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A Twins fan since 1969 and a copy editor for The Free Press (Mankato, Minn.) since 1985, I've written a weekly column on baseball since 1989.


Latest Content from Baseball Outsider

Lots of moves, lots of criticism
via Baseball Outsider July 25, 2017 at 09:38 AM

The Jaime Garcia trade finally went down Monday. The trade itself is OK, with one curious aspect. The roster ramifications of adding the veteran lefty starter have, in my opinion, been mishandled.I discussed in the Monday print column why such a trade was a logical move. Two (to three) months of Garcia will cost the Twins Huascar Ynoa, a 19-year-old Dominican signed in 2015 for a $800,000 bon

Goodbye, Breslow (and injury updates)
via Baseball Outsider July 24, 2017 at 09:38 AM

Craig Breslow was designated for assignment after Sunday's game. The move was unsurprising, necessary and, for me at least, a bit depressing. I've always liked Breslow, or more accurately I liked what Breslow represented -- a top-of-the-charts intellect carving out a space for himself in baseball.Breslow's been through this before. The veteran lefty is in his 12th major league season; he's pitched

Pic of the Week
via Baseball Outsider July 23, 2017 at 09:38 AM

Tom Kelly with his Target Field statute on Friday.The Twins installed yet another larger-than-life bronze statue at Target Field on Friday, this time honoring Tom Kelly, manager of the 1987 and 1991 World Series champs.Kelly remains a "special assistant" in the new regime, but he's clearly pared back his activities after his stroke of a couple winters ago, and I doubt that he's as influential with

Or not adding Jamie Garcia
via Baseball Outsider July 22, 2017 at 09:38 AM

Reports of the Twins trading for Jamie Garcia proved to be greatly exaggerated. The Mexican lefty started Friday night in Los Angeles, allowing three runs in seven innings to the mighty Dodgers and even hitting a grand slam -- for the Braves.The supposedly imminent deal was on the rocks by Friday morning, with the Braves said to be shopping the 31-year-old around to other clubs. I'm in no position

Adding Jamie Garcia
via Baseball Outsider July 21, 2017 at 09:38 AM

News broke Thursday night that the Twins were about to complete a trade with Atlanta that would bring veteran left-handed starter Jamie Garcia to Minnesota for a prospect.The deal was not complete when I went to bed, and there was no indication of who the prospect would be. And without knowing who the Twins are giving up, there's no way for me to say yeah or nay.I will say this: Garcia is a step u

File this suit
via Baseball Outsider July 20, 2017 at 09:38 AM

I think I'm afeared the suit will jump me.(Photo by Linda Vanderwerf)My wife and I rolled up to Target Field for the Wednesday matinee against the Yankees. I expected to comment today about the game.And there were plenty of things to comment about, and you can find comments elsewhere on the interwebs about Miguel Sano's homer and Jose Berrios' pitching and Zack Granite's first major league RBIs.On

Gee, Colon? Part 3 (and Hughes and Breslow)
via Baseball Outsider July 19, 2017 at 09:38 AM

Well, at least he threw strikes.For four innings, the Bartolo Colon Experiment worked, He carved up the Yankee lineup with mediocre velocity coupled with location and movement, and with some good fielding plays behind him.Then came the fifth, in which he got no outs, and in which Ryan Pressly did what Ryan Pressly has done pretty consistently all season: give up a homer. The 3-1 lead turned to a 6

Gee, Colon? Part Two (plus Vargas)
via Baseball Outsider July 18, 2017 at 09:38 AM

Monday morning's post questioned the logic of giving tonight's start to Bartolo Colon over Dillon Gee.The Twins doubled down on that decision, right or wrong, after Monday's game:Source w/direct knowledge confirms Dillon Gee was placed on outright waivers to make room for Colon on 40-man roster.— Mike Berardino (@MikeBerardino) July 18, 2017Cutting Gee fits the timing of his opt-out. The Twins cle

Gee, Colon? A tale of two Mets refugees
via Baseball Outsider July 17, 2017 at 09:38 AM

The Twins signed Dillon Gee to a minor league deal with an opt-out on June 22. They brought him to the majors two days later and had him sit in the bullpen waiting for a long relief outing that never came, then optioned him to Rochester. The major league stint did not wipe out the opt-out.Gee, who has made 125 major league starts, most of them with the Mets, has made three starts for Rochester, 15

Pics of the week
via Baseball Outsider July 16, 2017 at 09:38 AM

Yadier Molina of the St. Louis Cardinals donned a specialgold chest protectorJosh Harrison of the Pittsburgh Pirates sported a pairof deliberately mismatched All-Star socks.Bruce Harper of the Washington Nationals wore spikesthat paid tribute to Jose Fernandez, the star pitcher of theMiami Marlins who died last year in a boating accident.A few fashion statements from the All-Star Game.

