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  1. Like
    jkcarew reacted to jorgenswest for a blog entry, Carlos Correa and a runner on first   
    Carlos Correa has 51 plate appearances with a runner on first(only) and less than 2 outs. In those 51 plate appearances he has 9 strikeouts, 6 walks, 1 HBP, 1 double, 1 home run and hit into 15 double plays. The most frequent outcome is a double play. That isn't surprising as he hits right handed, frequently makes solid contact and isn't very fast. Those factors aren't going to change.
    It makes me wonder how often the Twins have tried to steal a base in those situations. I can't recall any. I think they need to view each of those grounded into doubles plays like a caught stealing. With Carlos up they need to be more aggressive stealing a base. Even a 70% success rate is probably preferable to staying on first with the likelihood of being the front end of a double play. Julien stole bases in the minors. They need to send him. They batted Correa first for a while. If they do that they need to put speed at the bottom and send them.
    If anyone knows how to find it I would like to see how often they have tried to steal in this situation.
  2. Haha
    jkcarew reacted to Brock Beauchamp for a blog entry, Do you have the right stuff to be the top contributor in our community?   
    Well... do you, punk?
    Last July, we started a new community initiative where we offer prizes for the most liked posts and blog entries on the site. We'll post these awards four times a year: first half of the season, second half of the season, offseason, and spring training. Probably. Unless it becomes a miserable experience, at which point we reserve the right to stop at any time.
    These prizes... aren't great, to put it bluntly. They kinda stemmed me from reading comic books in the 1980s and loving the "No-Prize" award in every letters page written by the editor of Marvel Comics, signed off by Stan Lee and wow... I'm getting old real fast with that sentence so I'm gonna stop.
    But the prizes, while not great, are incredible.
    This season has been such a train wreck, such a total collapse of all things at once, such a complete and utter failure across the board that it was difficult to decide which of the many ripe fruits I should pick off the Minnesota Twins 2021 tree to celebrate this season finally coming to a close. But ultimately, I had to go back to the source of our collective misfortune and, at that point, it became clear what most needed celebration: the 2021 Minnesota Twins bullpen. And once that clicked into place, I realized there was only one place I could go with the second half community prize:
    A Ron Davis commemorative display.
    This display not only features Ron Davis' epic 1984 campaign with the Minnesota Twins but it also features Ron Davis' epic 1984 campaign with the Minnesota Twins.
    2021 Twins fans surely can commiserate with everything I said - and didn't say - in that sentence.
    But there's more than just a few trinkets included in this display, as the below video will show to you skeptics still standing in the back:
    Ron Davis Commemorative Display Prize Ron Davis Prize.mp4
    Yes, you heard that right. That is Grammy award-winning artist Sarah McLachlin singing her 1997 hit "Angel" from her 8x platinum album, Surfacing.
    So if you have the nerve, feel the moxy, can be the spoon, will channel your inner Randball's Stu... this perfect piece of Twins history could be yours, all you have to do is write the most popular post in the Twins Daily community. That could be a comment on a news story, a reply to a blog post, or even a blog comment.
    For the lucky person who can be all those things to all those people all at the same time, you will win the ultimate piece of Minnesota Twins memorabilia.
    I know, you just want this thing so much but remember, YOU HAVE TO EARN IT.
    Just like Ron Davis.
  3. Like
    jkcarew reacted to Danchat for a blog entry, Top 50 Prospects (#9-1) - Aug 21 Update   
    Time for the final update to my prospect rankings:

    Any thoughts?
  4. Like
    jkcarew reacted to mikelink45 for a blog entry, Total Bases   
    Baseball records used to have so much more meaning for me, but now I realize the external and societal influences and they have taken on less meaning. 60 and 61 were magical - 70 and 73 on steroids - blah. 714 and 755 HR totals were meaningful, but they were steroided too and then along came the juiced ball and 300 + team HRs means less too.
