Author Archives: pbyradm

Terry Ryan is gone and the sun still rises in the East

Change is comingThe sun still rose in the east this morning just as it always has but the difference is that Terry Ryan is no longer the Twins GM. Lots of Twins fans are happy that Ryan is gone and many are sad and disappointed. I am never happy to see someone lose their job, especially a job they love.

But life moves on, and almost 48 hours after the announcement I think I would like to jot down some thoughts and questions that come to mind.

Owner Jim Pohlad

Owner Jim Pohlad

My over-riding thought about the situation is that I now have a different opinion of owner Jim Pohlad. I had originally thought that he was a hands off owner and that he would let his brain-trust run the Minnesota Twins organization. Now it appears to me that is not the case, in true Pohlad fashion he is taking charge and showing everyone that he who holds the gold makes the rules. There is nothing wrong with that, just don’t try to blow smoke up my skirt saying that you let the experts run the show. What I don’t understand about this announcement is why Pohlad would tell Ryan that his contract would not be renewed after the season ended? Why tell your GM in June that his services are no longer required but that he can run the team for the rest of the season if he wishes to do so? I guess that the team just did not want to announce a “firing”, they would have preferred simply not renewing his contract. Another thing, why would Pohlad say that the only stipulation for a new GM is that Paul Molitor will manage in 2017? Only Jim Pohlad and Dave St. Peter know for sure.

Check out the rest of the story at Twinstrivia.com .

Looking at the length of Twins games from 1961-2015

Clock baseballjpgSome time ago I did a piece on the length of MLB games after the league announced its changes to quicken the pace of play prior to the 2015 season that I called Looking back at the pace of play in 2015. You can read that article here. Today I want to take a look at the entire history of Minnesota Twins game duration’s going back to 1961.

First off we are going to note of some rule changes that baseball implemented since 1961 that may or may not have had an impact on the length of games. I am not saying I have them all listed here but I listed as many as I am aware of. I appreciate Stew Thornley’s help in compiling this list

1961 – 162 game schedule implemented
1966 – artificial turf first implemented (Astrodome)
1969 – mound lowered 5 inches
1969 – strike zone was shrunken to the area from the armpits to the top of
the batter’s knees
1969 – saves rule added
1969 – playoffs started
1971 – all players must wear protective helmets
1973 – AL DH started
1973 – glove sizes standardized
1975 – ball was permitted to be covered with cowhide because of the shortage
of horses
1995 – wild card team added to playoffs
1997 – interleague play introduced
2008 – limited instant replay introduced on August 29
2013 – In addition to interpreters taking the mound with the pitching
coach/manager, two other rule changes of note were implemented. 1. A seventh
coach will be permitted to suit up and sit in the dugout, one more than in
previous seasons. This change comes as a result of several teams hiring an
assistant hitting coach, most of whom were forced to sit out games in the
clubhouse last year. 2. The fake-to-third, throw-to-first pick-off move that
almost never works will now be considered a balk. The “trick move” was voted
out by the Playing Rules Committee last year — giving MLB the authority to
bar the move but approval by the player’s union would make the ban
unilateral.
2014 – MLB’s new system of instant replay dictates which plays are subject
to review, how instant replay will be initiated by field managers and how
the review process will be conducted. As a part of the expansion of instant
replay, Clubs will now be allowed to show all replays on the ballpark
scoreboard, regardless of whether the play was reviewed. Home plate rules
were also changed.
2015 – MLB introduced new pace of game rules 1. With certain exceptions,
hitters must keep one foot in the batter’s box between pitches throughout
their at-bat. 2. Each ballpark now has between-inning countdown timers to
ensure that the next half-inning starts promptly.
The timers are set at 2 minutes, 25 seconds for most games and 2:45 for
nationally televised games. Pitchers and hitters have been encouraged to be
ready to go when the clock reaches 20 seconds. 3. Managers can now signal
instant-replay challenges to umpires from the dugout area, instead of from
the field.
2016 – Netting behind home plate to reach out to dugouts. Possible strike
zone change?

My personal definition of a long game is one that last 3 hours or more. I love watching baseball but when the game drags on and there is a modicum of action than I start to get bored. For the most part I would rather watch a 2 1/2 hour game over a 3 1/2 hour game but there are exceptions, a high scoring back and forth game can be fun just as a 2 hour and 20 minute game with no action can be boring. For my purposes here I will consider games that last 3 hours or more as long games. The chart you will see tracks game duration averages as well as games that last 3 hours or more. Games of less than nine innings are excluded in my study.

