4:05 AM EDT, Sun October 25, 2020
17 hours ago
Grading the 2020 Twins: Caleb Thielbar

Grading the 2020 Twins: Caleb Thielbar

Photo by Nuccio DiNuzzo/ Meat Raffle! As we did last offseason, Twinkie Town writers are grading player who appeared in a game for the 2020 Minnesota Twins. (Last year’s grades can be found here, this year’s here.) Players will be graded individually on an A-F scale based on their hitting, fielding, and whatever else the author wants to consider. Sometimes writing these is more fun for a bit-player than it is for the stars. This is one of those cases. Caleb Thielbar, aka Meat Raffle, is one heck of a story. Five years ago, he was a Twin, and had a decent rookie campaign before being...
20 hours ago
Twinkie Town Talk: Free Tacos!

Twinkie Town Talk: Free Tacos!

Photo by: Don & Melinda Crawford/Education Images/Universal Images Group via And Twins winning awards Recently, at Twinkie Town: James Fillmore’s latest visit to the world of Stadium Swindles. What is “Mental Toughness” and what does that say about the Twins’ playoff streak? Who do you think is the Twins’ MVP? Almost everyone here thinks its the same player. Elsewhere in Twins Territory: Nelson Cruz got another “Good Guy” award — this one is the Marvin Miller Man of the Year. Oh, and pending-free agent Cruz is apparently looking for a two-year contract. That...
Oct 23, 2020
Gabbing w/ Gamble: Who was the 2020 Twins Rookie of the Year?

Gabbing w/ Gamble: Who was the 2020 Twins Rookie of the Year?

Photo by Brace Hemmelgarn/Minnesota Twins/ Which young gun impressed you this year? Hello and welcome back to your Friday helper, your work-week ender, another Twinkie Town discussion post. Here’s your question for the week: Who was the 2020 Twins Rookie of the Year? There is a pretty short list of contenders for this one, but it may be a closer race than you’d think at first glance. By my count, the Twins had 12 players appear in games this year who qualify as rookies. Here are those 12: Position Players: Ryan Jeffers, Travis Blankenhorn, Lamonte Wade, Brent Rooker, and Aaron...
Oct 21, 2020
Time for some positivity

Time for some positivity

Photo by Jerry Holt/Star Tribune via It’s not all doom-and-gloom in Twins Territory In some ways, 2020—especially its ending—was not the greatest season to be a Minnesota Twins fan. Public access to Target Field was denied for the duration, the entire team (save for Nelson Cruz & Kenta Maeda) seemed to underachieve based on 2019 levels, and the playoff losing streak reached new—and more depressing—heights. Having the Trash-stros be the team to end the Twins’ season? The final knife twist. Yet, there are two primary ways in which the ‘20 squad could—and should—be seen...
Oct 21, 2020
Former Twins in the World Series

Former Twins in the World Series

Photo by Tom Pennington/ Which former Twins could soon be World Champions? The World Series has finally arrived. With baseball’s grandest stage in full swing, which former Minnesota Twins find themselves competing for the Commissioner’s Trophy? Tampa Bay Rays The Tampa Bay Rays feature three former Twins, all relief pitchers. Nick Anderson- Nick Anderson was a former Twins prospect who never got his chance with the big-league squad. He was traded away for next to nothing, and has since become one of baseball’s best relievers. He had a 0.55 ERA and 26 strikeouts in 16.1 innings...
Oct 20, 2020
“Mental Toughness” and the Twins’ playoff streak

“Mental Toughness” and the Twins’ playoff streak

An exploration into what folks think mental toughness is and how to end the worst streak in sports history A lot of theories can arise when a sports team loses eighteen straight playoff games. It could be the fault of a bad GM, or a bad coach. Perhaps a mercurial closer if we’re focusing on baseball, or even a modern day curse. Except the Twins now hold the record for playoff futility across all of American sports, so there is no longer precedent. What Twins fans want to know is why this has happened and if there is a way out. I like to get “Mad Dog” Chris Russo’s take on baseball,...
Oct 20, 2020
Grading the 2020 Twins: Miguel Sano

Grading the 2020 Twins: Miguel Sano

Photo by Brace Hemmelgarn/Minnesota Twins/ Another incomplete, but lets put a letter on it anyway As we did last offseason, Twinkie Town writers are grading player who appeared in a game for the 2020 Minnesota Twins. (Last year’s grades can be found here, this year’s here.) Players will be graded individually on an A-F scale based on their hitting, fielding, and whatever else the author wants to consider. This one is going to be another controversial Twin. The Twins signed Josh Donaldson last winter, pushing Miguel Sano across the diamond to first base. Fans expected growing pains as...
Oct 19, 2020
How to swindle a stadium deal: “Throw A Billion Dollars From The Helicopter” film explains

How to swindle a stadium deal: “Throw A Billion Dollars From The Helicopter” film explains