    Doubles, triples, stolen bases are all dynamic and I love them, but ball park configurations, saber rattlers, and new strategies have removed a lot of the really exciting base movements. HR hitters drive cadillacs according to the old cliche. What do double hits drive?
    Hank Aaron had 6856 total bases in his career. He was most proud of that record. Total bases were the ultimate goal in his mind and I agree. The next highest total was 6134 (Stan Musial) - over 700 difference. Under rated Dave Winfield has 5221 and is 16 overall, while Molitor had 4854 and is #27. Harmon Killebrew is number #79 with 4143. 3998 is Carew's total - #92. Albert Pujols is the leading active player with 5863.
    The Twins/Senators record book has Harmon Killebrew 4026, Sam Rice 3833, Kirby Puckett 3453, Joe Judge 3239, Joe Mauer 3040 and Tony Oliva 3002. Remember that these are total bases with the Twins only so Killebrew and Carew will have different totals for the MLB record book.
    In a single season the Total Base records for the Twins has Tony Oliva with 374, Puckett 358 and 365, Rod Carew 351,and Brian Dozier 336. The Single season record for MLB is Babe Ruth 457, Rogers Hornsby 450, Lou Gehrig 447, Chuck Klein 445, Jimmy Foxx 438, Stan Musial 429, Sammy Sosa 425. Among active players Pujols has the 37th best season with 394. Tony Oliva's season rank 89th. Hank Aaron had fifteen seasons where he collected more than three-hundred total bases — the most seasons by any player and Lou Gehrig had five seasons of over 400.
  5. Like
    jkcarew reacted to mikelink45 for a blog entry, Rating the prospects - ESPN   
    I just read the ESPN prospect ratings by Kiley McDaniels and is was an interesting look from a new perspective. Riley came over from FanGraphs and he has a different style than Law and others I have read. What interests me is the Twins prospects ratings, of course, and he challenged some ideas. https://www.espn.com/mlb/insider/story/_/id/28820713/kiley-mcdaniel-top-100-prospects-2020
    First of all he has Royce Lewis rated the highest at number 15 - a surprisingly high rating in my mind, but he also lists him as a CF. "His hitting mechanics still need a little work in terms of timing and quieting his hand movement, but scouts rave about his makeup, and the raw power and speed are still elite. I'm betting on Lewis figuring things out and becoming an above-average everyday player with some chance to become a star, possibly in the infield"
    Jhoan Duran was #54 - "The maturity and command look to be in place for a ground-ball-focused rotation workhorse with swing-and-miss stuff." This is really nice to see, I expected Balazovic to be above him.
    #58 Trevor Larnach, "He's a slightly better bet in my book than Alex Kirilloff to be an above-average everyday player, but they're in roughly the same area." So the argument about who is number one - Kiriloff or Lewis has a new twist.
    #63 is Alex Kiriloff, "Kirilloff's pitch selection leaves a bit to be desired, while he's moving down the defensive spectrum to first base and his wrist has been giving him trouble."
    #93 Jordan Balazovic, "He also doesn't have a bunch of plus pitches that he's learning to harness, rather a number of above-average offerings that he already has a good feel for mixing."
    It appears on all the lists that the top five prospects is the same (Graterol by the way is #92 "his command might be enough to start, but it's legit closer stuff").
    Of course the question remains - who is the not on any list prospect who will be the next Arraez and throw the rankings out of the window. The second question - is it better to suddenly appear on the list and shoot to the top or to start your career with high expectations and high rating and then slowly slide down the list?
  6. Like
    jkcarew reacted to Twinternationals for a blog entry, [ES] How does a Venezuelan girl become a Twins fan? (Part 1)   
    Welcome to Twinternationals! This is a space for Twins fans from different countries to read about their team in their native language. This section is run by Venezuelan Mariana Guzmán (@TwinsLatinos) and Brazilian Thiéres Rabelo (@TwinsBrasil).
    Por Mariana Guzmán
    ¡Venezolana y fanática de los Twins!
