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RandBalls Stu

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  1. Teams hopes to make do with "the big kids" from local schools and playgrounds. Injuries are having a major impact across baseball, as teams scramble to field healthy rosters and make constant transactions with their minor league affiliates. No team has been more affected than the Minnesota Twins, who announced Thursday that they are placing their entire 40-man roster on the 10-day injured list. “We were almost halfway there already,” said manager Rocco Baldelli. “And given how banged up our quote-unquote healthy guys are, it felt like the right move.” To take their place, the Twins are relying on a forgotten World War I-era rule that allowed teams to backfill rosters with “strapping farmhands, eccentrics, spinsters, and gifted children from the area as our stout young lads take it to the Kaiser” in an emergency. Sources say Major League Baseball leadership is furious, but their hands are tied. “It was only meant to apply when players got drafted or volunteered for military service,” said a source close to MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred. “We now realize the vague wording gives teams like Minnesota some wiggle room. Unfortunately, the rule is very specific about the only person who can nullify the rule: Woodrow Wilson, who has died.” The Twins are said to be scouting local high schools, rec centers, and playgrounds for “big kids” who could handle the physical rigors of professional baseball and give Minnesota a chance to compete in the wide-open AL Central. “One of our scouts saw a kid named Cotter playing pick-up basketball at a park in northeast Minneapolis,” said Baldelli. “He was a good 4-5 inches taller than all these rickety dad types he was playing against. Just dominating them. Long story short he’s playing first base Friday and Saturday. He has Confirmation at his church on Sunday so we might build in a rest day, we’ll see how things develop.” As for why the team is not using their own minor leaguers, Baldelli was uncharacteristically blunt. “Fuel costs make all these call-ups crazy expensive, and a lot of these kids already have bus passes or a parent with a Honda Odyssey for carpooling. Also, the rest of the month we play Cleveland, Oakland, Kansas City, and Detroit. If we fielded a team of dogs in people clothes, we might go .500.” View full article
  2. Injuries are having a major impact across baseball, as teams scramble to field healthy rosters and make constant transactions with their minor league affiliates. No team has been more affected than the Minnesota Twins, who announced Thursday that they are placing their entire 40-man roster on the 10-day injured list. “We were almost halfway there already,” said manager Rocco Baldelli. “And given how banged up our quote-unquote healthy guys are, it felt like the right move.” To take their place, the Twins are relying on a forgotten World War I-era rule that allowed teams to backfill rosters with “strapping farmhands, eccentrics, spinsters, and gifted children from the area as our stout young lads take it to the Kaiser” in an emergency. Sources say Major League Baseball leadership is furious, but their hands are tied. “It was only meant to apply when players got drafted or volunteered for military service,” said a source close to MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred. “We now realize the vague wording gives teams like Minnesota some wiggle room. Unfortunately, the rule is very specific about the only person who can nullify the rule: Woodrow Wilson, who has died.” The Twins are said to be scouting local high schools, rec centers, and playgrounds for “big kids” who could handle the physical rigors of professional baseball and give Minnesota a chance to compete in the wide-open AL Central. “One of our scouts saw a kid named Cotter playing pick-up basketball at a park in northeast Minneapolis,” said Baldelli. “He was a good 4-5 inches taller than all these rickety dad types he was playing against. Just dominating them. Long story short he’s playing first base Friday and Saturday. He has Confirmation at his church on Sunday so we might build in a rest day, we’ll see how things develop.” As for why the team is not using their own minor leaguers, Baldelli was uncharacteristically blunt. “Fuel costs make all these call-ups crazy expensive, and a lot of these kids already have bus passes or a parent with a Honda Odyssey for carpooling. Also, the rest of the month we play Cleveland, Oakland, Kansas City, and Detroit. If we fielded a team of dogs in people clothes, we might go .500.”
  3. 'For $35/month, we envision a mix of live sports and all-new episodes of Tim Laudner’s Street Justice.' With news that Bally Sports North is close to finally offering a subscription service for local sports fans, rumors are swirling that a premium version will soon be available. “The outcry for a non-cable, non-satellite option for local sports fans is undeniable,” said a BSN executive who requested anonymity. “We also know that there’s an appetite for a premium experience. Our goal is to provide a bespoke product for every level of consumer.” Although details on the available tiers are unconfirmed, multiple sources say there are four options being discussed: BSN Basic: $20/month, Twins/Wolves/Wild/Lynx/United games available on tape delay no sooner than 72 hours after the live event; however, you must submit a written request to the Bally Sports North offices in Minneapolis to watch it. “Politeness will be a plus,” noted one source. BSN Basic Plus: $25/month, one live event per week. The event will not be telecast but rather described by a feral Kevin Lynch off his cell phone's Twitter feed. BSN Platinum: $35/month, all live events streamed as they happen unless there are blackout rules, conflicts with new episodes of Tim Laudner’s Street Justice, or BSN just calls it a weekend early and heads to the lake. BSN The Laudner Level: $40/month, all episodes of Tim Laudner's Street Justice available on demand, plus exclusive behind-the-scenes footage exclusive to BSN The Laudner Level subscribers. No live sports, but they will share all Athletic promo subscription offers they see online. “There’s a lot of noise out there about people wanting to watch the Twins or the Wild live, but our market research indicates the consumer really values choice,” said the BSN executive. “If they have the option to watch a World Series champ take the law into his own hands on an all-new episode of Tim Laudner’s Street Justice, then we think they’ll choose our Platinum or Laudner Level services. This week Tim busts some kids who are rearranging letters on the Lakeville Dairy Queen marquee to say 'PENIS.' Tough stuff, powerful.” When asked if they envision a streaming tier that would contain only live, local sports, the executive laughed for 17 minutes straight. View full article
  4. With news that Bally Sports North is close to finally offering a subscription service for local sports fans, rumors are swirling that a premium version will soon be available. “The outcry for a non-cable, non-satellite option for local sports fans is undeniable,” said a BSN executive who requested anonymity. “We also know that there’s an appetite for a premium experience. Our goal is to provide a bespoke product for every level of consumer.” Although details on the available tiers are unconfirmed, multiple sources say there are four options being discussed: BSN Basic: $20/month, Twins/Wolves/Wild/Lynx/United games available on tape delay no sooner than 72 hours after the live event; however, you must submit a written request to the Bally Sports North offices in Minneapolis to watch it. “Politeness will be a plus,” noted one source. BSN Basic Plus: $25/month, one live event per week. The event will not be telecast but rather described by a feral Kevin Lynch off his cell phone's Twitter feed. BSN Platinum: $35/month, all live events streamed as they happen unless there are blackout rules, conflicts with new episodes of Tim Laudner’s Street Justice, or BSN just calls it a weekend early and heads to the lake. BSN The Laudner Level: $40/month, all episodes of Tim Laudner's Street Justice available on demand, plus exclusive behind-the-scenes footage exclusive to BSN The Laudner Level subscribers. No live sports, but they will share all Athletic promo subscription offers they see online. “There’s a lot of noise out there about people wanting to watch the Twins or the Wild live, but our market research indicates the consumer really values choice,” said the BSN executive. “If they have the option to watch a World Series champ take the law into his own hands on an all-new episode of Tim Laudner’s Street Justice, then we think they’ll choose our Platinum or Laudner Level services. This week Tim busts some kids who are rearranging letters on the Lakeville Dairy Queen marquee to say 'PENIS.' Tough stuff, powerful.” When asked if they envision a streaming tier that would contain only live, local sports, the executive laughed for 17 minutes straight.
