Monday, April 26, 2004
Friday Night Postings
Friday's Posting - Lew Can Say That Again!
Throughout the weekend, I updated this website with stories or events from the Twins to the Wolves to the Vikings, to whatever I felt like. Each new topic was typed above the previous, so you'll want to start at the bottom and work your way up. If you have any questions or comments, please feel free to e-mail me. Also, don't forget to check out the main Friday posting - Lew Can Say That Again!
SUNDAY, APRIL 25, 2004
GARNETT UNANIMOUS FIRST TEAM ALL-NBA - The Wolves Star was the lone player who was named on everyone's first team ballot. This should solidify the fact that he will be the league's MVP. Joining Kevin Garnett on the first team are F Tim Duncan, C Shaquille O'Neal, G Kobe Bryant and G Jason Kidd.
Of course, Sam Cassell should have been on the first team, but he was on the 2nd team. The other second teamers are: G Tracy McGrady, F Peja Stojacovik, F Jermaine O'Neal and C Ben Wallace.
The third team was comprised of guards Baron Davis and Michael Redd, forwards Ron Artest and Dirk Nowitki and center Yao Ming.
'Melo is The Man - OK, I usually take everything I read from Charlie Walters column with a grain of salt, but I thought the following from his Saturday article was interesting:
The Timberwolves were notified singer Christina Aguilera, whose boyfriend is Carmelo Anthony of the Denver Nuggets, supermodel Tyra Banks and actor Josh Hartnett would be at Target Center on Wednesday for the Wolves-Nuggets game, but none were seen.
In his Sunday column, it followed up with:
Actor Josh Hartnett wore a disguise while attending the Timberwolves-Nuggets playoff game Wednesday night at Target Center.
Vikings Sign Blake Elliott - Following the draft, there is a frenzy to sign undrafted players to free agent contracts. Immediately after the draft, the Vikings signed this year's John Gagliardi Award winner, RB Blake Elliot, from St. Johns (MN), the 2003 Division III National Champions. The Vikings look at him as more of a combination RB/WR/KR.
Back in the Swing of Things, Win Twice - In Game 1, Quad Cities got back in the win column today with a 7-2 victory over Peoria. Christopher Schutt started and got the win going 5 innings. He gave up the two runs on 6 hits and a walk. He struck out three. CF Denard Span went 2-4 with an RBI. SS Alex Garcia and 1B Brock Peterson each had a double. RF Scott Whitrock was 1-2 with a walk and a HR.
In the second game of the day, the Swing won 4-3. Ben Pattee, playing 3B while Matt Moses is recovering from being hit by a pitch in the knee a couple of days ago, went 2-4 with 2 RBI. SS Sam Taylor went 2-2 with a walk and an RBI. LF Ryan Spataro went 2-2 with a triple. Scott Tyler went 4 innings for the win. He gave up 3 runs on 4 hits and 2 walks. Eric Brandon and Julio DePaula pitched three scoreless innings.
Quad Cities will play two games in Cedar Rapids before finally getting to play their home opener in their new ballpark.
Ft. Myers Shutout Again - Today, Ft. Myers got the opportunity to face some major league pitching... and it didn't go so well, losing 2-0 to Tampa. The Yankees have Jon Lieber on a rehab assignment in Tampa. He went 7 innings and gave up just two hits and struck out four. The Yankees may call him up soon. Scott Baker actually did very well for 6 innings. He gave up the two runs, but didn't walk anyone and struck out three. SS Jesus Merchan went 2-4. OF Trent Oeltjen had a hit, as did C Kyle Geiger. Ft. Myers starts a three game set with Brevard County.
New Britain Crushes Akron 19-0 - A big win for the Rockcats today. JD Durbin started and got more than enough run support. Durbin went 6 1/3 innings and gave up 5 hits and 2 walks and struck out 7. Victor Moreno and Pat Neshek finished the shutout. 1B Billy Munoz led the way going 4-5 with a double, a homer and 3 RBI. 2B Luis Maza was 3-3 with an RBI. 3B Ryan Owens went 3-6 with a homer and 2 RBI. BJ Garbe was 2-4 with two homers and 6 RBI. Jason Kubel had a double and a triple in five at bats with and RBI. SS Tommy Watkins went 2-5. DH Kevin West, who was named the Twins Organization's player of the week, was 2-6 with a home run. They now start a 3 game set at Erie.
