Category:MLB
Posted on: May 28, 2009 11:11 pm
Edited on: May 29, 2009 8:07 pm
 

Where should Go-Go go?

Are the Twins slowing the maturation of Carlos Gomez by not sending him to AAA?


At only 22 years old Carlos Gomez has already shown he is an elite major league center fielder, where so far this year he has a perfect fielding percentage. In his major league career he has more outfield assists then errors. He has also shown the ability to read the ball well off the bat and use his speed to track down hard to get to balls, making several highlight reel catches. He also has a cannon for an arm.

He is showing signs of having excellent base running skills, or at least the raw speed to bunt for base hits, take the extra base, and steal his way into scoring position. In a game against the Red Sox on Wednesday, he attempted to take home in the 7th inning and seeing that Boston catcher George Kottaras was blocking the plate ready to make the tag, Gomez lowered his shoulder and tried to run right through Kottaras. I am not sure how he held onto the ball, but it was great to see the young Twin playing such hard-nosed baseball. It reminded me a lot of former Twins center fielder Torii Hunter. Carlos Gomez has also been compared to A's great Ricky Henderson.

The problem however, is that he has not been able to hit for average at the major league level. Although he has already hit for the cycle in his young career, a sure sign of his raw talent, he has a career batting average of only .250 and a career on base percentage of under .300. So far this year he is hitting just .225, and that leads to the bigger problem...

With the emergence of Denard Span, hitting .317 on the year, Jason Kubel, hitting .340 on the year, and Michael Cuddyer hitting .330 with 7 home runs in May; there just hasn't been much playing time for Gomez. And what he needs is just that, more playing time. He has only started 25 games this year, several of which where as a result of Delmon Young being on bereavement leave for 9 days. Currently Gomez is being used mostly as a pinch runner and defensive replacement.

I believe that the future of the Twins outfield consists of Carlos Gomez, Denard Span, and Delmon Young. The Twins, in my opinion, would be better served sending Gomez down to thier AAA affiliate, the Rochester Red Wings. That way he would get a chance to get a full slate of in game at bats, and continue to work on his excellent potential on the bases. He would then be able work on things like taking pitches and 2 strike hitting with out it costing the big club a win.

As a minor leaguer in the New York Mets system Gomez saw an improvement in batting average every year, at each level. In 2005 playing A ball he has a batting average of .275 and an on base percentage of .331. In 2006 playing AA ball those numbers jumped to a .281 AVG and a .350 OBP. When he played AAA for 36 games in 2007 he got his average up to .286 and his on base percentage to .363. It appears that with work and regular at bats Gomez has shown the ability to make improvements on hitting.

Hopefully the Twins will give their young outfielders all they will need to reach their full potential, because if these emerging stars continue to progress, the Minnesota outfield could be the envy of the bigs for years to come.

Posted on: May 28, 2009 6:49 pm
Edited on: May 28, 2009 6:53 pm
 

Twins and Red Sox Split 4 game series

The Twins managed to split the series with the Red Sox in the final match up between the two at the Metrodome. At the end of the current home stand, the Twins are now 4 games back of Detroit, the same team they swept just a few series ago. 

In the four games vs. the Red Sox, both Justin Morneau and Joe Mauer, have both cooled down a bit. Hitting a combined 7 - 26 with 2 home runs. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

During Wednesday's game, the Red Sox tied a record with 7 wild pitches, by three different pitchers.

In the series finale, the Twins were unable to build off Joe Crede's early home run. In an odd game, Jason Varitek hit two home runs and then was ejected for arguing a called ball 4 when catching; however, that wasn't until after Twins' catcher Mike Redmond was tossed for arguing a play at the plate on a sacrifice fly. Replays show that Redmond was correct. Ron Gardenhire hurried out and was quickly ejected when responding to Redmond's ejection.

The Twins now go to Tampa Bay to play the struggling Rays, losers of 5 straight, in a three game series before returning home to for a 3 game series vs Cleveland.

Category: MLB
Posted on: May 27, 2009 4:37 pm
Edited on: May 27, 2009 7:15 pm
 

MLB's Worst Team Names

What's in a name?

I was looking into some history on what I thought were the MLB's current worst franchise names. For me the list came down to the following six:

The Sock teams: There are currently not two but three teams named after the color of their socks, or Sox. The Chicago White Sox, the Boston Red Sox and the Cincinnati Reds (who's name was shortened from the Red Stockings in the 1878).

                                               

The Oakland Athletics: The team, originally the Philadelphia Athletics, was named after a local gentleman's club, The Athletic Club of Philadelphia. In 1905 the team went professional and kept the same name. When they later moved to Kanas City in 1955, they continued to play as the Athletics. In 1968 the team moved to Oakland. The team name was officially changed to the A's from 1970 - 1981, before returning to the Athletics. This team name survived two city moves and two eccentric owners. Most surprising to me is that the name survived Charlie O. Finley. This was the guy who first gave baseball bright colored uniforms, night games, and unfortunately the designated hitter. He even tried to get the league to switch to a more visible orange baseball. Through all that, he was fine with his team being named after an Athletic club in Pennsylvania. 

The Philadelphia Phillies: The Phillies replaced the Worcester Brown Stockings (yes, another sock team) in 1883 under the name the Quakers. In 1884 the team changed its name to the Philadelphias. Newspapers had a hard time fitting the name in the box scores and started to type the them in as the Phillies. The team went by both the Phillies and the Quakers until 1890 when they officially changed their name to the Phillies.

