Staff Directory 10646006

Jim Souhan

Columnist | Sports
Phone: 612-673-4503
Location: Minneapolis
Other languages: None

Jim Souhan is a sports columnist for the Star Tribune. He has worked at the paper since 1990, previously covering the Twins and Vikings.

Souhan was Sports Editor of his high school paper at Vianney in St. Louis. He wrote and edited for the Missourian at the University of Missouri, where he earned a journalism degree with an emphasis on American literature.
Recent content from Jim Souhan
Vikings wide receiver Stefon Diggs faked a pass in the third quarter as Eagles defenders Fletcher Cox and Nate Gerry (47) chased him.

Souhan: Cure for an uncommon 'cold?' A hot game for Diggs

Stefon Diggs had more receiving yards Sunday afternoon than in any other two games this season. "I have been waiting patiently, preparing," he said.
Stefon Diggs told reporters, “Yeah, I want to be in Minnesota,” and winked. Are there issues that losses would ignite?

Souhan: These next two Vikings games mean everything

If the Vikings lose their next two games, they will have to make up ground against such quarterbacks as Patrick Mahomes, Dak Prescott, Philip Rivers, Aaron Rodgers and Russell Wilson. That's a bit scary, given that they've already lost a game to Chase Daniel.
The Twins' most logical offseason move would be trading a position player for a starting pitcher. The best bargaining chip is outfielder Eddie Rosario

Souhan: Why Twins should consider trading Rosario

Rosario is talented, entertaining, clutch ... and tradable. Will the Twins deal their cleanup hitter for pitching this winter?
The Yankees' Gleyber Torres, right, celebrated with teammate Gary Sanchez after Torres belted a home run in the second inning of Game 3 on Monday nigh

Souhan: From Metrodome to Target Field, Twins' dubious record lingers

The playoff failures are a shared history now, from old Yankee Stadium to new, from Metrodome to Target Field, from Everyday Eddie Guardado to Any Pitch Will Do Eddie Rosario.
Vikings receiver Adam Thielen celebrated with Stefon Diggs after a touchdown in the third quarter.

Souhan: All is well (for now) after convincing victory over Giants

The Vikings proved that they could handle drama and beat a mediocre team with a rookie quarterback. But the fate of this season rests with how they'll do when things get tougher.
Twins second baseman Luis Arraez after striking out in the second inning Saturday.

Souhan: Twins' lineup of sluggers does little to rattle Yankees pitching

In two lopsided losses in the Bronx, the Twins lost by a combined score of 18-6, and in their 8-2 loss on Saturday at Yankee Stadium in Game 2, they were hardly competitive.
Twins starting pitcher Jose Berrios shouted into his glove as he left the mound in the third inning.

Souhan: Twins off their game in series opener, and pay the price

The Twins on Friday needed more innings from starter Jose Berrios and more resistance from the lineup. Instead, they produced one run after the third inning.
Twins players, including second baseman Luis Arraez, fielded grounders during a workout in the drizzle at Yankee Stadium on Thursday afternoon.

Souhan: Twins-Yankees a modern baseball matchup in a classic venue

Never before have two 100-victory teams met in baseball's playoffs while wielding so much power and so little pitching certainty.
Eddie Rosario, left, and Jorge Polanco — two Twins with postseason experience at Yankee Stadium — faced the media on Tuesday before facing the Yan

Souhan: Lots of reasons why these Twins shouldn't fear the Yankees

Are we supposed to believe that the 2019 Twins have no chance to beat the 2019 Yankees because a bunch of departed players failed to beat previous Yankee teams?
The arrival of Nelson Cruz this year helped Sano’s growth process, as the 39-year-old veteran slugger has served as a mentor to his fellow Dominican

'Grown up.' Sano finally becoming the player he was expected to be

Twins executives, managers, coaches and teammates had tried to lead Miguel Sano. Then a new teammate came along and Sano found the ideal leader in Nelson Cruz -- and Sano was ready to follow him.
T.C. Bear sat with Chrissie Olson and her 5-month-old daughter during a free "Postseason Push" party Thursday, which watched the Twins play the Tigers

A much different Twins team gets ready to recapture postseason magic

These powerful newbies could break Minnesota's streak of 13 playoff losses.
Twins starting pitcher Martin Perez reacts after issuing a walk to Aaron Judge in July at Target Field.