TWINS WIN GAME AND SERIES - With the 4 run third inning, the Twins grabbed a 4-2 win over the Royals. They also took 2 out of 3 games to win the series.
Carlos Silva was excellent. He gave the Twins 7 innings of one-run ball. He struck out just two, but walked. He scattered 9 hits and worked himself out of trouble with a few double-play balls. JC Romero pitched a perfect 8th inning. I like that Gardy has now kept Romero in to start the 9th inning when a left-handed hitter is leading off. That was the case today, with Matt Stairs leading off. Unfortunately, Romero walked Stairs. Gardy came out and replaced Romero with Joe Nathan. Nathan struck out Ken Harvey for the inning's first out. Aaron Guiel pinch-hit and Nathan hit him with the second pitch, bringing the game-tying run to the plate. David DeJesus singled to center to load the bases and bring up the game-winning hitter. Mendy Lopez walked, moving the tying run to 2B! Joe Randa stepped in to bat for the Royals. After a long at bat, Randa popped up to catcher Blanco. Tony Graffanino then struck out to end the game.
Joe Nathan is doing a great job of reminding Twins fans of Eddie Guardado. So far, there has not been an easy Save for Nathan. But, he is now 6 for 6 in Save Opportunities. Carlos Silva picked up the win and is now 3-0 on the year.
Lew Ford and Jacque Jones were each 2-3. Henry Blanco was 2-4. Corey Koskie had the RBI single before Torii Hunter hit his 3-run homer.
The Twins start a three game home stand against the Toronto Blue Jays Monday night. The Twins are 12-6 and in first place in the AL Central. After a 15-3 win over the Baltimore Orioles, the Blue Jays are 6-12 and in last place in the AL East.
OK, Karim Garcia just hit a solo home run for the Mets off Cubs starter Matt Clement. The reason I had mentioned him earlier was just because he was throwing a no-hitter. The home run ended that, as well as the shutout. Clement had a no-hitter through 6 1/3 innings. Clement gave up a single to Eric Valent later in the inning, but got out of the inning with a 3-1 lead.
Vikings Final Pick - The Vikings used their 7th Round pick (#220) to select Jeff Dugan, a tight end from Maryland. He's 6-3 and about 260 pounds. He is a blocker more than a pass receiver. I'm not sure he'll make the team. The Vikings have stockpiled tight ends of late. I would have preferred that, if they are going to take a gamble, gamble on the defensive side of the ball.
The superstitious person in me won't tell you why you might want to check out the Cubs/Mets game on WGN. Matt Clement has struck out 11 Mets in 6 innings, and is still pitching "pretty well."
The Red Sox just finished off a 2-0 win over the New York Yankees to sweep the Yankees in a 3-game series. Think the NY media is going to jump all over this now? Pedro Martinez and Scott Williamson combined to four-hit the Bronx "Bombers". Alex Rodriguez did have two more hits today.
Since we can't watch the Twins/Royals game on TV, if you get WGN, you should check out the Cubs game this afternoon against the Mets. Matt Clement has 10 strikeouts through the first five innings. Let's just say that so far he is pitching pretty well, and leave it at that.
Welcome Back, Torii!! - Torii Hunter just gave the Twins a 4-0 lead in the top of the 3rd inning with his first home run of the season, a deep shot to left field. Good to have Torii back for that very reason. He can provide a lot of power! Corey Koskie had singled in Lew Ford, who had walked, for the game's first run. Hunter's home scored Koskie and Jose Offerman, who had singled. This all came with two outs.
Vikings Sixth Round Pick - With the 184th overall pick, the Vikings selected Deandre' Eiland, a safety from South Carolina. He is fairly small at 5-11, 202, but for a 6th round pick, this is pretty good. He has played corner and nickle back as well as safety in his college career. Will he make the team? I don't know. His lone problem appears to be his small size. However, he is bigger than Tyrone Carter, who the Vikings re-signed this offseason. And again, any defensive help the Vikings get will be helpful! They had previously drafted two Defensive Linemen and two Linebackers. This was their first selection in the Defensive backfield.