Contemplating Jorge Polanco
via Baseball Outsider July 15, 2017 at 09:38 AM

There isn't a lot of reason to praise Jose Berrios' pitching Friday night in Houston -- more than half his pitches missed the strike zone -- but the fact remains that five of the seven runs he allowed were unearned because of an error by Jorge Polanco.Polanco's defense has deteriorated sharply since this post in late May, which quotes the founder of Baseball Info Systems as saying that Polanco had

Notes, quotes and comment
via Baseball Outsider July 14, 2017 at 09:38 AM

Bartolo Colon made what was presumably his sole minor-league tune-up start Thursday night for Rochester, the Twins' Triple A affiliate. His stat line was not particularly encouraging: 3.2 innings, 4 hits, 4 runs, 2 walks, 5 strikeouts. He threw 76 pitches. Those determined to find a reason to believe can latch onto the strikeouts. I'm inclined to pay more attention to the walks, because Colon's su

Nick Gordon vs. Royce Lewis vs. Wander Javier
via Baseball Outsider July 13, 2017 at 09:38 AM

Away back last Sunday, Nick Gordon, the Twins' sole representative in the Futures Game, started at shortstop and hit leadoff for Team USA. He went 1-for-3 with a run scored.There's a debate over whether Gordon, who is having what appears to be a typical Gordon season at Chatanooga, is still the organization's top prospect. Royce Lewis, taken 1/1 by the Twins about a month ago, outranks him in the

The Twins at the All-Star game
via Baseball Outsider July 12, 2017 at 09:38 AM

All three Twins at the All-Star Game played, and it was a mixed bag of results:Miguel Sano blooped an RBI single to right in his only at-bat;Brandon Kintzler had a Brandon Kintzler inning -- three batters, three ground balls;Ervin Santana allowed the only National League run, a homer by Yadier Molina.“I was a fan that got to pitch in the game, so I appreciate that.”-- Brandon Kintzler  N

The Twins at the break
via Baseball Outsider July 11, 2017 at 09:38 AM

The Twins are 45-43, 2.5 games behind Cleveland in the American League Central. This you can tell from a glance at the standings.But the innards of that record are ... interesting.For example: The Twins are 10-5 in games decided by one run. They are 12-20 in games decided by five or more runs.This is NOT typical of good teams. The better the team, the more often they win in blowouts, and as a rule

Contemplatng Tyler Duffey
via Baseball Outsider July 10, 2017 at 09:38 AM

It was the kind of situation Tyler Duffey had excelled at for most of this season: The starting pitcher (in this case Kyle Gibson) was struggling in the fifth inning, but the Twins were still in the game, down two with a man on and no outs. The obvious notion was for Duffey to work the fifth and sixth innings and keep the Twins in the game. This, as I have repeatedly observed, is Duffey's role on

Pic of the Week
via Baseball Outsider July 09, 2017 at 09:38 AM

 Derek Dietrich of the Miami Marlinsjokes around with an oversized glove borrowed fromMarlins fan Tony Voda (right)during the first inning of their game on July 4 in St. Louis.Too big a mitt to be legally used, but cause for a double-take anyway.

Notes, quotes and comment
via Baseball Outsider July 08, 2017 at 09:38 AM

Friday was quite the busy day in Twinsdom. Let's get chronologic:* Joe Mauer went on the disabled list with Kennys Vargas recalled. The Twins demoted Vargas on Monday to reactivate Ehire Adrianza. Mauer injured his back on Tuesday, and the Twins dawdled a couple of days before pulling the trigger, presumably (as I noted Thursday) because Vargas hasn't given them a lot of reason to get excited abou

Mauer's (not) back
via Baseball Outsider July 07, 2017 at 09:38 AM

I got one right, more or less: Alan Busenitz, called up to fill Hector Santiago's roster spot, was sent back to Rochester after watching two games from the bullpen to activate Felix Jorge, who will start today's game.I expect that Jorge will be demoted again immediately after the game. The Twins figure to fill out the weekend with Aldaberto Mejia and Kyle Gibson, then have four days off, then will

Dancing the pitching staff
via Baseball Outsider July 06, 2017 at 09:38 AM

Hector Santiago was insistent that his lack of velocity Sunday was deliberate. On Tuesday he threw his regular bullpen session and, asked by a reporter if that meant he was making his scheduled start Friday, replied: "Presumably." On Wednesday he went on the disabled list again.We can connect the dots as we wish, but bottom line is: Santiago is not making that Friday start.Alan Busenitz, sent out