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GAME THREAD: 9/30/20 Minnesota Twins VS Houston Astros, 12:08 CDT


Mill1634
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I think this is an extreme overstatement. It sucks, but the window isn't closed. You saw one of the more promising prospects today in AK, who hit the ball hard twice. Rooker was really good in his time up here. Jeffers wasn't all-star level by any means, but if he puts the numbers up over 100-120 games, it is a top 12 catcher in the game, with his defense. Alcala threw gas out of the bullpen, and can turn into a legit late inning option. Kenta evolved into a stud pitcher. May could very easily be brought back, and the same can be said with Cruz. The sky isn't falling Twins fans.

 

I'm not sure how open the window even was, but it's going to be tough to field a better team next year than they had this year. Hill and Odo are likely gone. Cruz isn't getting any younger and appeared to fade down the stretch in this shortened season. Rosario will need to be replaced, probably by an unprepared rookie. Buxton and Donaldson are huge health risks every year. They're locked into Kepler and Sano who have yet to find consistent success. May is probably gone, Romo will be gone. The team is going to be too cash strapped to add serious free agent help, so they'll have to get lucky in the scrap bin per usual.

 

They'll win games but it's gonna be a challenge to build from this into a serious contender next year.

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The thing is, Rocco needs to have a meeting with them here after the game or the next day or two and take them to task. Tell them not to come back if they are gonna piss their pants. Or not give effort, or focus and do what it takes to win. 

 

Laying back hasn't done a thing for this squad with Gardy or Rocco. These guys have no fire. I just don't know how you can lose 16 in a row then come out not ready to play harder than you ever have before. 

 

Maybe it's just Minnesota, maybe its the Pohlads. I don't know what it is, but hard nosed is not it. 

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Tom Kelly was a great manager

This is just BS.  I am so over the 'hero worship' of a mediocre manager like 'TK.;  It was the players that won the titles, and Kelly just stayed out of the way.  Jack Morris refused to come out.  TK did NOT send him out in the 10th.  I am so done with deifying a very average manager that had two teams that found ways to win with a very unique player in Puckett (and a few others) that were able to rise to the occasion when presented the opportunity.  After all the years of having TK involved with the Twins since, why hasn't his 'postseason Zen' rubbed off on the team?  Because he was NOT the reason.

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The thing is, Rocco needs to have a meeting with them here after the game or the next day or two and take them to task. Tell them not to come back if they are gonna piss their pants. Or not give effort, or focus and do what it takes to win. 

 

Laying back hasn't done a thing for this squad with Gardy or Rocco. These guys have no fire. I just don't know how you can lose 16 in a row then come out not ready to play harder than you ever have before. 

 

Maybe it's just Minnesota, maybe its the Pohlads. I don't know what it is, but hard nosed is not it. 

I've seen nothing from Rocco that would suggest taking anyone to task is in his makeup. And I don't see that kind of fire from anyone on the roster, either. At least anyone that matters or will be here next season.

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This is just BS.  I am so over the 'hero worship' of a mediocre manager like 'TK.;  It was the players that won the titles, and Kelly just stayed out of the way.  Jack Morris refused to come out.  TK did NOT send him out in the 10th.  I am so done with deifying a very average manager that had two teams that found ways to win with a very unique player in Puckett (and a few others) that were able to rise to the occasion when presented the opportunity.  After all the years of having TK involved with the Twins since, why hasn't his 'postseason Zen' rubbed off on the team?  Because he was NOT the reason.

 

Maybe staying out of the way made him a good manager. I think Rocco is an example of overmanaging. 

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This is just BS.  I am so over the 'hero worship' of a mediocre manager like 'TK.;  It was the players that won the titles, and Kelly just stayed out of the way.  Jack Morris refused to come out.  TK did NOT send him out in the 10th.  I am so done with deifying a very average manager that had two teams that found ways to win with a very unique player in Puckett (and a few others) that were able to rise to the occasion when presented the opportunity.  After all the years of having TK involved with the Twins since, why hasn't his 'postseason Zen' rubbed off on the team?  Because he was NOT the reason.