And, in 20 years, they’ll probably want another one. | Photo by Tom Pennington/ A recent documentary shows how the sausage gets made, Globe Life Field style. Down in a suburb of Dallas, ArlingtonSeveral grifters were planning a scheme.They hoped to buy low and sell high on baseballNew stadiums prop the value of teams. In 2016, Arlington’s new mayor announced his intention to partner with the Texas Rangers on a new, mostly publicly-financed baseball stadium, replacing one built in 1994. After an extremely brief interval, the city council voted unanimously to put a financing referendum...
Oct 19, 2020
I’m tired and I’m not going to take it anymore

I’m tired and I’m not going to take it anymore

Photo by Brace Hemmelgarn/Minnesota Twins/ I mean, I actually will, but I’m tired. There have already been several post-mortems on the Twins 2020 season. Most, of course, reflect the very mixed reality that was the shortened season. There was the good (Nelson Cruz, Kenta Maeda, Tyler Duffey, Trevor May), there was the bad (Polanco, Kepler, Rogers), and there was the ugly (another 0-for in the playoffs). As the philosopher, Sheryl Crow said: “A change would do us good.” Mostly, from my point of view, there was stunning mediocrity. Perhaps that mediocrity was best exemplified by...
Oct 19, 2020
Twinkie Town staff submits their votes for Twins MVP. Who is your choice?

Twinkie Town staff submits their votes for Twins MVP. Who is your choice?

Photo by Hannah Foslien/ A trio of candidates stand out from the rest of the roster. Although the Minnesota Twins did not make it as far as fans hoped in the playoffs, some players turned in outstanding seasons. As Major League Baseball has wrapped up the Championship Series and look ahead to the World Series, Most Valuable Player awards were handed out. So why not do the same for the Twins? Twinkie Town writers submitted their selection for the Twins’ 2020 MVP and their argument as to why that player is deserving of the award. Below are their decisions; their choice is in bold. TJ...
Oct 19, 2020
Monday Morning Minnesota: Still waiting for the offseason edition

Monday Morning Minnesota: Still waiting for the offseason edition

Photo by Hannah Foslien/ And remembering Sid Hartman. Previously on Twinkie Town: Brandon checked in on the rest of the AL Central to see what they’ve been up to since also very quickly losing in the playoffs. Nothing unites the midwest like not winning at sports! Matt graded Taylor Roger’s 2020 and it isn’t pretty. I haven’t seen grades this bad since I took high school Algebra. Gamble and the rest of us have gone and gabbed about who the Twins should bring back in 2020. Who is the most desired non-Nelson? The answer MAY surprise you! (It’s Trevor May, that was a pun. If...
Oct 18, 2020
Legendary sports columnist Sid Hartman passes away at 100

Legendary sports columnist Sid Hartman passes away at 100

Photo by Brace Hemmelgarn/Minnesota Twins/ The long-time Star Tribune sports reporter’s last column was published today. As if 2020 couldn’t get any worse, it takes another life - this time in the Minnesota sports realm. Sid Hartman, long-time sports columnist for the Minneapolis Star Tribune, has passed away according to his son. He celebrated his 100th birthday earlier this year. According to the Star Tribune, Hartman started selling papers in 1928 as an eight-year-old boy. His first piece in the newspaper was in fall of 1945 and he wrote multiple columns a week for the paper ever...
Oct 18, 2020
Grading the 2020 Twins: Taylor Rogers

Grading the 2020 Twins: Taylor Rogers

Closer, closed. | Photo by Brace Hemmelgarn/Minnesota Twins/ In which more goes wrong for the 2020 Twins. As we did last offseason, Twinkie Town writers are grading player who appeared in a game for the 2020 Minnesota Twins. (Last year’s grades can be found here, this year’s here.) Players will be graded individually on an A-F scale based on their hitting, fielding, and whatever else the author wants to consider. I’ll continue the series today with a key 2019 contributor whose 2020 was... well, let’s carry on. After a rock-solid 2019 clamping down the ninth inning, Taylor Rogers...
Oct 18, 2020
Rival Roundup: Offseason Edition

Rival Roundup: Offseason Edition

Photo by Rich von Biberstein/Icon Sportswire via Technically it’s the Postseason edition. Please complain in the comments below. Earlier this year, I put together a series of articles outlining the major additions and subtractions from each of the four rival teams around the division — a way to keep a finger on the pulse of the ever-changing landscape of the American League Central. Of course, the pulse of said landscape promptly flatlined this March, as preseason coverage and regular season predictions were thrown headlong into a brick wall with the postponement of Opening Day. But...
Oct 16, 2020
Plato’s Cave: A 2020 Baseball Allegory

Plato’s Cave: A 2020 Baseball Allegory

Shadows versus reality In an ancient philosophical dialogue between Plato and Socrates, the two vaunted thinkers discussed an allegory of a cave of prisoners: A group of people have been chained in a cave their entire lives. They face a blank wall and only see the shadows projected onto it from objects passing in front of an unseen fire. To the prisoners—who have never seen the outside world—the shadows are all they know, yet those shadows do not accurately portray reality. This scenario was used to illustrated the goal of a philosopher to both perceive and understand higher dimensions...