Monday Morning Notebook

24 Oct

also available at www.SethSpeaks.net -

If you are interested in purchasing a copy of the TwinsCentric Offseason GM Handbook, now is the time. It is available for $5.99 now. When the World Series is complete, you will receive your copy in your e-mail. If you wait to order until after the World Series, it will be a still-very-reasonable $9.99 for over 130 pages of Twins content. Click here to pre-order your copy today!

  • Michael Cuddyer will certainly be targeted by several teams this offseason, including the Twins. The Giants were interested at the trade deadline, so we can assume they will remain interested. Is it possible that the Yankees don’t pick up Nick Swisher’s 2012 option and turn their attention to Cuddyer? The Rockies are known to be interested, maybe the Reds? The Orioles and the Red Sox are options. In other words, Cuddyer is going to have plenty of options this offseason. After Carlos Beltran, Cuddyer is probably the top outfield free agent. Being a Type A free agent probably wouldn’t hurt him. However, the assumption that he would want to stay with the Twins and maybe even take a little less money to stay could be a factor, as it was last year with Carl Pavano.
  • While most talk about Cuddyer, Jason Kubel is another very interesting free agent. He has shown in the big leagues that he can hit over .290, can hit 25 homers and drive in runs. Yes, I fully believe that his best defensive position is Designated Hitter. My bold prediction is that the Red Sox will let David Ortiz go even though he had a huge 2011 season again. If they do, then Jason Kubel can take over as the Red Sox DH and do just as Ortiz did. He can tattoo the Green Monster, and he can take advantage of the short porch near Pesky’s Pole down the right field line. If he did, he would become baseball’s best DH.
  • Dave Deland from the St. Cloud Times took the World Series as an opportunity to do what seems to make Minnesotans happy, bashing Joe Mauer. It ridiculously has become sport of its own. In this article, he talks in far-too-much-depth about Nick Punto being in the World Series while Joe Mauer isn’t.
  • Justin Morneau is mentioned in this article talking about concussions, how things have changed in just the last couple of years and when the rewards of coming back just aren’t worth it. Very interesting article.
  • Yahoo Sports named the Five Most Disappointing Teams in baseball this year. How is it even possible that the Twins weren’t #1… aside from an East Coast bias, of course?
  • Bill Mahoney from ProSportsBlogging.com is seemingly offended that Jeff Mathis and Drew Butera are the catchers representing MLB in their trip to Taiwan next week. Of all things to be offended by, who gets to go to that is not really it. They aren’t going to Taiwan to dominate and crush these teams. They’re going there to spread the MLB story, to represent the US and baseball. There are some All-Stars that go each year, and some aren’t All-Stars. Not a big deal. Danny Valencia is also representing the Twins in Taiwan.
  • Bleacher Report wrote an article about Jewish players, owners and GMs. One of the Twins players made the list.
  • Happy Birthday to Ron Gardenhire, who is 54 today. Kyle Gibson turned 23 years old over the weekend.
  • Where does the 1991 World Series rank among the best postseason series of all time? Hardball Times discusses.
  • See where Seedlings To Stars ranks Brian Dozier on its Top 100 list.
  • Nick Nelson asked the question, “Is Denard Span Trade Bait?”
  • There are many reason to Follow Me On Twitter, but I often post things there and not here, things like the Diamondbacks adding former Twins prospect David Winfree to their 40 man roster. I met David at Twins Fest in 2006 after he was named the Twins minor league hitter of the year in 2005. He’s had an interesting minor league career, but this is great news for him!
  • The Baseball Outsider wrote about the Twins’ Cuddyer Conundrum.
  • Do the Twins or members of the Twins rank in Yahoo Sports Top 5 Worst Teams to win the World Series?
  • Puckett’s Pond claims that the Twins Farm System is Getting Better.
  • Puckett’s Pond also ran down the Twins Top 5 One-Hit Wonders in their 50+ years in Minnesota.  
  • Aaron Gleeman posted some more Twins Notes, discussing more players removed from the 40 man roster,
  • A Huge Congratulations to “Babs” from Knuckleballs on her wedding over the weekend!!
  • North Dakota Twins Fan discusses the idea of Jack Morris becoming a pitching coach for the GCL Twins. (regarding Sid Hartmann’s STrib article saying he worked with the Twins Instructional League team and might consider coaching.)
  • As  I mentioned last week, I headed down to the cities on Friday night. On Saturday morning, I spent some time at Wings of Watertown which was a great time. My brother and I then went to the Gophers/Nebraska game, and there was definitely more Red in the stadium than maroon and gold. We had a great time tailgating before and after the game, and being lifelong Nebraska fans, we didn’t mind the outcome. On Sunday, I was in downtown Minneapolis for a couple of hours before the Vikings game, but I left about two, an hour before the game started. I truly enjoyed listening to Paul Allen call the game. It was a good game, as evidenced by the score. But there definitely appeared to be an excitement surrounding the first start of Christian Ponder. His mobility and his ability to convert some third downs stood out to me. Those that follow me on Twitter saw me tweet later last night, “Tim Tebow 13-27, 2 TD, Christian Ponder 13-32, 2 TD.” I got bashed. So, I figured I’d take this time to explain myself. All I was saying was that as exciting as Ponder was, and as much of an improvement he probably was over Donovan McNabb, calling his performance “great” isn’t quite accurate. Yes, I realize that Tebow put up his numbers in a win against the Dolphins, arguably the worst team in the NFL, whereas Ponder put up his numbers against the Packers, arguably the best team in the NFL. That said, the Packers defense isn’t exactly in the same class as teams like the Ravens. The intent was not so much to compare Ponder to Tebow. It was just to say that calling Ponder’s performance ‘great’ isn’t exactly accurate either. Some said that Ponder needs to be given time. I completely agree, and I am very excited to see the progression of Ponder, I think he’ll be terrific. Some said I can’t compare Ponder to Tebow because it was Ponder’s first career start, and it was Tebow’s fourth. Yes, Tebow is a grizzled veteran! Listen, like I said, I enjoyed the game yesterday. Allen did a great job of making me feel like I was actually watching the game, seeing what was happening, and it was a great game. Ponder made a good first impression, and let’s leave it at that. He’s going to have a lot of performances over his career that we will actually be able to categorize as ‘great!’     