His teams were fundamentally sound.  You'll admit that?

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Maybe it's just Minnesota, maybe its the Pohlads. I don't know what it is, but hard nosed is not it. 

 

Since it's not isolated to the professional baseball team, my money is on it's Minnesota. Something about the state makes players.....soft?...choke?...complacent?...too comfortable?...too neurotic?

 

Can we just get a reporter who can ask Nelson Cruz or Rich Hill or Marwin Gonzalez what's different about this organization than the organizations where they actually have won playoff games?

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Since it's not isolated to the professional baseball team, my money is on it's Minnesota. Something about the state makes players.....soft?...choke?...complacent?...too comfortable?...too neurotic?

 

Can we just get a reporter who can ask Nelson Cruz or Rich Hill or Marwin Gonzalez what's different about this organization than the organizations where they actually have won playoff games?

 

I've been saying for years that there's far too many fans that are just satisfied with the team making the playoffs and/or trying really hard. The majority of fans refuse to hold the teams and players accountable, and if you do you're deemed "not a true fan."

 

The same is true of the media. They've got their comfy gigs that don't grow on trees, so they rarely/never ask real questions of the players, the coaches, or the front office. And the rare ones that do, get snatched up by bigger markets.

 

Can you imagine how much fire a 100-win team takes after getting swept last year in a different market? The fans and the press would've been all over them.

 

Here, we just sat back and waited for Lavelle's Spring Training Restaurant Reports.

 

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His teams were fundamentally sound.  You'll admit that?

Most (not all) teams from high school on up are fundamentally sound.  When you have a generational player like Puckett and a whole bunch of 'gamers' that play the game with their own sound fundamentals, you hardly need a manager.  Just because Kelly doesn't f*&K it up with shifts and stupid bullpen usage, doesn't mean that you need to reincarnate him.  You just need an average manager that makes decent 'in game' decisions and stays out of the players way.  These characteristics are not that hard to find.  It is MORE important for the organization to find the players with the internal drive to win, than it is to find a manager to do so.  Look at all the winning WS managers that have failed elsewhere - they are abundant.  Baseball managing (like hockey coaching) has very little to do with winning.  It might have more to do with losing.  Molitor was also known for gaffe decisions, and he knew the game cold - we were told. 

 

What the Twins need to focus upon is finding players that refuse to lose, and putting together a group that may not pass all the analytics tests, but know how to win,  Then, you add a manager that just tries not to dick it up for them with his own decisions.  Thus, this is more of an indictment of a manager that meddles, than it is support for a manager that doesn't.  Pitching and hitting coaches also may be more important than the manager, as they help refine strengths/weaknesses.  A bad third base coach can also be a HUGE problem, as we have found out.....To sum it up, Kelly was average.  His players PLAYED above average, and Puckett was exceptional - when it counted.  I was at the home games for both WS Championships.  It was evident that Puckett simply refused to lose, and they had some pitching that was similarly inclined (coupled with winning role players) and they gelled as a team when it mattered in the playoffs (perhaps because of, or in spite of Kelly - who was known to be kind of an ass).  

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I would feel a lot better if we were just getting outplayed.

But we don’t just lose these games. We lose them in embarrassing fashion.

Everything during the regular season that made us great and got us to this position suddenly disappears, year after year. And the unbelievable brain farts. Getting the 3rd out twice on the basepaths. Polanco suddenly can’t accurately throw the ball from 20 feet in the 9th inning. The cleanup hitter getting himself ejected which accomplished nothing.

This streak has transcended players, managers, GM’s, owners and even stadiums. I’m Charlie Brown thinking it’s going to be different this time, but it never is.

You lost me with "The cleanup hitter getting himself ejected..."

