Quick hits late Friday night from CitiField, where the Twins lost their fourth straight:
-Nice ballpark. Very pretty, although, as many New Yorkers told me, the Mets seemed to screw up a lot of the small details. But if you're just taking a look for the first time, it's a great place to watch a game.
-Mets fans always seem so much happier than Yankees fans. Yankees fans are trained to believe that winning is the only thing. Mets fans are just glad when their team doesn't trip over its own shoelaces.
-Jerry Manuel, the Mets' ``manager'', has no idea how to run a game.
Jose Reyes leads off the eighth with a single off Jesse Crain. Now the Mets have the meat of their order facing a struggling reliever, knowing the opposing manager doesn't want to use any of his best relievers in a game he trails by three.
So Manuel gives Crain a free out with a bunt. That bunt also opens first base, so Crain intentionally walks the Mets' best hitter, David Wright, who already had a double and a homer. Then, when Ron Gardenhire brings in struggling lefty Ron Mahay, Manuel orders a double steal and Joe Mauer throws out Wright.
The Mets wind up not scoring in an inning when Manuel handed two free outs to Crain and Mahay and took the bat out of the hands of his best hitter. Dumb, dumb, dumb.
-I noted this on twitter earlier (twitter name: Souhanstrib); we were talking to Johan Santana before the game, and someone asked if he gets together with his old Twins teammates, since he owns a mansion in Fort Myers, where many Twins have homes.
Santana said, no, and then proceeded to say that he's had invitations to play golf with a few of the fellas, but that he's a terrible golfer.
That's right. Johan has had an old sexual assault charge that was dropped show up in the tabloids the last couple of days, and that story revolves around an enounter on a golf course, and Johan brings up his struggles on the golf course in front of 20 reporters without being prompted about the charges.
Have I already used the phrase ``Dumb, dumb, dumb''?
-Santana faces Carl Pavano on Saturday. What a matchup, Santana in his first start against his old team and first start since the charges were made public, and Pavano pitching in the town where he became known as ``American Idle'' for all of his time on the disabled list with the Yankees.
I can feel the New York love already.
-Saturday is the rare day for me without a radio appearance. I'll be back on 1500ESPN for the Ron Gardenhire Show at 9:30 a.m. on Sunday, followed by Sunday Sports Talk. Our show will last only from 10-11 Sunday because of the early Twins' game.
-If you're going to visit New York, do it in the spring, winter or fall. Summer is oppressive in New York. You can't have that many sweaty people crammed together unless you're in Hades, or a hip-hop video.
-Saw David Kahn interviewed on NBA-TV late Thursday night. He used a lot of big words and said pretty much nothing that made sense, then Kenny Smith, who is wonderful, pointed out that Kahn had been on that show after the draft two straight years.
I'm paraphrasing here, but Smith then said that if a GM is on talking about his high draft picks two years in a row, he might not be doing such a good job. Gotta love Kenny Smith.
-Joe Mauer is hitting .304 with three homers and 32 RBI, almost halfway through the season. And he's been healthy. Those are nice numbers. Those are not $184-million numbers.
-Kevin Slowey gave about as forthright a postgame summation as he ever has, saying he hasn't been good enough and he and his teammates are frustrated. Give him credit for that, at least.
-I wrote about the Twins' woes for the Saturday paper. I'm writing about Johan Santana for the Sunday paper, then heading home to watch the Tigers and Twins.
-I've given it a lot of thought, and I still think the Wolves should have taken DeMarcus Cousins over Wes Johnson...and Steph Curry over Jonny Flynn...and...you get the idea.
-The Twins' top pitching prospect, Kyle Gibson, threw six shutout innings at Class AA New Britain tonight after being shut down for nine days.
-I'd throw some hockey in here, but that would be silly - Michael Russo sends a tweet every three seconds about the NHL draft. I have nothing to add.
-Who has the bigger ego? LeBron James or Brett Favre? Which guy is more intent on having America await his next move, or even his next interview?
-This from NYTimes writer Tyler Kepner: Jason Bartlett was the last out of Buehrle's perfect game, Jackson's no-hitter, and was pinch-hit for by Hinske to end the 2008 World Series.
-Interestingly, Ron Gardenhire has acted uptight all week, then after Friday's game he went into ``We're going to be fine and all need to cheer up'' mode. Which could be a really good thing for this team. Nothing worse for a struggling baseball team than seeing its leadership tense up. And Gardy's been very tense lately.
-I don't know if I've ever seen a manager and a player with as much mutual hate as Brendan Harris and Gardenhire. I think Gardenhire is going to keep demoting Harris until the Twins start winning. So Harris could wind up at Elizabethon soon.
I mean, they call up Jason Repko, and Gardy is asked why, and he says he needed a righthanded hitter. Ouch, babe. I think Harris thinks he's a better manager than Gardy, and I think Gardy thinks he can still hit better than Harris.
-If Jason Repko is the answer, what was the question again?
-Gotta love Cuddyer. Finally settles in as a rightfielder...then spends the end of last season subbing for Morneau at first, and now he's playing third base without complaint. Made a great play Friday night, too.
-I'll check in after the Santana game on Saturday.