Minnesota Twins Shakeup at GM Makes No Sense

This past week Minnesota Twins owner Carl Pohlad dismissed general manager Bill Smith from his role despite giving him the dreaded vote of confidence after the team’s ninety-nine loss season. It was mentioned that the change was due to philosophical differences and that Smith was offered another role within the organization in baseball operations.

I can understand that there would be turmoil on a club that was expected to compete for the division once again and tanked the season, but the manner in which this maneuver took place is nonsensical. The top assistants to Bill Smith are remaining intact in their posts. Ron Gardenhire undoubtedly will be in the dugout on opening day and Terry Ryan was brought in to be the interim general manager with no timetable on filling the position permanently.

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Minnesota Twins are in Total Free Fall

Delmon Young

The Minnesota Twins have been plummeting in the American League Central standings. There win percentage may be lower than Adam Dunn’s batting average by the end of September. The Scott Baker injury recently put the icing on the cake of a disastrous season. Fans looking for a bargain in the Twin Cities should look to purchase tickets secondhand during an NFL Sunday. They could pick up the seats for next to nothing.

In analyzing the struggles of the ball club, the most glaring shortcoming is the lack of RBI production from those who should have provided more impressive numbers. Delmon Young, Jason Kubel, Justin Morneau, and Joe Mauer were all expected to have substantially more runs batted in. Usually the team can weather the storm if one of its players falls off, but when it’s almost everyone, good luck.

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Twins Should Trade Michael Cuddyer

The trade deadline is fast approaching in Major League Baseball. It is a unique season, so the date is largely ignored due to the NFL free agent comings and goings. Twins General Manager Bill Smith has some tough decisions to make. The team is on the borderline of heading into contention for the stretch run or on the cusp of faltering into the depths of the cellar in the division.

This is the type of decision that he can make from watching the club on a daily basis and getting a feel for which direction they are headed. I think that he should choose to sell at this juncture. Michael Cuddyer is a solid and versatile player. He has been the rock of the club this season with a myriad of injuries affecting almost every aspect of the roster. This is why he is valuable to all the other squads looking to add a complete player for the late summer push.

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Twins Vs. Tigers: AL Central Race Heating Up Now?

Outside of Justin Morneau, Jason Kubel is the most prolific bat in the Twins lineup on a consistent basis. He has more potential than Joe Mauer to put up big time numbers in the RBI and home run departments. The argument could also be made for Delmon Young or Michael Cuddyer, but I would wonder if those that would bring up those names have ever been to a batting practice session. People often speak of making judgments concerning the eye test. This would be more of a case of trusting the ear test.

If the Twins could take the Tigers and Yankees off the schedule, then the reason of the season would be pure bliss. The team showed promise in the first two series that were post All Star break. The Indians and Royals are anonymous nationally, but intra-divisional contests are always of the utmost importance in Major League Baseball. Then the team faced the Tigers-a team that had beaten them eleven straight times before Saturday night.

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Minnesota Twins Contractual Obligations

matt capps

Commentators frequently refer to this time of year as a dead period. I couldn’t disagree more because it really gives me the time to pore over the numbers and action of the current WNBA season. Seriously, it does offer a pause to analyze the state of organizations and to ponder what should transpire in the future to maximize success.

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How the Twins can Fix Tsuyoshi Nishioka

Heading into their weekend series against the Milwaukee Brewers at Target Field, the Twins and their fans can rest a little easier after taking two of three games from the Los Angeles Dodgers despite giving up fifteen runs in the first game and scoring only seven runs in all the games combined. This last fact simply shows that the club is resourceful and is getting quality pitching on a regular basis. Starter Scott Baker made Andre Ethier look like a Little Leaguer during the matinee game on Wednesday.

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Joe Mauer’s Triumphant Return to the Minnesota Twins

Joe Mauer

It was fitting that Joe Mauer knocked in a runner with a single during his first plate appearance on Friday after coming back from bilateral leg weakness. It was a story book beginning for the Minnesota Twin who is head and shoulders above the rest.

Okay, I’ll stop.

The club jumped out to a six to one lead against the Padres on Friday before having to hang on, only winning by one run. Matt Capps picked up his tenth save in the process. Mauer isn’t the only notable player returning to the line-up.

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Baby Steps Forward with the Minnesota Twins

matt capps

It is imperative that individuals refine and rewrite their goals on a consistent basis.