Souhan: Take it from the old guard and welcome Yankees in the playoffs

Current and former Twins believe there is no reason to fear their playoff matchup with the Yankees, but that belief is hardly supported by historical fact.
Twins pitcher Devin Smeltzer

Souhan: Blossoming bullpen becomes Twins' weapon of secrecy

The bullpen became a Twins weapon because of the most boring and underappreciated aspect of baseball management: Patience with young talent.
Twins pitcher Randy Dobnak gave up one hit and an unearned run over six innings in Wednesday night's clinching victory.

Souhan: Key players turned around careers for march into postseason

Wednesday night, a handful of formerly under-or-off-the-radar Twins players produced, again, proving that the most mathematic of sports is often the least predictable.
P. J. Fleck goes for his first Big Ten opener victory Saturday, on the road vs. Purdue.

Souhan: Forget Lombardi. Fleck needs to be next Glen Mason (or Jerry Kill)

P.J. Fleck arrived at Minnesota painting himself as the next Murray Warmath. Approaching his third Big Ten football opener, it's time for him to target a more reasonable goal.
Vikings running back Dalvin Cook celebrated a first down in the third quarter.

Souhan: Cook's excellence has made him the face of the Vikings

Dalvin Cook is the Vikings' best player, athlete, stratagem and blemish-obscurer. "We're riding his coattails,'' receiver Adam Thielen said.
Quarterback Kirk Cousins is in Year 2 of his stint with the Vikings. Jon Gruden is in Year 2 of his second stint with the Oakland Raiders. Neither is

Souhan: Big money, big trouble so far in Year 2 of Cousins, Gruden

Success is still very much possible for the Vikings QB and the Raiders coach, but they are battling high expectations and confidence-deflating starts.
How well does Rocco Baldelli fit in with Ron Gardenhire, Paul Molitor and Tom Kelly, the three previous Twins managers?

Souhan: Maybe Baldelli isn't so different from past Twins managers

Twins first-year manager Rocco Baldelli wields attributes that previously benefited Tom Kelly, Ron Gardenhire and Paul Molitor.
Saints player Todd Van Steensel held up the American Association championship trophy while standing on the back of a moving vehicle during the Saints'

Souhan: Champion St. Paul Saints get their minute in the sun

The social media response turned a joke about having a one-block, one-minute parade into an event, which is just how things happen in Saints World.
Vikings quarterback Kirk Cousins walked back to the sidelines after throwing an interception in the end zone during the fourth quarter.

Souhan: Is Cousins regressing? Or did Vikings overestimate him from the beginning?

On Sunday, quarterback Kirk Cousins was in situations where he could prompt comparisons to Aaron Rodgers and Brett Favre. Instead, he evoked memories of Christian Ponder.
Kirk Cousins and the Vikings offense went by way of the ground in their Week 1 victory over the Falcons.

Souhan: Talk of Vikings' new 'offensive identity' should be silenced

What works one week might not work the next.
Dalvin Cook celebrates with teammate CJ Ham (30) after scoring on an 85-yard touchdown run during a preseason game against Arizona.

Souhan: Vikings will bring Ham to counter Green Bay, cheeseheads

C.J. Ham's ability to pass block, run block, run and catch could give him rare job security for an NFL fullback, especially one who wasn't drafted out of college.
Twins center fielder Byron Buxton has dealt with a slew of injuries this season.

Souhan: What the hex going on with Twins' history of crushing injuries?

