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Playing on the Radio.

I think Twins magic begins with a car radio, a commute of erratic, skidding traffic, and staring at the sun while waiting for red lights.   Returning to baseball life is a greater gift to the fans living in places where the offseason is covered in snow and loneliness.   When the bat cracks and the crowd cheers, we know the small city filled with red- and blue-clad fans will be born around Target Field. There will be beer, hugs, and shouting.   At that moment, the shouting comes from the guy in

Axel Kohagen

Axel Kohagen

Send Swarzak Squatching!

It is time we all join together to accomplish a great thing, Twins Territory.   We must send Anthony Swarzak on a Bigfoot hunting expedition. Swarzak has publicly discussed his interest in cryptozoology. I'm skeptical about the existence of an unidentified , two-legged mammal remaining undiscovered by science for so long, but I'm definitely a supporter of encouraging curiosity into the unknown.   The Twins pitcher has taken enough ribbing for his curiosity about nature, and he needs a chance t

Axel Kohagen

Axel Kohagen

The Ballad of Big Jim.

Twitter started sizzling yesterday. There's a chance Thome rejoins the team and puts a few more taters over the right field flag pole.   There's no way this helps the Twins long term, but I can't help but be excited. Jim Thome is so heroic Greek mythology borrows heavily from his career.   Mauer's never going to be that kind of hero. He's the quiet, unappreciated type. Biographies of the cool, consistent catcher will mention how little respect he got in his home town. They'll quote Gleeman's t

Axel Kohagen

Axel Kohagen

Back to School.

World Series, baby!   Twins have lost two games of spring training, but they're actually playing and I heard them on the radio. Plus, Willingham knocked one out of the park. My head still knows they're going to suck, but my hearts already preparing to race as the Twins vie for the AL Central.   I'm way too excited about guys with giant numbers on their jerseys. This year's Twins squad going to be like a group of high school seniors all the teachers have already written off.   The school analog

Axel Kohagen

Axel Kohagen

Full Squads, Empty Hearts.

If my Twins blog gets any bleaker, it'll have to wear black eyeliner.   Not too worried. First Spring Training home run by a Minnesota Twin will have me predicted a World Series victory in six games. I'm like that.   Roger Clemens is threatening to become an obsession for me. He could go into the Ty Cobb Hall of Fame for players so completely unlikeable they've become loveable. I'd drive him there myself, as long as I didn't have to rub Icy-Hot on his groin area.   Saints preserve us, I'm starti

Axel Kohagen

Axel Kohagen

Spring and Things.

The Twins are down in Florida, getting ready to play baseball.   I AM excited, of course. It just feels like all us Twins' fans got a Christmas tree out, and we're trying to pretend the packages that look and feel like bags of tube socks aren't really tube socks.   It's gonna be a tube socks year, folks.   Need to make it a goal to at least TRY to remember the names of the starting pitchers. Think I might try cue cards.   Two crappy seasons behind us. Someone has to be mad in that clubhouse. We

Axel Kohagen

Axel Kohagen

Off Topic - Bring Back Childhood Memories and Support a Scary Wisconsin Slasher.

This is off-topic, but if you grew up around the same time period as me, you know what happened after the summer Little League games.   You went to a sleepover and you watched a scary movie. Probably one where a guy with a mask and a sharp object chased teenagers around the woods.   Like the song says, they just don't make 'em like that anymore.   UNLESS . . .   Slasher Studios is looking for a few more donations to fund their movie Don't Go To The Reunion, and they could use a few bucks from a

Axel Kohagen

Axel Kohagen

Betting on the Wrong Horse.

Thought about the title of this blog. How would I feel if someone sends it back to me after a victorious Twins season? Then, I decided I'd feel pretty damn good about a winning season and probably wouldn't care someone reminded me I started out bitter.   Twins fans across the Internet are writing like the team was dying and they're planning the services in its hospital room. Opening Day will be the funeral service, and Spring Training the visitation.   Too morbid?   What's the proper way to pre

Axel Kohagen

Axel Kohagen

Sacrificing Shirseys.

