Time: 7:10 Central
Weather: Clear & comfy, 80° at first pitch, some wind gusts
Opponent’s SB site: Bucs Dugout
TV: BSN. Radio: Appropriately-named network for today’s game
MLB team record for strikeouts: 1596. Twins’ current pace: 1656
So the Pirates will be using RH "opener" Andre Jackson for this one, and it'll be his second start in his 18th MLB game. They also have four LH relievers, so you'll be seeing several of those. My favorite name among these relievers is Bailey Falter. His name is MY LIFE. Other baseball things to ponder:
— Going on this weekend in Minnesota will be the 100th state amateur baseball, or “town ball” championship tournament. Naturally, as with all things old-timey, Patrick Reusse has to weigh in, and does so here. It’s fine once you get past Reusse’s complaining about Breakdancing and Computers.
Skip once you reach these lines at the end: “Beer long has been the thirst-quencher for townballers and their fans — and not ones containing fizz or tasting like fruit. My guy Driscoll was a Budweiser man, and that or something similar should be good enough for you.”
(I mean, good Lord, Reusse, Budweiser has “fizz” in it and the history of Minnesota brewing involves many different taste styles and Doug Hoverson’s great book on the subject won awards but no, I’m not getting into a rebuttal of a beer dummy.)
WCCO has a less cranky overview of the tourney, and Kip Kovar of the Delano Herald-Journal wrote a very in-depth look at the big storylines. Games can be streamed on the “Neighborhood Sports Network,” a thing I didn’t know existed; here’s your link.
— Last weekend, the Saints "retired" Daryl Strawberry's jersey, and Matt Borzi at MinnPost wrote a fine article about Strawberry’s short time in St. Paul. Strawberry had long struggled with addiction and emotional health issues, which the pressure of performing as a star in New York did not help. Being with the Saints, however briefly, helped Strawberry enjoy baseball again, and these days he is, happily, much healthier.
Anyone who watched The Simpsons in 1992 will remember the chant “Daryl, Daryl,” but for my money the best clip is this one, explaining how Baldelli and the Falvine think:
— Do-Hyoung Park’s Twins Beat newsletter is always worth getting, and this week’s entry is about the team barber of choice, Aneudys Duran, or “Andy Fade.” He lives in Rochester, NY, but flies to Minneapolis, and Atlanta, where Eddie Rosario admires his work. José Berríos in Toronto is a fan, too. Incidentally, a favorite barber for the Twins pre-Duran was Kennys Vargas. Yes, him. He plays in Mexico now, BTW.
— Finally, before I knew what the “TC” stood for on Twins hats, I was confused and delighted by the odd shape of Pirates caps in the 1970s (the team’s great “We Are Family” era). What were those things?
Well, they were “pillbox”-style hats, which were never very popular in MLB, but several NL teams used them to celebrate the National League’s 100th anniversary in 1976. Since the Pirates were pretty good at that time, they kept the style going for awhile.
MLB.com has a history of caps in baseball that’s largely a New Era promo piece, but it does reference this fantastic series of posts by the Hall Of Fame Museum: Dressed To The Nines: A History Of The Baseball Uniform. That link's just about caps, but it has links to other pages about every part of uniform history, from numbers to pants to socks, and I guarantee you'll have fun looking at these.
What’s up with that 1951 Fargo-Moorhead Twins jersey? You’ll just have to poke around the HOF uniform history pages and find out!
|Ji Hwan Bae - CF||Edouard Julien - DH|
|Bryan Reynolds - DH||Royce Lewis - 3B|
|Ke'Bryan Hayes - 3B||Max Kepler - RF|
|Jack Suwinski - LF||Carlos Correa - SS|
|Henry Davis - RF||Jorge Polanco - 2B|
|Endy Rodriguez - C||Matt Wallner - LF|
|Liover Peguero - 2B||Donovan Solano - 1B|
|Alfonso Rivas - 1B||Christian Vazquez - C|
|Alika Williams - SS||Michael Taylor - CF|
|Andre Jackson - RHP||Pablo Lopez - RHP|
The most interesting young Bucs players here are Reynolds, Suwinski, and the slick-fielding Hayes. Plus, I can’t see the names “Andre” and “Jackson” together without thinking Stankonia. I’m a product of my era, what else can I be?