also available at http://www.SethSpeaks.net –
I missed last week’s Links and Thinks because of the news of Matt Fox’s promotion and start, but we are back this week with a lot of links. The Vikings/Saints game last night certainly did not lead up to the hype. Not a good football game by any means, but I don’t think it means a lot in the big picture. For those of you who look at the NFL “Expert” Picks, note that a few players and bloggers were added to the panel since I posted initially. Kevin Slowey, Kyle Waldrop, Danny Rams and Matt Schuld each sent me their picks for the week, as did Howard Sinker, Judd Spicer and Louis Schuth.
QUESTION OF THE WEEK
The Question for this Week goes back to my TwinsCentric Star Tribune blog from this week entitled 20 Questions. I jotted down 20 questions about the Twins as the season winds down. So I’ll ask you… What questions do you have about this 2010 team? What are the answers, or when will we know the answers? With just 22 games remaining, what are your questions about this year’s Twins team?
Twins Minor League Question
It was largely a disappointing 2010 campaign for most of the Twins affiliates, but there were some good performances. In your mind, which prospects made significant progress in 2010? Which jumped up your prospect rankings, or at least your thoughts on them going into the offseason?
The Twins are clearly in the driver’s seat in the AL Central. With a Magic Number of 17, Baseball Prospectus gives the Twins a 95.4% chance of winning the AL Central and a 95.6% chance of making the playoffs. But the key for the Twins the remainder of the season is to not become complacent, and that starts with this three game series against Cleveland, who is 57-83. It’s one thing to beat a Royals lineup with a lot of bad veterans, but the Twins will need to play well against a Cleveland team that has accumulated a lot of young talent. The Twins would be favored in at least two of the three pitching matchups this weekend. Note that Nick Blackburn’s numbers are horrible, one of the worst for a starting pitcher in baseball. However, in three starts since his return to the Twins starting rotation, he has given up just five earned runs in 22.2 innings pitched. In those innings, he has allowed just 16 hits, walked five and struck out 15 batters. In other words, he has been pretty good.
Here are the pitching matchups:
- Friday night – Carl Pavano (16-10, 3.52, 1.15, .258) vs Fausto Carmona (11-14, 4.05, 1.37, .268)
- Saturday night – Nick Blackburn (9-9, 5.85, 1.54, .318) vs Carlos Carrasco (0-0, 3.38, 1.13, .245))
- Sunday night – Kevin Slowey (11-6, 4.39, 1.29, .278) vs. Mitch Talbot (9-11, 4.40, 1.51, .278)
Here is a look around the Twins blogosphere. A good site to find 66 Twins blogs is Newsbobber’s Minnesota Baseball Blog site., but you can also look on the left side of this page for many. I’ve only included blogs that have been updated in the last few days (let me know if I’m missing any sites that I should add):
- Aaron Gleeman answered his Twitter mailbag of Twins questions.
- Nick Nelson wrote that the Twins are definitely In Control.
- Over the Baggy seems to think that Hardy will be back next year.
- Twinkie Talk’s Erin discusses Getting More Bang for your Buck, and how much the Twins and other teams are paying per Win.
- K-Bro posted another Book Review, this one of The Bullpen Gospels: Major League Dreams of Minor League Veteran, and it sounds like a book I would thoroughly enjoy.
- Ed Thoma, the Baseball Outsider, writes about the home/road splits for the Twins hitters and pitchers. It’s really interesting to see.
- Coffeyville Whirlwind wrote about the Lou Gehrig/Concussions discussion, and then about a couple of games against the Angels late in the 1961 season.
- Andrew from Off the Mark wrote about Things he learned while being an usher at Target Field.
- For the Love of the Game describes What Winning Feels Like, with more cool pictures.
- Hitting the Foul Pole writes On Matt Capps.
- Knuckleballs’ Jim Crikket wants to have a Game 163 every year.
- That’s Twins Baseball has a great, exclusive interview with the lovely Kate Bilo, one of the Accuweather weather ladies during Twins games.
- OMG MN Twins shared some more Jim Thome facts and then posted a little more about Mister Incredible.
- Congrats to On the Road with Shawn on the one-year anniversary. He also took time away from the Twins to write about the Derek Jeter contract situation.
- In Centralized, Curve For a Strike’s Topper Anton, who Paul Allen loves, discusses how well the Twins have played within their own division.
- Peanuts from Heaven wrote On Sweeps and Capps.
- Cold Omaha wants Twins fans and bloggers to Stop Bashing Matt Capps!
- North Dakota Twins Fan compares several MLB teams to NFL teams. Which baseball team does he compare the Vikings to?
- Who is the Hero of the Day according to the Glorious Nation of Hrbekistan?
Here are the links to the StarTribune.com TwinsCentric blog postings for this week:
- Tuesday – Seth Stohs – 20 Questions
- Wednesday – Nick Nelson – Managing to Win
- Thursday – John Bonnes – The Monetary Case for Urgency
- Friday – Parker Hageman – ???
- And then you’re also probably reading the other Twins blogs at StarTribune.com: LaVelle E. Neal’s Twins Insider, Joe Christensen’s Around the Majors, and Howard Sinker’s A Fan’s View.
- John Bonnes is on The Power Trip Morning Show on KFAN Tuesdays and Friday’s during the 7:00 hour. (Podcasts available here.) I am on KFAN with Paul Allen each Thursday morning at about 9:20. If you would like to listen, the podcast is available here.
PODCASTS AND MORE
- On Monday Night’s SethSpeaks.net Weekly Minnesota Twins podcast, I was joined by two legends in the Twins blogosphere, John Bonnes and Aaron Gleeman. The three of us held a roundtable discussion on many Twins topics.
- Tuesday night, I was without internet, but Travis and I still held the final Twins Minor League Weekly of the year in which we named our top three hitters and top three pitchers from each Twins affiliate.
- On Saturday morning, I was on the Dez Says Twins podcast accidentally. I was driving and called in to listen to the show. I meant to push a button to turn on the speaker phone, but instead hit the #1 so I was on the show for a couple of minutes.
- On Sunday night, Travis Aune and I hosted a ½ hour version of the SethSpeaks.net Weekly Minnesota Twins podcast and discussed the Rangers series, the Matt Fox situation, Ben Revere and much more.
- When that show finished, I was a guest/co-host on Fanatic Jack’s podcast that included Darren “Doogie” Wolfson, Louie Schuth and Dez Tobin as well.
Any thoughts on the Twins or the Twins blogosphere? Feel free to leave your questions and comments here.