The Twins, who found out Tuesday they'd be without Byron Buxton the rest of the season, haven't entered the playoffs with their best players healthy since 2003.
Atlanta Falcons outside linebacker De'Vondre Campbell (59) dove after Minnesota Vikings running back Dalvin Cook (33) as he ran the ball in the second

Souhan: Cook reminds us how much he needs to remain healthy

Having Dalvin Cook available and productive is the unifying theme of the 2019 Vikings. He is the rare non-quarterback who may be his team's pivotal player.
Vikings general manager Rick Spielman and head coach Mike Zimmer

Souhan: Pressure is on Zimmer, Spielman to make playoffs run

The Vikings should be good this year. They should make the playoffs. If they don't, ownership will have to decide whether to give Mike Zimmer and personnel boss Rick Spielman one more year.
Kaare Vedvik was let go on cut day.

Souhan: Vikings' kicker drama nothing new, but now is self-imposed

When it comes to Vikings and kickers, history doesn't just haunt. It nags.
Team USA posed for a group photo before Tuesday's match.

Souhan: USWNT, Lynx players support the fight for excellence and better pay

Both teams know that merely winning won't mean they will suddenly begin earning what their male counterparts make, nor will silence. "We're all in this together," Lynx coach Cheryl Reeve said.
Simone Biles competed in the floor exercise at the 2019 U.S. gymnastics championships Sunday in Kansas City, Mo., where Biles won the all-around title

Souhan: Greatest of all time? Biles could be best of the best

Most debates about the greatest athlete of all time skew toward our most popular sports and most celebrated performers. But Simone Biles could be the greatest athlete ever.
Seimone Augustus might have played her final home game for the Lynx on Sunday if the team doesn't make the playoffs.

Souhan: Lynx star flashes old skills for home fans, perhaps for final time

Seimone Augustus played what might have been her last game at Target Center on Sunday night. If the Lynx can't secure a home playoff game, Augustus might have said her first goodbyes.
Miguel Sano

Souhan: Why Sano is the Twins' most important player in September

Twins slugger Miguel Sano has refined his mechanics so he can crush fastballs, and his batting eye so he can lay off tough pitches.
Chicago Sky head coach James Wade.

Souhan: Sky coach learned from Lynx's Reeve. 'I stole everything'

In his first year as a head coach, James Wade is taking the Chicago Sky to its first playoff berth since 2016. His philosophy: Why reinvent the wheel when you can borrow one?
Lefthander Martin Perez produced a rare Twins quality start on Sunday, giving up two runs over six innings against the Tigers.

Souhan: Twins worrisome rotation on full display against Tigers

While pitching well enough to Detroit, Martin Perez continued a trend for the twins that is part good, part lousy and part worrisome:
Vikings running back Dalvin Cook broke away from the defense for an 85-yard touchdown in the first quarter

Souhan: Yeah, Cook is ready for the Vikings' regular season to begin

Running back Dalvin Cook provided the highlight of the Saturday's preseason game with an 85-yard TD run.
Bill Guerin chatted with his family before being introduced as Wild GM on Thursday at Xcel Energy Center.

Souhan: Here's why Bill Guerin now has the easiest job in sports

If the Wild struggles struggles this season, fired Wild general manager Paul Fenton will be blamed, and rightly so. If the Wild surprises this year, the new general manager's leadership will be lauded.
Minnesota Twins designated hitter Nelson Cruz celebrated after his solo homer in the fourth inning tied the score at 3-3.

Souhan: Juiced baseballs or not, Twins deserve their accolades

If you're the kind of baseball traditionalist who believes the old days were better, this might be a good time to adopt modernity. This Twins season has been fascinating.
Sean Mannion had another strong outing in his bid to be the Vikings’ backup quarterback, going 11-for-14 for 88 yards, one touchdown and one interce

Souhan: Zimmer praises Vikings offense after win — hey, it's a start

Let's search for hints, clues and annoyances from the Vikings' exhibition (the NFL hates that word) game at U.S. Bank Stadium on Sunday.
Jake Cave drove a ninth-inning, 3-0 pitch for a single. Controversy ensued.

