CLEVELAND,OH - AUGUST 14: A Progressive Field Stadium worker watches the water accumulate in the stands during the game between the Minnesota Twins and Cleveland Indians on August 14, 2011 at Progressive Field in Cleveland, Ohio. (Photo by John Grieshop/Getty Images)
FROM: Bill Smith, General Manager
TO: Employees of the Minnesota Twins
RE: The rest of this year
To our valued employees,
2011 has been a disappointing year for all of us. We have not won as many games as we had hoped and our revenues are flat. Heck, I couldn't even cheer myself up by wildly overpaying for a relief pitcher at the trading deadline. The pain goes all the way to the top, is what I'm saying.
We accept that we will not be winning the pennant this season. However, that doesn't mean that the season's over, or that we don't have things to concentrate on for the rest of the year. Below, I'd like to lay out my plan for the rest of 2011. Please focus on these things for the remainder of this season:
Make Kevin Slowey cry. We tried to turn him into a relief pitcher even though it was clearly a bad idea. We tried sending him back to Rochester. We tried trading him to anybody who would pick up the phone. (We even called a few Mexican League teams.) For awhile it looked like we had him an assistant professorship at St. Mary's. But ultimately we couldn't get rid of him, so like a dog that follows you home, or a Japanese shortstop, we're stuck with him.
So we're going to try a new tack: we want you to make Slowey cry. Gardy will be badmouthing anything he does to the press. Bremer and Blyleven will be blaming him for anything and everything that goes wrong. I'm trying to start a rumor that he's got illegitimate children scattered across the country. Our goal is to wear him down until he quits baseball and goes home.
- Convince Tsuyoshi Nishioka that he has never batted right-handed in his career. We've put a one-flap batting helmet in his locker, and the equipment room has instructions not to give him a different helmet. If he goes up there hitting right-handed, Gardy is going to call time and chew him out for screwing around. His translator's on board. Yes, this counts as brainwashing, but I don't care; I'd rather have him swinging with his eyes closed from the left side of the plate than see him whiff one more time right-handed.
- Keep Justin Morneau safe. We've installed cushions on all the sharp edges of his locker. We've put rubber bands over all of the cupboard doors so he can't accidentally get in there. We've done everything we can think of, but we can't watch him 24 hours a day. Keep an eye on him for us.
- Jim Thome. Remember that he's our get-out-of-jail-free card. He'll hit his 600th homer this fall if we have to move the fences in to 240 feet to make it happen. And, hey, possible bonus: if we do that, Ben Revere might have a chance to hit one all the way to the wall on the fly!
Figure out who to blame for this awful year. The only way we'll fix this is to figure out who is to blame. I figure that it's the guy who put together a team with no bullpen, no middle infielders, and no help of any kind from the minor-league clubs.
Of course, by that I mean Trevor Plouffe. And Slowey. Those two ruined the ballclub this year. Danny Valencia too. Somebody should make an example of those losers. Once we all agree that they're to blame, we can get started on 2012.