    Sí, esa es parte de mi historia. Nací y crecí en Venezuela y aunque cuando era una niña no tenia mucha noción del béisbol de Grandes Ligas, siempre supe que el béisbol era el amor de mi vida.
    En mi país el béisbol es un estilo de vida pero muy pocas veces los Twins eran un tema de conversación. Los Yankees de Nueva York, Medias Blancas de Chicago, Medias Rojas de Boston, Rockies de Colorado e Indios de Cleveland fueron, quizás, los equipos mas populares durante mi niñez en Venezuela.

    Todo comenzó en el 2003

    La primera vez que escuche hablar de los Minnesota Twins fue en el 2003, cuando un joven venezolano de 23 años se perfilaba como una futura súper estrella del equipo de las Ciudades Gemelas. Para esa época, yo vivía enamorada de nuestro béisbol invernal y por mi cabeza pasaban los nombres de varios equipos de Grandes Ligas pero jamás el de los Twins, no hasta que Johan comenzó a brillar con ellos.
    Transcurría la temporada 2003 y los diferentes medios de comunicación de mi país tenían muy presente a Johan, quien ese año fungía como relevista y en algunas ocasiones como abridor. Esa temporada, la tercera de Johan con los Twins, concluyó con record de ocho victorias y seis derrotas, y el buen sabor de boca de dejar una buena impresión con el equipo que le abrió las puertas vía Draft de Regla 5.
    La temporada 2004 comenzaba y yo por primera vez escuchaba hablar de los Entrenamientos Primaverales, inmediatamente comprendí cuan importante era para Johan hacer un buen papel durante ese tiempo en Florida. Con la conclusión de los Campos Primaverales llegaba la noticia de que el nativo de Tovar, al Oeste de Venezuela, se convertiría en uno de los abridores de la rotación de Ron Gardenhire; y comenzaría así su transición de relevista a abridor. La emoción con esta noticia se regó como pólvora por toda Venezuela, el muchachito que sorprendió a muchos en el 2003, se convertiría en abridor de un equipo que podía claramente pelear por un puesto a la postemporada.
    Con Johan como abridor, los dos canales de la televisión local que transmitían juegos de MLB una o dos veces por semana, hacían todo lo posible por siempre transmitir las aperturas del venezolano, y eso era para mi un alivio y disfrute. Sin embargo, mientras mas crecía mi amor por Johan y los Twins, más era la necesidad por conseguir información sobre el equipo, información en español; es ahí donde comenzaba mi sufrimiento. Si bien es cierto que Johan fue el detonante de mi fanatismo por Minnesota, también era cierto que en esos años también había un grupo de venezolanos y latinos sobresaliendo con los Twins; y eso, por supuesto, reforzó mi amor por este equipo. Y como es obvio, yo quería saber más sobre el grupo de jugadores y más sobre la historia del equipo que se estaba robado mi corazón.
    Los venezolanos, Juan Rincón, Henry Blanco, Carlos Silva, Luis Rivas y Luis Rodríguez también eran parte de nuestro roster, a ellos se sumaban los talentosos Eddie Guardado, Christian Guzmán, JC Romero, por solo mencionar a algunos de los talentos latinos que vistieron la camiseta de los Twins entre el 2003-2005.
    Ese año 2004 comencé a vivirme el béisbol de MLB con mucha pasión, solo hablaba de los Twins y de las maravillas que hacia Johan. Ese año, los Twins me “regalaron” un pase a la postemporada, nada mas y nada menos que ante los Yankees de Nueva York. Pasé el 2004 pegada a la TV, fue la primera vez en mi vida que no esperaba con tantas ansias el béisbol invernal.
    Por primera vez en mi vida sentía la emoción y presión del béisbol de octubre. Con la clasificación de los Twins llegó la Serie Divisional ante los Yankees. Vivir esa serie estando en Venezuela, era básicamente vivirla sola, muy pocos ligaban a los muchachos de Gardenhire. Era yo contra el mundo; y sí, suena dramático pero así lo sentí en su momento.
