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Souhan on Sports

Jim Souhan analyzes the local sports scene

Souhan: British Open and Twins were far too long in the making

If you like baseball and golf, as I do, you lived a full Sunday.

The British Open was on when we awoke and the Twins tried to play until we were dead asleep.

The results were mixed. Jordan Spieth turned in one of the great turnarounds in golf history and the Twins played sloppy, uninspired baseball. The common denominator: Neither should have taken so long.

I like Spieth and love watching him play. But no golfer should be allowed to take 20 minutes to take a drop. He was lucky he was in the last pairing, or he could have screwed up the entire field. Turns out he only delayed playing partner Matt Kuchar, a friend and a mellow guy. What would have happened if he had made someone like Ian Poulter stand there for 20 minutes?

Spieth's stretch run and the overall brilliance of a major at Royal Birkdale thankfully overshadowed a persistent theme in recent majors: Golf too often finds a way to remind us how arbitrary and silly many of its rules and rulers are.

So you can only look for your ball for five mnutes, but if you find it you can take 20 minutes to take a drop?

So you can choose to play a shot from the practice tee, next to a bunch of tour vans?

That's just silly.

I'm glad Spieth won, because I root for the best story, and Spieth putting himself on an impressive major championship pace will create great stories. But he shouldn't have been given so much time and discretion while taking that drop.

Speaking of eternities, the Twins played their longest undelayed nine-inning game in franchise history on Sunday, and for no good reason.

Baseball's timelessness was once one of its charms. No more. Now what we're witnessing is players moving about with no urgency and pitching changes that no one wants to see.

-Here's the Twins' view for the day: Eduardo Escobar should replace Jorge Polanco at shortstop. Polanco can spend the rest of the season as a utility player. Escobar's bat is needed in what has become a shallow lineup. I wouldn't give up on Polanco, but I wouldn't gift him at-bats while the team is in contention.

-Next live show from MNSPN.com: 6 Wednesday at Hell's Kitchen with Michael Russo. We'll also be at HK at 5 on Friday for Sports From Hell. You can find all of the shows at MNSPN.com

Souhan at the U.S. Open: It's windy to start Sunday's final round

Erin, Wis.

The wind is whipping around Erin Hills today, so scores will not be as low today as they were on Saturday.

But for those blasting Erin Hills for being too easy, understand that often the USGA artificially lowers scores by turning par-5s into long par-4s, and par-72 courses into par-70 courses.

If this were being played as a par-70 course, the leader would be at 6-under, which isn't very low considering that the weather has created ideal scoring conditions so far this week.

Scores will be higher today, and the winner will probably come in somewhere between 10- and 15-under.

There's nothing wrong with the best players in the world averaging a few shots under par per day on a course made easy by weather. Erin Hills is a links-style course, meaning rain and wind are the main variables, and until today there has been enough rain to slow the greens and not enough wind to bother the players.

Erin Hills isn't one of my favorite championship setups, but I don't find fault in the way the USGA set it up.

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Johnny Miller noted that Justin Thomas' 63 was probably not as difficult to attain as Miller's 63 in the last round at Oakmont.

Miller got some backlash for that on social media, but you know what? Someone asked his opinion. He gave it. And he's right.

It's not demeaning Thomas' remarkable round to point out that Miller's was even more impressive because of course conditions, and the fact that Miller did it on Sunday to win.

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New show with Michael Russo is up at MNSPN.com. Or you can subscribe on Itunes or your favorite podcast ap to MNSPN.com and get all of the shows.

Here's the link: https://goo.gl/KzvpnW

@Souhanstrib

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