Happy Birthday to Jacque - Jacque Jones turns 29 years old today. In his first at bat, Brian Anderson just hit him with a pitch.
The Lord is a Texan! - Nebraska QB Jammal Lord was taken in the 6th Round by the Houston Texans. Not a big deal, other than to say that he was drafted as a RB. Of course, those of us that watched and follow Nebraska football know that there is no way his game would translate into the NFL QB position. It might be fair to say that his game didn't translate into the college football game. But fact is that he is a good runner who could run the option pretty well. Interesting, NFL.com didn't even have him listed on their site and after he was taken, the listed him as a strong safety. UPDATE - NFL.com appears to have done a real quick Overview of Jammal Lord now that he has been taken. It is nowhere near as complete as others.
Interesting Twins Lineup - Here is the Twins lineup today: Punto 2B, Ford CF, Offerman 1B, Koskie 3B, Hunter DH, Jones RF, Cuddyer LF, Blanco C, Guzman SS. It is interesting to me for a few reasons. First, it is typical for Ron Gardenhire to play the hot hand, and that certainly is Michael Ryan. But Ryan isnít playing?? He is left-handed and so is Brian Anderson, the Royals starting pitcher today. That makes it surprising to me that both Jacque Jones and Corey Koskie are in the lineup. It has been unusual so far this year that both are in against a lefty. Hunter is back, and that is a good thing. I like Lew Ford in the two-hole.
EAGLES TAKE TAPEH - The Philadelphia Eagles used their 5th Round pick (#162 overall) to take Gophers FB Thomas Tapeh. This could be a very good place for him. He will be in the same offense as Donovan McNabb and Terrell Owens. He will be blocking for Correll Buckhalter and Brian Westbrook. The Eagles have huge expectations (they also signed Jevon Kearse), but Tapeh should be able to get some time as a lead blocker. It is a good place for him. The other Gopher who could be drafted is TE Ben Utecht. (Update - He wasn't)
Vikings 5th Round Pick - Rod Davis, a LB from Southern Mississippi. With the Vikings, you can never really say that a defensive selection is a bad pick. Davis is a middle linebacker who is just 246 pounds and runs about a 4.9 40, so I really am not a big fan of this pick. Thomas Tapeh is still on the board. With the pick immediately following Davis, the New Orleans Saints picked Mike Karney, a fullback from Arizona State, who Sports Weekly had rated right behind Tapeh.
Rochester Rained Out - The Redwings will not be playing today. They will play a double-header on Monday against Scranton. Carlos Pulido was sent back to Rochester as Torii Hunter was taken off the Disabled List. He will be the Twins DH today. On another note, Justin Morneau will not be playing Monday and Tuesday (and maybe Wednesday) because of the funeral of his grandmother.
Vikings second 4th Round Pick - They went with a speed running back in Mewelde Moore from Tulane. This pick makes no sense to me at all. Moore is a 5-10 and 205, so he's not big. The team already has Michael Bennett and Onterrio Smith. They have a 3rd down type back in Moe Williams. They have a kick returner in Kelly Campbell. And, Keenan Howry will be their punt returner. So, where does Mewelde Moore fit in? I don't get this pick at all, unless there is some sort of trade in the works??
Vikings first 4th Round Pick - The Vikings have two fourth round picks today. Their first choice (at #115) was Nat Dorsey, a big tackle from 6-7, 322, from Georgia Tech. First, I believe a team can never have too many big offensive linemen. Second, David Dixon won't be around forever. Third, the Vikings have spend a lot of money on offense. They need a strong line to protect those investments. I think this is another very good pick for the Vikings, a guy who could contribute very soon. The Vikings have a second 4th Round pick (#119), which they will be making shortly. I really think it is possible that they would take former Gopher and St. Paul native, Thomas Tapeh at this point. They haven't had a real fullback for a lot of years. Jim Kleinsasser was really a tight end, and some of the others they've put in there are too small. The Vikings don't use a lot of two-back alignments, but if they can get the top ranked fullback at this point, I think it's a very good move.