    El sueño de mi primer “October Baseball” se esfumó rápidamente. La única victoria que Minnesota conquisto en esa serie ante Nueva York lo hizo con Johan en la lomita en el primer juego. Santana lanzó siete solidas entradas en blanco, Juan Rincón y Joe Nathan se encargaron de preservar el triunfo. Una carrera impulsada por Jacques Jones en el tercer tramo y un jonrón solitario de Shannon Stewart, dieron el aporte ofensivo que necesitó Johan para ganar su primer y único juego en octubre. Pero aunque Minnesota sucumbió ante los Yankees, lo mejor para Johan estaba esperando por él durante el off-season del 2004.

    11 de Noviembre de 2004

    La fecha que le regalo una nueva hazaña al béisbol venezolano

    Jamás voy a olvidar la tarde del jueves, 11 de noviembre de 2004. Había salido del colegio y me fui a un Cybercafe a esperar los resultados del Cy Young 2004. No se cuantas horas pasé sentada frente a la computadora esa tarde, no se cuantas llamadas recibí de mi mama pidiéndome que me fuera a casa. Era como que todo en mi se había paralizado y solo esperaba que las Grandes Ligas emitieran el resultado. Caía la tarde en Venezuela y con ella llegaba la noticia, “Johan Santana es el ganador unánime del Premio Cy Young 2004”.
    El 2004 catapultó a Johan como una figura histórica del béisbol venezolano y me catapultó a mi como fanática de los Twins. Una histórica actuación de Johan ese año (record de 20-6 y 2.61 de EFE), lo hizo merecedor del Premio Cy Young al Mejor Lanzador de la Liga Americana, convirtiéndose así en el primer venezolano en recibir dicho galardón y en apenas el séptimo lanzador en ganar el premio de manera unánime.
    Todos en Venezuela estábamos seguros de que Johan ganaría; pero cuando la noticia ya era oficial, la explosión de emociones se disparo por todo el país. Mientras la nación celebraba la histórica hazaña, yo, aún perpleja, lloraba de emoción y felicidad. Me tomo unos minutos calmarme y salir de ahí a celebrar como todos lo estaban haciendo. Esa tarde se escucharon las cornetas de los autos como medio de celebración, desde esa noche y por muchos otros días, nadie paraba de hablar de Johan Santana.
    Ese día recibí llamadas y mensajes de texto de mis amigos, todos sabían cuanto admiraba a Johan y a los Twins, ese día hasta el menos experto en béisbol se enteró de la proeza del zurdo. Y con el reconocimiento individual de Santana, también, de alguna manera u otra, los Minnesota Twins comenzaban a ganar un poco de fama, ya no eran un equipo “fantasma” y eso me hacia muy feliz…
    En una próxima entrega continuaré contándoles como se siguió alimentando mi amor por este equipo y como nació Twins Latinos. Y por supuesto, que además de mi historia, en este espacio también nos dedicaremos a realizar entrevistas y a contar la historia de cómo los Twins Latinos han conquistado el Territorio Twins.
  7. Like
    jkcarew reacted to mikelink45 for a blog entry, Baseball in the West   
    I just read this really fun article in True West Magazine https://truewestmagazine.com/article/six-guns-sluggers/?mc_cid=1c6674cead&mc_eid=b66323b9da
    "Two sesquicentennial anniversaries in 2019 will commemorate landmark events in the history of the American West. When gold and silver spikes were gently tapped into place in a ceremonial laurelwood rail tie at Promontory Summit in Utah Territory to symbolize the completion of the Transcontinental Railroad on May 10, 1869, it opened the West as never before. Earlier in the year, the Red Stockings of Cincinnati became the first all-salaried, professional team in the fledgling sport of baseball. Undefeated as the year progressed, the Red Stockings rode these rails in mid-September to introduce professional ball beyond the Mississippi. The West offered opportunity and adventure, attracting people from around the world who flocked to the California gold rush of ’49 and the Comstock silver lode in ’59. Now, in 1869, these professionals came west to demonstrate their wealth of baseball riches to overmatched but eager ball clubs with a hankering to be part of the Red Stockings’ historic season."
