Know Thine Enemy #5: The Detroit Tigers

Reasons why the Twins should blitz the Tigers as quickly as I am blitzing out this post:

  1. The Yankees, Michigan Edition: About 5 years ago, the National Hockey League Players Association walked off the job, in a stirring display of union strength and greed. The unhappy result of this was that Mike Illitch, who had happily cackled over his millions as owner of the Detroit Red Wings suddenly remembered he owned a baseball team too.  Several millions of dollars later the Tigers out spend the rest of the AL Central as the greedy bastard representative of the division. *50 Loathing Points*
  2. U-G-L-Y: The tigers are big believers in the uglier the hair the better. Witness the Magglio Ordonez Mullet, and the Todd Johns Mutton Chop/Handle Bar/Rabid Dog combo. They don't got no alibi. *7 Loathing Points*
  3. Jim Bunning: The crazy Kentucky Senator got his start as a solid Tigers pitcher. Eventually being made a hall-of-famer is no excuse for saying things like: "My opponent is limp wristed." *20 Loathing Points*
Reasons why the Twins should do away with the Tigers quickly, as something like a mercy killing:

  1. Historically bad to surprisingly good: The Tigers are the same organization that came within two losses of passing the 1962 New York Mets as the worst team in all of baseball history. Their turn around in such a short span of time is remarkable (and completely expected given the tonnage of cash poured into the team). *-5 Loathing Points*
  2. Hank Greenberg: The first Hebrew Hammer came within two home runs of tying Babe Ruth's single season home run record, and got death threats for his religious beliefs. He was classy honorable and generally awesome (you can even watch a documentary featuring one of his old stalkers). *-20 Loathing Points*
  3. Ty Cobb: My vote for the greatest player of all time, the man who hit anything within a square mile of the plate, ran the bases like a gazelle, fielded like a god and was, even after Ruth, considered by many the greatest all round player of all time. (Of course, he was also an inveterate racist who beat up crippled fans, so he wasn't that great. *-1 Loathing Point*
Final Loathe-o-Meter Rating:  51 Loathing points
Also Known As: Driving behind someone on a cellphone


Another Letter From Livan Hernandez

Sweetest of all 'sota's--

I have heard that you are upset with me. Why my darling? What have I done? Why do you spurn me as you would a rabid doggie, or dat guy, de Kramer from de Seinfeld who can no more act for your amusment?

Oh. Last night? You are angry about last night?

Darling, do not you see dat I was testing you last night? Yes, testing. Only dis was no oral examination. No, no ABCDE scantron bubblies for you darling. Dere is only one test for love, well...two if you count de checking for STDs, but dere is only one which truly matters.

De test of loyalty.

If you just loved dat we were winning, if you just loved dat we had won 10 in a row, den you would doubt, you would be as upset as I am when someone puts de unfizzy coca into my Cooba Libre. If you now shun me and de oders, if you no longer are loving de Twins. Den, my darling...I am sad. So sad. Sadder than de word saddness can express. 'Escuse me...I am, how you say: heartrended, or heartbreaked...I am heartblended, like you took my passion and pureed it.

What's dat you say? Has my letter moved you? You still love de Livan?

Oh sweetness, never fear,  now dat our love is true I will rededicate myself to you and your happiness. I already have a romantic apology ready. Stay where you are I am coming to you with massage oils, tuna casseroles pina colada fixings.

Yours in humblest submissions, and the speed of Mercury's wings,


A confession

Last night, I doubted.

I doubted that Nick Blackburn could get an effective sinker down.

I doubted that Corey Hart was the skeeziest outfielder I had ever seen.

I doubted that Joe Mauer could get excited.

Blackburn got it down (though not often enough)

Hart is ultra-skeezy (and I say that with no shortage of my own scruffy facial hair).

And Mauer actually pumped his fist, honest to goodness and for real. After hitting the go ahead home run he pumped his fist then smiled and fist bumped with teamates, marking the biggest celebration he has had since saying: "Sounds good then," when Miss USA said she'd go out with him. 

I must also confess, I've only voted once for Mauer in the All-star game. I believe that padding the ballot box goes against the wishes of the proletariat. And, in an homage to bat-girl, the Twins blogger we all imitate, but can never hope to duplicate: I respect Chairman Mau-er's denunciation of bourgeois voting, and wear my Mau button with pride and faith in the Glorious Twins Revolution that is to come.

I confess my failings, but I repeat again: Go Twins.


