Friday, July 31, 2009

A Perfect Storm....(of tears and/or vomit)

I'm writing this post from O'Hare. It is early. Too early. For ME anyway.

I got, literally, 10 minutes of sleep. 5 minutes before United Airlines called at midnight to notify me of a flight change and to just sort of pee all over my proverbial Cornflakes in general, and then another 5 minutes immediately before my alarm went off when I am usually just going to bed. Yes, I'm a rockstar like that.

Anyway, I am planning to make it through the day exxlusively on power bars and enough caffeine to make my heart explode.

And when I left this morning the last thing I heard was that Bill Smith was getting hot and heavy with Oakland for frickin Orlando Cabrera.

Me + 10 minutes of sleep + too much caffeine + White Sox merch surrounding me + mothereffing Oakland = A perfect storm of increased probability that there will be baseball related tears and/or vomit on my part today. I don't deal well with things when I am sleep deprived.

Thankfully, it sounds like talks have cooled. If we had to make a trade, with Sanchez out of the picture, I'd rather have Scutaro. But I still don't believe that trading for trading's sake is going to get us anywhere.

But on the other end of the trade spectrum, I'm on my way to Pittsburgh to watch their AAA squad take on the Natinals. I'll say hi to Garrett Jones for you, assuming he still plays there by tonight.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Whatever, Buehrle. You're not so hot.

Going into tonight's game, I figured the odds were in our favor. I mean, seriously, what are the mathematical chances someone throws 2 perfect games in a row?

But I will admit, I ALMOST started getting a little nervous there for awhile.

I had faith though. I never really even doubted we would would win.

Because I had a secret weapon. Not being willing to completely trust the odds that Buehrle couldn't toss 2 perfectos in a row, I brought out the big guns.

That's right. Buehrle, you might be nearly perfect, but even YOU cannot withstand the awesome magical power that is artificially flavored frozen Cotton Candy confections.

I downed a cup of Cotton Candy Itti Bitz in a fog of superstition-fueled desperation, and finished it off just before 1st pitch, as tradition dictates.

And lo, the legend of fake frozen Cotton Candy goodness lives on.

In order to keep the magic fresh and reliable, I have to save it for very special situations. I am terrified of wearing the magic out with overuse. I'm very glad I picked this game though. Otherwise things could have gotten embarrassing.

You're welcome, Twins.

What sort of magical frozen treat do you think one might use to ward off a trade with evil ugly Oakland?

Monday, July 27, 2009

Stupid Trade Deadline.

I hate Trade Deadline Week.

I really do.

I always feel conflicted. On one hand, I would love to get the feeling that the Front Office has some fight in them and is willing to make a big move to go all the way, and various other sports cliches (sorry K-bro). On the other hand, ugly realism rears its head, and I have to consider that a new infielder or relief pitcher isn't going to be the one thing that gets us into October. Especially considering the liklihood that Slowey is done for the season.

I was all about the Freddy Sanchez idea before the Slowey bad news. Thanks to Garrett Jones, I feel more confident in my ability to continue to cheer on any of our boys who got sent to Pittsburgh. But now....eh.

And I hate the Orlando Cabrera talk. A) I don't like Orlando Cabrara. B) I can't imagine wishing the 10,000 fans, white-shoe fate on any of our players. Ick.

So....I have to disagree with Joe and Joe and Justin.

I know. I know.

Disagreeing publicly with Joe Mauer could get me arrested if I cross the state line into Minnesota. But so be it.

It's just that in this particular situation, I don't think I will be all that disappointed if we don't make a move. Obviously, if we started selling off pieces of the club, that's different. And I would be angry. HULK angry.

I would love to win the division, obviously. And it's totally doable. But the way the team has fared against the other AL divisions in general this season, does not bode well for our chances to make it past round one, even if we do make the playoffs.

Stupid realism.

Of course, in my heart I know magic happens. I always firmly believe in my heart that we are going to win the World Series....right up until we are eliminated. But I'm not sure I want to bet the farm on it. You know?

One new infielder, or one new relief pitcher isn't going to get it done by themselves. It's going to take superior play from everyone on the field, and a lot of that lucky magic. And if I'm counting on magic anyway, I'd almost rather roll with what we've got.

Friday, July 24, 2009

Road-Grays Anatomy

ROAD-GRAYS ANATOMY
Episode Summary 7/23/2009

On this week's very special episode, Joe confronts his claustrophobia in order to get the medical treatment he desperately needs, Brian learns unpleasant life lessons about making wise raw-fish choices, the team celebrates Glen's promising prognosis, and Sarah strangles a Rally Monkey.








NOTE: No rally monkeys were harmed during the making of this blog.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

I hate Oakland. (But I love Garrett Jones.)

I hate Oakland.

I really hate Oakland.