The Houston Astros: The franchise started in 1962 as the Colt .45s. Two years later the team moved to the new Harris County Dome Stadium. At that time team owner Roy Hofheinz, decided to change team name and the stadium name to the Astros and the Astrodome. He did so to pay homage to Houston's affiliation to N.A.S.A. and the Space Program. I actually like this team name, but have always disliked their logos. It started as the dome made to look like a UFO, and then switched to the Star in 1994. Doesn't Texas have another famous sport team with a Start as the logo?

Then there are the racist team names. The Cleveland Indians and the Atlanta Braves. Although I personally think the Braves is an honorable term for Native Americans, and both are far better than the NFL's Redskins.

Some better names also have some interesting origins. The Dodgers, named for all the Trolley Dodging you needed to do when going to the stadium in Brooklyn. Although they had many names in a short amount of years, I think we all wish they were still the Bridegrooms. The Twins, named for the Twin Cities. The Mets, being named for the city's area as well as the team's corporate name. The Nationals, bringing back the original name for the team in our Nation's Capital. The Kansas City Royals, named after the American Royal, a livestock show, horse show, and rodeo held in Kansas City since the late 1800's.

Of course there are also all the animal/bird names like the Diamondbacks and the Orioles. I do think most could do better, I mean how many Tigers are there in Detroit? However, there are animal names more specific to the teams region like the Marlins and the Rays.

 

Please leave feedback on any team names that you think are either outdated or just plain bad. I had a lot of fun researching this and would love to get some opinions. 

 

 

Posted on: May 26, 2009 5:39 pm
Edited on: May 27, 2009 12:52 pm
 

Slama watch 2009

Who is ready for some Slama?

I know I am. Anthony Slama is still playing AA ball for the Twins minor league team The New Britain Rock Cats.

On the season so far he is pitching 3-0, 2.59 era, 9 saves, and 38 strike outs in 24 and a 3rd innings. And that is after a terrible game on 5/23 when he gave up 3 runs in his 1 inning. 

In 2008 he was 4-1 with 25 saves and a 1.01 era and 110 strike outs in 71 innings pitched and was named MLB.com's Class A Adv. Relief Pitcher of the Year. 

I think we all know that Slama is the heir apparent to Joe Nathan and I can't think of a better way to learn the job then setting up for him in the 8th. Not to mention, the Twins need him. They have been looking for a solid 8th inning guy since Pat Neshek went down. So far this year the Twins relievers are carrying a combined earned run average over 4.00.

Category: MLB
Posted on: May 25, 2009 5:57 pm
Edited on: May 25, 2009 5:58 pm
 

Twins vs Brewers









Three Game Sweep. So much for the hot Brew Crew.

Sorry, I was out of town all weekend, but will provide better coverage on the next series.

Category: MLB
Tags: Brewers, Twins
 
Posted on: May 21, 2009 5:38 pm
Edited on: May 21, 2009 5:39 pm
 

Twins @ White Sox Game 3

In which the Twins take out their frustrations on their hated rival.

 

It is good to see the Twins finally making some line-up changes. I have been saying for weeks, that they can not keep putting Brendan Harris and Matt Tolbert in the two hole. I have been hoping they would give Jose Morales more at bats. I thought they could start him in the two hole. 

Well, Meatloaf has been know to say 2 out of 3 ain't bad. The Twins didn't put Morales in the two spot, but they did start him. And instead of starting Harris or Tolbert in the 2 hole, they dropped Tolbert down to the 8 spot, and moved everyone else up a spot. The result....

The Twins scored 20 runs in the first 7 innings.

Morales went 3 for 4 with two walks and 3 runs. Joe Mauer had 6 rbis. The Twins hit two 3 run homers and a Grand Slam (Mauer's 4th homer of the road trip). Even Tolbert had a big game. It also helped that Nick Blackburn pitched a great 7 innings of shut-out baseball. The final score was 20-1.

After the game Micheal Cuddyer, who hit a three run homer in the 7 run 2nd inning, stated "We needed that one, if there was ever a must win, it was that one." He further went on to say, "... we have been through this before. We've struggled in May for some reason, but going into the National League games we seem to pick up some momentum, and hopefully thats what we have been able to do today going into the series against Milwaukee."














 It was a long and ugly road trip; however, the Twins finished it on a high note. Now they can look to add to their one game winning streak in the comfort of the Metrodome where they are 14-9 on the year.




Posted on: May 20, 2009 12:15 am
Edited on: May 21, 2009 4:12 pm
 

Twins @ White Sox Games 1 and 2

More of the same In Chicago

Scott Baker and the Twins continue their skid, losing a 5th consecutive game. Baker had one bad inning, giving up 3 earned runs in the second. Including a 2 run homer to Paul Konerko. Mark Buehrle gave up 8 hits, but they were scattered over 7 innings. The Twins had the same problem against the White Sox as they have been having from their #2 hitter. Brendan Harris not only went 0-4, but he also hit into 2 double plays, actually taking away potential runs from Joe Mauer and Justin Morneau

Joe Mauer hit his 7th home run. That is the Twins' 8th of the road trip, and amazingly, they have all been solos.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Category: MLB
Posted on: May 19, 2009 7:53 pm
Edited on: May 19, 2009 7:55 pm
 

Sean Henn

I was just going to write a blog about calling up Sean Henn, and the Twins go and do it. I love it.
FYI, AAA stats. 24 innings pitched. 1.13 era. 32 K's. 
Category: MLB
Tags: Sean Henn, Twins
 
 
 
 
 
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