  5. 'And then Grandpa said that if a batter gets a home run when the bases are loaded, they call it a grand slam. I love it when he tells me his stories.’ Rowan Landskog, 6, loves it when his grandfather Bill Landskog comes over to read him bedtime stories. He especially loves it when the stories are in the realm of the fantastic and unbelievable, with tales of monsters and Martians sending him to sleep. Lately, the stories have taken an even more outrageous turn, as “Grampa Billy” tells his baseball-crazy grandson about the legend of the Minnesota Twins offense. “Grampa Billy said the Minnesota Twins used to hit a bunch of dingers,” said the junior Landskog, who lives with his mother in Stillwater. “He says they would hit them all the time and score a bunch of points. Wow!” The elder Landskog usually starts his reading shift with Dr. Seuss, moves on to Shel Silverstein or Where the Wild Things Are, then completes his duties by reading the Baseball Reference page for the 2019 Minnesota Twins. “Grampa said that when I was in preschool the Twins set the record for home runs,” said an astonished Rowan. “I think he knew I didn't believe him but he swore it was true." The kindergartner was especially awestruck by a new term he learned last night. “He told me a fun story about a friendly dragon who saved a pretty princess,” said an excited Rowan, his eyes filled with wonder. “And then Grampa Billy said that if a batter gets a home run when the bases are loaded, they call it a grand slam, and that the Twins have done it a lot! I love it when he tells me his crazy stories.” The storytelling grandfather was unavailable for comment but could be overheard issuing a series of expletives at his car radio when the Twins hit into their second double play during Thursday afternoon’s game against Kansas City. View full article
  6. Rowan Landskog, 6, loves it when his grandfather Bill Landskog comes over to read him bedtime stories. He especially loves it when the stories are in the realm of the fantastic and unbelievable, with tales of monsters and Martians sending him to sleep. Lately, the stories have taken an even more outrageous turn, as “Grampa Billy” tells his baseball-crazy grandson about the legend of the Minnesota Twins offense. “Grampa Billy said the Minnesota Twins used to hit a bunch of dingers,” said the junior Landskog, who lives with his mother in Stillwater. “He says they would hit them all the time and score a bunch of points. Wow!” The elder Landskog usually starts his reading shift with Dr. Seuss, moves on to Shel Silverstein or Where the Wild Things Are, then completes his duties by reading the Baseball Reference page for the 2019 Minnesota Twins. “Grampa said that when I was in preschool the Twins set the record for home runs,” said an astonished Rowan. “I think he knew I didn't believe him but he swore it was true." The kindergartner was especially awestruck by a new term he learned last night. “He told me a fun story about a friendly dragon who saved a pretty princess,” said an excited Rowan, his eyes filled with wonder. “And then Grampa Billy said that if a batter gets a home run when the bases are loaded, they call it a grand slam, and that the Twins have done it a lot! I love it when he tells me his crazy stories.” The storytelling grandfather was unavailable for comment but could be overheard issuing a series of expletives at his car radio when the Twins hit into their second double play during Thursday afternoon’s game against Kansas City.
  7. Stu took the week off so he handed the Friday content reins over to the late playwright Samuel Beckett. Turns out he's a real ball guy! MINNIE: Nothing to be done. PAUL: I'm beginning to come ‘round to that opinion. All this time I've tried to put it from me, saying Paul, be reasonable, he hasn't yet tried everything. And I resumed the struggle. So, there you are again. MINNIE: Am I? PAUL: I'm glad to see you back. I thought after the lockout you were gone forever. MINNIE: Me too. PAUL: Together again at last! We'll have to celebrate this. But how? Get up till I embrace you. MINNIE: Not now, not now. PAUL: May one inquire where His Highness spent the night? MINNIE: In a ditch. PAUL: A ditch! Where? MINNIE: Over there. PAUL: And they didn't beat you? MINNIE: Beat me? Certainly they beat me. PAUL: The same lot as usual? MINNIE: The same? Yankees, Dodgers, I don't know. PAUL: When I think of it…all these years…but for me…where would you be…you'd be nothing more than a little heap of bones at the present minute, no doubt about it. MINNIE: And what of it? PAUL: It's too much for one man. On the other hand, what's the good of losing heart now, that's what I say. We should have thought of it a million years ago, in the nineties. MINNIE: Ah stop blathering and help me off with this bloody thing. (MINNIE gestures at his Dairy Queen promotional Twins batting helmet.) PAUL: Hand in hand from the top of the Foshay Tower, among the first. We were respectable in those days. Now it's too late. They wouldn't even let us up. What are you doing? MINNIE: Taking off my helmet. Did that never happen to you? PAUL: Helmets must be taken off every day, I'm tired telling you that. Why don't you listen to me? MINNIE: Help me! PAUL: It hurts? MINNIE: Hurts! He wants to know if it hurts! PAUL: No one ever suffers but you. I don't count. I'd like to hear what you'd say if you had what I have. MINNIE: It hurts? PAUL: Hurts! He wants to know if it hurts! MINNIE: (MINNIE points at PAUL's Menards promotional Twins baseball pants) You might button it all the same. PAUL: True. (PAUL buttons his fly.) Never neglect the little things of life. MINNIE: What do you expect, you always wait till the last moment. PAUL: The last moment…hope deferred maketh the something sick, who said that? MINNIE: Why don't you help me? PAUL: Sometimes I feel it coming all the same. Then I go all “maybe this is the year he’s consistent all season long.” How shall I say? Relieved and at the same time…appalled. AP-PALLED. Funny. Nothing to be done. Well? MINNIE: Nothing. PAUL: Show me. MINNIE: There's nothing to show. PAUL: Try and put it on again. MINNIE: I'll air it for a bit. PAUL: There's man all over for you, blaming on his promotional Dairy Queen batting helmet for the