As the calendar turns to 2013, it's an opportunity for one blogger to make some resolutions for next season and the years to come.
I, Jon Marthaler, in the knowledge that I have failed in the past and with the desire to do better in the future, resolve the following for 2013:
That I will not get too excited about minor-league prospects, knowing that for every Kent Hrbek or Justin Morneau, there are two Scott Stahoviaks and three David McCartys.
To remember that Terry Ryan, whatever his decisions, is neither moron nor saint.
To continue to make fun of the Twins' medical staff as much as possible until they stop recommending rest as a treatment for every possible arm injury.
That I will not criticize Joe Mauer for his continuing failure to be superhuman.
To feel bad for Pirates fans, not only because they are Pirates fans, but because they are the latest fans to be required to ride the Francisco Liriano Carousel of Starting Pitching.
That I will not criticize those who continue to boo A.J. Pierzynski, because despite his excellent contributions as a Twin, he's just fun to boo.
To boo Delmon Young, wherever he might end up, regardless of anything else that happens.
To use my investigative reporting skills to discover whether the Twins' front office has a shrine to Brad Radke tucked away somewhere at Target Field.
To not feel a thousand years old because the Twins now have the same number of guys on their 40-man roster that were born in the 1990s and 1970s (two apiece).
That I will not get exercised about mistakes or mis-statements made by Twins broadcasters, especially Dick Bremer and Bert Blyleven, because no matter what, they are not Hawk Harrelson, and we should appreciate what we have, or more accurately, what we do not have.
That "Vance Worley" is a funny name.
To remember that all young players will endure some growing pains in their first years in the league, and so to not give up on Aaron Hicks and company too quickly.
(And that, despite the previous resolution, that I will still make fun of Brian Dozier's defense until he stops booting every fifth ground ball.)
That I will not get too excited or angry about Rich Harden, who hasn't been good in five years, hasn't pitched a full season in ten years, and hasn't thrown at all in two years.
To learn the names of the fifteen or sixteen long relievers in the Twins bullpen before, say, June.
That "third place in the AL Central" is, sad as it may be, a reasonable goal and one to be hoped for.
That I will continue to use cheap, obvious, holiday-related ideas for columns whenever possible.