I cannot remember a time when I didn't hate Oakland.

I used to hate them because they were good.

I continue to hate them because they are scary looking and kind of creepy and wear those awful white shoes.

Now I hate them because they are BAD. Which only makes our Twins look WORSE when they lose horribly to Oakland and allow them to score over 30 runs in a series.

Bad things happen in Oakland. Clearly, my irrational hatred of Oakland will continue. Although, honestly, my irrational hatred is starting to seem slightly more rational NOW, isn't it?

I tried listening to the game yesterday, but at some point they just gave up on the game and it was like those spring training games where they just sort of talked about other things. Which was probably good...considering the game was pretty awful. But I get distracted and if there's no game to follow, it seemed silly to bother.

On the bright side, I did catch the conversation about Garrett Jones and John Gordon being lost in a cab together in Cleveland once. Good stuff. Obviously, they were discussing Garrett Jones because he is ON FIRE for the Pirates. I'm very happy for him. He's finally getting the hero worship and adulation he so richly deserves. I looked at the top google keywords that bring people to this blog yesterday, and half of them were Garrett Jones related. Yay for Garrett!

I actually added Garrett Jones in a couple of my fantasy baseball leagues and it's paying dividends. I love that I live in a world where Garrett Jones is a viable fantasy option as well as a real-life baseball success. It makes me happy.

At this point, I will take happy where I can get it.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Epic Fail

Alternate titles for this post include "What the F Just Happened?!" "I Hate Oakland." "I Want to Punch Someone Right in the Mouth" and "Snatching Defeat from the Jaws of Victory."

I had to take a little self-timeout before trying to post anything, because my first attempt was little more than a string of words I wouldn't want my mother to hear me using.

Tonight was bad. It was real bad. I don't know who I feel more sorry for...those of us who stayed up and witnessed the whole miserable thing, or people who went to sleep certain of obvious victory, only to see the box score in the morning.

Maybe it's good that the game ended on such a blatantly bogus call at the plate. Cuz this way, I can focus my anger on the umpire. Although, for the record, we are more than capable of losing close games all on our own...fair and square. We don't need help from inarguably bad calls thank you very much.

And Oakland...for about 5 minutes, I actually felt sorry for you...with your 7 fans and your ugly-ass white shoes. But now...NOW...IT IS ON. I have abandoned all pity and renewed my hatred and fine-tuned my bloodlust to a fever pitch. Oakland, you must be destroyed. Take no prisoners.

I will be very disappointed if Gardy doesn't get himself ejected by the 4th inning tomorrow. There must be smack, and it must get laid the hell down.

Monday, July 20, 2009

E for effort.

I promise that I've tried.

I've tried very, very hard in every way I know how.

I have tried to feel upset or put out in any way by Ian Kinsler's walk-off HR at our expense last night.

But I cannot.

I love Ian Kinsler. I am unapologetic in this regard.

I love his baggy pants. I love his high socks. I love his winning smile. I love his cool hair. And most of all I love that he is amazing at baseball.

I'm sorry that 2-3 times a year he has to be amazing at baseball against the team that I love. But it can't be helped. I suffer through the emotional anguish this causes me.

And I would love to say that my first thought after the home run (Ian's SECOND home run of the night, just to clarify) was "Oh no!" But just between you and me, it was actually "Yay Ian Kinsler! You are awesome and I love you!" followed up quickly with a requisite "Oh no. Poor Twins." mea culpa.

I don't think my split allegiance this weekend really did any harm anyway. The Twins won the series. They beat Padilla, who I definitely do NOT love. They gained ground on the Tigers (The Yankees are good for something, I guess), and we didn't lose any ground on the White Sox. So, no harm, no foul.

And yes, when the Rangers come to town later this season, I will be cheering loudly for Ian Kinsler. And I will not feel guilty about it.

The heart wants what it wants.

Welcome back Alexi Casilla.

Again.

Here's the deal, Alexi....you need to be as good at baseball as Matt Tolbert is adorable. (Not that you aren't adorable Alexi...you are. But Matt Tolbert is....well...Matt Tolbert. You understand.) It's important that we maintain that delicate Total Awesomeness Rating on the squad. That's a tough order, but I know you're up to it. So, make like Nike and Just Do It.

I'm really glad that the Twins played the Rangers first thing back from the break. Because during the All-Star Break I got distracted with Harry Potter obsessiveness, and family stuff, and work and everything else. If we had to play a non-adorable, non-interesting team (like, say, the Oakland A's...) first game back, I might have strayed even further. But this was MLB's way of saying "Look Sarah, remember baseball? You love it! Look...it's Ian Kinsler!" And it worked. I'm fully back to hardcore baseball obsession now. And just in time for Oakland. Goodie.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

HR Derby and Caring Fatigue

It never fails....for about the first 45-50 minutes of the HR Derby, I'm super excited. I think thoughts like "I love the Derby! I think I like it better than the actual All-Star Game even!"