faults of his head. This is getting alarming. Gogo. MINNIE: What? PAUL: Suppose we repented. MINNIE: Repented what? PAUL: Oh. We wouldn't have to go into the details. MINNIE: Our being Minnesota sports fans? (PAUL breaks into a hearty laugh which he immediately stifles, his hand pressed to his careworn Bomba Squad t-shirt, his face contorted.) PAUL: One daren't even laugh any more. MINNIE: Dreadful privation. PAUL: Merely smile. It’s not the same thing. Nothing to be done. Gogo. MINNIE: What is it? PAUL: Did you ever read Baseball Reference? MINNIE: Baseball Reference…I must have taken a look at it. PAUL: Do you remember the Similarity Scores? MINNIE: I remember the Advanced Batting stats. I remember WAR and Win Probability. I remember seeing that his closest comps are Kyle Schwarber and Adam Duvall and Bo Jackson. The very look of it made me thirsty. That's where he'll go, I used to say, that's where he'll go for our postseason. We'll win. We'll be happy. PAUL: You should have been a poet. MINNIE: I was. Isn't that obvious? PAUL: Where was I…how's your head? MINNIE: Swelling visibly. PAUL: Ah yes, the two players. Do you remember the story? MINNIE: No. PAUL: Shall I tell it to you? MINNIE: No. PAUL: It'll pass the time. Two players traded at the same time as our savior. One— MINNIE: Our what? PAUL: Our savior, Joe Mauer. Two players. One is supposed to have been saved and the other…damned. MINNIE: Saved from what? PAUL: Hell. MINNIE: I'm going. PAUL: And yet…how is it –this is not boring you I hope– how is it that of the four beat writers only one speaks of a player being saved. The four of them were there –or thereabouts– and only one speaks of a player being saved. Come on, Gogo, return the ball, can't you, once in a way? MINNIE: I find this really most extraordinarily interesting. PAUL: One out of four. Of the other three, two don't mention any players at all and the third says that both Hardy and Hoey were damned. MINNIE: Who? PAUL: What? MINNIE: What's all this about? Damned how? PAUL: Hoey got optioned. Hardy went to Baltimore. MINNIE: Why? PAUL: Because Hoey couldn't save them. MINNIE: From hell? PAUL: Imbecile! From losing. MINNIE: I thought you said hell. PAUL: From losing, from losing. MINNIE: Well what of it? PAUL: Then the two of them must have been damned. MINNIE: And why not? PAUL: But one of the four says that one of the two was saved. MINNIE: Well? They don't agree and that's all there is to it. PAUL: But all four were there. And only one speaks of a player being saved. Why believe him rather than the others? MINNIE: Who believes him? PAUL: Everybody. It's the only version they know. MINNIE: People are bloody ignorant apes. PAUL: Pah! MINNIE: Charming spot. (MINNIE looks at Twins depth chart.) Inspiring prospects. Let's go. PAUL: We can't. MINNIE: Why not? PAUL: We're waiting for Sano. View full article
  8. MINNIE: Nothing to be done. PAUL: I'm beginning to come ‘round to that opinion. All this time I've tried to put it from me, saying Paul, be reasonable, he hasn't yet tried everything. And I resumed the struggle. So, there you are again. MINNIE: Am I? PAUL: I'm glad to see you back. I thought after the lockout you were gone forever. MINNIE: Me too. PAUL: Together again at last! We'll have to celebrate this. But how? Get up till I embrace you. MINNIE: Not now, not now. PAUL: May one inquire where His Highness spent the night? MINNIE: In a ditch. PAUL: A ditch! Where? MINNIE: Over there. PAUL: And they didn't beat you? MINNIE: Beat me? Certainly they beat me. PAUL: The same lot as usual? MINNIE: The same? Yankees, Dodgers, I don't know. PAUL: When I think of it…all these years…but for me…where would you be…you'd be nothing more than a little heap of bones at the present minute, no doubt about it. MINNIE: And what of it? PAUL: It's too much for one man. On the other hand, what's the good of losing heart now, that's what I say. We should have thought of it a million years ago, in the nineties. MINNIE: Ah stop blathering and help me off with this bloody thing. (MINNIE gestures at his Dairy Queen promotional Twins batting helmet.) PAUL: Hand in hand from the top of the Foshay Tower, among the first. We were respectable in those days. Now it's too late. They wouldn't even let us up. What are you doing? MINNIE: Taking off my helmet. Did that never happen to you? PAUL: Helmets must be taken off every day, I'm tired telling you that. Why don't you listen to me? MINNIE: Help me! PAUL: It hurts? MINNIE: Hurts! He wants to know if it hurts! PAUL: No one ever suffers but you. I don't count. I'd like to hear what you'd say if you had what I have. MINNIE: It hurts? PAUL: Hurts! He wants to know if it hurts! MINNIE: (MINNIE points at PAUL's Menards promotional Twins baseball pants) You might button it all the same. PAUL: True. (PAUL buttons his fly.) Never neglect the little things of life. MINNIE: What do you expect, you always wait till the last moment. PAUL: The last moment…hope deferred maketh the something sick, who said that? MINNIE: Why don't you help me? PAUL: Sometimes I feel it coming all the same. Then I go all “maybe this is the year he’s consistent all season long.” How shall I say? Relieved and at the same time…appalled. AP-PALLED. Funny. Nothing to be done. Well? MINNIE: Nothing. PAUL: Show me. MINNIE: There's nothing to show. PAUL: Try and put it on again. MINNIE: I'll air it for a bit. PAUL: There's man all over for you, blaming on his promotional Dairy Queen batting helmet for the faults of his head. This is getting alarming. Gogo. MINNIE: What? PAUL: Suppose we repented. MINNIE: Repented what? PAUL: Oh. We wouldn't have to go into the details. MINNIE: Our being Minnesota sports fans? (PAUL breaks into a hearty laugh which he immediately stifles, his hand pressed to his careworn Bomba Squad t-shirt, his face contorted.) PAUL: One daren't even laugh any more. MINNIE: Dreadful privation. PAUL: Merely smile. It’s not the same thing. Nothing to be done. Gogo. MINNIE: What is it? PAUL: Did you ever read Baseball Reference? MINNIE: Baseball Reference…I must have taken a look at it. PAUL: Do you remember the Similarity Scores? MINNIE: I remember the Advanced Batting stats. I remember WAR and Win Probability. I remember seeing that his closest comps are Kyle