That was an officiating fail. Rosario had a clutch at-bat and worked a walk, but he ump called a 6-inch high (unhittable) ball a strike. When the pitcher came back with the same pitch Rosario had to swing or or he'd just get jobbed again, but that is an unhittable pitch. Rosario walked, the ump blew it and had no reason to toss him when he did.

I think the crew was particularly one-sided largely because Donaldson went national with disrespectful criticism. They had it out for the Twins in this series. How else so you explain those back-to-back Safe calls on clear outs?

 

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Since it's not isolated to the professional baseball team, my money is on it's Minnesota. Something about the state makes players.....soft?...choke?...complacent?...too comfortable?...too neurotic?

 

Can we just get a reporter who can ask Nelson Cruz or Rich Hill or Marwin Gonzalez what's different about this organization than the organizations where they actually have won playoff games?

They let the players take steroids on Cruz's Rangers and let hitters steal signs with spy gear on Marwin's Astros, sooooooooo not sure. Maybe we can learn something useful from Hill

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The Twins playoff losing streak is now old enough to come up here and have a drink with me.

Not quite. The 18 *game* playoff losing streak was born on Oct. 6, 2004. So it's just getting its drivers license next week.

 

The playoff *series* losing streak was born on Oct. 13, 2002, so that can indeed drink Canadian beer in a couple weeks. :)

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Yup, that's what I was getting at!

 

So we need to re-hire TK next year, and if that doesn't work, we need to re-animate Charles Schultz (unless he was cremated, in which case breaking this curse becomes much trickier).

 

Dust in the Wind? We're not in Kansas anymore....

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some franchises just struggle in post season. Dodgers and Braves over the recent decades can't win in post season. Twins of course no. Buffalo Bills....haven't won a playoff game in many years. Boston Bruins have lost I believe 7 of their last 8 trips to the Finals (at least they get there....but can't finish the deal) 

 

Even with entirely different players, losing can follow a team...no real explanation. But its a total lie when the players say they don't think about it. Just like when some say they don't hear the crowd. Thats total crap. they do and it does affect them....either for good or ill.  These athletes are humans not machines. They react to things. Why do players, after winning a championship always say....and thank you to the BEST fans in the league. (they all can;t be the best...but the players acknowledge their role)

 

As Twins fans, we are all hurting right now. As a lifelong fan of AAA Rochester, and affiliate of the Twins for almost 20 years now...doubly painful because we didn't even have a season. to have the Twins end like this is just very maddening.

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I think this is an extreme overstatement. It sucks, but the window isn't closed. You saw one of the more promising prospects today in AK, who hit the ball hard twice. Rooker was really good in his time up here. Jeffers wasn't all-star level by any means, but if he puts the numbers up over 100-120 games, it is a top 12 catcher in the game, with his defense. Alcala threw gas out of the bullpen, and can turn into a legit late inning option. Kenta evolved into a stud pitcher. May could very easily be brought back, and the same can be said with Cruz. The sky isn't falling Twins fans.

So with our starters that can only pitch 5 innings and all of our hitters leading the league in strikeouts we can look forward to another first round exit next year too? I mean the sky isn't falling, but like a bad earthquake I think the ground may be crumbling underneath.

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Looked like they were content with just getting the robes.

Did the hitters actually wear the robes at the plate in this series? That might explain their performance, as I imagine that robes would inhibit the swing. (Although I understand that robes benefit other kinds of “swingers” — perhaps the Twins confused the two.)

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The Twins haven’t won a playoff series since they traded David Ortiz. So that’s it then....
The curse of David Ortiz....
at least that’s what Golf Digest says
Maybe its the Money Ball curse.

 

At this point that is the only thing that makes sense. Let Ortiz walk and he becomes a Hall of Famer that wins multiple rings and is one of the best every postseason players in history.

 

Twins play cutesy for how many season and don't even get a single win. Seems fair...

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