Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Monday, August 23, 2010

No no-no

Well, the Twins broke up the no-hit bid with a Joe Mauer single to center in the top of the ninth, but that was about it for the visitors.

Twins lose 4-0.

I've always been conflicted about whether it's cool to cheer for a guy who has a no-hitter going against your favorite team. In this case, obviously, it would have been a team effort, but that's still pretty rare.

I was fired up when Mauer lined his single up the middle, which tells me that, deep down, I didn't want to see the Twins get no-hit.

So now I know.

Mining is pretty much out as a future career

The story of the Chilean miners is remarkable.

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/38816833/ns/world_news-americas

Todd Russell, an Australian miner who went through a similar ordeal in 2006, described how he and his partner survived for two weeks while trapped in a small cage some 3,000 feet below ground.

"We were stuck ... in a small pocket of air. We couldn't stand up or even sit up. We had to lie down on our backs. If one of us was on our back, the other had to lie on his side for 14 days. We were tossing and turning on sharp rocks and being cut to pieces. We were really worried about the cuts getting infected.

"We had no food or water for the first six days. ... We had to urinate into our helmets so we could collect something to drink.

"It was also very hot and humid down there but, because of the flow-through of air from fans that were blowing through into the level we were on, we were also suffering from hypothermia (because of the cold air blowing on our sweat). We had to cuddle each other to keep our body cores warm."

That's hard to fathom. It gives me chills just thinking about it. One thing's for certain: becoming a miner is kind of out of the picture as a future career.

Interesting suggestion via one of the comments to the article:

"Lower some iphones or other media systems loaded with a ton of games, movies, books, etc, and then lower broadband ethernet and USB lines in order to keep them online, recharged, and feeling more in charge. They could even play online games, instant message, read up on cabin fever, SAD, and whatnot."

I don't know the logistics of lowering those items, but it seems plausible considering officials have lowered other necessities to the trapped miners.

What would you want if you were in a similar predicament? I think I agree with the commenter — give me some form of media entertainment, a means to communicate with the outside world, stay abreast of current events and plenty of reading material.

Oh, and a pizza. I'd want a pizza, too.

Another question: Do you think you could survive up to four months in a similar situation? That would be brutal.

It worked! Kind of. Not really at all.

It kind of worked.

Harden was pulled within about two minutes of my post. He pitched 6 2/3 no-hit innings before Rangers manager Ron Washington pulled him. In other words, he got Slowey-ed.

The Rangers will take a team no-no into the ninth.

No-hitter, no-hitter, no-hitter!

Let's see if this works.

The Rangers' Rich Harden has a no-hitter going against the Twins. A no-hitter. In progress.

Karma, do your thing.

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Brian Duensing, who are you?

Where the hell did Brian Duensing come from?

Last year he kind of emerged as a dependable long reliever, started getting thrust into pivotal late-inning situations and eventually transitioned to the starting rotation, where he excelled down the stretch. Hell, Duensing was the Twins' starter in Game 1 of the ALDS against the Yankees — at Yankee Stadium, no less, and against CC Sabathia, who earns roughly $25 mil a year while Duensing probably pulled down somewhere around $300K in 2009.

Duensing's back on that horse. Valuable reliever turned starter, and again, the lefty is thriving. He's our best arm in the rotation right now. Which leads back to my original query: where did he come from? I don't remember ever hearing his name prior to the 2009 season, so it's unlikely he was a rising star in the organization.

As I've done with every single question I've ever had, I turned to Google. Here is what I found:

Brian Duensing is 5-11, 205 pounds. He was born Feb. 22, 1983 in Marysville, KS. He went to college at Nebraska and was a third-round draft pick of the Twins in 2005. His career ERA is 2.78 in 168 1/3 innings. This season, Duensing is 7-1 with a 1.92 ERA.

Duensing led the Twins to a decisive 7-2 victory over the Angels on Friday night, allowing a lone run in eight innings (six strikeouts, no walks, six hits) to help the Twins bounce back from the Thursday night debacle against the White Sox. They are back to 20 games over .500 and lead the Sox by 4.5 games in the Central (Chicago was rained out Friday).

In his past two starts, Duensing has allowed one earned run in 17 innings (including a complete-game shutout of Oakland). He's 4-0 with a 2.18 ERA since joining the rotation last month. Oh, and Friday against the Angels, he induced 16 groundball outs.

Not too effin' shabby.

By the way, he's making $417,000 this year. That's a pretty stellar value.