Schwarber and Adam Duvall and Bo Jackson. The very look of it made me thirsty. That's where he'll go, I used to say, that's where he'll go for our postseason. We'll win. We'll be happy. PAUL: You should have been a poet. MINNIE: I was. Isn't that obvious? PAUL: Where was I…how's your head? MINNIE: Swelling visibly. PAUL: Ah yes, the two players. Do you remember the story? MINNIE: No. PAUL: Shall I tell it to you? MINNIE: No. PAUL: It'll pass the time. Two players traded at the same time as our savior. One— MINNIE: Our what? PAUL: Our savior, Joe Mauer. Two players. One is supposed to have been saved and the other…damned. MINNIE: Saved from what? PAUL: Hell. MINNIE: I'm going. PAUL: And yet…how is it –this is not boring you I hope– how is it that of the four beat writers only one speaks of a player being saved. The four of them were there –or thereabouts– and only one speaks of a player being saved. Come on, Gogo, return the ball, can't you, once in a way? MINNIE: I find this really most extraordinarily interesting. PAUL: One out of four. Of the other three, two don't mention any players at all and the third says that both Hardy and Hoey were damned. MINNIE: Who? PAUL: What? MINNIE: What's all this about? Damned how? PAUL: Hoey got optioned. Hardy went to Baltimore. MINNIE: Why? PAUL: Because Hoey couldn't save them. MINNIE: From hell? PAUL: Imbecile! From losing. MINNIE: I thought you said hell. PAUL: From losing, from losing. MINNIE: Well what of it? PAUL: Then the two of them must have been damned. MINNIE: And why not? PAUL: But one of the four says that one of the two was saved. MINNIE: Well? They don't agree and that's all there is to it. PAUL: But all four were there. And only one speaks of a player being saved. Why believe him rather than the others? MINNIE: Who believes him? PAUL: Everybody. It's the only version they know. MINNIE: People are bloody ignorant apes. PAUL: Pah! MINNIE: Charming spot. (MINNIE looks at Twins depth chart.) Inspiring prospects. Let's go. PAUL: We can't. MINNIE: Why not? PAUL: We're waiting for Sano.
  9. "The rush of acquiring and sending away assets is unbeatable. We’re hooked, baby,” said a manic Falvey. The pace of the Twins offseason went from zero to 100 once the lockout ended, with a flurry of moves by Minnesota’s management duo (President of Baseball Ops Derek Falvey and GM Thad Levine) leading to a radically different opening day lineup. And the pace has not slowed down. Shortly after moving closer Taylor Rogers and prospect Brent Rooker to the Padres for pitchers Chris Paddack and Emilio Pagan, the team announced that they traded team mascot TC Bear to the Jacksonville (FL) Zoo and Gardens. In return, they’re receiving a significant number of snakes, reptiles, and other creatures. “I’m just going to come right out and say that I don’t know what we’re going to do with a half-dozen Burmese pythons,” said Falvey. “But we hadn’t made a trade in a good 2-3 hours, and the rush of acquiring and sending away assets is unbeatable. We’re hooked, baby!” Levine, who said he hasn’t slept since Monday afternoon, was equally enthused if unclear about the trade. “Do you know if a monitor lizard is cool with letting relievers ride him out of the bullpen,” said Levine. “I don’t want to get on PETA’s radar, but I’ll be honest, I don’t know where we’re going to put him otherwise. GOD I LOVE TRADING, CAN’T BEAT IT.” Neither Falvey nor Levine would comment on the fact that TC Bear is not a real bear, but in fact a person in a pretend bear costume who is being sent to a zoo to live among real bears that will likely visit mind-bending violence upon him. “He’s dealing with it as best he can,” said a source close to the man who wears the costume. “Is it as bad as when (former Twin) Andrelton Simmons demanded to speak to the mayor of the talking bear village where TC Bear lives about repealing their mask mandate? No. Still, the threat of mauling is one he takes seriously.” The team says there are no further moves in the offing, and rumors that Minnesota is trading an old Metrodome urinal trough for a shoebox of expired prescription drugs are unfounded but they're very open to it and would throw in a gently-used Mike Maksudian. View full article
  10. The pace of the Twins offseason went from zero to 100 once the lockout ended, with a flurry of moves by Minnesota’s management duo (President of Baseball Ops Derek Falvey and GM Thad Levine) leading to a radically different opening day lineup. And the pace has not slowed down. Shortly after moving closer Taylor Rogers and prospect Brent Rooker to the Padres for pitchers Chris Paddack and Emilio Pagan, the team announced that they traded team mascot TC Bear to the Jacksonville (FL) Zoo and Gardens. In return, they’re receiving a significant number of snakes, reptiles, and other creatures. “I’m just going to come right out and say that I don’t know what we’re going to do with a half-dozen Burmese pythons,” said Falvey. “But we hadn’t made a trade in a good 2-3 hours, and the rush of acquiring and sending away assets is unbeatable. We’re hooked, baby!” Levine, who said he hasn’t slept since Monday afternoon, was equally enthused if unclear about the trade. “Do you know if a monitor lizard is cool with letting relievers ride him out of the bullpen,” said Levine. “I don’t want to get on PETA’s radar, but I’ll be honest, I don’t know where we’re going to put him otherwise. GOD I LOVE TRADING, CAN’T BEAT IT.” Neither Falvey nor Levine would comment on the fact that TC Bear is not a real bear, but in fact a person in a pretend bear costume who is being sent to a zoo to live among real bears that will likely visit mind-bending violence upon him. “He’s dealing with it as best he can,” said a source close to the man who wears the costume. “Is it as bad as when (former Twin) Andrelton Simmons demanded to speak to the mayor of the talking bear village where TC Bear lives about repealing their mask mandate? No. Still, the threat of mauling is one he takes seriously.” The team says there are no further moves in the offing, and rumors that Minnesota is trading an old Metrodome urinal trough for a shoebox of expired prescription drugs are unfounded but they're very open to it and would throw in a gently-used Mike Maksudian.