You can read the rest of the story at Twinstrivia.com .

Twins can’t be fixed unless they trade Joe Mauer

Joe Mauer

The Minnesota have lots of issues that need fixing and in spite of their horrendous pitching the very first problem they need to address is Joe Mauer. I know Mauer is making $23 million a year but money is not the issue here. The problem here is that he is playing first base and hitting in one of the top three spots in the batting order while hitting .258 with 26 RBI in 337 plate appearances. Catcher Kurt Suzuki who hits in the bottom of the order is hitting .278 with 25 RBI in just 194 PA’s. I am not trying to show how good Suzuki is, I am trying to show how bad Mauer really is.

For the rest of the story go to Twinstrivia.com .

Minnesota Twins draft trivia

The 2016 June amateur draft starts today and the Twins will have the number 15 selection. The Twins have picked 15th just once since the draft started in 1965 and that was way back in 1977 when they selected an outfielder from a high school in New Jersey by the name of Paul Croft. Croft spent four years in the Twins system and during that time advanced up to “A” ball before the Twins let him go.

Any player the Twins draft today or over the next few days has a small chance of ever wearing  a Minnesota Twins uniform at any point but even the ones that do get to the top of Twins mountain won’t arrive until 2020 or later so don’t get too excited about these draft picks just yet.

Interest in this years draft seems really down this year here in Minnesota, probably because of the apathy in Twins baseball due to the Twins miserable play in 2016 and Twins management refusal to accept what is going on around them. Pat Reusse did a piece on the Twins in today’s Star Tribune called “Dancing after victories? These Twins have no shame“.

I am here to “second” what Reusse said and push it a step farther. The Twins should start running ads now that a “huge” surprise for Twins fans is coming at the All-Star break and when the break arrives the Minnesota Twins should announce that they understand how bad the team has been and to show appreciation to Twins fans for supporting this historically bad team the rest of this season that they will cut ticket prices in half for all remaining home games. People that have tickets in hand for future games should be credited for half their ticket price for tickets in 2017. Seems to me that is the least they can do for their fans. Twins ownership should appreciate that Twins fans are mad as hell, at least that shows the team that there is still interest in Twins baseball versus the apathy that could and is building around this franchise very quickly. Remember, it costs less to keep fans than it does to get new fans.

But let’s have a little fun here versus crying in our milk about the Twins poor play. How much do you know about the Twins and their adventures in the MLB June amateur draft? Give these questions a try.

To see the questions and the rest of the story please go to Twinstrivia.com.

When is enough, enough Minnesota?

The Twins lost another game today by a score of 9-2 at Target Field to the Baltimore Orioles. That makes 7 losses in a row and 10 out of their last 11. Let’s look at some facts:

  • They have won twice in 17 games on the road.
  • They are 6-10 at their home park
  • In April they were 7-17
  • So far in May they are 1-8
  • They have been outscored 174-111 after 33 games
  • They are 2-13 against other Central Division teams
  • Starting pitchers are 3-15
  • The closer is 2-4 with 2 saves and a 5.40 ERA
  • Six relievers have appeared in 14 or more games
  • The pitching staff has the highest ERA in the league
  • Opponents are hitting .274 against Twins pitching
  • The Twins are hitting .236
  • Twins have made more errors than everyone except for Oakland

I could go on and on but what is the point, this team is playing horrendous baseball right now and they can’t catch any breaks either, that’s life. Believe me when I say that this team is not as bad as it is playing right now just like it was not as good as it played in 2015.

Do they miss Torii Hunter in the clubhouse? Sure they do but even Hunter couldn’t help this team play to the level that most people expected. So what is the problem? In 1982 the Twins lost 102 games and after 33 games they were 11-22, the Twins record this year after 33 games is 8-25.

owner Jim Pohlad

owner Jim Pohlad

 

I don’t care what Jim Pohlad has said publicly, GM Terry Ryan and manager Paul Molitor have to be on the hot seat right now. Hitting coach Tom Brunansky and pitching coach Neil Allen should not be buying any green banana’s either. My prediction for what is it worth is this. The Twins have a day off on Thursday and then play three games in Cleveland and three more in Detroit after that. If the Twins don’t play .500 on the road this week, Paul Molitor will not return to Minnesota with the team as the Twins manager.

 

You can find the rest of the story at Twinstrivia.com .

 

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