I managed to catch the entire series this weekend, but I also had a pretty nasty fever so I'm not really sure what I did and did not see. I've nearly recovered, but this is still going to be a bit on the short side because I'm all out of cool washcloths. I'm pretty sure I saw a beatdown on Sunday, but that just doesn't seem right. I know the Twins took two of three in Chicago and that's always fun.
My friend sent me a text last week and he was wondering when the last time the Twins had a guy come up from the Minors and completely exceed expectations. I couldn't come up with anyone off the top of my head, but Santana is the obvious answer. He's been outstanding at the plate and he's played a pretty competent center despite being an infielder and inspiring this movie poster:
Over the weekend, Santana had a dynamite series. He went 0-5 on Friday, but I can't blame him because that giant swamp monster in the outfield was really creating havoc for everyone. Then, from Saturday to Sunday, he went gonzo. He went 7-10 with a double, triple, home run, two walks, two stolen bases, five RBI and five runs scored. Santana is an exciting player with game-changing speed. I'm not sure he should be kept in center, but he might just be outstanding regardless of where he plays.
Santana's counterpart in center is a pretty exciting player himself. Adam Eaton was all over the place this weekend. He's a pest, but I respect him. Although, on Saturday, he singled, then ran up a rainbow and punched a hornless unicorn and got thrown out at second. I cannot condone those baseball and non-baseball actions. Just reckless.
Josh Willingham wasn't terrible this weekend, although he did go 1-7 during Sunday's hit parade. I don't remember his dragon wings from before, but I'm guessing they help him in the field? The Twins weren't able to trade Willingham before the deadline and might not be able to move him before the end of August. If that happens, I think the Twins need to play Willingham sparingly in September.
I appreciate Willingham's contributions to the Twins, but by September, he'll be in the final month of his contract and extremely unlikely to return. Even if he starts breathing fire, I don't think he changes the Twins' fortunes in 2014, so it makes way more sense to get more at-bats for players who will be in Minnesota in 2015 and beyond.
Gibson has taken over as the Twins' best starter, as his ERA is lower than Phil Hughes' and that's the only stat I can look up without getting up. Gibson was good on Sunday and six strikeouts in seven innings is a great recipe for Gibson success. That one pitch he threw that sunk under the plate and then popped back up into Eric Fryer's glove was particularly nasty. I'm not sure if it was completely legal, but it was something to see.
Former Twin Update - Sam Fuld
The Twins were quiet at the trade deadline, disappointing Brad Swanson and likely some other people. I hoped they would make more moves so that I could complain about them on Twitter, but it didn't work out that way. The Twins were able to parlay an early-season waiver claim into a 27-year-old starter with some MLB success. While I am not a huge Tommy Milone fan, even I have to admit that this was a fantastic trade. Fuld appears to be the World Series favorite's starting center fielder, thus nullifying the second part of the first part of this sentence.
Baseball Card from the past?
I really don't remember Will Clark's face being quite so melty, but that's what I see on my screen. In the days before photoshop, you really saw the players' facial imperfections, huh? It seems completely irresponsible and insensitive of Topps to match the background to his face. Just classless; he can't help who he is.
Fun Stat - Sunday's Game
During Sunday's game, the Twins had back-to-back-to-back home runs, an inning when they batted around, a 5-hit game and a giant half lizard-half toad playing first base. I am 100% certain that this combination of events has never happened in an MLB game. If you know whether or not the first three feats are unique on their own, please make sure to leave a comment.
Oswaldo Arcia's hair
I'm pretty sure I'm not hallucinating that hair, right?
Plugging My Way
I wrote a bunch of words about the Hall of Fame last week. I read these posts again this weekend and it seems like I made some pretty outlandish statements. I think I inducted a Yeti into the Hall of Fame, but you'll just have to read to find out. Here's part one and here's part two.
Was it just me or were Joe Mauer's sideburns growing on the field on Saturday?
It was really irritating to have to see all those pink and purple flashes on the screen all weekend. I hope that whatever Fox Sports North was attempting with this new feature is very short-lived. It was impossible to concentrate on the action with those periodic splotches. I turned off the TV for a little while, but then it just turned itself back on. Anyway, I'm feeling a lot better now and I'm looking forward to seeing if the Twins can take a home series against a pretty poor Padres team. Have a great week, everyone!