If you have any questions or comments or other links, please feel free to leave them here.

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8 Responses to “Monday Morning Notebook”

  1. mike wants wins October 24, 2011 at 9:22 am #

    I finally ordered the Handbook this year. You guys deserve the money for your efforts. Thanks to you all for entertaining and informative sites.

    • Seth October 24, 2011 at 1:27 pm #

      Thanks Mike for all you support!

  2. gobbledy October 24, 2011 at 10:37 am #

    I don’t think Cuddy will take less money to stay with the Twins like Pavano did unless, like Pavano, he doesn’t get any better offers. The question will be does this team really look like it can contend for the next couple years so you’d want to play here? If you aren’t signing with a team that has a chance to win it all wouldn’t you want to get maximum $$?

  3. DB October 24, 2011 at 10:51 am #

    Hey Seth! Thanks for responding to my tweet last night (@bigD1123). I completely agree with your take on Ponder. I felt your comparison wasn’t apples to apples, so it didn’t carry your point very well, but you’re right. A “great” QB would have found a way to win that game yesterday. Can’t be negative about Ponder’s performance, though, given the competition he was facing for his first start. Hopefully, in the coming years, he can live up to the potential he showed yesterday.

    I have a question about Cuddy. When I look at his situation, I wonder if teams are going to look at him and say that the draft pick plus $10-15 mil is too much to pay for him? Kubel may be more attractive to most teams. Your thoughts?

    • mike wants wins October 24, 2011 at 2:17 pm #

      The O scored 27 points, they didn’t lose the game….that’s like giving the pitcher a win for giving up 7 runs in 6 innings, when he leaves with an 8-7 lead….

  4. Keli October 25, 2011 at 7:48 am #

    Hi Seth,
    I know it’s way off topic, but in looking at the AFL, do you ever look at ‘Away (or Home) Outs”? I have been doing this when Hicks starts in center field, and it really looks like he has amazing range. Have you seen or heard anything about his defense (other than his 2 errors!) in the AFL? Thanks! And, after starting 0-for-16(?), his offensive production hasn’t been too bad either. Maybe he is out of his 2-month long slump! Do you think he will start 2012 in NB?

  5. Josh K October 25, 2011 at 10:42 am #

    I just read the Deland article. How is this guys a sports editor when he knows nothing about baseball? He makes it sound like Punto could have/would have gotten $4 million per year this past off-season if he wanted to, but decided to take a huge pay cut.

    This guy is nuts, and if I were the St Cloud Times I’d be embarrassed that we was employed by us.

  6. Chad Groetsch October 27, 2011 at 8:33 am #

    Regarding Dave DeLand: For years we have suffered his Twin bashing in cloud town. The only time he is likely to say anything remotely good about the Twins is when they are winning a lot and he knows he’ll be ripped up one side and down the other for negative to their success. His columns were rants against most aspects of the team until about 2003 then he quieted down. This last season only gave him the fuel he needed to start back up with his moronic tirades.

    Not surprising too was the lack of front page coverage for the Twins in lieu of other sports items when they were winning but big headlines when they lost. His slant has always been against the Twins. Had they won the world series he would still find a way to hide the article below the Taco Bell coupon. Oh yes, his disgraces have permanently placed him in my personal doghouse.

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