    This was a fun historic article - you might remember I had an earlier Blog that had Wild Bill Hickok in a baseball game and Tom Custer was a good pitcher.

    It took a long time before baseball moved west in the professional sense. For a long time the West Coast had a minor league team with players like Joe DiMaggio and his brothers making it almost as good as MLB. St Louis was the team of the West for a century.
    "In 1859, the first organized team on the Pacific Coast, the San Francisco Eagles, was established. The next February, in San Francisco they played to a 33-33 tie with the Red Rovers of Sacramento. In September, the Eagles traveled to Sacramento in a rematch for the state title, emerging victorious 31-17. In a few years, the Eagles organization had grown such that with the overflow they formed a new club, the Pacifics. Both became premier teams among more than a dozen that organized in the Bay Area. The sport was invigorating to watch and spectators might even shoot their six-guns when excited. With gamblers betting on their favorite team, it’s said it was not uncommon to have enthusiastic supporters fire into the air to shake the concentration of batters taking swings or to rattle fielders preparing to catch the ball."
    https://www.sfomuseum.org/exhibitions/local-nine-san-francisco-seals-baseball-1903-1957 The San Francisco Seals had a very long and successful life in the bay area.
    After the 1957 season - another pennant for the Seals, they moved to Phoenix and the Dodgers and the Giants began the westward expansion of baseball in MLB.
    Now you might think this has nothing to do with the Twins, but if you had been around then you would have seen our local cities trying to get these teams to come to us. But - "Millers were top-level affiliates of the Boston Red Sox (1936–38; 1958–60) and New York Giants (1946–57). The Red Sox actually swapped ownership of their top farm club, the San Francisco Seals of the Pacific Coast League, for the Millers in 1957, enabling the Giants to move to San Francisco."
    The Original St Paul Saints - "The Saints finished first in the American Association nine times, and won the Little World Series in 1924. During this period, the Saints were a farm club of the Chicago White Sox (1936–1942), the Brooklyn Dodgers (1944–1957), and the Los Angeles Dodgers (1958–1960). The Saints played streetcar home and away double headers with their local rivals, the Minneapolis Millers. When the Minnesota Twins came to town in 1961, the Saints became the Omaha Dodgers while the Millers ceased operations."
    Note both Dodgers and Giants had a connection to the Twin Cities. The Dodgers were going to LA, but the Giants were not sure about SF and played games with the Twin City Press. https://www.nytimes.com/2005/06/17/sports/baseball/the-giants-almost-headed-not-quite-so-far-west.html
    "MINNEAPOLIS, June 16 - If not for Walter O'Malley, Willie Mays might be remembered for making a leaping catch 100 yards from a grazing cow.
    If not for a few twists of fate, Mays could have an "M" on the cap in his Hall of Fame plaque, and the scrum for Barry Bonds's 73rd home run ball might have occurred in the upper deck of the Metrodome."
    "According to newspaper and historical accounts, Stoneham discussed moving here with Minneapolis officials as early as 1955, when concern over declining attendance and the decrepit condition of the Polo Grounds prompted him to consider his options. The Giants owned the Class AAA Minneapolis Millers, giving them territorial rights, and Metropolitan Stadium was under construction on 164 acres of farmland in suburban Bloomington in hopes of luring a big-league team."
    The west won out, but the conversations were strong enough to interest the Griffith family in moving the Original Senators to that Bloomington field and here we are the Twins! And the story of the DC franchise which has had at least three professional teams includes 108 years without winning a series.
  8. Like
    jkcarew reacted to sethmoko for a blog entry, 2019 and 1969 Division Races   
    2019 is the 50th anniversary of the moon landing and some things that were more of a giant leap for mankind, like the Minnesota Twins winning the first ever American League West Division title. Major League Baseball had just split into divisions so there would be an additional round to the postseason for the first time since the introduction of the World Series.
