I haven't done one of these in a while, so forgive me if I'm a little rusty ...
I'm late to the party on mentioning this, but both Batgirl and Stick and Ball Guy are, as SBG puts it, "constructing the next generation of great Twins bloggers" via procreation. No, not together (although they're two of my favorite people and would probably spawn some sort of a super-blogger). The timing of the dueling pregnancies is interesting and one can only assume that the excitement from the Twins' amazing turnaround played a part by, for lack of a better phrase, getting everyone's spirits up.
Congrats! And if there isn't a single "Boof" or "Johan" involved in the naming process, I'll be extremely disappointed in both parties.
Here's a battle I have a difficult time picking sides for: Sid Hartman versus the Minnesota Daily.
Over the past couple years I've steadily cut my non-sports television watching to a bare minimum, so I'm sad to report that one of the few shows I watched regularly, Lucky Louie, has been canceled by HBO. I understand how Lucky Louie rubbed many people the wrong way as the world's filthiest sitcom, and both the ratings and reviews were less-than-stellar, but I had been holding out some hope just because it was HBO.
I think the show, while often uneven and usually jarring, was bordering on brilliant. Whether it simply wasn't right for the general public or I'm one of the few truly insane people with cable, it was right up my alley. I laughed harder during an average episode of Lucky Louie than I have during every episode of Entourage combined. And now, after just a dozen episodes, Lucky Louie joins Freaks and Geeks and Arrested Development in my TiVo in the sky.
A quick music recommendation: Corinne Bailey Rae. For those of you who prefer to listen to a few songs before you buy/download/steal a CD, you can hear some samples on her MySpace page.
Friend of AG.com and Hardball Times staffer David Gassko had to do a sales job to talk me into listening to this audio clip and then had to convince me to stay with it through a slow start, but once things got rolling it was well worth it. The reason I often turn down radio interview requests is mostly because it freaks me out, but potentially being associated with a person capable of producing the aforementioned clip is certainly a decent secondary reason.
Thankfully, Michael Rand of the Minneapolis Star Tribune continues to help make up for my lack of radio exposure by mentioning me in the newspaper. Incidentally, if ever you want to make absolutely certain that everyone reads something you write, get it published on Deadspin.
I avoided picking on first-year MLB.com Twins beat writer Kelly Thesier much during the season by avoiding her writing at all costs, but in my thirst for postseason-related content last week I stumbled across this beauty:
That statement would be ridiculous enough as a throwaway line, but it was the lead. For the record, the Twins lost Francisco Liriano and Shannon Stewart to season-ending injuries, and Brad Radke, Torii Hunter, Rondell White, and Jason Kubel missed a chunk of the schedule and/or saw their play suffer because of health problems. You'd think someone who spent the year reporting on Liriano's elbow and Radke's shoulder would see the silliness in "injuries haven't been too much of a factor for the Twins."
Speaking of the injured elbow that apparently wasn't "too much of a factor for the Twins," the latest is that the team hopes Liriano can avoid surgery through "a therapy and rehabilitation program" in Florida that begins this week. I won't pretend to know what I'm talking about when it comes to arm injuries, but at this point I'd bet against a non-surgical option solving Liriano's problem for the long haul. With that said, I don't blame Liriano or the Twins for trying to avoid surgery at all costs.
Injuries haven't been too much of a factor for the Twins this season and the hope is that continues into the playoffs.
I'm skeptical that taking some time off will "fix" Liriano's elbow and this attempt to avoid surgery may end up simply delaying the inevitable. The worst thing that could happen now is for Liriano to try to pitch through the injury again, suffer another setback, and either make the situation worse or further delay his eventual recovery. As discussed here a few weeks ago, Tommy John surgery would likely get him back on the mound, healthy within a year. I'm not sure this approach can do the same.
On a related note, if you haven't checked out Carlos Gomez's interesting look at Liriano's mechanics over at Baseball Think Factory, you definitely should.
Last and least, a few readers have asked me to mention when something I've written appears on NBCSports.com, but I've mostly avoided doing so thus far because there's no set schedule for my articles being posted yet. Plus, I know a subset of this audience gets annoyed when I self-promote. With that said, my "Daily Dose" from late last week and contribution to "Sunday Schooled" from this weekend were both featured on the NBCSports.com front page recently.
I know some of you who stopped by NBCSports.com upon my urging a while back were disappointed that all the coverage was devoted to football, but as I explained at the time, they're doing what's called a "gradual launch." Slowly but surely, they've added NHL and NASCAR content to go along with the NFL stuff, and baseball is on the way. In fact, there's some stuff on the horizon at NBCSports.com that I'm confident those of you who frequent this blog will enjoy quite a bit.