Nine Innings with Seth

26 May

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It’s been awhile, but I think it is time for a new Nine Innings with Seth. Here are nine topics or subjects that are at least a little different. As with a regular ball game, there are some quick innings, and other innings tend to drag on a little bit! Hopefully there is plenty of information here today that you will enjoy.

1st Inning – Radio Time

As has now become a regular time slot, I will be on The Paul Allen Show on KFAN this morning at 10:20 to talk about the Twins.

2nd Inning – All About Joe

I suppose that the title for this inning is not quite right. No one knows all about Joe Mauer. Maybe not even Joe Mauer. But everyone has an opinion, and everyone wants an update. Finally today, there is an update. On Tuesday, Joe Mauer went 0-1 with a walk in his first game action. He was the designated hitter for the Extended Spring Training team. He took a five-pitch walk. He also reached on an error after a nine-pitch at bat. He had to slide into 2nd and 3rd bases and scored a run. Of course, following the game, Mauer declined comment and would not give any time table.

As fellow TwinsCentric blogger Nick Nelson tweeted on Monday, Mauer has a sore shoulder and will not throw for a week to ten days. Hopefully that is the time that he is able to start catching some innings.

However, it is a positive sign that he is able to play, even just as a designated hitter. It is a start.

3rd  Inning – Signing for North Minneapolis

The Twins announced on Wednesday that several of their players will be signing autographs outside of Gate 29 on Target Plaza. For $10, fans can get one autograph with any of the players participating. Proceeds will go to the Red Cross for its relief efforts for tornado victims in North Minneapolis.

4th  Inning – The Slowey Situation

I am really struggling with this Kevin Slowey situation. Obviously I am not in the clubhouse every day like many, but I have never heard anyone say anything negative about Kevin Slowey. In fact, in my opinion, he is a terrific guy. We first made contact late in 2005 after he signed with the Twins and finished his season in Beloit. He has done several Q&As, and he continues to participate in my NFL “Expert” Picks each year. I have absolutely nothing bad to say about him. In fact, there are many great things to say about him. I remember talking to him at Twins Fest several years ago when a little kid came to him and asked him what his season highlight was. Slowey responded by saying that it was pitching the gold medal game against Cuba in Havana during an international comopetition. Then, he asked the boy what his favorite highlight of his season was. I was impressed. So when I hear reports of the Twins saying negative things about him, I can’t help but wonder aloud. When I hear Bert Blyleven and Dick Bremer bashing and questioning Slowey, it certainly makes me wonder.

Slowey is incredibly smart and speaks several languages “well enough.” I have heard it from a couple of sources that Gardy and the coaches don’t necessarily like smart players. See Craig Breslow and Brendan Harris for a couple more examples. Is Slowey an ace? No. Would it be nice if he was able to just take the role (bullpen) that he is being asked to fill? Of course. But I think the level of disdain and disappointing the is spewing out of the coaching staff and the media is far overboard. Even if everything they say is true, why are they letting it become public? There would be several teams interested in Slowey today if the Twins made him available.

To be fair, if Slowey is healthy and just asking out of the bullpen role, that would be disappointing. At the end of the day, the Twins are paying him well to pitch in whatever role they ask. And if he wants to get back into the starting rotation, the best way to do that is to pitch well in his given role, the bullpen. However, he was put on the disabled list yesterday with an abdominal strain. Even that can’t be an easy situation as Slowey says it is an ‘acute’ abdominal strain, while the Twins trainer says t is ‘mild.”

5th Inning – From Goat to Hero

Kris Humphries is probably the single reason that I don’t really watch Gophers (or any college) basketball anymore. Watching that ‘team’ play during his one season  in the Maroon and Gold was awful. The offense was Throw it to Humphries and see what he can do. That was it. I have never seen more individual, selfish play in my life. And now, news came out yesterday that he proposed to Kim Kardashian and she said yes. So now, Kris Humphries is my hero.

6th Inning – Minor League Game Notes

Rochester did not have a game scheduled on Wednesday.

New Britain 4, Binghamton 3 – Mark Dolenc led the Rock Cat bats. He went 4-4 with his fourth double. Yangervis Solarte went 2-4 with his third home run. Steve Singleton and Joe Benson each had two hits. Bobby Lanigan started and gave up three runs on five hits. In six innings, he walked two and struck out three. Mike Tarsi struck out two in two scoreless innings.

Ft. Myers 1, Tampa 12 – It was a rough one for starter Kane Holbrooks. In 3.1 innings, he gave up 11 runs on 14 hits and two walks. Shooter Hunt came in and gave up one run on two hits and two walks in 2.2 innings. He struck out two. Jhon Garcia went two scoreless innings and struck out four. Note that Aaron Hicks was not in the lineup. He’s been playing very well of late. On Tuesday night, he was caught between third and home and dove into 3rd base and came away from there holding his hand. The extent of the injury is not known at this time. It could be a short-term thing, or (hopefully not!) it could be longer. I’ll try to get more information.