North Score: Why don't we try writing down the 'unwritten rules'?

Are these unspoken agreements useful or would we be better off in general without them?
The Vikings saw enough potential in Kaare Vedvik that they gave up a fifth-round draft pick to acquire him. Vedvik could make his preseason debut Sund

Souhan: Vikings run themselves in circles trying to find dependable kicker

They have used up another fifth-round draft pick to land a guy who might or might not be the solution.
Souhan: To coach Caruso and the Tommies: Consider vengeance

Souhan: To coach Caruso and the Tommies: Consider vengeance

The MIAC will be an easier place to win games and a lesser place to be an athlete once St. Thomas is gone. The Tommies shouldn't go out quietly
Twins manager Rocco Baldelli

Souhan: Twins fans worry themselves into the ground

You have questions about the Twins after the trade deadline? Jim Souhan has answers.
Twins closer Joe Nathan, in 2011

Souhan: 'Midwest's Mariano.' Nathan getting last word by joining Twins' Hall of Fame

Joe Nathan mastered that as the best closer in Twins history, and he said he will try to employ that skill Saturday when the team inducts him into its Hall of Fame.
Wild owner Craig Leipold introduced Paul Fenton as the Wild's GM during a press conference in May 2018.

Souhan: Owner Leipold's decision making now Wild's biggest problem

You can blame fired Wild GM Paul Fenton for a rare blend of incompetence and arrogance, but only after you blame the guy who knew him -- and hired him anyway.
Mike Zimmer spoke with his team at the end of practice during the first day of training camp earlier this week.

Souhan: Vikings' optimism reigns as camp begins. But so what?

What will matter for the 2019 Vikings is not what they say this summer, but what they show after a potential rough start or key injury this fall.
Twins relief pitcher Tyler Duffey crouched in disbelief

Souhan: Twins' bullpen has its moments, but criticism is misplaced

Can the Twins win big this year without making a trade to bolster their bullpen? The tested nerves of a Minnesota sports fan say no. History says yes.
The Twins' Ehire Adrianza ripped an RBI triple to score teammate Luis Arraez in the ninth inning and tie the score 6-6. The Twins went on to win 7-6 w

Souhan: Love baseball? You have to love what Adrianza's done for Twins

Claimed off waivers in February 2017, Ehire Adrianza joined the Twins as a stereotypical light-hitting utility infielder. But his game has grown substantially.
Shannon Stewart's contributions to the 2003 Twins included not only the spark that led them to their second consecutive division title, but also this

Souhan: As Twins know, the best trades are those a team never regrets

The Twins don't need to make a statement. They need to avoid regret.
Jeff Munneke

Souhan: After 31 years, Munneke keeps doing his best to sell underwhelming Wolves

As the vice president of fan experience, Jeff Munneke might have the toughest job in local sports, and he is one of the longest-tenured of Minnesota sports executives.
Twins second baseman Luis Arraez celebrates a walk in the ninth inning.

Souhan: There's a place in Twins lineup for Arraez

In eight pitches in Tuesday's game, Louis Arraez demonstrated how he has risen so quickly with the Twins and, perhaps, so permanently.
Odyssey Sims scored 15 points on Sunday night against Phoenix.

Souhan: What rebuilding? Sims leads overhauled Lynx into contention

If you haven't noticed, the Lynx are 10-7 without four star players who were with them last season: Maya Moore, Lindsay Whalen, Rebekkah Brunson and Seimone Augustus.
Jamal James (right) vs. Antonio DeMarcoPhoto by Jim Souhan, Star Tribune

Souhan: Is James title-fight material? He says yes

Jamal James, a welterweight from Minneapolis, on Saturday headlined another nationally televised card at the Armory. He defeated Antonio DeMarco in a unanimous decision.
Nelson Cruz (23) celebrated with his teammates in the dugout during a game against the Rays last month.