SATURDAY, APRIL 24, 2004
That was Pathetic!! - No, things certainly didn't get better after the first quarter. The Nuggets won 107-86. The Nuggets just flat-out out hustled the Wolves all night. They got too many offensive rebounds and every loose ball. Carmelo Anthony was good. 24 points. Marcus Camby had 12 points, 16 rebounds and 5 assists. Nene, Francisco Elson, Earl Boykins and Andre Miller were all very good.
However, when the two teams play in Denver again on Tuesday night, expect completely different results. Did you notice how over-celebratory the Nuggets were. Every dunk was executed with extra flair. The Nuggets were incredibly arrogant and to an extent that it could not have been missed by anyone, including every member of the Timberwolves staff and roster. The Wolves were embarrassed last night, but think about it for a minute. What did the Nuggets do last night? The won a home game in the playoffs. That's great, but it's not like they stole home court advantage. It's not even like they tied the series. In other words, if the Wolves win Game 4, they take the 3-1 series lead back to the Target Center.
Kevin Garnett led the Wolves with a near triple double. He had 24 points, 11 rebounds and 8 assists. Latrell Sprewell scored 25. Wally Szczerbiak scored 11, but was just 4-12 from the field. Sam Cassell had 10, but was limited by foul trouble.
Overall, just a terrible game for the Wolves. But they're veteran, they'll make some adjustments and look for a far better performance on Tuesday!
Nuggets Impressive in First Quarter - The Minnesota Timberwolves got a running 26 foot 3-pointer from point guard Darrick Martin to cut the Nuggets lead to just 12 and 30-18. Carmelo Anthony scored 10 points and Andre Miller had 8. Kevin Garnett scored 8 points and had 5 boards for the Wolves. I better go watch more closely and maybe they'll start playing better!
MIRACLE GET SHUTOUT - Ft. Myers lost 2-0 to Tampa today. Francisco Liriano started and went 6 innings. He gave up two runs on four hits and four walks. Brent Tamburrino went 3-4 for the Miracle, increasing his average to .462. Jose Morales was 2-5 with a double.
Twins Can't Comeback Again - The Twins were unable to comeback from a big deficit again tonight against the Royals. This time, the deficit was just too big and the Twins lost 10-1. Actually, they didn't hit well, the didn't pitch well and they didn't field the ball well. That's not a good combination if you want to win.
Pitching- Seth Greisinger really didn't do too poorly. He lasted 4 2/3 innings. He gave up seven hits and three runs. In 1 1/3 innings, Terry Mulholland gave up two hits and two walks for two runs (one earned). Joe Roa gave up a run in an inning. Carlos Pulido, who is probably only still on the 25 man roster because of the wet conditions in Kansas City, pitched the 8th inning for the Twins, gave up four runs on four hits. Ken Harvey and Tony Graffanino each had three hits for the Royals. Carlos Beltran and Matt Stairs each had a home run. Beltran also had a triple.
Hitting - Michael Ryan had a single and an RBI triple in four at bats. Cristian Guzman went 2-3. Rob Bowen and Corey Koskie each had a single. Six hits, that's it! Darrell May started for the Royals and gave up the one run. But he left the game with one out in the fifth with an injury. Shawn Camp came in and pitched 3 2/3 shut out innings for the win.
Fielding - Cristian Guzman had two big errors. Doug Mientkiewicz even had an error. Three errors in one game is not good! That doesn't help the pitching.
Other thoughts - the Twins went with an outfield of Michael Ryan in LF, Lew Ford in CF and Michael Cuddyer in RF. Hunter will probably come off the DL and play tomorrow. The team was being cautious with Stewart. Jacque Jones was the DH. Rob Bowen got another start.
Prospect David DeJesus was brought up and played LF. He was 0-3. DeJesus will likely be the Royals CF next year when Carlos Beltran leaves as a free agent.
Tomorrow afternoon, the two teams play the final game of the series. Carlos Silva will start for the Twins. The Royals will counter with lefty Brian Anderson.
Vikings Third Round Pick - The Vikings made another trade. They have made trades to move down in each of the first three rounds. The Vikings took the 88th overall pick, and selected Darrion Scott, a Defensive End from Ohio State. Vikings fans continue to say that the Vikings need defense. Well, on Day 1 of the draft, the Vikings took Defense, Defense, and more Defense. Check out some analysis of the Vikings picks here.
