only $20 per person. They'll pass over the money without even thinking about it: for it is money they have and peace they lack. And they'll walk out to the bleachers; sit in shirtsleeves on a perfect afternoon. They'll find they have reserved seats somewhere along one of the baselines, where they sat when they were children and cheered their heroes. And they'll watch the game and it'll be as if they dipped themselves in magic waters. The memories will be so thick they'll have to brush them away from their faces. People will come Ray. The one constant through all the years, Ray, has been baseball. America has rolled by like an army of steamrollers. It has been erased like a blackboard, rebuilt and erased again. But baseball has marked the time. This field, this game: it's a part of our past, Ray. It reminds of us of all that once was good and it could be again. Oh... people will come Ray. People will most definitely come."
04-10-2012, 07:01 PM #42
Yeah. Well, it's one thing to lose 4 games. It's quite another thing to be totally outplayed and outclassed.
04-10-2012, 07:41 PM #43
I'd put myself at about a 5. I've become tremendously cynical about the front office the last few years. And it wasn't all Bill Smith. The Twins' moves make more sense to me when I remind myself that the Club President is someone from a marketing background.
I told myself this winter that I would try to stay away from the expectations game and just enjoy the games as they are played. But I find myself watching a lot more baseball on channels other than FSN. (And I've been a Twins fan since the 1965 season. I've endured the ups and the downs but I have a very hard time getting past the "good old boys club" stagnancy of this team's management.)
I'd guess most of the people posting here are 9s or 10s (or higher) on the pure fanaticism scale. My guess is that the interest is waning a lot more quickly among casual fans.
04-10-2012, 09:52 PM #44
I guess I'd put myself at a 6 or 7 on that scale. The Twins are my team, but I'm a baseball fan first and a Twins fan second.
There seem to be a lot more people on the extreme ends than in the middle. It's either blind cheerleading or knee-jerk negatvisim about absolutely everything. I tend to be a little more rational about it.
But I'll tell you this - I'd much rather watch a game with a bunch of 10's than a bunch of 1's.
It's baseball, people, it's supposed to be fun. You can get into it, and even be passionate about it, but at the end of the day, it's a harmless diversion. The experience of a baseball game isn't all about whether your team wins. Sometimes the home team wins, sometimes they don't. Sometimes you get a close, flawlessly played game that's decided in extra innings, sometimes it's a laugher that's over by the third inning. Sometimes you get an eventful game filled with suicide squeezes, double steals, 7-man infields, grand slams and crashing-into-the-wall catches. Sometimes it's an unremarkable bunch of routine plays.
But it's more than that. It's the pleasure of sitting outside enjoying the sights, sounds, tastes and smells of a major league game on a perfect summer evening. It's the look of unbridled elation on the face of a kid who just had a foul ball bounce into his hands. It's the sweetness of seeing a couple of octogenarians decked out in Twins gear holding up a "Circle Me Bert" sign that announces they're celebrating their 50th wedding anniversary.
And I would much rather experience all that surrounded by a bunch of people shouting "Go Twins" even though all realistic possibility of victory evaporated 3 innings ago than by a nattering nabob of negative ninnies moaning, groaning and muttering "I told you so" after every little Twins misstep. (Seriously, if you're one of those people, do the rest of us a favor and stay home.)
04-10-2012, 10:00 PM #45
04-10-2012, 10:51 PM #46
Each team has fans that are willing to be patient, think logically and give the benefit of the doubt to players and front office personnel whose jobs are much tougher than it looks on TV
I disagree with the premise that only those who always give the benefit of the doubt to players and front office personnel can be described as willing to be patient and able to "think logically."
04-11-2012, 07:46 AM #47
I'm a 3, but not because I'm a pessimist or irrationally angry at losses & poor performance, I simply think some of the Twins philosophies are outdated. If I were a Tampa Bay Rays fan, I'd be a 7 or 8 because I think they have a smarter front office and manager.
04-11-2012, 10:08 AM #48
I would say it depends. Probably about a 5 most of the time. I think like many fans if I like the decision I don't get angry but if I don't like it or they don't make many decisions I get angry. Although I will admit this year I am probably a 2 because of how horrendus last season was and the fact I am a huge Cuddyer, Kubel and Nathan fan they were the only 3 people on this team I didn't want to see leave and yet we let them go.
04-11-2012, 10:13 AM #49
04-11-2012, 06:38 PM #50
Probably a 7 for Gardy, a solid "5" for the front office (I have more faith in Ryan than Smith ... but ...) and a solid 2.5 for the medical staff.
There are things that drive me nuts - mostly, that the organization is so enamored with "pitch to contact" that it seems they think missing bats is a bad thing. And the medical staff needs to get straightened out .... seems like every time there's an injury, we find out a few weeks later that it's far worse than anyone imagined.