And then time apparently slows down. When what feels like 5 hours goes by, and we're still in the first round....that's when the fatigue sets in.

I always manage to power through to the end, but (last year aside) I always stop caring completely by the 2nd batter of round 2.

Congrats Prince Fielder. I didn't actually watch you get your trophy because of that whole not-caring thing, but it's nothing personal. Good Job.

Poor Joe. E for effort. He did better than Justin did in his first Derby.

I wonder how many players have won on their first attempt? I'm not actually going to look it up, due-once again-to caring fatigue, but I do wonder passively. It seems like it's harder for newbies. Although Nelson Cruz sure put on a show.

And people wonder why the Rangers are my runner-up next-best-thing-to-the-Twins team this season. They're kind of awesome. Plus...you know....Ian Kinsler and all.

And speaking of Ian Kinsler, after every swing of Brandon Inge's epic HR Derby fail, I proudly announced "Kinsler would've made that," just to be annoying.

Yes, I am still bitter.

But on a happy note, it was so awesome to meet the folks at our pre-game shindig on Saturday. It was great putting faces to names, and blogs and Twitter handles. And it really only reinforced my opinion that the Twins have vastly superior fans. Especially women fans. Um...we are pretty, pretty awesome. So, back-patting and self-congratulatory murmuring all around!

Friday, July 10, 2009

I'm glad I didn't hold my breath.

I actually wrote an entire blog post this morning and then promptly erased it. I was crabby. It seemed unnecessary. But at one point I begged for one win, just ONE win all season, against the Damn Yankees. But I ended by saying that I was not planning on holding my breath.

Obviously, I am really glad I didn't hold my breath.

The only good thing I can say about the Yankees series is that it's over. The Yanks are gone, never to darken the Dome doorstep again.

It's hard to think of different ways to talk about the same thing over and over again. We kind of stink against the Yankees. And it doesn't seem to matter if they Yankees are playing well, or if the Yankees are playing poorly. We just can't beat them, no matter the circumstances, I guess. I don't even blame any individual players. Because, looking back, we can lose to the Yankees just as efficiently with entirely different line-ups. It's institutional.

I think someone needs to perform an exorcism or something. Might I suggest we get the boys from Supernatural to come to town and help us ward off evil?




They're good at that sort of thing. And it would make me happy.

Hopefully everyone will use this frustration as a motivator to bully the White Sox around a little this weekend. Some winning would be a very welcome change of pace. Also if we could maybe infect the White Sox clubhouse with the contagious case of Suck we've contracted, that would be great.

I'm getting very excited for our little pre-game shindig on Saturday. Don't forget to email Lipgloss & Baseball's Jen for details and directions if you're interested in attending: parkavepirate@comcast.net

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Well, Gomez was great....

I would love to forget last night ever happened.

BUT....then I'd have to also forget about that miraculous Gomez catch. And not watch the clip of it 27,489 times.

That's not really a deal I'm willing to make.

So I guess I will not be able to eternal-sunshine the images of that loss out of my brain just yet.

Maybe today will be better. Maybe?

In non-baseball popculture related news, I have developed a surprising addiction to the new tv show Make It Or Break It. I was hopelessly hooked from episode two, when the main characters warded off would-be attackers (a comically bad-acting crew of hoodlums drinking 40s out of paper bags) with gymnastic fighting. Yes. A gymnastics fight. It was awesome. Cheesy and wonderful. I highly recommend it.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Oh Goodie.

The Yankees are in town.

Funny story....I was looking for a fantasy baseball pitchers to fill-in for Kevin Slowey on a couple of my teams. I considered Glen Perkins. And then I realized that he'd be pitching against the Yankees. And I flashed back to the last time he pitched against the Yankees while he was on one of my fantasy rosters. And I passed. I have faith that this outing will be much much better. Glen is at home this time. And he is not broken this time. And he is awesome. I know it will be different. Still....I'm not willing to jinx anything by recreating the same scenario. Good luck to all our pitchers now. Scotty Baker can set the tone tonight will awesomeness against our old foe Sabathia. (Side note: remember how nice it was when CC was in the NL? Yeah. I miss that.)

Personally, I think three-straight amazing walk-off victories would be fitting. But I will settle for just a plain old series win. That would be super.

And requisite All-Star stuff: With out repeating trio of All-Stars set in stone, I am throwing all of my support to Ian Kinsler in the AL last chance vote thingy. This should not come as a surprise to anyone. If Josh Hamilton is a starting outfielder this season, it's practically criminal that Kinsler didn't make the roster out-right. Anyone who joins me in my unapologetic Kinsler-love will be rewarded with acknowledgement of your superior taste in baseball players. Apologies to Brandon Inge, who also probably deserves to be there...but Ian Kinsler is a little bit more adorable and does not play in our division.