Know Thine Enemy #4: The Milwaukee Brewers

Reasons we should trash the Brewers like a pile of smelly limburger:
  1. Border War: Wisconsin and Minnesota (I found out when I moved here) are as fierce a pair of rivals as any namby-pamby Eastern-academic, centers-of-commerce/culture, historic franchises. Vikes/Pack--it's on. Gophers/Badgers--it's on like Donkey Kong. Twins/Brewers--it's on like Donkey Kong, all night long. Though I still think of myself as a Montanan living in Minnesota, please allow me to say: "Time to throw down cheese munchers!" *30 Loathing Points*
  2. Copyright Infringement: A plucky team from a minor market in the uppermidwest takes on teams with bigger budgets and more tradition? Does this sound familiar. We were that way before you, ya cheaters! *15 Loathing Points*
  3. Bud Selig: The Darth Vader of baseball--well, that's not quite true. Vader seemed pretty hardcore...Selig seems more like a wheezing beuracratic middleman who tells Darth Vader that if he wants to choke another rebel he has to file a 16-8W form with Debbie in HR. Selig ignored the steroid debacle, has been terrible for labor agreement, and tried (with the help of our own Emperor Pohlad) to eliminate the Twins completely--all of this, while he was the owner of the Brewers. *100 Loathing Points* 
  4. Stadium Envy: We contended for 6 years before getting a new stadium, the Brewers went a decade between winning seasons and they got a new stadium four years before we even had a plan in place. Jerkwads. *5 Loathing Points* 
Reasons to daintily tip the Brewers into a garbage can, after smelling something a little funny:
  1. Brother V.s. Brother: The biggest difference between Minnesota and Wisconsin is that one is spelled M-I-N-N-E-S-O-T-A, while the other is spelled W-I-S-C-O-N-S-I-N. Most people I know in Minnesota have family in Wisconsin, and (I imagine) vice-versa.  And when you really think about it, Brewers fans had to suffer Pohlad just as much as Twins fans have to suffer Pohlad. As the great Adaili Stevenson once said: "There's far more that unites us than divides us." As the equally great mulletted truck-driver beaten up after the Rodney King verdict said: "can't we all just get along." *-129 Loathing Points*
  2. As Alice Cooper taught us: Milwaukee is Algonquin for: "The good land" *-5 Loathing Points*
Final Loathe-o-Meter Rating: 16 Points 
(Also Known As: Your TV fritzing out at a crucial moment in a sporting event)


The Final Battle

Three of the four Pitchers of the Apocalypse lay broken and beaten across the dusty fields of Interleagia.

Pestilent Johnson ambushed behind a bluff by Matt Macri and an acorn crazed Craig Monroe.
Warring Webb surpracted in Domey Dale by Alexi Cassila and Brian Buscher.
Deathly Peavy, and his horse, Trevor the Terrible, taken apart on the sands of San Diablo by Buscher and Brendan Harris, Comic Foil at Large.

Now only one remained, Maddux, the Harbinger of Famine, the man who deprived all of hits with both pitches and his glove. Who had risen to the lofty ranks of the greatest and most terrible of all the historic Pitchers of the Apocalypse.

Maddux, the Harbinger of Famine, began well, he outdueled hitter after hitter, menacing, yet aloof. And then he made his greatest mistake.

For he chose to pester Gogo, the Majordomo of Mojo, hitting him in the elbow.

"Did you see that!?" Said Gogo, his eyes blazing with the heat of of a thousand fiery suns. "He hit me in the arm!"

"Yeah, did it hurt?" asked Jerry, Gardy the Garden Gnome's happy little helper. 

"It hurt too much...now, he must DIBIMIHAN!"

"Debbie Mahan?"


"Dibs on my ham?"


"Oh, die by my hand...."


"Okay, okay, your hand...whatever, just don't go crazy."

But it was too late...For Gogo of Mojo had begun to channel his crazy Gogo powers. He soon scored on a double from Chairman Mauer, but he was not done. Soon, with Maddux the Harbinger of Famine fading, falling behind the mighty bats of the Twins, Gogo returned to first and blazed past Maddux, leaving nothing but scorched earth in his wake.

Brendan Harris tried to calm his fiery rage. "Hey, Gogo, did you see that I hit another home r-"

"HE MUST DIBIMIHAN!" Screamed Gogo vaulting past Harris, who had no alternative but to roll his eyes toward the camera.
And then again Gogo did smite the last attempt of the Harbinger of Famine, delivering the final blow against the Four Pitchers of the Apocalypse and speeding merrily past Maddux's slowly broasting carcass. "HE HAS DYDBIMIHAN!!" he bellowed into the sky turning all the heavens above into a bleeding orange and wreaking the last of his terrible vengeance upon the foes of justice, and consistent hitting. 

Kristina and Baseball - a reluctant love story

There was a time when I was not nearly as emotionally attached to baseball as I am now... Twins games were merely a benign presence in my life - something I occasionally went to with my dad to appease him. My involvement went about as deep as sitting with my sister, eating Skittles and making fun of Ron Coomer's name. Usually I brought a book. To me, these things were much more enjoyable than caring about some guys hitting a small ball with a small stick and then trying to outrun said ball to a little white slab on the ground. Pretty dumb.

Then, my friend Emily started dragging me to games with her, because she thought A.J. Pierzynski was dreamy. I started to learn players names, more detailed rules of the game, and the joy of heckling outfielders from the cheap seats. Despite my resistance, baseball was starting to win me over, sort of like a guy you think is a loser but then they keep bringing you flowers and chocolates and you start to think maybe they're not so bad after all.

But there was more...I remember the moment I really fell in love with baseball - the moment it broke my heart. It's amazing how love and hate are so frequently packaged together, and I find it ironically appropriate that this happened shortly following my first (so far only) huge, ugly heartwrenching breakup.
I was sitting in my friend Jon's dorm room in October 2002, watching game 5 of the AL division playoffs between Minnesota and Anaheim. I thought we were in like flynn. I had never been more sure of anything in my life than I was that the Minnesota Twins were going to the World Series.
Nothing can describe the wrenching feeling in my gut when Adam Kennedy's bat connected with that small leather sphere of destiny, making his 3rd home run of the game... not just any homer but a 3 run homer. The unlikeliness and the unfairness of it all was enough to make me yell and throw things at the TV screen, which I probably did. As the angels scored run after run, my heart was like a little bug being ground into the sidewalk buy the foot of a 7 year old...that 7 year old being the Anaheim Angels.