Souhan: Cruz's contributions to Twins go well beyond his statistics

The Twins should return to the playoffs this season. If they do, Nelson Cruz and the people who signed him should receive a large percentage of the credit.
Boxer Jamal James of Minneapolis, who trains at Circle of Discipline gym, is preparing for a match with Antonio DeMarco on Saturday that could help pr

Souhan: Minneapolis boxer hopes he's on verge of career-defining fight

Jamal James, 30, is closing in on a title fight that could change his life. But because this is boxing, there are no guarantees this will actually happen.
First-time PGA winner Matthew Wolff made an impression on fans Sunday at the inaugural 3M Open — and vice versa.

Souhan: Top two finishers give 3M Open instant credibility

Little more than an hour before Matthew Wolff rolled in his winning eagle, there were six players tied for the 3M Open lead and 14 players within two shots of it.
Matthew Wolff, who has a peculiar swing, teed off from the eighth hole Saturday as Tom Lehman watched the ball’s flight.

Souhan: 3M Open co-leaders got to top with different swings

To paraphrase golfers everywhere and Duke Ellington once upon a time: It's not how, it's how many; and you ain't got a thing if you ain't got your own swing.
Tom Lehman hugged his caddie after shoot a 4-under 67 in the first round of the 3M Open at TPC Twin Cities in Blaine. ] AARON LAVINSKY• aaron.lavins

Souhan: Lehman goes low on TPC Twin Cities course he redesigned

Thursday, in the first round, he shot a 67, leaving him tied for 18th. If he keeps playing like this, he'll face insider trading charges.
Jason Day

Souhan: Nice-guy Day seeking nicer results on PGA Tour

Jason Day hasn't won the PGA Tour in more than a year, and he missed the cut twice in majors in 2018. But, "my game is kind of starting to take a turn," he said on Wednesday."
Patrick Reed smiled as he scoped out the putting green on the 10 hole Tuesday.

Souhan: Reed's Ryder Cup pluck endeared him to Minnesota fans

At Hazeltine in 2016, Patrick Reed became Captain America, a player who elevated his game when playing for country and with countrymen.
Courting cooperation remains an important part of building an event for 3M Open director Hollis Cavner.

Cavner's team for 3M Open following Palmer's example

3M Open boss Hollis Cavner follows Arnold Palmer's model of kindness, with a penchant for relentless networking and old-fashioned hospitality.
Joel Goldstrand of Plymouth, noted golf course architect and former golf pro, pitched a local tour stop decades before the 3M Championship became the

Souhan: Longtime Minnesota pro sees state PGA stop become reality

Decades before the 3M Championship became the 3M Open, a local golfer stopped by 3M headquarters to pitch a local tournament. That golfer, Joel Goldstrand, deserves to be remembered, as well.
FC Cincinnati goalkeeper Spencer Richey was unable to stop a shot by Minnesota United midfielder Hassani Dotson

Souhan: Loons beat up on a club that's far from MLS-ready

The Loons put eight shots on goal against a clearly overmatched Cincinnati side on Saturday. Seven went in.
Twins third baseman Miguel Sano

Souhan: Fix Sano's swing, and he's back to being fearsome

Miguel Sano, 0-for-7 on Thursday, is desperately in need of a reset. But this is no time to give up on him. His primary problem is mechanical, and mechanics can be fixed.
The Twins' Jonathan Schoop celebrated his third-inning solo homer at Target Field on Tuesday, part of a 9-4 victory over Tampa Bay.