  11. Why will this injury-plagued veteran turn it around in a Minnesota Twins uniform? Because he just has to, alright? You sure ask a lot of questions. I’ve watched countless veterans get a shot to wake up the echoes of past glory for the Minnesota Twins. In a tale as old as time, those veterans simply didn’t have it anymore, be that “it” talent, youth, conditioning, anabolic steroids, some cocktail of all these things, you name it. I’ve watched Steve Carlton and Sidney Ponson and Rondell White and Butch Huskey and Bret Boone and Joe Crede and Mike Pelfrey and Ricky Nolasco and Ramon Ortiz and Steve Howe and Roberto Kelly and Greg Myers and Pat Borders and Ruben Sierra and Greg Swindell and Mike Morgan and Todd Jones and Mike Fetters and Jesse Orosco and James Baldwin and Phil Nevin. I’ve talked myself into Brian Fuentes as a possible closer. It feels good to admit this in a public forum. My shame is yours now. Given all that I’ve learned, and knowing that for every Paul Molitor there are 145 Shane Rawleys, I want you to know what I think about Chris Archer. I think he’s going to be just fine. Given all the names I’ve listed without even mentioning John Candelaria, not even once, you are likely wondering why I think Archer will be perfectly adequate. Because I need it very badly. I could really use a good, solid Twins season in 2022. I say this knowing extremely well that 40% of the starting rotation are veterans trying to prove something after a bad year or years, 40% are just kids, and 20% is Sonny Gray. It’s challenging to be optimistic! And yet. It’s going to be alright. Do I have proof of this? Of course not. But the fact remains, I’d really like for it to happen, and it feels like the universe owes us a kindness. Might that feeling just be a breakfast burrito repeating on me? Absolutely. But this time, it’ll be different. View full article
  12. I’ve watched countless veterans get a shot to wake up the echoes of past glory for the Minnesota Twins. In a tale as old as time, those veterans simply didn’t have it anymore, be that “it” talent, youth, conditioning, anabolic steroids, some cocktail of all these things, you name it. I’ve watched Steve Carlton and Sidney Ponson and Rondell White and Butch Huskey and Bret Boone and Joe Crede and Mike Pelfrey and Ricky Nolasco and Ramon Ortiz and Steve Howe and Roberto Kelly and Greg Myers and Pat Borders and Ruben Sierra and Greg Swindell and Mike Morgan and Todd Jones and Mike Fetters and Jesse Orosco and James Baldwin and Phil Nevin. I’ve talked myself into Brian Fuentes as a possible closer. It feels good to admit this in a public forum. My shame is yours now. Given all that I’ve learned, and knowing that for every Paul Molitor there are 145 Shane Rawleys, I want you to know what I think about Chris Archer. I think he’s going to be just fine. Given all the names I’ve listed without even mentioning John Candelaria, not even once, you are likely wondering why I think Archer will be perfectly adequate. Because I need it very badly. I could really use a good, solid Twins season in 2022. I say this knowing extremely well that 40% of the starting rotation are veterans trying to prove something after a bad year or years, 40% are just kids, and 20% is Sonny Gray. It’s challenging to be optimistic! And yet. It’s going to be alright. Do I have proof of this? Of course not. But the fact remains, I’d really like for it to happen, and it feels like the universe owes us a kindness. Might that feeling just be a breakfast burrito repeating on me? Absolutely. But this time, it’ll be different.
  13. “I can see the optimism and hope over (Carlos) Correa in their eyes. That’s when I strike,” said the monster. As many Minnesotans return to the physical office, men like Josh Kinney await. He has two goals: Drop a “Mondays, am I right?” as early as possible on the first day of the week, and to rob his co-workers of even fleeting joy. “Lots of people on my floor are Twins fans, couple of them have season tickets,” said the Shorewood native. “I saw the news about Carlos Correa (the new Twins shortstop) and want to make sure they know the club is still in desperate need of pitching. “I figure they’ll be coming into the break room, maybe to get some coffee or water. I can see the optimism in their eyes. That’s when I strike. ‘Saw that the Twins got Correa. Does he pitch?’ Then I give them a fake laugh and/or shoulder punch and exit the room. Devastation.” This vile behavior is nothing new for the St. Thomas graduate. “I guess I knew I was a buzzkill at a young age,” said Kinney, a human resources generalist for Best Buy. “We’d be opening presents at Christmas and I’d be sure to let my siblings know who got the most expensive gifts, right in front of my folks. I could always count on one of them to start wailing and my Mom to get furious. At least until Mom left with her yoga instructor. Then Dad would just give us cash and watch the loudest cable news channel he could find.” Kinney’s co-workers say his ability to pee on any campfire is unsurpassed. “We had an Oscars pool one year, like a $10 entry fee, nothing major,” said Betsy Mick, a senior digital strategist. “Josh sent a department-wide email to let everyone know that the winner needs to claim the prize money on their taxes. He CC’ed the IRS. It was remarkable.” Kinney says his Correa-derived cruelty should be a durable form of death-by-small-talk for months. “Even if they shore up the rotation, which they won’t, I’ll shift to reminding them he can opt out after this season, which he will,” said the monster. “If things go south and they have to trade him before that, and they will, I’ll remind them of the success rate for prospects.” Kinney laughed and excused himself to remind a Vikings fan of Kirk Cousins' extension. Image license here. View full article
  14. As many Minnesotans return to the physical office, men like Josh Kinney await. He has two goals: Drop a “Mondays, am I right?” as early as possible on the first day of the week, and to rob his co-workers of even fleeting joy. “Lots of people on my floor are Twins fans, couple of them have season tickets,” said the Shorewood native. “I saw the news about Carlos Correa (the new Twins shortstop) and want to make sure they know the club is still in desperate need of pitching. “I figure they’ll be coming into the break room, maybe to get some coffee or water. I can see the optimism in their eyes. That’s when I strike. ‘Saw that the Twins got Correa. Does he pitch?’ Then I give them a fake laugh and/or shoulder punch and exit the room. Devastation.” This vile behavior is nothing new for the St. Thomas graduate. “I guess I knew I was a buzzkill at a young age,” said Kinney, a human resources generalist for Best Buy. “We’d be opening presents at Christmas and I’d be sure to let my siblings know who got the most expensive gifts, right in front of my folks. I could always count on one of them to start wailing and my Mom to get furious. At least until Mom left with her yoga instructor. Then Dad would just give us cash and watch the loudest cable news channel he could find.” Kinney’s co-workers say his ability to pee on any campfire is unsurpassed. “We had an Oscars pool one year, like a $10 entry fee, nothing major,” said Betsy Mick, a senior digital strategist. “Josh sent a department-wide email to let everyone know that the winner needs to claim the prize money on their taxes. He CC’ed the IRS. It was remarkable.” Kinney says his Correa-derived cruelty should be a durable form of death-by-small-talk for months. “Even if they shore up the rotation, which they won’t, I’ll shift to reminding them he can opt out after this season, which he will,” said the monster. “If things go south and they have to trade him before that, and they will, I’ll remind them of the success rate for prospects.” Kinney laughed and excused himself to remind a Vikings fan of Kirk Cousins' extension. Image license here.