Oddly enough, this experience proved to be the gateway to my obsession with baseball. I had found a sport that played with my heart much like my 19 year old hormones did - mercilessly. Baseball is full of suspense and calculated moves. Every play is potentially game-saving or game-ruining; one missed catch can mean you're down by 3 runs. One great pitch and you're safely out of an inning. It was also during college, or maybe shortly thereafter, that I discovered my appreciation for Justin Morneau's backside. Either way, I was already hooked.

Along the way I developed another passion - hatred for the New York Yankees. Allow me to explain - my dislike of the Yankees is somewhat similar to my disdain for someone who buys a really ugly pair of $700 Louboutin heels and then walks through the mud in them.
1) Just because your shoes cost a lot doesn't mean they're pretty. Similarly, just because you spend a lot of money on guys who can hit the ball really hard and really far doesn't mean you have a great baseball team.
2) If you do spend a lot of money on something, try not to fuck it up. If one of your player's salaries is the same as the salary of other entire teams, you should be able to trounce the shit out of everyone you meet, or at least you should be able to pay them to lose. The Yankees do not do this. They're not *horrible* per se, but clearly the ammount of money Steinbrenner shells out is not enough to do the trick.
3) The Yankees are the satan of baseball. In my opinion. This has nothing to do with shoe analogies, except that sometimes apparently, the devil wears Prada.

So there it is. A brief history of my love affair with baseball. Since I haven't been able to stay up until 12 to watch the Padres games, I'll have to let Ben continue to document these (however truthfully) but I promise I'll be back next week with some extremely accurate coverage.
Have a great weekend!


The Battle Changes Course

As Webb the Pitcher of War fell in the Domey Dale a cry rose forth from the noble band of hitters.

"Awesome!" shouted Jason Kubel

"Sweet!" exclaimed Michael Cuddyer

"SUPRACTION!" copyrighted Delmon Young.

"Hey," said Brian Bucher, he of the knee whacking blow against Brandon Webb, "why are we sitting around here. The other pitchers of the apocalypse are over on that beach, why don't we go take them out on their turf."

"Yeah!" cried Justin Morneau.

"Hell Yeah!" crowd Joe Mauer.

"Jiminy-jo-bob-jeeephus-Jamima!" gabbled Mike Lamb.

And so the might Twins' hitters ran forth from the Domey Dale towards the sandy shores of San Diablo (Yes...St. Devil...for these were the pitchers of the apocalypse, and not mere men who occasionally enjoyed the southern Californian sunshine).

That is to say, almost all the Twins' hitters ran forth. For poor little Brendan Harris, so young, so scared of the imposing Pitchers of the Apocalypse was cowering under an elm branch. Young Buscher of the knee whacking approached him and carefully asked. "What's wrong, Brendan?"
"Nothing...I mean we're winning and all, but..."


"I don't feel complete."

"Does that have anything to do with the hack photoshop job they did on you?"

"No, I mean, not really...you see, I don't have any schtick."

"It's a forest, there are plenty of..."

"No, not sticks, schtick, gags, something funny to say or do. Craig Monroe's obsessed with nuts, Mike Lamb's a crazy prospector, Delmon Young yells out copyrighted phrases. I'm just a guy who goes out and does his best."

"You know Brendan, there's no shame in being dependable."

"There isn't?"

"Of course not, you're what they call a foil."

"Like an ee-pee?"

"It's pronounced eh-peh, and no...you see it's up to you to react to the madness around you, to Livan's love letters, and the world's adoration of Justin's butt. That's all you have to do. The fans will respond to that, they'll rely on you to do your job and to provide them a touchstone to their own bemusement at the world around them. You see, humor, or umour as it was in the Latin originally meant..."

And so they spoke, long into the twilight of all things comical and uncomical, humorous and just umourous in nature. Until they looked up in the twilight of Domey Dale and realized that it was midnight.

"OH NO!" shouted little Brendan Harris, "we missed the game in San Diablo!"

"Oh, no, my little friend. For though it is midnight here, it is far from it in San Diablo...Quickly to the YetToBeFoundComicalName-Mobile!"
In San Diablo the hitters were befuddled. They had hurt the Horseman Peavy, but his stallion Trevor the Terrible--The Horse of Death still grunted and pawed the ground.

"Lemme attem, lemme attem!" snarled Mauer the Sideburned.

"We must observe the rules of war," said the Morneau the Mountie, "It is not yet your turn to do the damage, it is, that one guy, with the short cropped black hair...you know who I'm talking about, plays over on the other side of the infield."

"Oh yeah," said Cuddyer, "that ONE guy...has he said anything this year?"

"Whether he did or not it wasn't an original wordism like mine! Hey, Wordism! That's my new Wordism!!" proclaimed Young proudly. 

"Where is he anyway?" asked Morneau.