For example, I don’t think that my modeling career is going to take off the way that I had hoped fifteen years ago. One month out from the All Star break, the Minnesota Twins also need to do this. At the beginning of this season, manager Ron Gardenhire and GM Bill Smith undoubtedly had postseason play in the cards and a possible run at the pennant. This is of course is unless they were matched up against the New York Yankees in the playoffs.

Well, now it makes sense for the club to modify their expectations to move forward.

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Minnesota Twins are a Complete Disaster

Twins fans have recently heard some very sad news concerning the deteriorating health of the prodigious slugger Harmon Killebrew. He has checked into a hospice to start the final phase of his life. This obviously is more important than what is currently taking place on the field, but that action is not going to put a smile on anyone’s face either. “Whatever can go wrong will,” is a fatalistic view, but it is certainly the case with the Twins thus far this season.

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Minnesota Twins Offense is Nonexistent

Delmon Young

Justin Morneau and Joe Mauer have been on the shelf during the early part of the season. The batting order hasn’t even come close to picking up the slack in their absence. Michael Cuddyer looks lethargic in his body language and Delmon Young’s production is nowhere to be found. The team had two national television appearances in the past week and both games contained striking similarities. They lost close games at the conclusion due to lack of execution against mediocre teams at best.

The good news is that Friday’s game against divisional rival Cleveland Indians was rained out. This is the best thing that could have happened since the latter is so hot and the former is extremely shorthanded. Ron Gardenhire should have taken the heat for moving closer Joe Nathan to a holder role because now it looks like the players make the roster moves instead of the manager.

In addition, a player’s confidence is a fragile thing. A conversation like that must be held in confidence, even if the pitcher doesn’t mind it getting out. Doubt is a fragile component in the late innings. The moment that it enters a reliever’s mind, bad things are looming on the horizon. No make-up date has been determined for Friday’s contest, which is also a good thing. If the teams didn’t meet so often throughout the season, then a doubleheader likely would have been decided upon. Splits are almost always the case when this transpires. It takes away from the intrigue of a single game when both best possible line-ups are not on the field.

Some credit has to be given to a few hitters. Danny Valencia is hitting for a low average, but some timely hits have garnered him a healthy number of runs batted in. Outfielders Jason Kubel and Denard Span have both hit over three hundred on the year and provided energy to this largely lackluster band of characters. With runs so hard to come by, the squad should be stealing more than Mike Leake at Macy’s.

At  least the movement might provide some holes for hitters who are in the batter’s box or decrease the necessity for extra base hits to score runs. While it’s true that the team’s winning percentage is hovering around a typical Tony Gwynn batting average, things can only get better. The White Sox haven’t looked much sharper and Detroit has proven to be vulnerable as fall approaches.

Fans have to ask themselves if it is okay for the team simply to be patient and wait for players to become productive and get healthy or is it time for some action?

They can no longer call themselves small market because of all the revenue generated from Target Field. In addition, they really do have a regional following because they are the only team in the area for fans in North and South Dakota to embrace. A substantial part of Iowa is even on their side due to the Cubs ineptness. So, the news is bad but it could be worse.

Minnesota Twins Season Preview

Last season, I know first hand what Target Field did for Minnesota Twins fans. Sure, it gave us one of, if not the league’s best stadium. But it gave us false hope. It made us Twins fans think that without an ace and a lineup filled with major holes, we still had a chance to compete with the Yankees, Red Sox and Rays.

Well, if the AL Divisional Series was any indication, the Twins are nowhere close to where they need to be if they do in fact hope to make a run at the AL pennant this season.

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Well Played, Mauer! Already Best Minnesota Twin Ever?

Joe Mauer

Joe Mauer recently picked up Silver Slugger and Gold Glove awards for his production during the 2010 regular season. This already solidifies him as the top player to ever suit up in a Minnesota Twins uniform. Longevity plays more of a factor in Major League Baseball than in other sports.

Mauer had to play half the season without his fellow M&M boy Justin Morneau and he still managed to acquire a .327 average-nine home runs, and seventy five runs batted in. This is quality production considering that Mauer had more injuries than were publicized. After receiving the honors, Mauer released a few comments hinting that he was banged up for an uncertain period of time while staying in the line-up.

By Patrick Herbert

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