The first two games of the season have been complete and I can honestly say I have yet to watch a single pitch. One of the problems was that both of the contests were not on any major channel and the other issues was the games were being played very early in the morning. I still don't know how I feel about the first two games of the season being played in Japan. It is great to spread the game to international markets but I love when all of the games are being played in the first couple days and there is one game after another on ever ESPN station. With the way it is set up now, the A's and the Mariners have already played two of their games and it seems to take a little something away from the Opening Day that will take place in the US next week.
The great thing is this is the last edition of Friday Links-N-Thinks before the Twins have their own Opening Day contest in Baltimore. In Fort Myers, the roster is starting to come together and the team looks close to being ready to make a push in the AL Central. Justin Morneau started to swing a good bat this week with multiple home runs. Joe Mauer has been hitting well for most of the spring and he seems ready to get back to his injury-free self. Francisco Liriano has put together some impressive outings and he could be poised to make a splash in the rotation for the Twins.
Overall, it is the most wonderful time of the year as the wait for the beginning of the 2012 season is almost over. Here are a variety of stories from the last week that I enjoyed with a little humor splashed in for some fun. Enjoy the links and have a fantastic last weekend without Twins baseball.
- For those lucky enough to score ticket to the Twins home opener, the schedule of events for the day was released by the club. The 2002 Twins team will be honored and who doesn't want to see Denny Hocking throw out a first pitch.
- Betsy over at For Love of the Game continued her series of posts relating the Twins roster decisions to the popular Hunger Games novels. Not everyone will survive until the end but may the odds be ever in your favor.
- It is getting closer to the time for Twins fan Lindsay Guentzel to head to the MLB Fan Cave for the start of the regular season. Over at Knuckleballs Blog they posted a video update of her progress.
- The new website Twins Daily has been doing very well in their first five week of existence.
- David Bromberg and Anthony Slama look to bounce back after each had a rough 2011. Seth Stohs thinks both could work their way back on the big league roster in 2012.
- The ESPN Sweetspot blog has done multiple predictions for the AL this week and the Twins got a couple nods in some categories. The Cy Young votes are here and the Rookie of the Year vote could surprise you.
- Do you have the desire to see every uniform change that will be taking place across baseball this year? I am excited for the Twins to wear their Minneapolis Millers uniforms.
- Former Twin R.A. Dickey has made quite the name for himself in the Big Apple and this piece does a good job of showing who he is as a man.
- Carl Pavano is in the middle of a very weird extortion plot. Some people will do anything for a navy Range Rover with tan leather.
- Twins Fan from Afar is fine with the news that that Justin Morneau will be DHing.
- I read this headline and thought the old Ruben Sierra was still attempting to play with an MLB club.
- There was quite the Twitter war earlier this week between the local media and the rest of us so called "bloggers." John Bonnes wrote some of his thoughts on the controversy.
- Do you ever go to eBay and try and find cheap Twins stuff to purchase?
- Minor League Ball has been running a series of posts on the top players who are under 25 years old. John Sickels reminds Twins fans why we miss Wilson Ramos.
- Page 2 at ESPN.com did an interview with Chris Iles, the corporate communications manager for the Twins, to discuss their use of social media during games.
- Don Mattingly called Ozzie Guillen a bad name.
- It looked like Cristian Guzman could be back in the AL Central at some point during the upcoming season. The Indians released him but maybe now he can show up and throw out a first pitch with Denny Hocking.
My Weekly Rundown
- Monday: Revere becomes outfield's odd man out
- Tuesday: Could Capps perform better than Nathan in '12?
- Wednesday: Gibson could be the 2013 Opening Day starter
- Thursday: Replacements could fill back end of the rotation
Video of the Week: In the time Jim Thome spent in Minnesota, he was never asked to step on the field as a fielder and there was no reason for him to do this with the AL having the DH. Time have changed for Mr. Thome as he signed a free agent contract with the Phillies in the offseason. Now he is going to be forced to play at first base from time to time in order to get himself into the line-up. Here is the video proof that he can still make a tough play at first base. It wasn't the most graceful thing in the world but he got the job done.