"Here he is!" And so, with the trumpet sounded by noble Brian Buscher, young Harris strode to the plate and stared at Deathly Trevor the Terrible. And then did he smite a pitch mightily and thoroughly, deep into the San Diablo night.

"Way to go Brendan...is that your name, Brendan?" said Mauer.

"Yes it is Joe, and you know, I've learned a lot these last few hours: I learned th--"
"Oh my god, look at what Buscher just did! Woohoo!!" Cried the mighty army, for lo, Brian Buscher had smoted a pitch more mightly and thoroughly than Little Brendan Harris had, and he was the hero of the day, while Brendan Harris gave a big sigh and shrug to the camera thereby fulfilling his purpose as Comic Foil at Large.

The Battle Continues

Continuing our Epic Saga of the Twins V.s. the Four Pitchers of The Apocalypse, when last we left our heroes they had just had their bacon saved by Matt Macri and Craig Monroe from the sneak attack proffered by Randy Johnson.

Macri came hobbling into camp supported by Monroe.

"Craig?" the valley resounded.

"Hey, I brought some oak smoked bacon I found on the trail," Monroe said.

"Oh, I've been looking for that,"said bacon conisseur Justin Morneau. Just then, grizzled old man Mike Lamb came into the Twins camp, his jittery legs and antiquated mannerisms belying his inner madness. 

"Jeeeeeeeeee-hosephat there fellers!" his whiney high pitched voice twittered, "Brandon
 Webb's a-ridin' into to town vowin' vengeance on whatever crummy crooker croaker cracked the crawdad of Crandy Cronson!!"

Only Mike Redmond, himself grizzled but civilized by regular appearances in the line-up, understood and tried to explain to Lamb, "Matt's hurt, and Craig...hey, where did Craig go?" (For Craig had vanished into the tree line again, for he was swift and stealthy and beginning to go through acorn withdrawal.)

"Gee-heeheeheeheheheeeeeee!" Lamb cackled, "t'aint no kinda rhubarbary gonna distract Webby-woo! He's the horseman a war...don't ya know?"

"What are we gonna do fellas?" cried little Brendan Harris.

"We'll do what Craig would do in this situation," replied the little heard and less listened to Delmon Young

"We're going to use acorns to fashion codpieces for ourselves?" asked Macri between gasps of pain.

"No, we'll use surprise, and distraction: WE'LL USE SURPRACTION!!"
"I prefer Distrise," Macri said meekly.

"Too late, I already said Supraction, so Supraction's what it's got to be."
Later that day, Brandon Webb came racing into the Domey Dale the Twins called home, growling in his grueling growl "Grrrrahhh grrrrngggg ghgggrrraaangh!" (Which is, in Arizonian: "Where is the opposing team of batters, so that I might destroy them.")

But Webb was much distressed for the Dale was empty: "Guh, grung guhgrrrraah!" ("Well, that's a surprise!"). Then did a ball shoot from a near by wood into the sky, and the ball was the same color as the sky and as Webb followed the trajectory of the ball he was much amazed to see that the ball could indeed have been the sky, or a cloud or anything at all.

And Webb said, "Gunh, grung guggarangh" ("Wow, that's a distraction!") And as he followed the flight of the ball he did not see Alexi Cassilla and Brian Buscher sneak up on either side of him, bat's poised and ready and after the ball landed at his feat the two batters swung simultaneously on Webb's head, thumping him mightily and besting another pitcher of the apocolypse.
Standing over the prone form of another opposing pitcher Young was heard to say: "That's Supraction, sucka!"

And thus was the second pitcher of the apocalypse bested.


I'm a giant slacker

I apologize for my sad lack of posting the last few days, which will probably continue through the weekend... Unfortunately, our great country is divided into 3 different time zones, which means that the games in SanDiego start about an hour or so before my bedtime in Minnesota. I would love to stay up until midnight watching baseball, but unfortunately my boss would probably not love me quite as much in sleep deprivation mode. Therefore, I will probably have to forfeit my viewing of most if not all of these games.

Second, I'm going out of town this weekend...which is fun, but which means that I'll probably be too busy to watch baseball. I will obviously be checking the score obsessively but I won't be able to watch which makes me sad in my heart. *tear*

Know Thine Enemy #3: The San Diego Padres

Reasons why the Twins should hit the Padres so hard that their Ninos y Ninas will feel it:

