Unheralded

TOM COYNE: Back In Circulation — The Fraternal Twins Of 2022

When our twins, Ashley and Patrick, were born over 30 years ago, my wife and I often got curious looks as our double stroller rolled through the neighborhood. “Are they identical?” some would ask. That is, until they noticed the pink and blue pajamas and were told their names. This year’s version of the Minnesota Twins would appear to be …


Unheralded

JIM THIELMAN: Beer Here? Not Any More

The best vendors at the ballpark snapped out quips and nonsense, thick as mustard on a hot dog. They poured a beer, handed over a soft pretzel and spun out a story about a mother-in-law they didn’t have or a fish they never caught. Those nearby leaned in to listen. Vendors made fans part of the game, like foul balls …


JIM THIELMAN: Baseball Is Disappearing Into The Corn Field

An Iowa farmer builds a baseball diamond where corn should grow in the 1989 film “Field of Dreams.” Soon, ghosts play baseball. For legal reasons, actor Jimmy Earl Jones plays an author not named J.D. Salinger. The resonant bass voice of Jones says: “They’ll come to Iowa for reasons they can’t even fathom. They’ll turn into your driveway, not knowing …

CLAY JENKINSON: Future In Context — America And Race: When Sports Players Refuse To Play

Ever since the police killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis on May 24, and the subsequent national eruption of protest against police brutality, police shootings and systemic racism in the United States, we have all wondered what ultimately would come of this moment in our long, troubled history of race relations. Would this be another round of temporary protest followed …

TIM MADIGAN: Anything Mentionable — Bill Plaschke On ‘Extra Innings’

This is the forward to my book, “Extra Innings, written by Bill Plaschke, former Los Angeles Dodgers beat writer for the Los Angeles Times. Fred Claire is a fighter. You might not know that to look at him — he’s so distinguished and dignified and darned polite — but believe me, when he spots an unfairness or injustice, the man will …

TOM COYNE: Back In Circulation — The Dirty 30 Or A September To Remember?

Even the loyalest of Twins’ fans could hardly have expected this. With 30 games to go in the 2019 regular season, Minnesota is 30 games over .500. That’s both symmetrical and surprising, considering the team has a first-year manager, a relatively new front office and more errors than all but three major league teams. Home runs can cure a number …

JIM THIELMAN: Ayyyy, What’s Up, Deck?

Who would think stark realizations about shrewd capitalism and insight to human nature could come from watching nine innings of pantomime baseball? Not this little black duck, as Daffy would say during cartoons in which Bugs Bunny was the smart one and Daffy was, well, daffy. Because the Minnesota Twins have had more bad seasons than good since moving into …

TOM COYNE: Back In Circulation — No More April Mauers, But Can Twins Become Powers?

I think I’m experiencing a different kind of March madness this year. Instead of going crazy about hoops, I feel like I’ve been jumping through too many of them. At the start of the month, I was constantly getting plowed and it had nothing to do with alcohol. Everything in sight was white. Shoveling mountains of snow was a daily …

JIM THIELMAN: Maybe Oliva Is Too Good For The Hall Of Fame

After we arrived at the expansive field on the outskirts of Cooperstown, N.Y., that smoldering Sunday in July 2001 for Kirby Puckett’s Hall of Fame induction, Tim, Shari and I needed to visit the port-a-potties, all blue, lined in a row by the road. We joined one of the dozens of human anaconda lines packed with tomorrow’s sunburn victims. A …

JIM THIELMAN — Opening Day: It’s Greek To Me

Dunno why, but for the past half-century, Major League Baseball has missed the fun-filled opportunity to have Don Demeter throw out the first pitch of each season. The lanky, giraffe-necked Oklahoman will be 83 this year and retired from baseball for 50 years. It’s not as if he couldn’t have been capably handling this chore. If you’re not starting to …

MIKE BRUE: Cubs-Indians World Series Game 7 Ranks As One Of The Best — But THE Best . . . .?

For high drama, Wednesday-into-Thursday’s historic World Series Game 7 between the long-suffering Chicago Cubs and Cleveland Indians franchises made for worthwhile baseball viewing and listening. In my case, it was some of both. Thank goodness for car radios. A cleanly played game? Not really. You could question some of the unorthodox managerial decisions, too.  Still, the contest featured enough some …

TOM COYNE: Back in Circulation — Baseball Can Be Worth The Wait

The major league baseball playoffs are in full swing and if this year’s early games are any indication, we could be in for a memorable fall.  There have already been masterful pitching performances, monstrous home runs, odd plays and plenty of drama.  Toss in the fact that the four teams still alive haven’t won a World Series in at least 22 years …

TOM COYNE: Back In Circulation — Grading The Twins

As a college broadcasting instructor, it’s my responsibility to give each of my students an update on his or her performance about halfway through each semester.  The report is designed to praise students for their positive achievements, offer suggestions on how they might improve in other areas and, maybe most importantly, catch any trouble spots before it’s too late. While …