TheDeadballEra - Did you know that Hall of Famer Jimmy Foxx died from Choking on a piece of meat in 1967? In 1902, Pat Hynes was shot on his 23rd birthday by a bartender over a credit dispute. Len Koenecke was 31 in 1935 when he was battered with a fire extinguisher on a flight. Check out The Deadball Era site to find out how baseball players died, where they are buried, etc.
From Lee Sinnis' ATM Reports. I think it's funny:
1) I thought there was an error on sportsline.com's pitching matchups when they listed "Valdez" as starting for the Padres, in for Ismael Valdez's last couple of starts. Ismael has been spelling it "Valdes" throughout his whole career, so I assumed it was a typo.
According to Sportscenter, there was an error, but not the kind any of us would have expected. During the offseason, he found his birth certificate. He found out, for the first time, that he has been spelling his name wrong for his entire life.
Yet another example of how real life can produce things that are better than the best fiction writers' imaginations.
Rockcats Crushed by Akron 11-2 - Let's start with the positive. Jason Kubel got back into the flow with a 3-4 performance raising his average back to .455. Luis Maza was 2-4. Henry Bonilla got the start for New Britain and gave up 4 runs in 6 innings. The 7th inning is when things got really ugly. Jon Pridie gave up 6 runs and got just two outs. Brian Wolfe came in to get the last out of the inning, but he also gave up another run. The Rockcats play Akron again tomorrow afternoon.
Vikings Take Linebacker in 2nd Round - Dontarrius Thomas, LB from Auburn. He is 6-2 and weighs about 245, but runs the 40 in less than 4.6. The Vikings actually moved up, making a deal with the Saints to move up to the 48th pick from the 50th pick.
Redwings Win 3-2 - Rochester had just six hits, but it was enough. When Michael Restovich slid safely into home in the bottom of the 9th, the comeback was complete. The team was down 2-1 until the 8th inning. No player had more than one hit. Jason Bartlett was 1-2 with a walk and a sacrifice fly. Willie Eyre went 5 1/3 innings. He gave up the two runs on five hits and two walks. Kevin Hodge gave up three hits in 2 2/3 innings of scoreless relief. Jesse Crain picked up the win with hit scoreless 9th inning. The teams play the final game of the series tomorrow afternoon.
Udeze followed the Low-Carb, Atkins-like diet to lose 100 pounds over 4 years. Check out this article about a couple on the Atkins Diet that was banned from a buffet!
Vikings Trade 19th Overall Pick - OK, They just traded the 19th pick to the Dolphins for the 20th pick and a 4th round pick. The Dolphins then took G Vernon Carey. I have to think that the Vikings will pick DE Kenechi Udeze (You-DEZ-ah). Udeze is from USC. His senior year of high school, he weighed almost 380 pounds. USC told him that if he dropped 30 pounds, they had a scholarship for him. He gave up pizza, pop and didn't eat after 9 p.m. Low-Carb, high protein. He dropped 30 pounds in no time and went to USC. He dropped another 70 pounds. Today, he sits at 6-4, 280 pounds and runs a 4.75 40. Mel Kiper had him ranked 13th. Sports Weekly had him ranked 10th.
UPDATE - The Vikings just took Udeze, who is in the same mold as Bruce Smith, Jason Taylor and Reggie White. GREAT PICK! With Chris Hovan and Kevin Williams, the Vikings may finally have a great line! Hopefully the will get a cornerback later in the draft. They signed Antoine Winfield in free agency, but cornerback depth is always good in the current NFL.
TOP PROSPECTS - On the left, you will now see that I will be keeping tabs on some of the Twins Top Prospects. I want to also include New Britain's Jason Kubel, so if anyone knows where I can find a mug shot of him, please e-mail me and let me know. Thanks!
BIG TRADE - The NY Giants selected QB Phillip Rivers with the 4th pick in the draft. Shortly after, they sent Rivers (along with their 3rd round pick this year and their 1st and 5th Round picks next year) to the Chargers for the rights to Eli Manning. Now Manning got what he wanted, and the Chargers get an equally rated QB plus three additional draft picks including a #1 pick next year. Everyone wins, but the Chargers do very well for themselves!!