  1. Petco Park: Naming rights make sense when it leads to something rather classic sounding: Miller Park, or vaguely inspiring: Progressive Field. Naming your stadium after a place where one buys Pooper Scoopers...that's just being a corporate tool. *16 Loathing Points*
  2. Rotation: As my colleague rightly pointed out the terrifying string of superb opposing pitchers continues with Jake Peavy and Greg Maddux in this series (with Chris Young, a soon to be Cy Young candidate coming back from surgery). The Twins rotation, by comparison is four kids who sure hope they get Dairy Queen after the game and an old codger who looks like he's just rolled out of a hammock in time for his start. Pitching wins championships, and so the Padres earn my loathing. *4 Loathing Points*
  3. The Friar: As there is separation between church and state, so should their be separation between church and baseball. The Padres' Friar is a direct challenge to this. Worse still, he has inspired the Padres "Rewards Club", the Frequent Friars. This abominable pun means that the mascot (and his team) must needs be excommunicated. *8 Loathing points*
Reasons we should daintily slap the Padres, to show our disdain but not our full force.
  1. Tony Gwynn: Two great outfielders in the 1990's: Kirby Puckett, and Tony Gwynn. Kirby's gone...Tony is still wicked cool. *-2 Loathing Points*
  2. The Rewards Club: I'm not about to say the pun again, but still...if you buy Padres tickets they will give you...stuff. Lots of Stuff. Not newsletters, but movie tickets, and money back on your baseball tickets and a backpack and...well...stuff. Carl Pohlad would prefer you buy the tickets and get the hell off his lawn you rotten kids ya. *-10 Loathing Points*
  3. Lindsey Reed: My very good friend Lindsey is from San Diego...Lindsey is a wonderful person, erego her team cannot be pure evil. *-5 Loathing Points*
  4. They stink: Like the Nationals before them, the Padres, kinda suck. They are next to last in almost every major offensive category in the National League.  They are last in the NL West, and as we clocked the best team in the NL West last weekend, kicking sand in the face of the weakest team there is a little like knocking an 8 year old down after you just beat up his father. *-10 Loathing Points*
Loathe-o-Meter Rating: 1
(Also Known As: Feeling obliged to stifle a yawn)


The First Battle

And so, the Twins ventured forth to battle the four pitchers of the apocalypse. Or rather, almost all the Twins ventured forth to battle the four pitchers of the apocalypse. For indeed, Matt Macri was still scared.

"You guys go ahead, I'll uh, I'll just make sure we turned off the gas, and unplugged Justin's curling irons..." said Macri, as he subtly sidled away from the mob. Macri slunk away finding salvation in an 1890s Opium Den...until.

"I say Lord Farthington, is that a baseball player?"

"Zounds Earl Bumswizzle! You are correct, 'tis the cowardly lad Macri, who has left his comrades in arms to battle the four pitchers of the apocalypse without his moral support."

"Lets invite him to Lady Dashlingwedge's Country Home!"

But Macri loathed sitting room farces, and so fled the Opium Den for a near by forest where he heard: "Psst...hey, Macri, pssst!"

"I don't want any crumpets!"

"It's alright man it's alright, it's me, Craig."
"Craig Monroe? But no one's seen you in weeks."

"Yeah, I know, after the Chicago series I decided I'd never let the team down again.  So I took to hiding here in the forest I've lived mostly on nuts, you know after the 7th day they're pretty friggin' great."

Then did Macri think to the first day he joined with the Twins. The noble gnome Little Nicky Punto had fallen ill and only Macri could replace him. Before Little Nicky had gone to the far away land of "Rihabeelit Station" he had said: "You are now one of a chosen few, a happy few, a band of brothers. We will win together and we will lose together, but we will never leave one another to face horrors alone."

And so Macri did remember the words of Little Nicky Punto, and turn to the frightened Monroe to urge him forward.  "Come, Craig," he said, "we must arise from this glen and go to help our friends."

"But how, Macri? Can't we just forage for some nuts?"

"No, look over to the sudden and unexplained black and white bluff, the pestilential ugly pitcher with the world's nastiest mustache is departing from the pack of pitchers of the apocalypse to try a surprise attack."

"Mmm...acorns are good."

"NO NUTS! Come on Craig, it's up to us. we can hide for him behind the bluff then I will hit the small balls and you can hit the long balls and we will vanquish the hideous, malodorous,  pestilence."

And so did two of the unlikeliest Twins destroy the first of the four pitchers of the apocalypse.


And Lo, they came from over the hills, riding like the wind and leaving blazing trails of fire in their wake. Brandishing their Cy Young awards, they raised the battle cry.

While sleeping in his humble abode, Gardy the gnome heard the hoofbeats of impending doom. Gardy knew what he had to do - from underneath his bed he pulled his magic RBI horn and called the Minnesota Twins starting lineup to his side. From all corners of the earth they appeared, wielding their bats, ready for the war that was to come.

"Brave gentlemen," said Gardy the gnome. "We must fight six battles in the coming days. Four of these will be more terrible than you can ever imagine. The four pitchers of the apocolypse will soon arrive."

Matt Macri gasped. Brendan Harris started crying like a little girl.

"Yes, it's true. Randy Johnson, Brandon Webb, Jake Peavy and Gregg Maddux are on their way and we must be prepared." Gardy turned to Justin Morneau. "Justin do you have your magic bat?"


"Oh...I'll take your magic bat..." Joe Mauer winked seductively at Justin.

"Joe this is no time for love games," snapped Gardy. "We must be ready. But for now, all we can do is wait."

Know Thine Enemy #2: The Arizona Diamondbacks

We continue our series of mercilessly mocking opponents with the NL West leading Arizona Diamondbacks.