Beloit 4, Burlington 5 – Pat Dean started on his 22nd birthday. He went 5.2 innings and gave up three runs (2 earned) on four hits and two walks. Blayne Weller went the next two innings and gave up two runs on four hits. He walked none and struck out three. Michael Tonkin, Jason Kubel’s brother, got the final four outs.

7th Inning – Viewing Party

Last year, TwinsCentric hosted several events where Twins fans could get together, watch a ball game and talk about our favorite team. Details are still being finalized, but keep Friday, June 3rd in mind as we will be co-hosting a Twins Viewing Party with KFAN’s Intern-Gal Lindsay that night. As of now, the location is still pending, but we will get any updated information to you as soon as things are finalized. John Bonnes (The Twins Geek), Parker Hageman (Over The Baggy), Nick Nelson (Nick’s Twins Blog) and myself will be there, and I’m certain many of your other favorite Twins bloggers will be as well. So again, keep the date open.

8th Inning – Harmon Killebrew

The governor of Minnesota has designated today Harmon Killebrew Day. The Twins will celebrate the life and times of Killer in a tribute ceremony at Target Field tonight which will be telecast. I wish I could make it there as I’m certain it will be an emotional night. Again, Killebrew played his final big league games the year that I was born, so I never got to watch him play. But I have been overwhelmed by the stories of the type of person that he was. Again, I want to be like Harmon is a theme that hopefully I can carry with me as a blogger and as a person. His work off the field and the stories by so many Twins fans and players has almost overshadowed what an incredible baseball player that he was. If you are able to make it to the event, or want to continue talking about Killebrew, that is always fine!

9th Inning – Twins Links

That’s it for today. Thanks for reading! As always, if you have any questions or comments, please feel free to leave them below.


8 Responses to “Nine Innings with Seth”

  1. mike wants wins May 26, 2011 at 8:47 am #

    Seth, your comments about gardy maybe not liking smart guys is interesting. I was going to post something on gleeman’s site about this, but wasn’t sure I should.

    I do think there is something to it. I clearly have no proof either way, but it does seem odd that several of the players being run out of town are college educated. Of course, this is also the front office that doesn’t believe in complicated math. So I’m not sure it is just Gardy.

  2. Matt May 26, 2011 at 10:07 am #

    The dumping of Breslow still confounds me to this day. But I think that Gardy’s dislike for Brendan Harris was less about how smart he was and more about what a terrible player he is.

  3. gobbledy May 26, 2011 at 11:14 am #

    i was really bothered by how bert reacted and just trashed slowey on tv. i’m old enough to remember that bert was known to be a jerk most of the time. for selfish reasons, more money, he forced the trade out of minn. he made few friends in texas (gave natl tv the finger) was soon traded by them and then forced another trade out of pittsburgh becuase, if i recall, he didn’t like how he was being used.
    the entire talk cycle was way over board and maybe just something to get the fans minds off how bad the team is by pushing the blame on slowey. we’ve seen gardy call out players before when he could have taken at least some of the blame himself, which he rarely does.

  4. DH in Philly May 26, 2011 at 12:13 pm #

    Who needs proof when you can make unwarranted accusations anonymously over the internet?

  5. mike wants wins May 26, 2011 at 1:35 pm #

    Dh, if that is aimed at me, I said I was hesitant to post it until Seth did. Now, I’m engaging in a conversation with Seth about what he posted.

    I guess I could have just ignored that part of his post. If it was aimed at Seth, well, there is nothing anonymous about his posts. He also states that he has reason for it to be warranted.

    I responded to that, rightly or wrongly.

  6. TT May 26, 2011 at 5:03 pm #

    ” I have heard it from a couple of sources that Gardy and the coaches don’t necessarily like smart players.”

    With all due respect Seth, what credible source for that claim would there be other than Gardy and the coaches? Its certainly possible someone has that impression, but how would they know?

    I don’t doubt that Gardy and the coaches put being “smart” low on their list of qualities to consider when deciding who should play. Hitting, fielding, running, throwing, pitching … have all got to be higher on the list. But the implication seems to be that being smart is somehow a disadvantage with the coaching staff.

    I wouldn’t pay much attention to the TV commentators, they may very well think piling on the side of management is just part of their job. Blyleven sounds like another cranky old curmudgeon complaining about “kids today”. He no doubt walked miles to school everyday in his youth, “uphill both ways.”

  7. TT May 26, 2011 at 5:13 pm #

    I’m not sure what was puzzling about Breslow. When they got rid of him, he had a 6.28 ERA with 11 walks and 11 hits in 14.1 innings over 17 appearances. Being smart doesn’t save you with those results.

  8. jeff May 27, 2011 at 9:32 am #

    How does the catcher develop a shoulder problem after being on the DL for weeks for leg problems? Mauer is an elite level player when he is healthy, but he has been so damn frustrating this year.

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