Game #1. Home Field Advantage?
Through 5 innings, the Twins were leading 3-0 over the Yankees. The fans were feeling great. Maybe we've got it in us this year, we thought. Maybe things will be different this time. These Yankees aren't looking so hot. We've got 'em right where we want them. The thing about playing the Yankees is that I'll never be comfortable with a 3 run lead in the 9th inning with 2 outs. And for good reason, mind you. The Yankees came back in the 6th inning and scored 4 runs. The Twins put in some good effort in the bottom of the 6th and tied it up 4-4. Okay, we're still in this. We've just got to hold them.
Don't get me started about Jim Thome being hit by a pitch by Sabathia in the 2nd inning. Should there have been retaliation? I don't know. Maybe. Do I think there should have been retaliation? Absolutely. I don't even care if Sabathia didn't do it on purpose. Send those jackholes a message. "No one hits J.T. and gets away with it."
Moving on, the Yankees put two more runs on the board in the top of the 7th when my *favorite* reliever, Jesse Crain took the mound. This guy pitched .1 innings, giving up 3 hits and 2 runs. How are you not playing in Japan by now? And not just Jesse, but the good 'ol boy, J. Mauer - a pathetic 1 for 5 night. Am I being punk'd? It certainly felt like I was.
Needless to say, the final score was 6-4 Yankees. F that.
Game #2. Crap
We came out with an early one run lead this time, but the truth is that an early lead never matters against a team that cheats*. Pavano pitched his face off, but allowed 4 runs. What was the hardest part of this game? Knowing that the series was over when the Twins lost this game. While it was a nice fantasy, I think most Twins fans pretty much knew that, even though it was possible, the Twins wouldn't go in and win two games in New York. Home field advantage aside, we were outplayed. You know what would've been nice? A bases clearing double. 0 for 3 with runners in scoring position? Gimme a break.
Dear Hunter Wendelstedt,
You are my least favorite Hunter. Shut up.
P.S. See below
|You really enjoyed this a little too much, Hunter|
Remember when the Twins clinched the AL Central? That was a beautiful day/night. Everyone was excited. All that was left to find out was who the Twins would take on in the post season. Would it be the Yankees or the Rays? People were worried about playing the Yankees because of our pathetic, horrible, agonizing history of failure when playing them in the post season. These fears were not without merit, and I hate to write that. Baseball is an intricate game, where anything can happen. Calls go either way at crucial times and everyone has an opinion. Is there a serious mental block that happens to the Twins when they play the Yankees? Maybe. Is there a serious block of some sort when the Twins play in the post season? Absolutely. Sure, we get to the playoffs a lot, but we haven't gotten past the ALDS since 2002. That's painful for everyone who cheers for these guys. That's probably painful for the players, too. The difference is that they get paid even when they lose. All I get is a shit load of text messages from Yankee fans that make me want to either a). push them off a bridge; or b). throw myself off a bridge.
You may have noticed my recap of game three hasn't at all recapped the game. That's because it's still too painful. We lost, okay? That's all there really is to say. A few other things are things I can only show:
|The Thome Shift continues in game 161 against Toronto|
|These guys are weird and I hate them|
What do we need to remember about this season? There are a handful of things:
1. Target Field really is stunning. It's amazing that we don't have to play in a football stadium anymore. Anyone who was able to visit Target Field this year knows how incredible it feels. Each time I went, I had to remind myself to dress for the weather since I wasn't going to be watching climate controlled baseball.
|Wally's still in action|
|Watching fireworks at Target Field|
|The most beautiful sight of the summer|
2. We did, after all, win the American League Central Division. We went from 1st to 3rd, to 2nd and back to 1st. It was a long battle to end in 1st place this year. Obviously, not nearly as nerve wracking as the last 2 seasons. Maybe it's just me, but being in first place (alone) after game 162 felt a little weird. Good, but weird.
3. Although I inaccurately predicted that Justin Morneau was busy knocking up his wife while out with his concussion, I was right that he knocked her up. When I wrote about him knocking her up, I had no idea that she was nearly 9 months pregnant at the time. The good news is that baby Evelyn was born on Sept. 23, 2010 - coincidentally 9 days after I accused him of spending too much time horizontally.
4. We are for sure going to win the World Series in 2011. We just needed to break in Target Field before really going on a tear.
* = Sort of true/Not true