Reasons we should whip the Diamondbacks like Rev. Arthur Dimsdale in The Scarlet Letter:
  1. Big Ugly: Randy Johnson, he of the face only a mother could love, pitches for Arizona (when he's not napping or trying to beat the Early Bird crowd to Denny's). The terrorizing Big Fella has spent the better part of the last 20 years glowering down on hitters. Racking up 288 Wins and 4,800+ Strikeouts. He's a first ballot hall-of-famer--and not a Twins player, erego he must fail. *6 Loathing points*
  2. So Good, So Young, So Fast: The Diamondbacks are a lot like the Twins, talented young players who play the game hard, run, hit and throw. The only difference is while the Twins missed the playoffs this year and continue to beat their heads against the White Sox and free spending Tigers, while the Diamondbacks made the NLCS last year and lead their division this year. *3 Loathing Points* 
  3. Geography: Along with the previous point, if the Diamondbacks lived in Minnesota and the Twins lived in Arizona, the Twins would lead the NL West and the Diamondbacks would be in 2nd in the AL Central. So we're only about 3,000 miles from being a first place ball club. *2 Loathing Points*
  4. Fashion Victims: The Diamondbacks are committed, above all else, to looking fabulous. For a while that meant hideous purple jerseys. Then hideous pinstripe jerseys with purple trimming. Then hideous pinstripe vests with purple sleeves. Now they have Red and black, but they also have let the name on their front be shortened to simply: D-backs. As an aesthete this offends my eyes and the only solution I can see is to destroy them. *9 Loathing Points*
Reason we should flail them as severely (though ultimately feebly) as Nathaniel Hawthorne flailed at the pages he wrote The Scarlet Letter on:
  1. Look in the Mirror: The Diamondbacks are the National League Twins. What is Chris Young but Carlos Gomez without the accent? What is Justin Upton but Delmon Young without the attitude? What is Stephen Drew but Joe Mauer without the mask? What is Brandon Webb but Scott Baker without the cup problems? By destroying them we would, in effect, destroy ourselves. This intellectual quandry is so great that we should only beat ourselves slightly, rather than severely. *-15 Loathing Points*
Loathe-o-Meter Rating: 5 Points=a slightly slower than normal internet connection



I have three stations pre-programmed in my car: NPR--the current; NPR--news; and 1500 AM--home of the Minnesota Twins.

So I was able to be in touch with the game throughout drives this afternoon. First to bar tender's school, then to the gym I work out at, and then on the way home (though by then it was all over). And here's what I realized:
  1. If I owned an SUV in a developing nation (like the one's I've lived in for most of the last 4 years) I would be beaten to a pulp when people realized I drove a car meant for 9 (which in developing nations means: 19) all by myself.--And we wonder why gas is so expensive.
  2. Games are fun to imagine when all you have is a little bit of commentary now and again. Sure you could watch the game (unless, as with today, the television people decided to be evil and not show it) but with the radio you can picture more things. The dome doesn't have to exist in your imagination. Every routine catch can involve a leaping sommersault in your imagination. Pop flies skirt the warning track, and during the 7th inning stretch Carlos Gomez and Alexi Cassilla have a little tea party behind 2nd base.
So, since we have no video footage to prove me otherwise here's the imaginative recap of today's game:

Wearing their special green and purple pinstripe alternate jerseys, the Twins demolished the Nationals to wrap up a 3-game sweep in the sweet Minnesota summer sunshine yesterday at Peanuts From Heaven Ballpark. 

"It was great to get a win and get back over .500" said outfielder Michael Cuddyer after the game, dressed again in his cuddly Teddy Bear pyjamas (complete with ears and his number on the back). "Almost as great as reading 'Peanuts From Heaven' on-line."

Cuddyer went 2-2 with 2 walks, a double, a triple, and a saved dalmatian from a burning building. He also helped Twins starter Glen Perkins by catching a number of line drives while doing cartwheels as he simultaneously prepares for the Men's Gymnastic Team Olympic trials.

Perkins went 8 innings and had some difficulties, largely to make the Nationals feel better about themselves. "Golly gee," said infielder Dimitri Young after the game, "those fellers sure were nice to let us score a coupla times and give me the chance to hit a home run...I know that Little D [Delmon Young] coulda caught it if he wanted too, but I suppose he didn't want me tellin' ma that he broke the lamp in the livin' room. Sure was mighty kind a' him."

Replied Delmon: "Shut up poopface!"

Cubicle = bane of my existence

See, here's the problem with being an "adult" and having a "real job"... sitting in my office doing workis not conducive to watching or attending afternoon games. I can check for score updates, and I can observe that we kicked ass, and apparently we did it using "muscle and finesse" (according to MLB.com), but sadly I was able to witness neither the muscle or the finesse.


Such is life. And without my job I probably wouldn't be able to afford things like...rent...or food... or... anything... So I guess you win some, you lose some.

Now THAT'S more like it

One fine day in June, the Minnesota Twins were chilling in the dugout, contemplating strategies for beating the Washington Sucktasticals.