Larry Fitzgerald Drafted #3 Overall, by Arizona - Former Vikings head coach Denny Green is now the head coach of the Arizona Cardinals. With his first draft choice in that role, Green selected Larry Fitzgerald, WR from Pittsburgh. As it is known, Fitzgerald is from Minnesota and spent time with the Vikings as a ball boy when he was in high school. With Anquan Bolden and Bryant Johnson, the Cardinals have a pretty good receiving trio. Will Josh McCown really be the QB that throws to them?
Eli Manning Taken 1st, Controversy Continues - In recent days, it came out that Manning's father, Archie, told the San Diego Chargers that they should not take Eli with the #1 pick, that he would not play for them. The Chargers let that leak out and since that time, the Manning family has been under attack. Unable to make a trade, the Chargers selected Manning first overall. When Eli came out to shake Commissioner Paul Tagliabue, boos erupted. Chants of "Wear the Cap" (because Eli did not put on the Chargers cap given to him) and "Eli Sucks" were loud. He and his father have done well in answering their questions, without really answering anything. So, does Manning have the right to say he will not play in San Diego? In my opinion, Absolutely. However, because of that, he now has to deal with the repercussions, which are also fair.
Kazuhito Tadano Called up by Indians - Tadano was, of course, the pitcher who became infamous this spring when it came out that he appeared in a Japanese, umm... erotic video, while attending college. I am sure there will be heckling in major league ball parks. The best thing for the 24 year old righty is that he does not speak English, so hopefully he won't understand it. He has received nothing but support from his teammates in the Indians organization. If they can get over it, so can everyone else! So, let the man pitch, and leave him alone!!! Who are we to judge!?
FRIDAY, APRIL 23, 2004
Tim Kurkjian, on Baseball Tonight, just gave an absolutely staggering statistic. After Barry Bonds was walked in the 7th inning tonight, he was 2-2 with 2 walks. In his last 36 plate appearances, he has been on 30 times. Just read that again and think about it! Incredible! UPDATE - He walked twice more in the game, meaning he has now been on base 32 of 38 plate appearances. That's an on-base percentage of .842.
What a Game!! TWINS WIN! - Down 5-1 going into the 8th inning, the Twins mounted an unlikely comeback against the Royals bullpen. Kevin Appier started and went just one batter into the second inning before leaving with what is believed to be an elbow injury. Jimmy Gobble entered the game and was great, pitching six shutout innings. On the other side, Kyle Lohse really struggled, throwing 62 pitches in the first two innings alone. Again though, Lohse needs to be commended for bearing down at that point and giving the team 5 2/3 innings. Aaron Fultz came in and pitched a great 1 1/3 inning stint. Joe Roa got two outs in the 8th before JC Romero came in for the last out of the inning. He got Matt Stairs for the first out in the 9th before giving way to Joe Nathan who got the final two outs for the save.
But where is the good stuff? How did the Twins come back? Well, in the 8th inning, Corey Koskie, who already had two doubles, drilled a ball to right field. Michael Ryan and Doug Mientkiewicz scored on the triple. Jose Offerman couldn't come through, striking out, but with Jacque Jones at the plate, Scott Sullivan threw a wild pitch to score Koskie from third.
So, going in to the 9th, the Twins were still down 5-4. Curtis Leskanic was in the game now. Lew Ford led off with a walk. Henry Blanco flew out to right for the first out, and then, the Royals lost control! Leskanic walked Cristian Guzman and then Michael Ryan singled to center to score Ford. Tony Pena had enough, and he brought Dennis Reyes in. Reyes proceeded to walk Nick Punto to load the bases. He then walked Doug Mientkiewicz to score Cristian Guzman for the go-ahead run. Corey Koskie came through with a sacrifice fly to centerfield for his third RBI, for a two-run cushion.
Twins 7, Royals 5 - A great win for the Twins in some bad Kansas City weather. To come back against the vaunted Royals bullpen has to be a big lift for the Twins, and has to be just as negative mentally for the Royals. Tomorrow, the two teams play again with Seth Greisinger taking on the Royals' Darrell May. Hopefully they will be able to play! Shannon Stewart sat out tonight's game with his leg injury. He probably could play tomorrow, but if they get the rain in Kansas City that is predicted and still play, it would be best for Stewart to get another day off. Michael Ryan started in left field and in the leadoff position, and came through with a 3-5 performance. He drove in the game-tying run in the 9th and scored two runs. Jacque Jones was 2-5. His batting average is at .328. Lew Ford went 0-3 with a walk. His league leading batting averaged drops to .418.