    All summer long, the Twins were in a tight battle with the Oakland A's for the first ever AL West title. After play on September 2, 1969 the Twins held a lead of 6 games over the A's. Coincidentally, in 2019 the Twins hold a 5.5 game lead over Cleveland on September 2 after an up and down (mostly up to be honest) summer. But as Labor Day passes, baseball races get much more serious and numbers up and down become a daily watch if they haven't been before.
    This week is a big week for the 2019 Twins with three games in Boston before coming home to Target Field for 3 games this weekend against Cleveland. A big series against Cleveland could go a long way toward putting away the 2019 AL Central Division.
    Something very similar happened in 1969. As I said, on September 2, 1969 the Twins led Oakland by 6. On September 3, the Twins beat Cleveland at home while Oakland lost in Boston. This stretched the lead to 7 before a four-game series which saw the Twins visiting Oakland over the weekend. And what happened? On Thursday, the Twins won 10-5 in 10 innings, then lost game 2 5-4. On Saturday, in what could be described as the "nail in the coffin" game, the Twins prevailed in an 18 inning affair by a score of 8-6. Minnesota closed out the 3-1 series victory on Sunday with a 16-4 pounding. That series win essentially ended the 1969 AL West race in much the same way a series win this weekend could change the way we all think about the 2019 Central race. The 1969 team closed out the season by winning 97 games and leading Oakland by 9.
    One element that will DEFINITELY not be repeated: the 1969 Twins were swept in the inaugural ALCS by the Baltimore Orioles. I have no predictions about a possible postseason result for the 2019 Twins, but I guarantee they will not get swept by the Baltimore Orioles.
  9. Like
    jkcarew reacted to Heezy1323 for a blog entry, Graterol Shoulder Impingement Q&A   
    Brusdar Graterol Shoulder Impingement Q&A
    Heralded Twins prospect Brusdar Graterol was recently shut down and placed on the IL for ‘shoulder impingement’. This is concerning given how promising a start to the 2019 season Graterol has had and what it could mean for his future.
    So what is ‘shoulder impingement’? And when might it need surgery? Let’s see what we can figure out:
    [Disclaimer: I am not a team physician for the Twins. I have not treated or examined any Twins players. The information I am using is only that which is publicly available. My goal with these posts is to provide some education to TD readers around general injuries that are peculiar to baseball players.]
    Question 1: What is shoulder impingement?
    Shoulder impingement is a sort of catch-all term that can be used to mean a number of different things depending on the specifics of the situation. It Is a term that is often used in application to patients who have pain in their shoulders, often without any specific structural damage or a particular injury. Most frequently, people have pain in their shoulder area that gets worse when working above chest level. It is often treated with physical therapy, activity modification, oral medication and occasional cortisone injections. It is uncommon for these patients to require surgery, but it is sometimes needed after the preceding treatments have failed to provide adequate relief. Some also refer to this condition as shoulder bursitis. It involves irritation of the rotator cuff and the bursa, which lies between the rotator cuff tendons and a part of the bone of the shoulder blade (called the acromion). You may have friends or family members who have been told they have ‘impingement’- this is a fairly commonly used diagnosis. More specifically, this condition is referred to as ‘external impingement’.

    Shoulder impingement in pitchers, however, often means something entirely different than what is described above. Whereas external impingement occurs between the rotator cuff and the acromion (outside of the ball and socket joint of the shoulder), pitchers more commonly have problems with what is called ‘internal impingement’. This occurs specifically in overhead athletes because of the tremendous motion that is necessary to hurl a baseball 90+ mph accurately. During the course of throwing, the arm is cocked back, placing it in an awkward position. In this position, part of the rotator cuff can get pinched between the bone of the ball and the bone of the socket (also often including pinching of the labrum). This may not seem like a big deal, but over time this repetitive motion can begin to take its toll. Experts agree that some changes/damage to the structures of the shoulder are likely normal and adaptive in pitchers rather than problematic. In some cases, however, these structural changes progress down the spectrum and become an issue- causing pain, lack of velocity and/or control and fatigue of the shoulder.

