Monday, December 12, 2005
Bon Voyage, JC!!
Good Monday morning to everyone. I'm going to just say that I had a busy weekend and did a lot of driving. (I did get to watch the Grand Rapids versus Greenway high school hockey game in Coleraine on Friday night. The schools are very near each other making a tradition that has created some of the best hockey over the last half-century. But on that night, it was Grand Rapids who won 12-2 in a blowout.) As a matter of fact, I was in a car basically from 11 in the morning until 9 last night. That's just too much. My mind is gone. So, there will not be much discussed today but I do need to thank everyone for your continued visits and support of this site. So because of that, I do have to throw a couple of thoughts here today. If you have any thoughts, please feel free to e-mail me or leave Comments. thanks! I have not updated the football picks, but the winners are highlighted below.
Of course I have to discuss the JC Romero trade that happened on Friday. The Twins traded the enigmatic left-hander to the Angels for a shortstop. We knew that Brandon Wood (and Howie Kendrick) were ridiculous to hope for, but I thought it might be possible to acquire Erick Aybar, an excellent AA shortstop. But when it came to fruition, the Twins got Alexi Casilla, a SS for the Angels team in Cedar Rapids much of the 2005 season. There he hit .325/.392/.409 with 11 doubles, 3 triples and three homers in 78 games. He also had brief stints. On the season, he stole 49 bases. I would suspect that Casilla may be the New Britain shortstop to start the season, but we will see.
The question I hear most is "That's all we could get for Romero?" Well, we can address that question two ways. The easy answer is "Yes." I mean, really, don't you think if Terry Ryan could have received anything more for Romero, he would have? Yes, I too was really hoping we could get more for Romero especially with the high value being put on relief pitchers this offseason. But every other GM in baseball understands that no matter what Romero's ERA ended at, he has been terrible for three years. The other GMs understand the percentage of inherited runners he has allowed to score. The other GMs understand the outbursts that Romero has had on the mound and through the media. Yes, he has a great arm, but when you're good in 2002, and bad in 2003 and bad in 2004 and bad in 2005, I think that is a pattern that certainly does not suggest he could do well in 2006! Did you want him put into close situations in games? I know I didn't, although many times Ron Gardenhire just kept throwing him out there. So, the Twins have to get what they can for him now because this is a real case of addition by subtraction. Romero will never return to his 2001 form with the Twins.
And please, let's end the talk about Francisco Liriano pitching out of the Twins bullpen. That is right up there with Joe Mauer to 3B rumors, in my opinion. Liriano is excellent and he is a starter. He is also young, so if he does not make the team out of camp as a starter, let him go back to Rochester and continue to progress by starting until he is deemed ready. The comparisons to Johan Santana 'stuff'-wise is exciting, but Liriano should not start out in the bullpen because 'that's what Johan did.' That is not a good reason. Santana was a Rule V draft pick who had to remain on the roster the whole year despite the fact that he was not ready. Of course you throw him in the bullpen. Liriano is close, if not already ready. Keep him starting!
(Note - see the Comments below on the Twins. There are really a lot of great comments, so please feel free to continue that discussion!)
The Vikings made me wrong again, which is fine with me. I thought yesterday's game was scary for the Vikings because of the Rams talented RB (Stephen Jackson) and WRs (Holt, Bruce, McDonald and Curtis), but the Vikings were able to get the win. Another good showing by Ko-Ro which is exciting. Of course, I listened to some of the game, but here is how excited I am about the Vikings... I spent most of the game listening instead to Rita Maloney's sports talk show on WCCO. I listened to her interview with the Gophers Women's hockey coach and one of their players. Then I listened to about 45 minutes of talk about peanut butter. I can't believe I just kept listening, but I did! That's weird too because the Vikings are now 8-5 which is remarkable! They are just one game behind the Bears now heading into next week's game. The Bears lost badly yesterday to the Steelers, the team that the Vikings play next week. That will be a very important game.
Other than that, I really don't know a lot. I guess I would just like to encourage you to participate in the Comments below. Feel free to talk about the Twins, the Vikings or any other Minnesota sports that you follow.
Potential Topics to comment on:
Well, obviously anything related to the Twins, like who they will or should sign, how much to give up for Hank Blalock, of Adrian Beltre or other.
How about this question: Is it fair for a player like Miguel Tejada to request a trade? Some may argue that he signed a six year deal with the Orioles, he should live up to it. Maybe a fair argument, but I could counter that then the Marlins should have felt forced to keep Carlos Delgado and all of their guys, and the Diamondbacks should not be able to trade Troy Glaus a year after signing his bad contract. Or the Yankees should have had to keep Javier Vazquez and Tony Womack and Carl Pavano and, and, and... Is there a hypocracy working here? I think so!
I'm always looking for suggestions, so feel free to talk about your favorite Twins blogs. If you want, rank and discuss them. What other baseball blogs do you frequent? Non-sports blogs?
Hey, if you want, you can give us your favorite recipe involving peanut butter. Maybe Rita Maloney will write and tell us how the sandwich that included bread, honey, peanut butter and cheese tasted!?
Hey, have a great day! I hope to have a new Q&A ready by tomorrow, but if it is not, I will be back with something, maybe another nine innings or something. Please come back! :)
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