CARLOS GOMEZ: Guys...this sucks, man.
LIVAN HERNANDEZ: I know what you mean...it is like a stake, a stake into my heart.
DELMON YOUNG: But...how is it like a stake in your heart? You had a win last night.
CARLOS GOMEZ: Yeah barely. I mean...we came very close to not winning.... the last thing I want is Di--fat-ri young laughing in my face.
DELMON YOUNG: Hey b*** that's my brother! Besides that wasn't even a good joke.
JOE MAUER: (pats Gomez on the back) Hey man, it's OK....not everyone can make good fat jokes. Remember how hard it was to come up with fat jokes for Sidney Ponson?
ALL: (nodding in agreement) yeah....
JUSTIN MORNEAU: Fatthew Lecroy made it so easy, we forget what it is like to struggle.
(All nod, but don't really know what he's talking about because Lecroy is before their time)

CARLOS GOMEZ: OK let's get back to business... I mean let's face it... the Washington Nationals suck.
KEVIN SLOWEY: Maybe they only suck in Washington? Their sucktastickness may be non-transferrible.
CARLOS GOMEZ: What does that even mean?
JUSTIN MORNEAU: Guys, don't think so hard. But seriously though, I think it might be simpler than that. So simple, it's right in front of our faces.. (crosses eyes to see in front of face)
JOE MAUER: Hey guys...why don't we try to...hit the ball?
ALL: Huh?
JOE MAUER: Well... I mean... you know how in those 3 games we lost to Chicago, our runs in all 3 combined weren't even enough to win one game? I think maybe if we hit the ball more...maybe that wouldn't happen as much.
SLOWEY: Also, I'll try to throw the ball so the other team can't hit it.
LIVAN HERNANDEZ: Hey maybe I should try that.
JOE: so...are we ready?
And they all trotted out to the field, ready for victory.


From Livan Hernandez's Love Letters

Cherie 'Sota--

Ohhh, how I lovve you my fair Minne-sota. I am so happy to have left sunny Cooba for the frigid springs of the Tiny Apple-is. But I must confess how much my lovve has affected my pitching.

You see fair 'sota, when I am away from you my pitching, she suffers. She is a wounded flower under de harsh criticisms of other fans. In Cheecago dey say I stink like de rancid butter at de bottom of a discount movie theatre's popcorn machine. In Cleeva-a-land, dey say my stomach resembles de jiggling goo of congeled nacho cheese, and dey claim revenge for my victory ten years ago as a Marlin of Florida. 

But back in my beloved dome--oh under de gorgeous teflon roofing--oh, I am so happy--my pitching, she is good again. I am sorry I cannot throw de ball more than 85 miles per hour, but it is out of love. I must caress de ball, love de ball, de ball does not like de pain of hitting Joe's glove too hard, so I massage it into the glove, with all de love in my heart. And you, my beloved 'Sota, you understand me. You like dat I can eat three plates of tater tot hot dish, and still have room for jello casserole. You understand dat "All-You-Can-Eat" isn't an offer, it's a state of mind. 

You understand me 'Sota, and for dat, I will show my gratitude by lethargically leaving de field. I will continue to let Michel Cuddyer run past me, I will only enter the dugout after our lead off man has stepped into de box, I will bask as long as is possible under your gaze, so dat I can carry the strength of our lovve with me to de next painful road trip.

I give you dis victory Minnesota--as I give you my heart.

Eternally and always yours,


Last night was my first live game in two years, and I noticed a couple of things about being at a game rather than watching the game on tv.
  1. There are many attractive women at baseball games.
  2. These attractive women seem to all have boyfriends...for the time being.
  3. There is a great deal of camaraderie that suddenly develops within your row at a ball game. In front of you: jerks. Behind you: losers. Next to you: your brothers. One guy debated Livan's pitch count with me, while another threw his arm around me during the 7th inning stretch. I'm sure part of this is alcohol consumption--but I genuinely appreciate drunken friendships.
  4. Some things don't change: I went to the game with my grandfather who took me to my first game at the dome about 20 years ago. Sitting in front of us was a 5 year old boy who was more consumed with his Kung Fu Panda toy than watching the game, but still--little boys, grandfathers, and ball games. That's pretty sweet.

Last Night in Review

I've gotta say, I was more than a little nervous watching last nights game.
Despite the fact that we should logically, as my esteemed colleague pointed out, be able to squash the Washington Nationals like so many rotten crabapples in the grassy fields of our youth, it almost didn't happen.

I was totally ready to accept this game as one more 1-0 loss where our offense couldn't get s*** done. I was almost right... and then a miracle happened, in the form of a beautful, perfect 2 run homer by my future husband. See, this is why I like Justin. Sure, he hits into the occasional double play (OK maybe more than occasional) but when the chips are down, Justin Morneau gets shit done.

Aside from my Justin Morneau lovefest I don't really know what to say...the Bullpen did good tonight though, so that's something. Joe Nathan almost gave me a mild heart attack, which is better than a severe heart attack, and Brendan Harris dropped the ball...literally. You've got some work to do before you join the ranks of the Pirhanha crew in my mind, little buddy.

On a completely different note, my boyfriend (my real boyfriend, not Justin Morneau) lives in DC and is a Nationals fan. "Wait," you say. "Nationals fans exist??? I thought they were only real in the stories my grandpapy used to read to me!" Wrong. There are approximately 7 of them, and my boyfriend Matt is one. Anyways, I checked my voicemail at about 10pm and listened to his message, which he left at 7:45 and which basically went "Hahahaha you're losing hahaha Twins suck!"... I was like "Oh, poor little guy...he doesn't know yet..."

I'm at work. I should go do something productive now.


Know Thine Enemy #1: The Washington Nationals

For our first special feature here on Peanuts from Heaven, we are happy to bring you a brief glimpse at the teams who play the Twins.

