I thought I'd get a jump on the season post-mortems by analyzing exactly what went wrong in sabermetric detail. Read, and learn, and discover how to truly love.
-- Failure to return Cuddyer’s DVDs. Cuddyer, a known DVD junkie, has been loaning out movies to teammates and exacting his own brand of Librarian Vengeance on late returns, causing many Twins players limping into the trainer’s office to mutter nervously, “I just fell, that’s all.” The first rule of Cuddyer’s Movie Club? You do not talk about Cuddyer’s Movie Club.
-- Cuddyer is a Squib. An amateur magician, Cuddyer has been attempting to Apparate clueless rookie defenders into the proper positions for fielding routine plays, resulting in several Splinchings.
-- Gardenhire’s bowling tutor. According to LaVelle E. Neal III, Gardenhire was approached during Spring Training by a well-dressed man who offered to give him some sure-fire bowling mojo in in return for “nothing, almost nothing at all.” Gardy took the first free tip, rolled like a PBA pro, and found the well-dressed man applauding his game and offering permanent bowling greatness if Gardy would only sign a foul-smelling, crinkly parchment with strange writing on it. The Twins manager became a bit nervous when told the signature would have to be in blood, but hey – it’s bowling! As a result Gardy’s game is now perfect. However, all his bowling shoes mysteriously leave baseball cleat-marks on the lanes, and the poor man has been barred from every bowling alley in the world save one, somewhere in northeastern Wyoming at the base of a curious rock formation. Also, the Twins now suck.
-- Nishioka’s culture shock. The Japanese immigrant was looking forward to rasing his genetically perfect children in America, giving them an exposure to two influential cultures during their formative years. However, once he discovered that America does not have such essentials as vending machines that sell schoolgirl panties and dried squid parts, Nishi decided that this is far too barbaric and backward a country for developing minds, and resolved to play his way into a contract buyout.
-- Mauer’s food allergy. Joe is lactose intolerant. Who knew?
-- Thome’s colossal ego. The guy isn’t even in the Hall Of Fame yet, and still, for the opening season of Target Field, the Twins over-promoted his presence on the team with paper-mache-looking statues all over downtown Minneapolis posing the former All-Star in his patented fielding stance. I mean, c’mon. What kind of egomaniac would agree to such a campaign before retiring? Talk about hubris, and it pissed off the baseball gods – who let Twins fans enjoy their first season in a new outdoor ballpark before retaliating during the second with their mighty shithammer of ironic justice. Should he show appropriate humility in the future, Thome may yet appease the irritated deities, but until then, they will continue to smite down a promising player in his prime for the penultimate baseball sin of excessive self-love. (The baseball gods are contractually prevented from smiting Yankees players, but allowed free rein against the Mets.)
-- Morneau’s workout regimen. Apparently, all those fast-food sodas pounded with bears provide somewhat less nutritional defense against injury than we all had supposed. Note to scientists, and possibly writers or documentary filmmakers: there might be something to this inexplicable connection between fast food and poor health. Consider looking into it, although it may seem counterintuitive on first glance.
-- You. You know who you are. You forgot to drink your ritual beer before the first pitch on Opening Day, or wear your ritual jersey, or buy your ritual tickets. You thought these rituals were silly, and figured you’d prove to yourself how silly they were by ignoring them and watching how well the Twins did without your sympathetic magic. Well, you were wrong, weren’t you? And now we all are paying the price, while +10 Wizard Michael Cuddyer is formulating spells to render your genitals barren and prevent your tastebuds from enjoying the slightest bit of nourishment for the rest of your soon-to-be short and unlamented existence. You deserve it, and the angels will rejoice at your passing. (Note: Website trollers who first started posting occasional comments during this season are NOT responsible for the Twins collapse. The multifarious agents of baseball fate forgive and even salute them for doing so. You may complain that this is unfair, but you would be sadly mistaken.)
-- The Twins. Either the trainers made mistakes, or management made mistakes, or scouting made mistakes, or some players who’ve had good seasons in the past had bad seasons, and some front-office moves that seemed plausible didn’t pan out, and the injury bug hit for what may have been no really infuriating reason. Or some combination of the above. This is a remotely possible analysis but no reasonable person will give it any credibility.
Now I have given you all the power to wail and gnash your teeth at the right people. Gratitude can be expressed by check or money order. Payments signed in blood will not be accepted unless attached to a contract promising me better skills in MLB 2012. In the meantime, you’re welcome.