  15. “It’s like riding a bike, but the bike is existential sadness and it doesn’t have a bullpen,” said Edmund. Lisa Edmund is just about to lose it. “Where are the pitchers? Where’s the shortstop? Do we have any catchers left?” Edmund, 44, is a Minnesota Twins fan since childhood. She spent most of her winter fretting about the owners’ lockout. As the rhetoric grew harsher and games started getting canceled, she “totally panicked.” When the two sides finally came to an agreement last week, the Belle Plaine native was profoundly relieved, right? Wrong. “The regular season starts tomorrow, basically. They made a bunch of trades and still have gaping holes in the roster. This cannot possibly be the plan. I feel like I am taking crazy pills.” When it was pointed out that the Twins did acquire a top-of-the-rotation starter in Sonny Gray, Edmund grew agitated. “Did they get four more Sonny Grays? Can he come out of the bullpen on his off-days? Do they really expect to contend this year? And if they don’t, why did they trade Chase Petty? I’m trying to find any sort of road map here and I’m coming up wanting.” While the front office has urged patience, Edmund refuses to heed that advice. “I’ve seen this before. Remember when they brought up Jason Bartlett as the 25th man even though it made no sense and then he just went, 'Oops, retired, smell ya later' and we all just had to deal with the fact that they only had 24 guys to bring north and just started asking around if anyone else felt like going? That’s where we’re at now. We just dumped all of Josh Donaldson’s contract, we have money to burn and spaces to fill. Last I checked, we picked up Jose Godoy to be a less-swole Ben Rortvedt. Terrific. I should get season tickets because I’ve never seen a team play without a shortstop for 81 games, oughta be a blast. This is madness.” When asked if she was actually happy that the season was saved, Edmund took a moment to ponder the question and light another cigarette. “I guess so? I would have been miserable if the owners banged the season, but I’m miserable now, too. It’s like riding a bike, but the bike is existential sadness and it doesn’t have a bullpen.” View full article
  16. Lisa Edmund is just about to lose it. “Where are the pitchers? Where’s the shortstop? Do we have any catchers left?” Edmund, 44, is a Minnesota Twins fan since childhood. She spent most of her winter fretting about the owners’ lockout. As the rhetoric grew harsher and games started getting canceled, she “totally panicked.” When the two sides finally came to an agreement last week, the Belle Plaine native was profoundly relieved, right? Wrong. “The regular season starts tomorrow, basically. They made a bunch of trades and still have gaping holes in the roster. This cannot possibly be the plan. I feel like I am taking crazy pills.” When it was pointed out that the Twins did acquire a top-of-the-rotation starter in Sonny Gray, Edmund grew agitated. “Did they get four more Sonny Grays? Can he come out of the bullpen on his off-days? Do they really expect to contend this year? And if they don’t, why did they trade Chase Petty? I’m trying to find any sort of road map here and I’m coming up wanting.” While the front office has urged patience, Edmund refuses to heed that advice. “I’ve seen this before. Remember when they brought up Jason Bartlett as the 25th man even though it made no sense and then he just went, 'Oops, retired, smell ya later' and we all just had to deal with the fact that they only had 24 guys to bring north and just started asking around if anyone else felt like going? That’s where we’re at now. We just dumped all of Josh Donaldson’s contract, we have money to burn and spaces to fill. Last I checked, we picked up Jose Godoy to be a less-swole Ben Rortvedt. Terrific. I should get season tickets because I’ve never seen a team play without a shortstop for 81 games, oughta be a blast. This is madness.” When asked if she was actually happy that the season was saved, Edmund took a moment to ponder the question and light another cigarette. “I guess so? I would have been miserable if the owners banged the season, but I’m miserable now, too. It’s like riding a bike, but the bike is existential sadness and it doesn’t have a bullpen.”
  17. In what is hopefully the final Lockout Lookup, we discuss just one of the many 2014 Twins outfielders. This is the story of Sam Fuld. Subject: Sam Fuld Why You Remember Him: The 2014 Minnesota Twins outfield. You remember it, don’t you? The banged-up Josh Willingham. The inconsistent Oswaldo Arcia. The more inconsistent Danny Santana. The raw Aaron Hicks. The soon-to-retire Jason Kubel. The *squints at Baseball Reference, because I do not remember this guy playing in one game, much less 41* real person Jordan Schafer. And the subject of this profile, Sam Fuld. Fuld was snagged off waivers from Oakland in April 2014 after previous Lockout Lookup subject Darin Mastroianni struggled out of the gate and was DFA’ed. His remarkably thorough* Wikipedia page notes that he led the Twins in on-base percentage in his 53 games with the dreadful 2014 squad and you know what, I believe it. *Fuld’s Wikipedia page is long enough to qualify as a canonical addition to Tolkein’s Rings saga. Although hobbits and orcs aren’t mentioned, they’re implied. Fuld would get traded back to Oakland at the deadline for Tommy Milone, who will be throwing 86 mph fastballs in three starts for the Diamondbacks before being sent to Triple A for the rest of our natural lives. The Stanford product’s most notable seasons came with the Rays, who acquired him from the Cubs in the Matt Garza trade. Is Sam Fuld the most 2011 Tampa Bay Devil Ray? Discuss amongst yourselves. (John Jaso is the strongest contender.) What You Don’t Remember: He was the leadoff hitter for Team Israel in the 2017 World Baseball Classic. What You Might Remember: His frequent Buxton-esque wall collisions in Tampa led to a #LegendOfSamFuld hashtag on the bird site. What’s He Up To: Fuld is the general manager for your Philadelphia Phillies. Which means that one of his special assistants last year was…Terry Ryan, the man who claimed him off waivers in 2014. View full article
  18. Subject: Sam Fuld Why You Remember Him: The 2014 Minnesota Twins outfield. You remember it, don’t you? The banged-up Josh Willingham. The inconsistent Oswaldo Arcia. The more inconsistent Danny Santana. The raw Aaron Hicks. The soon-to-retire Jason Kubel. The *squints at Baseball Reference, because I do not remember this guy playing in one game, much less 41* real person Jordan Schafer. And the subject of this profile, Sam Fuld. Fuld was snagged off waivers from Oakland in April 2014 after previous Lockout Lookup subject Darin Mastroianni struggled out of the gate and was DFA’ed. His remarkably thorough* Wikipedia page notes that he led the Twins in on-base percentage in his 53 games with the dreadful 2014 squad and you know what, I believe it. *Fuld’s Wikipedia page is long enough to qualify as a canonical addition to Tolkein’s Rings saga. Although hobbits and orcs aren’t mentioned, they’re implied. Fuld would get traded back to Oakland at the deadline for Tommy Milone, who will be throwing 86 mph fastballs in three starts for the Diamondbacks before being sent to Triple A for the rest of our natural lives. The Stanford product’s most notable seasons came with the Rays, who acquired him from the Cubs in the Matt Garza trade. Is Sam Fuld the most 2011 Tampa Bay Devil Ray? Discuss amongst yourselves. (John Jaso is the strongest contender.) What You Don’t Remember: He was the leadoff hitter for Team Israel in the 2017 World Baseball Classic. What You Might Remember: His frequent Buxton-esque wall collisions in Tampa led to a #LegendOfSamFuld hashtag on the bird site. What’s He Up To: Fuld is the general manager for your Philadelphia Phillies. Which means that one of his special assistants last year was…Terry Ryan, the man who claimed him off waivers in 2014.