Souhan: A few losses doesn't mean Twins are anywhere near a slump

Their performance over the past two weeks doesn't qualify as a toe stub, much less a headlong tumble down the stairs.
Joe Mauer shook hands with then-Twins GM Bill Smith after signing an eight-year, $184 million contract as Mauer’s agent Ron Shapiro, left, looked on

Souhan: For Mauer, contract became an unjust burden

His inability to produce at a $184 million level in his later seasons drew much criticism from fans.
David Ortiz, in 2016.

Souhan: Love for 'special guy' Big Papi transcends borders

Former Twins player David Ortiz went on to enormous success with the Red Sox. Sunday night in Santo Domingo he was shot in the back and remembering happier times is not difficult for current players.
Faith Johnson Patterson led girls' basketball teams at Minneapolis North and DeLaSalle to state titles, but player and parent drama at her last two jo

Souhan: Why did a Hall of Fame prep basketball coach walk away from her sport?

That Faith Johnson Patterson isn't coaching is an indictment of high school sports and society. "I think things have changed drastically in terms of parent involvement," she said.
Amy Capitola, of Robbinsdale, held up a Lindsay Whalen sign before the start of Saturday's game against the Los Angeles Sparks. She's been a season ti

Souhan: Want to support Whalen? Buy a ticket to women's sports

In the Twin Cities sports market, the average male fan spends more time complaining about his favorite team than recognizing Minnesota as a bastion of women's sports success.
Eddie Rosario celebrated his solo home run with teammate Jonathan Schoop on May 23.

Souhan: Twins' early success proves you can't please every fan

The Twins' success this season is not pleasing everyone in the fan base - nor will it.
Kevin Warren with fans at a Vikings game in 2017.

Souhan: Warren a good choice to take on hypocrisy of college sports

Kevin Warren accomplished all that he could with the Vikings as their chief operating officer. Now he's off the lead the Big Ten, which should not be his destination job.
The Loons, in Pride Game garb, celebrated a goal by Kevin Molino (7), his first of 2019. Trouble is, those the Loons expect to score didn’t.

Souhan: Heath criticizes defense when offense was problem in loss

The crowd was loud, the sun was shining and the play was intense, and all that wound up mattering was that Minnesota United didn't take advantage of scoring chances.
In 2015, Torii Hunter’s MLB career was winding down and Byron Buxton’s was just beginning. Four years later, Buxton is retracing Hunter’s gracef

Souhan: It's like 2006 all over again with these Twins

For the last 104 games of the season, the 2006 Twins played better than any Twins team since the 1991 World Series champion, and the 2019 Twins are playing just as well.
A young child is carried from the stands after being injured by a foul ball off the bat of Chicago Cubs' Albert Almora Jr. during the fourth inning of

Souhan: Twins to look at need for even more protection from foul balls

Twins officials said that Target Field uses more netting than is required by Major League Baseball, and that they will reevaluate the need for more fan protection.
Twins starting pitcher Devin Smeltzer

Souhan: Cancer survivor Smeltzer calm but says 'it's hard to keep it together'

Rookie pitcher Devin Smeltzer looked composed right up until he met his wife, Brianne, outside the Twins clubhouse after the game. That's when the tears started.
Twins hitting coach James Rowson insists the team's increase in home runs is a result of the players' experience, talent and work habits.

Souhan: Hitting coach Rowson is man behind Twins' offensive surge

James Rowson and assistant hitting coach Rudy Hernandez are at the heart, or at least the calluses, of the Twins' transformation into a feared slugging lineup.
The Lynx Napheesa Collier drove to the net during the first quarter

Souhan: Lynx draft picks stand out in debut for team in transition

First-round draft pick Napheesa Collier logged big minutes Saturday in the Lynx season opener, and connected well with fellow rookie Jessica Shepard.
Joe Mauer retired after last season, and with his salary off the books the Twins have compiled powerful pieces to the lineup.

Souhan: Mauer is Twins' 2019 MVP - Most Valuable Pensioner

Joe Mauer's retirement - and money off the books - is not the only key development in the Twins' emergence as one of baseball's best teams, but it might be the most important.