“Maybe we’ll have a whiteout on Tuesday. Maybe it’ll look like winter in here. This place is a different animal when it comes playoff time.” - Michael Cuddyer. Without a doubt, this needs implemented. I don't know how these things start but word needs to be spread that Tuesday's game at the Dome is a whiteout. White shirts. White Homer Hankies. Blind the Tigers with blaring nothingness. Who is with me?
Charley Walters draws attention to a goofy clause in Michael Cuddyer's contract that states the Twins have five days after the conclusion of the 2009 World Series to decide if they want to pick up his 2011 option year worth $10.5M. Cuddyer, who was hitting .286/.344/.571 with nine homers since September 1st coming into Sunday's game, has his 2009 season valuated at $9.5 million dollar according Fangraphs.com's metrics. Considering this has been the best year of his career, the Twins will undoubtedly choose to pick up this option year. However, what should be approached as an easy decision, the organization should anticipate some degeneration in his skills as he ages. This late season surge notwithstanding, Cuddyer is easily an asset as he is a career 848 OPS hitter against LHP - a trait not shared by any current right-handed batting member of the team.
After a huge month of August facing left-handers when Jason Kubel went 8-for-19 (.421), the left-handed DH has gone 11-for-43 (.256) since the start of September. Subtracting August, Kubel is hitting .214 against same-sided pitching on the year. Meanwhile, since moving into September, Cuddyer and Delmon Young are 28-for-79 (.354) with five homers. Although it would be beneficial to insert Kubel into the DH slot day-in and day-out and he has improved against left-handed pitching (which is good when relievers come in), in 2010 if all the personnel remains the same, Cuddyer or Young should be the designated hitter when scheduled to face a lefty starter to take advantage of the platoon split. Yup, I'm thinking that far ahead.
Who are these guys?
Player A: 45 games, 7 HR, 31 RBI, 28/4 K/BB ratio, .305/.324/.492 (816 OPS)
Player B: 46 games, 6 HR, 25 RBI, 34/10 K/BB ratio, .291/.337/.442 (797 OPS)
Give up? They are both Delmon Young. The former is the current streak he is on (excluding Sunday's numbers) since August 1st, 2009. The latter is his August 8th to the end of the season in 2008. So as Sid Hartman tries to tell you that the Young-for-Garza trade is starting to look good, tell him we've seen this act before.
Speaking of the future, I like Josh Johnson's optimism since the Miguel Sano signing. 2013 Twins baseball is going to be a thing of beauty to see...that is, if we are not all killed off by the toxins we breathe in emitting from the garbage incinerator adjacent to Target Field in the next several years.
KFAN and Minnesota Poker Magazine's Phil Mackey eats crow. Hey PMac. What goes better with crow? Red or white?
Because Joe Mauer is probably going to get $18 million a year starting in 2011, look what kind of a team that would have bought you in 1988.
How about some good 'n random Metrodome quotes and memories to wrap this up so I can focus on Tuesday's game?
"It tore just like a bed sheet." Don Poss, executive director of the Metropolitan Sports Facilities Commission after 11 inches of snow tore huge gaps into the fabric in November, 1981.
"It was like hot air from the dome was just shooting up and fabric was going straight towards the sky." - Kevin Bjornson, December 1982. I don't know who Mr. Bjornson is either but he was apparently one of the residents near the Metrodome who was watching the lunar eclipse at 4 AM when he saw the Dome's roof tear for the second time in a little over a year.
"Some fans took off their shoes and waded through while others braved the puddle, shoes and all." - At the home opener in 1982, sewage water poured out from the restrooms onto the concourse due to sand and debris obstructing the plumbing. Apparently, when you gotta go, ya gotta go.
"The ball jumps out better here than any park I've ever been in. You know if you get the ball up here it's got a chance. I'd like to have seen Harmon Killebrew and those guys here. He would have hit a thousand." - New York Yankees third baseman Graig Nettles, May 1982, under headline "Yankes Just Love New Dome."
"If Harmon Killebrew were active today, he'd hit 125 homers a season." - Oakland A's manager, Billy Martin, 1982.
"The only time this has given me trouble is when the ball is against a background of a similar color." Twins outfielder, Dave Engle, echoing every visiting outfielder for years to come. May 1982.
"This place is the big leagues. I feel like I'm in the Guthrie Theater, like I have to give a performance, not play baseball." - Roy Smalley, Twins shortstop. April 6th, 1982.
"Playing indoors reminds me of when I was a kid and you had to go to your room and you couldn't go outside. It was like you were being punished." - George Brett, 1985.
"If I wanted my players to be Ping Pong players, I would send them to China to play the Chinese National Team." A racially-sensitive New York Yankees owner George Steinbrenner fumed after a particularly bad bounce loss to the Twins in 1985.
"It's a little league ballpark. What a joke." New York Yankees manager, Billy Martin, May 1985.
"It's like a magic trick. I said I wasn't going to take my eye off of it. I didn't and it still disappeared on me." - Yankee shorstop Bobby Meachan, May 1985, lost two balls in the Dome's ceiling.
"What takes place in the Metrodome is not a ball game, it is a circus." - Yankees owner George Steinbrenner in a prepared statement after New York filed a formal complaint to the American League that the Metrodome was a substandard baseball facility, May 1985.
"Just as important, though, was the fact that the Angels were in Chicago." - on April 14th, 1985, the Twins postponed an indoor baseball game due to blizzard conditions. The organization says it was because they were worried about the well-being of the fans on their travels to the Dome. Nevermind the fact that the visiting California Angels were circling over the Minneapolis-St Paul Airport for over an hour and unable to land at 5 AM. April 14th in 2010 will be the second game at Target Field against the visiting Red Sox (if they are able to land).
"I can't understand how they designed this place with a white roof." - Lloyd Moseby, Toronto Blue Jays, April 1984.
"My suggestion is to get David Copperfield here to see how it happened. He can have it in his next TV special." - Umpire Jim Evans. The official that awarded Dave Kingman a ground-rule double on what would have been an infield pop-up that disappeared into the Dome's drainage hole in the roof.
"The ball just bounced over my head." - Chicago White Sox, Harold Baines, after Twins second baseman Tim Teufel's blooper bounded over the outfielders head leading to an inside-the-park-home run.
"You are a great pitcher with a 6.00 ERA in this dome." - Oakland A's pitcher, Joaquin Andujar.