I don't care about the NL race as much, but for the record, I am voting for Pablo Sandoval.

And on a lark, I've decided to ditch the "Katie" moniker I've come to know and love. It started out as an homage to the lost verse of Take Me Out to the Ballgame (Yeah, baseball's national anthem is actually about a GIRL who loves baseball so much she makes up her own song to bring her team luck. Go figure that they never really bother to mention that.) But no one really got it, and it seems a little silly now. Plus, there's another lovely Katie in the Twins fan girl blogosphere. It's just less confusing this way I think.

And if I use my real name, Sarah, this picture is more awesome. That's my Twitter handle there at the bottom.




Heaps of gratitude to Luckie Strike my Twitter-friend for snagging that awesome picture at the Astros/Pirates game last night. Poor Garrett Jones. He is forced to do embarrassing things for my entertainment remotely now.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Twins Party Time!

The number of people finding their way to this blog right now via googling for pictures of Garrett Jones is almost equal to the number of people who google "Why does Matt Garza spit so much?" when Garza pitches. And not that I blame them. Garrett Jones is worth googling.

So, welcome all you new Garrett Jones fans! Here you go:







In Twins news, the win today made me happy. The injuries....not so much. I am making a special wish to the Groin Fairy to make sure Justin is A-OK by Friday.

But good job getting 2 games over .500 boys! I knew you could do it. We just needed to do a little goal-setting and voila! You made it happen. If you can see it, you can be it....and all that jazz.

And as promised, we have finally got the details for our July 11th get together nailed down. Jen from Lipgloss & Baseball has graciously agreed to host the shindig at her place. If you're interestested in coming, please email her at parkavepirate@comcast.net so she can get you the address and stuff. Seems prudent not to post that sort of stuff willy-nilly on the internet.

So...here's the Deal:

What: Twins Fan/Blogger/Twitter Party
When: July 11th, 2009 12:30-3:30pm
Where: Jen's House (please email parkavepirate@comcast.net for address and info)
Who: Anyone who wants to come! If you're reading this, you're invited.

This is pre-game before the 6:10pm White Sox game, which happens to also be the Twins Hall of Fame induction night for Brad Radke. It's pretty laid back. We're planning to hang out and meet some new folks who share a love of Twins Baseball. I'll be bringing some materials for sign-making and perhaps some Twins trivia. People are free (and encouraged!) to bring any outdoors-y, tailgate-y games they might have. We'll just be doing snack foods, so folks are welcome to bring a little tasty something to share if they're able. Some bloggers/tweeters have purchased (or are planning to purchase) cheap seat tickets to the game, and are going to be sitting together as a group. If you already have tickets elsewhere, or don't plan to go to the game (shame on you! Brad Radke!), you can still swing by pre-game for some fun and frolicking. It will be good times. I promise.

If you have a blog or website, and can let other people know, we'd all appreciate it!

Also...we need a good fun name for this thing. I was thinking "Lollapalooza" but that's already taken, I guess. Anyone have any ideas?

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

2 Games Over .500 or Bust!

So THIS is what a winning road-trip feels like.

I LIKE it!

If this new-found winningness away from home has anything to do with the noticeably scruffier appearance of many of our players....keep it up boys. Adorableness Counts....but so does being Good At Baseball. Leave the razors at home if that's what it takes. We'll still love you even if you do start to look a little gross.

So now that we have the "Have a winning road-trip" monkey off our backs, the next big milestone will be "2 games over .500." Let's do this thing people!

But the whole winning thing wasn't even ALL of the good baseball news today brought me.

Garrett Jones got called up to play for the Pirates.

Suddenly the PNC Park baseball Tweet-up trip got 100% Garrett Jonesier. And that, my friends, is a very good thing.

This news confirmed a suspicion I had that I am maybe, just maybe, able to control the Pittsburgh Pirates' front office with my mind.

I'm pretty sure of it now. Because when we first planned the Pittsburgh trip, I wished that Andrew McCutchen would get called up before then. And like 2 days later, he was. And just yesterday I was telling someone that it would be really nice if Garrett Jones could ALSO get called up before the trip.

And THEN HE WAS!

Clearly, either I have a magic ability to have my wishes come true (but ONLY very specific wishes and only wishes regarding minor league call-up decisions by the Pittsburgh Pirates)...OR someone from the Pittsburgh Pirates front office has planted bugs somewhere in my home and is listening in. But that's a little creepy. So, I instead choose to believe that I am MAGIC! Yay!

---I'm sorry to all the Pittsburgh players who had to get traded in order to make all my McCutchen/Jones dreams come true. My bad :(