  19. At the turn of the last decade, one man bestrode the mound like a colossus. This is the story of Jose Mijares. Subject: Jose Mijares Why You Remember Him: Mijares was part of the Minnesota Twins bullpen from 2008-2011. A promising start (2.34 ERA with 55/23 K/BB in 2009) deteriorated to the point where he was non-tendered after the 2011 season. If you recall the Twins bullpen of that period, that wasn’t a ringing endorsement of Mijares’ continued viability. Mijares rebounded with Kansas City and San Francisco in 2012, appearing in 78 games and snagging a World Series ring with the Giants. Of course, the real reason you remember him is that he was, well, a big fella. We love the hefty relievers, don’t we folks? Terry Forster, Rich Garces, and Mijares all sort of looked like regular dudes instead of world-class athletes with 2.1% body fat who only eat protein shakes, plain chicken breasts, and broccoli. It also plays into the fiction that, hey, if these guys can do it, we could go out there and strike someone out, return a Serena Williams serve, get a bucket in an NBA game, etc. Please understand that this could never happen, not in a million billion years. The humiliation on your face as you attempted and failed to do any of these things over and over would power a large Ohio city if it could be harnessed for electricity. Let’s say Youngstown. What You Don’t Remember: He was dinged for using a banned substance (non-performance enhancing) in 2015. What You Might Remember: Some other 2011 bullpen denizens: Alex Burnett. Dusty Hughes. Eric Hacker. Chuck James. Lester Oliveros. They went 63-99 for a reason, man. What’s He Up To: There’s nothing super current out there. I don’t even think Seth knows what he’s up to, and Seth knows everything about Twins past, present, and future. Hopefully he’s somewhere eating whatever he wants and living a nice retired life. View full article
  20. Subject: Jose Mijares Why You Remember Him: Mijares was part of the Minnesota Twins bullpen from 2008-2011. A promising start (2.34 ERA with 55/23 K/BB in 2009) deteriorated to the point where he was non-tendered after the 2011 season. If you recall the Twins bullpen of that period, that wasn’t a ringing endorsement of Mijares’ continued viability. Mijares rebounded with Kansas City and San Francisco in 2012, appearing in 78 games and snagging a World Series ring with the Giants. Of course, the real reason you remember him is that he was, well, a big fella. We love the hefty relievers, don’t we folks? Terry Forster, Rich Garces, and Mijares all sort of looked like regular dudes instead of world-class athletes with 2.1% body fat who only eat protein shakes, plain chicken breasts, and broccoli. It also plays into the fiction that, hey, if these guys can do it, we could go out there and strike someone out, return a Serena Williams serve, get a bucket in an NBA game, etc. Please understand that this could never happen, not in a million billion years. The humiliation on your face as you attempted and failed to do any of these things over and over would power a large Ohio city if it could be harnessed for electricity. Let’s say Youngstown. What You Don’t Remember: He was dinged for using a banned substance (non-performance enhancing) in 2015. What You Might Remember: Some other 2011 bullpen denizens: Alex Burnett. Dusty Hughes. Eric Hacker. Chuck James. Lester Oliveros. They went 63-99 for a reason, man. What’s He Up To: There’s nothing super current out there. I don’t even think Seth knows what he’s up to, and Seth knows everything about Twins past, present, and future. Hopefully he’s somewhere eating whatever he wants and living a nice retired life.
  21. If you were a baseball GM in the mid-to-late '00s, chances are you traded Brendan Harris at one point. Subject: Brendan Harris Why You Remember Him: If you were a wheeling and dealing MLB GM in the mid-to-late ‘00s, chances are you threw in Brendan Harris as part of the deal. The infielder out of William & Mary was moved four times between 2004 and 2010, three of them involving your Minnesota Twins. 2004: As part of the 4-team Nomar Garciaparra blockbuster (Twins fans: feel free to call this the Dougie Baseball blockbuster, I won’t tell anyone), Harris was traded by the Cubs to the Montreal Expos. 2006: In the only non-Minnesota transaction, the Expos are now the Nationals, and they include Harris in a trade with the Reds for Austin Kearns. 2007: The Matt Garza trade! You remember the Matt Garza trade! Harris came over with (sigh) Delmon Young and Jason Pridie for Garza, Jason Bartlett, and Eddie Morlan. 2010: The J.J. Hardy trade! You remember the J.J. Hardy trade! You’re probably still mad about it and that’s OK! Harris and Hardy were shipped to Baltimore for Jim Hoey and Brett Jacobsen. I’m getting upset just typing it. Harris was coming off a career year in Tampa (highs in OPS, HRs, RBI, OBP, and batting average) when he joined Minnesota. He didn’t quite scale those offensive heights in his 2+ seasons here and his defense didn’t make up for it. Despite this, the team signed him to an extension prior to the 2010 season in a move described by one local blogger as a “head-scratcher.” What You Don’t Remember: Future Twin Orlando Cabrera was also moved in the Nomar/Mientkiewicz deal. What You Might Remember: From 2011 to 2013, J.J. Hardy led all major league shortstops with 77 home runs. Hoey pitched 24 innings for the 2011 Twins before never seeing the majors again. I’ve just made myself upset again! This is on me! What’s He Up To: Harris is using his Wharton MBA for X10 Capital, an organization that “empowers professional athletes with the tools and resources necessary to fulfill their dreams.” Before you ask, yes, Tuffy Gosewisch is one of his co-workers. You can find him occasionally tweeting at @brendanharris23. View full article
  22. Subject: Brendan Harris Why You Remember Him: If you were a wheeling and dealing MLB GM in the mid-to-late ‘00s, chances are you threw in Brendan Harris as part of the deal. The infielder out of William & Mary was moved four times between 2004 and 2010, three of them involving your Minnesota Twins. 2004: As part of the 4-team Nomar Garciaparra blockbuster (Twins fans: feel free to call this the Dougie Baseball blockbuster, I won’t tell anyone), Harris was traded by the Cubs to the Montreal Expos. 2006: In the only non-Minnesota transaction, the Expos are now the Nationals, and they include Harris in a trade with the Reds for Austin Kearns. 2007: The Matt Garza trade! You remember the Matt Garza trade! Harris came over with (sigh) Delmon Young and Jason Pridie for Garza, Jason Bartlett, and Eddie Morlan. 2010: The J.J. Hardy trade! You remember the J.J. Hardy trade! You’re probably still mad about it and that’s OK! Harris and Hardy were shipped to Baltimore for Jim Hoey and Brett Jacobsen. I’m getting upset just typing it. Harris was coming off a career year in Tampa (highs in OPS, HRs, RBI, OBP, and batting average) when he joined Minnesota. He didn’t quite scale those offensive heights in his 2+ seasons here and his defense didn’t make up for it. Despite this, the team signed him to an extension prior to the 2010 season in a move described by one local blogger as a “head-scratcher.” What You Don’t Remember: Future Twin Orlando Cabrera was also moved in the Nomar/Mientkiewicz deal. What You Might Remember: From 2011 to 2013, J.J. Hardy led all major league shortstops with 77 home runs. Hoey pitched 24 innings for the 2011 Twins before never seeing the majors again. I’ve just made myself upset again! This is on me! What’s He Up To: Harris is using his Wharton MBA for X10 Capital, an organization that “empowers professional athletes with the tools and resources necessary to fulfill their dreams.” Before you ask, yes, Tuffy Gosewisch is one of his co-workers. You can find him occasionally tweeting at @brendanharris23.
