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The World Series continues. I don’t know if you were like me and waited up until Carlos Ruiz hit a slow roller down the 3B line to end the game, giving the Phillies a 2-1 series lead, but that was late! Then last night, it was a blowout for the Phillies, and tonight could be more of the same as Cole Hamels will try to end the World Series for the Phillies. The Gophers football team won again, beating Purdue handily on the road. They are 7-1. They are #17 in the new BCS standings. Could they be for real? Imagine if they went 11-1, and based on who they play they could. The cynic in my says they have as good a chance at ending the season 7-5, but I really don’t think that will happen. The Gophers hockey team beat Wisconsin a couple of times. The Vikings had a week off, but received news that both Kevin Williams and Pat Williams could be subject to a four game suspension due to steroids. That’s never good. Losing those two, along with the injured EJ Henderson, would greatly hurt the middle of that Vikings defense! Apparently the Wild are doing pretty well, so that’s good. Here are some more thoughts and notes:
· When you read anything written by Charley Walters in the Pioneer Press, you often have to take it with a grain of salt. However, he wrote an excellent article on St. Paul native (and St. Thomas grad) Buzz Hannahan. He was in the Phillies organization for several years and played with several of the current World Series participants including Chris Coste. Their stories are actually quite similar except that Coste actually got a chance. I encourage everyone to read it if you haven’t.
· Real GM performs an audit of the 2008 Twins season.
· Another article on the Virginia Beach, Virginia, area’s big leaguers; Michael Cuddyer, BJ Upton, Justin Upton, David Wright, Ryan Zimmerman and Mark Reynolds.
· Here is an article about Jason Bartlett’s stolen base in the World Series giving everyone a free taco at Taco Bell. It also talks about his leadership skills. There is a quote from a text message from Kevin Slowey that is pretty impressive. Why? Because it uses the word “verbose.”
· OK, I am always interested and intrigued by the inner-workings of baseball. This article from the Philadelphia Inquirer is about advanced scouting, something that is overlooked by fans. Overlooked probably isn’t even the right word; many probably don’t even know it is happening. Anyway, this article talks about some advanced scouting done on the Twins by the Braves scout Mike Arbuckle heading into the 1991 World Series. Also, Kent Tekulve talks about trying to find something, anything about Francisco Liriano to try to gain an edge. This article is absolutely worth the read. If you ever wondered why a fielder was standing somewhere strange for a particular batter, or why a pitch out was called in a certain situation, this article may help explain some of that.
· Gophers assistant coach Rob Fornasiere was named the ABCA Assistant Coach of the Year.
· These are the kinds of stories I try to find throughout the offseason. This one comes from the Lewis County Chronicle, in Washington. It discusses the season and plans for Twins prospect Brock Peterson. According to the article, there is an assumption that he will remain in the organization and head to Rochester in 2009. What’s even more interesting is that there is a chance that he will go to Colombia this winter to play ball. It is a country that the Twins have never sent a player, so it could be interesting.
· Anthony Slama (17), Philip Humber (18) and Brian Duensing (19) were added to the Twinkie Town Top Prospects list via votes this weekend. Currently, you can vote for Twins Prospect #20.
Arizona Fall League Weekend Update
· The Rising Stars Showcase was on Friday night. Anthony Slama and Rob Delaney represented the Twins. Slama didn’t pitch. Delaney pitched the 8th inning. He gave up one walk and struck one out in a scoreless inning.
· On Saturday, Phoenix won 13-10 over Scottsdale.
· Steve Tolleson went 2-5 with an RBI. He batted second and played 2B. He is now hitting .405.
· Dustin Martin went 1-4 and is hitting .264. He batted fifth and played LF.
· Tim Lahey pitched the 8th inning. He gave up a hit and two walks, but no runs, in the inning.