(Note: The Twins spring training opener wasn't on TV here in the Twin Cities, and my powers of visualization aren't good enough to provide you with a decent game recap from the radio. Consequently, I'm writing these game notes off the box score, and making up my own details to give the whole thing a little bit of color.)
(If you don't like this, I completely understand, but I also think you're taking a February 27 game a bit too seriously.)
Only one game is in the books, but it already seems clear that the Twins will dominate the Grapefruit League this season, winning the Mayor's Cup in the process and earning all of the benefits that come with both successes, which can best be represented by the equation: D + S = B, where the variables stand for ""Diddly", "Squat", and "Bupkus." Two of these are also names of players in Twins minor league camp. Call Seth Stohs ($1.99 for the first minute, 79c per minute thereafter) and he'll tell you which two.
A few notes from the game:
- Joe Benson's three-run triple in the fifth inning broke the game open for the Twins. Red Sox center fielder Mike Cameron claimed to be distracted by a low-flying aircraft, which on further investigation turned out to be the moon, and Benson's line drive rolled all the way to the fence.
- Jason Repko also tripled in a run, calling into question Boston's decision to make Darnell McDonald play left field blindfolded and without a glove.
- Jeff Bailey homered for the Twins, which was funny because nobody in the Twins organization has any record of the team ever employing a player by that name.
- Tsuyoshi Nishioka was 1-3 and drove in a run before giving way to Ray Chang at second base. A confused Denard Span was overheard asking multiple team officials why Nishioka had been allowed to change his jersey and stay in the game.
- Pat Neshek threw a scoreless inning, but Ron Gardenhire told reporters following the game that Neshek had failed to display the proper attitude, and was being sent down. Told he couldn't do that yet, Gardy got angry and threw his hat while mumbling about people "not throwing right."
- Brian Dinkelman was thrown out at home plate after Scott Ullger charged off the bench, tackled new third-base coach Steve Liddle, and sent the slow-footed Dinkleman home from first base on a wild pitch.
- Anthony Swarzak showed up to camp 30 pounds lighter, but was treated for dizziness and battle fatigue after giving up four hits and three runs (including a home run) in one inning. Said Swarzak, "Forget this. Somebody get me a pizza and a can of chocolate frosting."
- Chris Parmelee doubled and singled in two trips, which should get him on course for another year of hitting .240 in Beloit. (We're kidding! We have no idea where Chris Parmelee will hit .240 this year!) (No, seriously, we're kidding, and would never make random jokes about a minor-leaguer. Except for this one. And all of the other ones today.)
Carl Pavano started and threw a pair of scoreless innings, striking out two. I have nothing funny to say about this because I don't know if he had a mustache going or not.
- Drew Butera struck out twice and left three guys on base. It's nice to see that at least one guy is already in mid-season form. Local blogger Nick Nelson was treated and released at Hennepin County Medical Center after suffering several self-inflicted, Butera-caused stab wounds.
The Twins are back in action today at noon, playing Boston yet again, but this time on "the road" across town in Fort Myers. Nick Blackburn and Kevin Slowey are both scheduled to pitch for Minnesota, then brawl with each other down the left-field line as part of Gardy's effort to get more "toughness" out of the fifth starter in the rotation.