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Game Thread Twins vs Reds 8/3/21 6:10 PM CDT


 

Olympic Trials

The Little Woman (she’s got all of two inches on the 4’8” Simone Biles) and I enjoy watching the Olympics; especially women’s gymnastics and all swimming events. So you can imagine our disappointment when Biles got the “twisties”, which is apparently a real thing that causes gymnasts to temporarily lose their spatial awareness, and had to withdraw from most of the Olympic competition after displaying symptoms during warm-ups.


So it occurred to me, professional baseball players don’t deliberately chose to go into a slump, loose control of their fastball, forget to hit the cut-off man or how to play a hot grounder. It just happens, and sometimes it’s a mental thing. Not a wandering mind, a harbinger of mental illness or a lazy attitude, not that kind of mental thing, just a temporary disconnect between body and mind that throws of their hand-eye coordination, their balance, their athleticism, whatever makes them the athlete they are. Should they be faulted for being "human"? Simone Biles wasn’t. Her team and fans instead rallied around her and other Olympic athletes from different sports spoke up, saying they too have suffered similar lapses.


And yet we as baseball fans (I’m guilty) jump all over a struggling ballplayer as if our boos, snide remarks and constant haranguing is going to fix the problem.


How dumb is that?


But I suppose some of us feel that since our tax dollars paid for the stadiums they play in, our ticket and souvenir purchases and the outrageously over priced concessions we purchase in “our” stadiums and what we fork out to the cable companies for the privilege of watching games on TV indirectly pays for the players' multi-million dollar salaries we have the right to get on the players’ cases when they fail to perform up to our expectations.


But then again maybe gymnastics fans are more sophisticated than baseball fans. Maybe they better understand that these incredible athletes are merely human and they’re just as human when they fail to perform at the highest levels as they are when they win the gold.


Anyway, I'm going to try to be a more understanding, more forgiving Twins fan. As least as far as it applies to the players and their athletic “body and mind” performances. Managers and coaches, who only have to use their brains, I’ll hold to a higher standard. You know, since they're only half there.

 

Cincinnati  56-50

Twins 44-62


Pitching Tonight

Kenta Maeda. 4-4   ERA 4.40.  K 90

Tyler Mahle 8-3. ERA 3.71.  K 133


Line-ups

Twins - Late as Usual

Reds

Jonathon India 2B  .277
Jesse Winkler LF .302
Kyle Farmer SS .262
Joey Votto 1B .276
Max Shrock RF .333
Tyler Naquin CF .247
Eugenio Suarez 3B .174
Tucker Barnhart C .264
Tyler Mahle P .059

 

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And don't forget about Lucas Sims. Beaned Buxton just before the playoffs (Sept 25) in 2019 and gave him a super concussion. Cincy pitchers have been very bad for Buxton, and have made him suffer greatly.


 

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I believe, in baseball, that "mental illness" (really, mental illness?) or the "twisties" is called the "yips". The disconnect. Rick Ankiel and Chuck Knoblauch (throwing from second to first while with the Yankees.....) come to mind as famous cases.

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Smalley, talking about Votto, opines that when you get on a hot streak where your mechanics are just right, it makes hitting a homer just as easy as hitting a single.  Which suggests that almost every hitter has broken mechanics more often than not.

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