    There is not perfect agreement amongst experts about why exactly these athletes begin to have pain in some cases. Regardless, it is likely a very complex combination of factors ranging from subtle changes in mechanics to core strength to gradual loosening of shoulder ligaments over time (and many others). Each individual case is likely different, and treatment needs to be tailored to the specifics of the athlete.
    Question 2: How/when did this injury occur?
    Typically, this is not an injury that results from a single trauma (though theoretically it can happen that way). It is much more typical for this to be the result of an accumulation of ‘microtraumas’ over a long period of time.
    Question 3: Does this injury always need surgery?
    No. As mentioned above, painful shoulder impingement in throwers is likely related to a complex set of factors. Because of this, treating any ONE thing with a surgery is somewhat unlikely to be effective. As a result, treatment is almost always begun by trying to calm down inflamed tissues. This typically involves rest from throwing. It may also involve oral medications and in some instances, cortisone injections. There is some discussion around PRP and so-called ‘stem cell’ injections (what orthopedists refer to as Bone Marrow Aspirate Concentrate or BMAC) for these types of problems, though this is not yet something I would consider standard of care.
    During this time, the athlete is also likely to undergo physical therapy to work on improving some of the other factors mentioned above- core strength, range of motion, rotator cuff strength, etc.
    As the pain and inflammation improve, the athlete is likely re-examined by trainers and physicians. This can take anywhere from a week or two to several weeks depending on the case. When things have improved sufficiently, the athlete is likely to begin an interval throwing program, which involves progressively more aggressive throwing sessions. Once they have completed this, they would likely return to the mound and begin throwing from there. Once appropriate progress has been made (and of course presuming no setbacks are encountered), they are likely cleared to return to play.
    The success of non-surgical treatment for these types of problems is all over the map in the literature. There are ranges from percents in the teens to 70%+. Again, it likely depends on a large number of factors which makes prognosticating nearly impossible.
    Question 4: How do we tell which cases of impingement need surgery and which do not?
    This can be among the most difficult decisions to make when dealing with pitchers. One of the problematic elements is that surgery to treat this problem is comparatively not very successful. As noted above, in general there are likely a number of different structural abnormalities in the shoulder that are in play with this injury. Some of them are adaptive and are considered ‘normally abnormal’ for pitchers. Others are problematic. Separating these two is something about which even experts readily disagree.
    It is difficult (and perhaps foolish in this setting) to quote surgery success rates, but in general they are not the best. There is a reason behind the old saying that for pitchers “If it’s the elbow, call the surgeon. If it’s the shoulder, call the preacher.”
    Question 5: What is done during surgery?
    This is widely variable depending on the specific structures that are injured, and (quite honestly) the particular views of the operating surgeon. I was recently watching a lecture on just this subject that featured a panel of a number of the preeminent North American surgeons that treat these problems. The differences of opinion and differences in strategy between surgeons were substantial. Yet another reason to make significant efforts to make non-surgical treatment successful.
    Question 6: How concerning is this for Graterol?
    This is hard to know from the information available. As stated earlier, the term ‘impingement’ can mean a wide variety of things- some more concerning than others. One of the positives in this case would seem to be that Graterol was pitching very effectively quite recently. Thus, this doesn’t seem to be something that has been festering for months. Hopefully that means they’ve ‘caught it early’ and can get things back on track sooner than later. I would imagine he will be out for a few weeks at least, but I would be surprised if he required any surgery in the near future.
    Overall, many pitchers have occasional blips on the radar with things like this that are improved with rest and rehab and don’t recur in the future. Predicting the future is difficult for anything- and this type of issue especially- but hopefully Graterol can get back on the mound throwing gas soon.
    Go Twins!
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