Those looking for thoughts on the Twins game tonight can follow the game in two places. First, Twins Chatter, they're able to watch the game and post their thoughts each inning. Secondly, as always, you can join in on the Game Thread Discussion at that Dickie Thon Fan Forum.
Quad Cities Lost to Dayton 4-1 - The Swing had just three hits on the night, two of them were by C Kyle Phillips (one was a double). Adam Harben took the loss for the Swing. He went 5 innings and gave up three runs, but he also struck out 10 batters.
Ft. Myers lost to Lakeland - The Miracle got to try to hit off of the top Tigers top pick in the 2003 draft, Kyle Sleeth. They didn't fare so well. Sleeth went 7 innings and gave up just three hits and struck out 7. 1B Garrett Jones was 2-3 with a double for the Miracle. Jeff Randazzo struggles for Ft. Myers. He started and went just 4 1/3 innings. He gave up 6 hits and 3 walks. He is now 0-3 with an ERA of 11.57.
New Britain Beats Akron - Tonight, the Rockcats were able to win 3-1 over the Indians' AA Affiliate. Jim Abbott got the start and gave up one run on 4 hits in 7 innings. Brent Korecky came in, pitched the final two innings, and picked up the victory (now 2-1). 1B Billy Munoz went 2-3. DH Kevin West was 1-4, but he had a solo homer. Jason Kubel was 1-4 and his average is down to .431. FYI, former 1st Round pick, BJ Garbe played LF, went 1-4 and is hitting .205.
Rochester Two-Hit by Scranton-Wilkes Barre - The Redwings lost 5-0 to Scranton tonight. For Rochester, Jason Bartlett (.393) and Justin Morneau (.422) had the lone hits against former big leaguer Clay Condrey. Bartlett's hit was a double. Brent Schoening took the loss giving up all five runs (4 earned) in his 5 2/3 innings. He is now 0-2 but has a 2.87 ERA.
Chad Allen Called Up by the Rangers - He was hitting .518 at AAA with a home run and six doubles. He will be a reserve outfielder for the Rangers.
REAL AMERICAN HERO, PAT TILLMAN - Let's start with something outside of the sports arena. After 9/11/01, Arizona Cardinals safety Pat Tillman gave up a $3.6 million and a cushy NFL life to enlist in the Army. He went to boot camp. He went to war. Yesterday, he died serving his country in Afghanistan. I knew Tillman left the NFL and gave up a lot, but be sure to really pay attention to the things being said about him on TV, radio or in writing. He was an amazing man! I want to share this article by Dan Wetzel of Yahoo Sports. Reading that puts everything into perspective. It makes making millions of dollars to be the QB of the San Diego Chargers not seem like such a bad thing. It makes you wonder how the Knicks/Nets NBA playoff series is being called a 'war' or 'battle.' Read Simeon Rice's comments in that article and realize how many people really do think.
Tillman knew death was a possibility when he enlisted. He believed in the cause, and he was willing to fight and sacrifice for it. I get upset when people talk loudly about their opposition to the war. There are a lot of people out there who believe that it is the right thing. (uh oh, sorry to bring up politics!) There are a lot of us who support George Bush and his decisions. Just because all you'll hear about Bush in the next six months on TV will be negative, think for yourself. Make up your own mind about who you're going to vote for. Don't vote for George Bush because he is a Republican, or don't vote for John Kerry because he is a Democrat. Hear or read all perspectives and pay attention to the facts and then make up your own mind. But whatever happens in the election, support your President! Partisanship bugs me more than most things in the world. What's wrong with being in the middle? I can agree with George Bush. I can disagree with George Bush. But, he is my President and I will respect him and his decisions!
Pat Tillman thought for himself. He knew what was going on and he still made a decision to do what very few people would have done. There is no way I would have, and I don't know how I feel about that! His life should be celebrated. His strength and loyalty are incredible. Take a time to think about him and his family. Then don't forget all of the other Americans who are serving their country in Afghanistan and Iraq. Think about their families. If you see them, thank them!