As my illustrious (and illustrated) partner has pointed out, the Twins are having an impressive season, particularly given the low expectations. They lead the AL Central in exceeding expectations--and, apparently, attractive buttocksed First Basemen.

But what about those teams who foolishly enter the Metrodome? Why do they foolishly incur the wrath of our occasionally unstoppable, occasionally stalled offense and a pitching staff at once brilliant and kind of lame. Most importantly of all, why should you care that the Twins beat this team in particular. Sure, we'd all like for our boys to go 162-0...but that's long gone. So why should we want to beat the dickens out of our current opponents.

We here at Peanuts from Heaven Inc. are happy to provide you with reasons to decimate each team the Twins play (as well as a few reasons to be nice to them) an Enemy Quotient and a final ranking as to where they fall on the Loathe-o-Meter (All rights reserved), beginning with this pivotal interleague skirmish with the Washington Nationals.


Reasons we should crush them like popcorn kernels between our giant incisors:
  1. The Twins are in fact the old Washington Senators--the Walter Johnson Washington Senators. The First in War, First in Peace, Last in the American League Washington Senators. We sucked on behalf of the nation's capital before the Washington "Nationals" ever existed. We must defend our title as the original Washington franchise before these wannabes establish a foothold. *7 Loathing Points*
  2. The Nationals are in fact, in case you are 5 years of age or younger, the old Montreal Expos--the...uh...that one guy with the hair Montreal Expos. The "Pardon nous, mais puet-etre vous voudrez voir un petit match du baseball ce soir? non, vous preferez une grande silence ou la suel chose qui un peut etendu est la raser des prostituies Quebecquois? D'accord, c'est bien" Montreal Expos. We must not allow masquerading Canadians to infiltrate our beloved America and therefore have no other choice but to destroy them all. *8 Loathing Points*
  3. America's Least Wanted: The Nationals apparently devised a roster concept that values people a great many baseball fans dislike above actual talent. Among the scourges of the game who now call the District home? Elijah Dukes (of restraining order fame), Dimitri Young (of hot dog clubbing fame), Aaron Friggin Boone (of god-awful Yankees alumnus fame) and Paul Lo Duca (of Mitchell Report fame). Think of it another way: these would be the people you work with if Johnny McSpite-alot was your Human Resource Manager. *10 loathing points*
  4. Christian Guzman: The kid has batted .328 and .311 in the past two years as a National--his highest batting average as a Twin? .302. Now he consistently produces at the plate whereas during his days in a Twins uniform you could only count on him to consistently produce groans and sighs from fans at another "he almost beat it out" double play. *4 Loathing points*
Reasons we should have mercy and merely crush them like melted fragments of M&Ms between our slightly sore molars.
  1. Rob Mackowiack: Arguably the most enjoyable name to say in the major leagues with any one of a dozen possible pronunciations (MACK-we-ack; Ma-KO-vee-ack; Macko-WACK; Smith). *-3 Loathing points*
  2. Christian Guzman: To be fair, he's actually producing about on par with his career average. He's just fixed his swing. Plus we all get to say "GOOOOOOOOOOZ again...so that's going to be fun." *-4 Loathing points*
  3. They stink: They do, the Nationals are very, very bad at baseball. When it comes to crocheting they are at least as good as your Aunt Florence, and I believe that ace Tim Redding has a lovely bunt cake recipe; baseball--they stink. They are 29-42, 12.5 games behind the Phillies, only 3 teams have worse records than the Nationals. So utterly annihilating them would be about as satisfying as the United States Army conquering Andorra. As inconsistent as our team is, this has all the potential to being the baseball equivalent of dunking on your infant cousin in Nerf basketball. Why be the arrogant jerks of the league--a gentle drubbing is all that's required here. *-13 Loathing points*
Washington Nationals final Loathe-O-Meter Ranking=9 points (Otherwise known as: Stubborn Poppy Seed Stuck in Gum Line)


Some observations:
1) Just to clarify, I am the one with the halo. I'm slowly working on earning my devil horns but it will take time and effort.
2) Justin Morneau looks good from behind. I first noticed this from my seat behind first base and my decision to someday marry him is based primarily on this. And also he makes some great plays...and I'm sure he's a nice person, too...
3) Dome Dogs are delicious.
4) My TV is broken and I'm too lazy to do anything about it. I will mooch from the TVs of others.

This season has been, I think, better than most people thought it would be. I admit I was skeptical at first and pretty much wrote the year off as a rebuilding year. But then, something happened... the Twins started playing...kind of well. Sometimes kind of awesome. And then sometimes we lose 6 games in a row, most of them by double-digits, and all you can do is drink half a bottle of wine and hope that things will be better tomorrow. Welcome to the frustrating, exciting roller-coaster ride that is Twins Fandom.


Declaration of Principles

Welcome to the Blog "Peanuts From Heaven". While there's no shortage of blogs in the world, and while there are a great many Twins blogs, there are no Twins blogs written by us (as far as we know). 

But to further distinguish this blog from its competitors we will endeavor to do the following:

  1. Report on the Minnesota Twins with nothing but biased and partial consideration of how great the Minnesota Twins are.
  2. Mock each other as mercilessly in print as we do in our personal conversations.
  3. Be funny.
  4. Rule the World. 
Check in soon for more commentary.