I drive by Target Field nearly every day. In the off-season, it looks like a brand new piece of playground equipment. The next time I go past it, it'll look broken-in.   Target Field's not Yankee stadium, but it deserves history. And what's history without a few ghosts?   Revere was a player with a future. Moving him is smart. Giving up winter dreams about his potential will still hurt.   I was as ready as I could be to lose Span. Losing Revere came as a surprise. I'm an jag-off for not getting

Axel Kohagen

Axel Kohagen

The Day-to-Day Zone

THE DAY-TO-DAY ZONE   FEAR IN A HANDFUL OF ROSIN PART 3   A MR. HORRORPANTS SCREENPLAY   BASED ON AN IDEA BY MICHAEL HAAS (@digitalHaas)     INT. BLACK AND WHITE. A MOD 50s LIVING ROOM. THERE ARE SEVERAL COUCHES MADE UP OF LIGHT GRAY RECTANGLES. A COFFEE TABLE SITS IN THE MIDDLE OF THE ROOM, COVERED IN MAGAZINES.   DENARD SPAN ENTERS THE ROOM, LOOKING CONFUSED AND FRUSTRATED. HE SITS ON ONE OF THE COUCHES.   HE SHAKES HIS HEAD AND STARES AT A DOOR IN FRONT OF HIM.   THE DOOR IN FRONT OF HIM IS

Axel Kohagen

Axel Kohagen

Humble Suggestions for a Very Special 10 Year Anniversary Edition of AaronGleeman.com

I, for one, suggest we definitely spend some time celebrating Aaron Gleeman on 10 years of maintaining his blog. Gleeman is a succinct and clear writer who never sacrifices quality, even when producing articles in great quantity. He makes it easy to join into online conversation with other Twins fans, and I'm thankful for what he's done.   So with that in mind, the 10 year anniversary of AaronGleeman.com has to go down like it was classic Johnny Carson stuff. Here are some suggestions:   1) Wher

Axel Kohagen

Axel Kohagen

Ch-ch-ch ah-ah-ah

CH-CH-CH AH-AH-AH   FEAR IN A HANDFUL OF ROSIN PART 3   A MR. HORRORPANTS SCREENPLAY     THE CAMERA PANS OVER AN EMPTY TARGET. DESPITE THE STADIUM'S BARRENNESS, WE CAN HEAR THE SOUNDS OF BASEBALL. PERHAPS THE HAPPY SOUNDS OF THE 2010 SEASON.   MR. HORRORPANTS IS STANDING ALONE AT HOME PLATE. HIS LAB COAT IS FLAPPING IN THE BREEZE.   BEHIND HIM, FROM THE OPPOSING DUGOUT, THE SPECTRAL IMAGE OF JOHAN SANTANA APPEARS.   JOHAN SANTANA It's time.   MR. HORRORPANTS I knew this day would come. We'v

Axel Kohagen

Axel Kohagen

Terror at the Martin Romero Institute!

TERROR AT THE MARTIN ROMERO INSTITUTE:   FEAR IN A HANDFUL OF ROSIN PART 2   A MR. HORRORPANTS SCREENPLAY   INT. A LIVING ROOM OF AN ABANDONED HOUSE.   Mr. Horrorpants enters the room. He kicks at a crushed plastic beer cup. From the corner, a crouched human being stirs. The crouched stranger stands and reveals himself to be Carl Pavano, dressed as a teenager from the 1950s.   PAVANO Nick?   MR. HORRORPANTS Something is amiss here!   PAVANO They're all gone! All of my friends! We thought we

Axel Kohagen

Axel Kohagen

The Marlins Memo.

From: Michael Fakename To: Marlins Home Run Feature Design Team.   I. Love. It.   When I said I wanted something that looked like Rainbow Brite puked on a snowglobe, I was just a boy with a dream. You and your design team made this boy's dreams come true!   Can I make one small request? Could you add just ONE MORE Marlin to the display?   I'm envisioning a marlin that comes out of the top of the display, but real slowly. I mean, REALLY slowly. Almost creepy slow. It should just stop for a moment

Axel Kohagen

Axel Kohagen

It's ALIV . . . No, Nope. It's Not. Sorry.