  23. The Twins didn't always have a problem finding an answer at the shortstop position, even if that answer wasn't always the best one. This is the tale of Cristian Guzman. Subject: Cristian Guzman Why You Remember Him: A key part of the Chuck Knoblauch trade along with Eric Milton (no offense to Brian Buchanan and Danny Mota), Guzman held down the shortstop position during Minnesota’s early-‘00s renaissance. Most noteworthy was his All-Star 2001 campaign, which the New York Times’ Aaron Gleeman ranks as the 8th-best season ever by a Twins shortstop. Equally noteworthy, if less pleasant, is that he just couldn’t hit that good outside his 2001 surge. Gleeman notes in the link that Guzman has the lowest OPS+ of any Minnesota Twin with that many plate appearances. As someone who remembers Tim Laudner hitting .203 with seven home runs for what felt like 100 years, this surprised me. That said, any Metrodome attendee from 1999-2004 will remember Bob Casey bellowing “Cristian Guuuuuuuuuuuuuzman” until their dying day. There are worse legacies. Guzman left the Twins in free agency for the Washington Nationals in 2005. After an injury-plagued start in D.C., he managed a second All-Star appearance in 2008. He last played with the Texas Rangers in 2010. What You Don’t Remember: His 1999 salary was $200,000. What You Might Remember: Guzman led the American League in triples in 2000, 2001, and 2003. When he did get on base, Guzman could move. He also led AL shortstops in errors in 2001. What’s He Up To: Per Wikipedia, he lives in New Jersey with his wife and six children. No other sources for that claim, but there's also a Cristian Guzman Carpentry LLC listed in Springfield, NJ, so it's at least possible. View full article
  24. Subject: Cristian Guzman Why You Remember Him: A key part of the Chuck Knoblauch trade along with Eric Milton (no offense to Brian Buchanan and Danny Mota), Guzman held down the shortstop position during Minnesota’s early-‘00s renaissance. Most noteworthy was his All-Star 2001 campaign, which the New York Times’ Aaron Gleeman ranks as the 8th-best season ever by a Twins shortstop. Equally noteworthy, if less pleasant, is that he just couldn’t hit that good outside his 2001 surge. Gleeman notes in the link that Guzman has the lowest OPS+ of any Minnesota Twin with that many plate appearances. As someone who remembers Tim Laudner hitting .203 with seven home runs for what felt like 100 years, this surprised me. That said, any Metrodome attendee from 1999-2004 will remember Bob Casey bellowing “Cristian Guuuuuuuuuuuuuzman” until their dying day. There are worse legacies. Guzman left the Twins in free agency for the Washington Nationals in 2005. After an injury-plagued start in D.C., he managed a second All-Star appearance in 2008. He last played with the Texas Rangers in 2010. What You Don’t Remember: His 1999 salary was $200,000. What You Might Remember: Guzman led the American League in triples in 2000, 2001, and 2003. When he did get on base, Guzman could move. He also led AL shortstops in errors in 2001. What’s He Up To: Per Wikipedia, he lives in New Jersey with his wife and six children. No other sources for that claim, but there's also a Cristian Guzman Carpentry LLC listed in Springfield, NJ, so it's at least possible.
  25. The Twins used to have a player named Aaron Hicks before sending him away. He became an All-Star for the New York Yankees. This is the story of who the Twins acquired. Why You Remember Him: The Twins wanted a catcher. And while I have no way of knowing this for certain, they also wanted someone with the most Irish New York cop name in Major League Baseball. Thus, they acquired John Ryan Murphy from the New York Yankees for outfielder Aaron Hicks. Hicks would become a reliable All-Star because of course he would. Murphy would not become a reliable Minnesota All-Star because of course he wouldn’t. But it’s much worse than that! Per Baseball Reference, Hicks produced 8.1 WAR in 2017 and 2018. Murphy produced 82 at-bats for the Twins with a .143 average. But it’s much worse than even that! Numbers can be cold and lifeless, but video is forever. You can find, on the public internet where even kids can see it, clips of Murphy hitting a go-ahead home run for the Yankees vs. the Twins and Hicks making a diving stab to finish off another victory for the Bombers over the hometown nine. This feels like something we all should have seen coming considering the two parties involved in the transaction. But we just let it happen and hoped for the best and here we are. “Never have dreams.” –Twins Daily co-founder Parker Hageman What You Don’t Remember: If you’re playing bar trivia, he’s the answer to the question, “Who caught Mariano Rivera’s final pitch?” In his third professional game, no less. He also was C.C. Sabathia's 3000th strikeout. What You Might Remember: Murphy was eventually traded to Atlanta for Gabriel Moya. Moya has not pitched in the bigs since 2018. What’s He Up To: Murphy is a free agent, last playing for PIttsburgh in 2020. Will he return to the game and inflict more pain, either directly or via side channels, on the Minnesota Twins? I mean, probably. View full article
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