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Souhan on Sports

Jim Souhan analyzes the local sports scene

Souhan: Miguel Sano and...Brooks Robinson? See the comparison

When Miguel Sano ranged far to his right last night, stretched to field a grounder, threw while his momentum carried him toward the Target Field tarp and bounced a throw to first baseman Joe Mauer, I suddenly felt nostalgic.

The play looked remarkably like the one Brooks Robinson made in Cincinnati during the 1970 World Series. That play, among others, made him the Series MVP.

So when Sano made his play, I tweeted the comparison. After the game, without offering any hints, I asked Twins manager Paul Molitor if he had seen that kind of play before.

And Molitor mentioned "Brooksy.''

 

After his press conference, Molitor asked me who the batter was who hit the ball to Robinson. It was Lee May. ``Right runner, then,'' Molitor said.

May was slow and the Cincinnati turf was hard, enabling Robinson to make that play. Sano made his play on a soft grass field against a fast runner in Austin Jackson.

I won't say Sano's play was better. But it was similar. And that's meaningful, that a player of Sano's power and bulk can handle third base like one of the best ever to play the game.

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Tonight at Hell's Kitchen we'll run the Russo-Souhan Show at 6, then John Millea's Preps (should we call it Prepapalooza?) at 6:45. Please stop by for live questions, watch on HK's facebook live page or listen later at MNSPN.com, the site where all of our shows are stored.

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Souhan: Thoughts on Vikings O-line, Twins' O-surge

Back from vacation, ready for a long football season leading into a Super Bowl blocks from my house.

Two points this morning:

1. I think the Vikings should be a playoff team. But only if the offensive line is competent.

The starting offensive line was hardly that against the Bills, but if my premise is that preseason games are meaningless, this is a good time to remind myself of that.

Good performances in the preseason are meaningless. So are many bad performances.

We're not going to know much about this line or offense until we see the starting group lining up together and dealing with a defense that has prepared a game plan to beat its flaws. And that won't happen until the regular season begins. Which is another reason not to have four - or any - preseason games. You learn nothing.

2. Byron Buxton is 7-for-14 over his last four games. In his last 19 games, he's hitting .371 with a .420 on-base percentage and .500 slugging percentage for an OPS of.920. He's becoming the player he needs to be for this franchise to take off.

I know fans are still obsessing over the Twins' willingness to sell off at the trading deadline. The reality is that this team will be a true contender, this season and for the next five, only if its best young players thrive. Buxton is proving that. Without Jaime Garcia and Brandon Kintzler, the Twins are winning because of players like Buxton,Eddie Rosario and Kepler.

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Live shows this week from MNSPN.com and Hell's Kitchen: 6 p.m. Wednesday: Russo-Souhan Show followed by...6:45: The Prep Show with John MIllea. Please stop by for one or both. Barb Abney's Music From Hell will follow.

@Souhanstrib