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  1. Baseball in the Backseat (Twins at Astros -- Games 136-138)

    Chuckles (Twins 10 Astros 6 Game 136)

    Other places it was Labor Day and the last day of the fair, but in our house it was preparation day. The next day my wife was due at the hospital for a thyroidectomy. She's fine, and she's going to be fine. It's just another annoying grown-up thing that reminds a person real life always wins.

    We stayed busy preparing for our trip to the hospital, and the game itself didn't get much attention.

    Still, when I heard about ...
  2. The Death of a Disco Mustache (Twins at Rangers -- Games 133-135)

    We're Still Doing This? (Twins 3 Rangers 2 -- Game 133)

    Forgot this was a solid win until a Rangers fan reminded me of it on Twitter. Close game against a great pitcher and a good team. Twins win.

    I was more excited about another Morneau homer. Morneau may be Canadian, but his backstory makes him a real American hero. Brash but charming slugger finds early success, suffers a career- (and life-) threatening injury, and is just now getting to the part where the audience stands ...
  3. No Flames to Fan for Fans (Royals at Twins - Games 130-132)

    Slam the Door (Twins 1 Royals 6 - Game 130)

    I won't pretend any interest in following this game. A certain combination of real life emergencies left my family shell-shocked and living in a bunker mentality. This delayed my game recaps, and as you can imagine that delay was the least of our concerns.

    I woke up from a nap that felt like a flatline to the Twins taking the fall on a heavy-hitting eighth inning. A score like that tells me I didn't miss anything by skipping out ...
  4. Gut Rot (Twins at Indians - Games 127-129)

    Cheating On My Mind (Twins 5 Indians 1 - Game 127)

    I missed cheering for Deduno, who held the Indians to 3 hits in 6 innings. I was excited after the game ended, but I forgot Close Encounter of the Wild Kind took the mound.

    Truth is, Twins gang, I’ve been sending all my hopes and dreams down Pittsburgh’s way. If the Pirates have a winning season I’ll screech in joy. If they make the playoffs I’ll hit a sports bar to watch.

    The Pirates have made for a nice baseball ...
  5. Detroit, Out of Focus (Twins at Tigers -- Games 124-126)

    Focal Point (Twins 6 Tigers 3 -- Games 124)

    The Twins win, but do so with an albatross hanging around their neck. An albatross with a catcher's mask and sideburns.

    Joe Mauer sat out this game and ended up on the 7 day concussion DL. This has the potential to be beyond bad. Mauer is the reference point that holds the Twins in position. If his efficacy is limited or destroyed by the lingering side effects of a concussion, down goes up and up goes down.

    In these ...
  6. Then We Dotted the "i" - (Twins versus Mets -- Game 123)

    (Twins 1 Mets 6 -- Game 123)

    Today, two teams who won't get near the playoffs came together to play one final game that didn't mean much of anything. Except the Twins still lost.

    Pitcher Kyle Gibson lost his job, too. I decided years ago he was going to be the future of the organization, so I made plans to stick with him throughout his ups and downs so I could say I always knew he'd be an ace.

    I willed it, but it didn't happen. I can't say I'm sure anymore, ...
  7. Even the Dogs are Cringing (Twins versus White Sox -- Games 119-122)

    (Twins 4 White Sox 3 -- Game 119)

    Twins win on a walk-off hit from Chris Herrmann. That's a memory he'll keep in his back pocket forever.

    Pelfrey made a game of it on the mound. Maybe there's something to him, but I don't know if I can take another season of wondering what's going to end up on the Target Field mound, and what pitch its arm will fall off while throwing.

    What are the chances it's going to get better, though? I'm as optimistic about the future ...
  8. Glitches in the Order of Things (Twins versus Indians 116-118)

    We’re So Happy, Andrew Albers (Twins 3 Indians 0 – Game 116)

    Andrew Albers must’ve felt relieved when he finally hit the sack last night. He picked the Twins up with his right arm, the Twins fans up with his left, and still pitched a complete game shutout. That’s a lot of weight to haul around.

    I miss watching the games on cable more as the season stumbles toward a finish. Carroll’s gone to the Royals, who are eyeing life beyond the season finish. Even if the players ...
  9. Broad Shoulders Hit Long Homers (Twins at White Sox (112-115)

    A Grand Slam is Always Something (Twins 7 White Sox 5 -- Game 112)

    Even in a losing a season, a grand slam is something special. The Twins won the game, but even if they hadn’t, Morneau’s grand slam would have been something special. On the second to last pitch of a formerly 20-0 game, a grand slam is still special.

    Morneau hit two home runs in this game. I guess when you have to strain to see where you’ll be next year, you’re focused well past the skyline. And then you ...
  10. Slidin' to the Sea (Twins versus Royals 109-111)

    Crumb-Faced (Twins 0 Royals 13 – Game 109)

    I abandoned this game at 6-0, and all I missed was Jamey Carroll pitching a clean ninth inning. And a whole bunch of suffering.

    Checking the box score to see who stunk on the mound is like lining up elementary kids to see who has chocolate on their face after the cookie jar was emptied. This time, Correia and Pressly are crumb-bearded and cookie-handed.

    I’ve never been a pitcher at any level. Is there a point in ...
  11. The Astros Playin' (Twins versus Astros - Games 105-107)

    Road Goes On Forever (Twins 4 Astros 3– Game 105)

    Left a great time at Diversicon, a science fiction and fantasy convention, to find the Twins were still playing. The game was tug of war, and the rag tied onto the rope was still in the middle of the mudpit in the center.

    I’d spent the day with my mind wrapped around the business of writing the unreal and then bringing it to life (for more on my life out from under the baseball cap, click here). Listening to good old fashioned ...
  12. Nothing Will Keep Us Together - Twins versus Royals (Games 102-104)

    The Way the Ball Bounces (Twins 2 Royals 7 – Game 102)

    With the trade talk making the Minnesota Twins look like the garage sale everybody drives past, baseball kept being baseball. The game sounded great in my car, with the window down, and a few hints of fall in the breeze.

    Provus described a routine foul ball and it reminded me how elegant but complicated the game is. The ball goes in the air, affected by the way it was thrown, the way it was hit, and the atmospheric ...
  13. Green Shoots from Broken Bat Rubble (Twins at Mariners - Games 98-101)

    Daydream Disbeliever (Twins 2 Mariners 8 – Game 98)

    The Twins got knocked out early in this game, but everybody played nine innings anyway.

    During my little league tour of duty, I spent most of time at whichever part of the outfield they felt saved me from embarrassing attempts at fielding fly balls. If I was lucky and the ball stayed far away from my glove, I had nothing to do but daydream away until I was forced to humiliate myself at the plate.

    Getting ...
  14. If Twins Play In CA, Does Anyone Remember What Time? (Twins at Angels 95-97)

    Behind the Maps (Twins 4 Angels 2 – Game 95)

    Putting the Twins on a West Coast road trip is like keeping something in your glove compartment. No matter how much you swear you won’t forget this time, your mind goes blank when it counts.

    California time victories are nice to find between smashes of the “snooze” button on my cell phone. It’s like getting a nice letter, except no one mails anything anymore. Even the junk mail people gave up the ghost years ago.
    ...
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