IT'S ALIV . . . NO, NOPE. IT'S NOT. SORRY:   FEAR IN A HANDFUL OF ROSIN PART 1   A MR. HORRORPANTS SCREENPLAY       INT. MAD SCIENTIST'S CASTLE. MR. HORRORPANTS IS WEARING A LAB COAT AND STANDING IN FRONT OF A LARGE BODY ON A SLAB. HE IS ACCOMPANIED BY STELLA, HIS TRUSTY ASSISTANT GREAT DANE.   Mr. Horrorpants pulls a sheet off of the body on the slab to reveal a Frankenstein creation wearing a Minnesota Twins Jersey. On the sleeve is a patch revealing the creation represents Minnesota Twins F

Axel Kohagen

Axel Kohagen

Friends, GMs, Bloggers, and Fans: The Blogger "Controversy"

The following are my thoughts on the blogger versus journalist "debate." They are largely unresearched and completely subjective, but I hope they offer something to the public discussion.   1) It's not really a debate. This discussion is about the journalistic appraisal of the talent of the blogging community. I don't believe the discussion lends itself toward critiquing the journalistic community. Some mainstream journalists (Jon Heyman comes to mind) get more blogger abuse than others, but usu

Axel Kohagen

Axel Kohagen

Profit and Loss

Nishioka's demotion to Rochester woke the Internet like a robin singing. At that moment, Spring Training truly arrived. Players without unquestionable abilities are now assets, each compared to similar players and measured for potential value for the team.   When someone like Nishioka is cut early, it adds drama to the entire process. He represents a large investment of time and money, and sending him to the minors so quickly says a lot. This leaves the Twins with a bench spot to fill, and a

Axel Kohagen

Axel Kohagen

A Spectral Jason Tyner.

This morning, I sat down with my granola and Diet Mountain Dew, ready to begin my day. As my hindquarters hit the couch, and before my hand could reach the remote, I noticed a strange presence sitting in a chair in my living room. I was surprised, but somehow I recognized this intruder.   "Jason Tyner?" I asked.   Tyner nodded.   "How did you get in my living room?"   "You're imagining me here," he said. His mouth did not move. "You've been avoiding me inside your own brain, and I had to appea

Axel Kohagen

Axel Kohagen

A Spring Training Report From A Civil War Era Soldier.

12 March, 2012.   Ft. Myers, Florida.     I trust this Letter finds you Well and in Good Health and Spirit. Tell Mother I miss her Hot Dish Casserole every Day.   I fear this Baseball Season will be what We feared it would be when this Spring Training Campaign began. It is now mid-March, as you can see, and we are still faced with the same Questions of last Year's horrid and shameful Defeat.   The Artillery was splendid yesterday, on 11 March 2012, but surely that one sublime Gift of Providence

Axel Kohagen

Axel Kohagen

Unrelated Cross-Promotion.

Last year, as some of you know, I wrote an online novel called The HooseCows. It's about an independent league baseball team where broken ballplayers try to find peace dealing with ballpark ghosts and bad people. It's available at http://www.cfcows.com. Currently, I'm preparing it for publication.   The problem is I missed writing fiction, and I wanted to write something else. I missed having a story to tell, so there was only one thing to do . . .   The new story will have under 5% baseball, an

Axel Kohagen

Axel Kohagen

I Walked-Up With A Monster!

In my continuing quest to improve the ferocity of Target Field Walk-Up Music, I have had an epiphany.   For around a 100 years, horror movies have hired composers to add intensity to the moment. Why not go with the professionals on this one? After all, some of the Twins players could use a jolt of intensity in the pysch-out department.   Here are some horror themes that would sound mighty smart pumping out the speakers at the ballgame.   Song: "Psycho: A Suite for Strings" Composer: Bernard Her

Axel Kohagen

Axel Kohagen

The Buterrible-Pun Men.

Between the idea and reality, between the motion and the act, falls the home run Towles hit this afternoon.   We terrible pun men wait by our computers, with our pointer fingers cocked and ready.   We terrible pun men, already awaiting the opportunity to be the first to title a blog post "The End of a But-ERA" when the catcher is dropped from the roster.   In this frozen land, we know only one smart-assed blogger can be the first to use "The End of a But-ERA." And so we wait with eyes watchin

Axel Kohagen

Axel Kohagen

Still Preheating.

September 1st, 2007.   Driving home from a night class at St. Mary's, I turned on the Twins game. Gordo was hinting at something big happening for the guy on the mound. I listened to the game and drove home in a daze. I parked my car and did my best to walk to my back door without running or skipping. Once inside, I turned on the baseball game and called my wife into the living room.   "I can't say what's going on, but look at the numbers on the scoreboard when Scott Baker gets to the mound," I

Axel Kohagen

Axel Kohagen

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