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Book preview: “Hey! Wha’ Happened?” by Derek Thad Falvine

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Excerpts from Falvine’s new memoir about the Twins’ 2017 season.

'For Your Consideration' TIFF Press Conference
Falvine on his “Hey! Wha’ Happened?” book tour
Photo by Donald Weber/Getty Images

Although it seems a bit premature to write and release a book about the Minnesota Twins 2017 season, Twins Senior Chief President of Baseball Stuff, Derek Thad Falvine has done just that. The book is titled, “Hey! Wha’ Happened?” and will soon be available in the discount bin of bookstores across the greater Metro area.

In it, Falvine “takes full responsibility” for the things that went awry in the team’s current baseball season. Highlighted excerpts below.


On the Twins’ roster needs:

They would say, “We need a starting pitcher!” So I got Bartolo Colon. Then they would say, “We need relief pitchers!” It’s just endless, and that’s the way it was. Here’s what it was like:

Molly: “We want a pony!”

Me: “Okay, here’s a pony.”

Molly: “Wah! We want a unicorn now!”

Me: “I can’t get you a unicorn. They don’t even exist and I just gave you a pony.”

Molly to the local press: “Falvine doesn’t believe in this team! Wah!”

Local press to me: “Why do you hate the Twins so much? Because they’re not the Indians?”

Me: “I don’t hate the Twins, I just can’t get a unicorn.”

Local press: “Then why don’t you get them a narwhal?”

Now, how is that my fault? But it is still my responsibility, and I accept that, except for what everybody else did.

On why the Twins were buyers, then sellers, then buyers again, and then not buyers:

By July, the Twins were doing much better than anybody expected. I mean, no one saw that coming! No one! I was planning on riding out a bumpy season until the trade deadline then sell off almost everyone of any value for prospects that were like the players in Cleveland’s farm leagues - big, young, strapping lads with broad shoulders and chiseled jaws. But instead, I was being pressured to “buy” instead. So I got them Jaime Garcia.

What do the players do? Of course, they start losing again. So then I was forced to “sell” and traded off Garcia, and went back to my original rebuild plan.

Naturally, the players, just to show me up and make me look the fool, start winning again.

It’s not like I have a crystal ball and magic fairy dust in my pocket, I get my information on the team by listening to sports talk radio like you do. I don’t have any “insider” information, I watch the games in the executive luxury suite seats just like everyone else. Maybe if the Twins had gone on a 22-game winning streak like the Cleveland Indians did, we could talk about “buying.”

I’m partly to blame for not having clairvoyance but shouldn’t the Twins’ players step up and be more like the Indians? Now there’s a baseball team! Or at least have the decency to stop trying when the front office decides it’s time to give up on the season. Seems like that should be a courtesy I wasn’t afforded.

On the A.L. Central race:

Every time I made a move for the Twins, Indians’ GM Mike Chernoff would have to one up me. It’s like a scene in the movie, “This Isn’t Something About Mary: The XXX Parody.” In it, “Big Ben” Dover plays an Oohber driver and he’s talking to a guy about marketing “Buns of Steel.” The guys says, “Why not ‘Buns of Platinum?’” So Ben responds with “How about ‘Buns of Uranium?’” Then finally, “Buns of Kryptonite.”

That’s what Chernoff is like, “Buns of Kryptonite.” That should be on him, if you really want to blame me somehow for that, I suppose that’s your prerogative, I guess.

On Doug Mientkiewicz:

In minor league baseball, the lines can get blurry, things get confused out there; the conflict between good and evil, the rational numbers and irrational numbers... With these young prospects, it must be quite a temptation to become a baseball god to them. Doug Meintkiewicz was operating out there without using any advanced baseball metrics at all, beyond any decent, moral restraint.

After he got ejected from a game before it even started, we knew he had gone quite literally, insane. I was going to fly to Fort Myers and take a pontoon boat down the Caloosahatchee River, down the Gulf to the Keys and terminate his command with extreme prejudice myself, but my minor league guy, Bruce Steil said he had Doug’s phone number so we let him go that way instead.

The book, “Hey! Wha’ Happened?” by Derek Thad Falvine will reportedly also be available at the Little Free Library near Nokomis Park.