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.
Since there’s no reason to focus on postseason pipe dreams, I keep coming back to the old saying: “If there’s a jersey on your back, you still got a chance.”
It’s a game, but most of life is a game. Especially the most important parts. Any game is a chance to tune in to perfection and start some kind of magical streak. Great moments get remembered after bad seasons fade away.
Even if those great moments happen half a country away, against a team who reached for the crown and fell in the moat.
MauerKinder (Twins 10 Angels 3 – Game 96)
No one cared about the game tonight. The Minnesotan Royal Babies were coming, and Papa Joe Mauer left on a jet plane to meet his kids at the plate. Twitter exploded in joy, then made the comparisons to the royal birth in England and exploded all over again.
Mauer is tied to this region so deep it goes past DNA into the soul of the state itself. His days as kid ballplayer were already finished. Now, he’s a new father. If you’re sipping from a half-full glass, you’ll appreciate the beauty of change. See things half empty and it’s just another sign time moves too damned fast to keep up.
So the game got left behind, but it still got played because that’s the whole point of everything. This game kept going so Chris Herrmann could hit his first career grand slam in extra innings. It’s the smallest moment in a losing season, and Herrmann isn’t on track to be a superstar. But the game doesn’t stop giving out great stories and moments of heroism just because the season is already over for a team.
Nothing But Bathwater (Twins 0 Angels 1 – Game 97)
We have MauerBabies. Twin girls with beautiful names. It’s a perfect hometown and hugs moment from the man who looks perfectly natural posing next to dairy products.
Later on, former Twin Francisco Liriano turned heads by pitching an excellent game against the Nationals. If he can’t be our hero, I’m okay with him saving the day in Pittsburgh. It’s karmic.
In between these events, the Twins played and lost. They turned in a bland 0-1 scorecard and the loss hit me with all the force of a bored shrug. With hope gone, baseball’s much bigger than games and scores. The race turned into a Sunday drive through the country, and suddenly the scenery matters.