Lew Can Say That Again!
Well, yesterday, I sang the praises of Lew Ford and pondered what the Twins could/should do when Torii Hunter comes off the Disabled List. All I know is that Torii will play CF. Jacque Jones will primarily play in RF, and Shannon Stewart will play LF the most. Where does that leave Lew? Well, Torii had a setback, so Ford got the chance to play again yesterday afternoon. In the 4th inning, the Twins were down 2-0 when Ford came to bat with Doug Mientkiewicz on 2B and Jose Offerman on 1B. He proceeded to give the Twins a 3-2 lead with a home run over the left-center wall. (the Twins won 4-3, and I was happy to see Joe Nathan do well in recording his first real save.) He then singled in his next at bat. So, on the day, Ford was 2-4. his batting average is up to .450. The 3 RBI puts him into the team lead with 15 RBI.
Lew Ford is being talked about everywhere! The Dickie Thon Twins Fan Forum is littered with Lew Ford discussion. Ford has been named the Official Player of Twins Chatter. (Speaking of Twins Chatter, be sure to check out their Letter to Victory Sports and their Cable Operator. It is wonderfully written!! Please check it out!) The Batgirl has promised Legos of Lew, which, after seeing the Lego re-enactment of the Suicide Squeeze, I am really looking forward to it. Just a day after he was called a Super Hero! Yard: The Blog certainly has strong feelings about Ford and the current Twins OF situation! Even David Pinto over at Baseball Musings discusses Lew's success and the Twins system.
Like everyone else, I wrote a bunch about Lew Ford yesterday. I decided to be lazy and leave yesterday's posting on the home page for you to re-read. I do want to caution all Twins fans right now. You're not going to like this, but I have to say it. Here is goes: Lew Ford will NOT hit .400 this year. I am sorry to say that. He will come down to earth. Let's hope Twins fans remain positive about Ford when his average sinks into the .350 range, and maybe even down to .320! Just remember, he has shown how good he can be. Be his fan, he appears to be a class act. Enjoy the way he plays the game! Enjoy his success! Be supportive and don't turn when he returns to human status!!!
By the way, the Twins won yesterday. Johan was OK, except against the ever-slugging Brandon Inge (note sarcasm) who hit a homer and a double off Santana. Rincon, Romero and Nathan did very well. All is good! The Twins are scheduled to play a three game series starting tonight in Kansas City. The weather is questionable, but hopefully they will be able to play all three games.
Friday - 7:10 - Kyle Lohse vs. Kevin Appier
Saturday - 6:10 - Seth Greisinger vs. Darrell May
Sunday - 1:10 - Carlos Silva vs. Brian Anderson
The Twins swept the Royals at the Dome last weekend. Hopefully they can win 2 out of 3 (preferably 3!)!
The Wolves play Game 3, in Denver against the Nuggets and 8:30 Saturday night! KG said that he played "Like Garbage" on Wednesday night when he recorded his third career playoff triple-double. Look for a big game from Garnett!
The NFL draft is Saturday and Sunday. I realize I am a dork, but I really enjoy watching it. This year, the Vikings draft 19th. I wonder if they will be able to pick on time! Two Gophers could creep into the first day of the draft, but both probably will last until early on the second day. Fullback Thomas Tapeh is the #1 ranked fullback in the draft. Ben Utecht is the fourth ranked tight end in the draft. Both are projected to go in the fourth or fifth round.
There is a lot of backlash over the American Idol vote. Ick!!
Friends aired its third-to-last episode last night. Rachel's moving to Europe. Ross doesn't want her to. That show is just way too good. I wish I could afford the Friends DVDs!!! Hey, my birthday is just 64 days away!! (I miss Bert Blyleven!).
You may have noticed that on the left of the screen, I have added the Chris Coste update. Some may wonder why. If so, check this link. It's a little background on me, and you'll understand why I try to keep up to date on Coste's career.
Anyway, I am going to call it a day. Below, you will find yesterday's entry, so take a look at it again. Stop by the site over the weekend. I am feeling guilty about writing so little, so I will have to write more over the weekend!! Check back for thoughts on the Twins/Royals series, the Vikings draft picks and the Wolves Game 3. Maybe more! If you have any questions or comments, please e-mail me!
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