RandBall Logo

Blog

RandBall

Find breaking sports news and commentary on Minnesota Vikings, Minnesota Twins, Minnesota Timberwolves, Minnesota Wild and University of Minnesota Golden Gophers and high schools from Minneapolis, St. Paul, the Twin Cities metro area and Minnesota.

A 12 percent chance Butler is with the Wolves after this season? Huh?

On Thursday, I advised you not to worry too much about rumors that Jimmy Butler and Kyrie Irving want to join forces as free agents after this season — presumably for a team like the Knicks or Nets.

A lot can happen between now and then. Butler could still re-sign with the Wolves, particularly since they can offer him more money than any other team.

I still believe that. I’m still advising calm.

However …

This mid-August, slow-time, doesn’t-have-much-to-do-with-anything ESPN.com poll is at least interesting. The ESPN Forecast Panel, which is not an official entity and might be made up of 17 squirrels with flashcards for all I know, predicted where the biggest potential NBA free agents will start the 2019-20 season.

And only 12.1 percent of panelists said Butler would be with the Wolves. Per the item:

Butler was also the only player in our Forecast for whom his current team didn’t finish first or second in the voting, with only 12 percent of panelists seeing Minnesota as his long-term home. Expect the four-time All-Star to have a new team next summer.

Again, there’s a long time between now and then. The only thing we know for sure is that if Butler joins whatever team Dwyane Wade is on, Wade is going to keep a close eye on his teammate.

RandBall: At least the Twins are showing some pride this year

Welcome to the Friday edition of The Cooler, where you can almost feel the summer slipping through your fingertips. Let’s get to it:

*You’ve been able to count on a few things with the Twins in recent years, including these two:

1) When they’ve been good, they’ve been quite good. When they’ve been bad, they’ve been quite bad. Between 1997 and 2017, the Twins only had one season where they finished with somewhere between 80 and 89 losses — seasons that would qualify as bad but not awful. That was 2007, when they went 79-83, the only losing record they posted between 2001 and 2010, with loss totals in the 60s and 70s. Before and after that, they generally piled up a ton of seasons with 90 or more losses.

2) Part of the reason those years stacked up recently is that relatively not terrible (what a term!) seasons became particularly putrid after Aug. 1. From 2011-2014, the Twins were 78-148 from that date until the end of the year, turning seasons that looked headed for mid-80s losses spiraling into awfulness. In 2016, they were 19-39 in those final two months.

It stood to reason that this year would follow a similar script given the Twins’ history and also given their circumstances, with several key players dealt away by the July 31 nonwaiver trade deadline and the disappointment of underachieving lingering in the clubhouse.

I ran a Twitter poll at the start of this week asking if the Twins would manage to avoid 90 losses this season. A full 77 percent of you said no.

At the risk of looking to hard for a silver lining in a bad season, though, this should be acknowledged: The Twins should get a little credit for — so far — showing some pride during the dog days. Since Aug. 1, they are 8-6 and have pulled their overall record to 57-63.

I’m not sure how much momentum actually carries over from one year to the next, but it does seem like avoiding 90 losses this season — a realistic proposition given the Twins’ current record — would at least somewhat boost the organization’s overall trajectory and let them treat 2018 like a setback instead of a total system failure. We’ll see if they can keep it up over the next six weeks.

*Teddy Bridgewater looked good again for the Jets in their second preseason game Thursday, adding even more intrigue to the team’s QB picture. Will they keep Teddy and start him? Keep him in a reserve role? Or find a QB-needy team willing to make a trade for the former Viking? Something has to give in the next three weeks.

*In case you’ve only been reading the headlines about John Elway offering Colin Kaepernick a job and Kaep turning it down, you should know this: It’s all in reference to pre-draft in 2016 — before Kaepernick’s social justice stand resulted him being blackballed by the NFL — when the Broncos tried to trade for Kaepernick but the sides couldn’t agree on salary.

TV Listings

Local Schedule

< >
  • Lynx at Connecticut

    6 pm on 106.1-FM

  • Canterbury Park live racing

    6:30 pm

  • Fargo-Moorhead at Saints

    7:05 pm on 93.3-FM

  • Detroit at Twins

    7:10 pm on FSN, 830-AM

  • Jacksonville at Vikings (preseason)

    12 pm on Ch. 9, 100.3/1130

  • Canterbury Park live racing

    12:45 pm

  • Detroit at Twins

    6:10 pm on FSN, 830-AM

  • Loons at FC Dallas

    7 pm on FSN PLUS, 1500-AM

  • Fargo-Moorhead at Saints

    7:05 pm on 93.3-FM

  • Detroit at Twins

    1:10 pm on FSN, 830-AM

  • Washington at Lynx

    6 pm on ESPN2, 106.1-FM

  • Chicago White Sox at Twins

    6:10 pm on FSN, 830-AM

  • Saints at Sioux Falls

    7:05 pm on 93.3-FM

  • Saints at Sioux Falls

    7:05 pm on 93.3-FM

  • Twins at Chicago White Sox

    7:10 pm on FSN, 830-AM

  • Twins at Chicago White Sox

    1:10 pm on FSN, 830-AM

  • Canterbury Park live racing

    6:30 pm

  • Saints at Sioux Falls

    7:05 pm on 93.3-FM

  • Canterbury Park live racing

    6:30 pm

  • Saints at Chicago

    7:05 pm on 93.3-FM

  • Oakland at Twins

    7:10 pm on FSN, 830-AM

  • Canterbury Park live racing

    6:30 pm

  • Seattle at Vikings (preseason)

    7 pm on Ch. 9, 100.3/1130

  • Saints at Chicago

    7:05 pm on 93.3-FM

  • Oakland at Twins

    7:10 pm on FSN, 830-AM

Today's Scoreboard

  • NY Mets

    Philadelphia

     

    - Bot 6th

    1

    4

  • Toronto

    NY Yankees

     

    - Bot 4th

    4

    2

  • Chicago Cubs

    Pittsburgh

    Delayed

  • Miami

    Washington

     

    - Top 5th

    0

    4

  • Tampa Bay

    Boston

     

    - Bot 4th

    3

    3

  • San Francisco

    Cincinnati

     

    - Bot 5th

    1

    1

  • Baltimore

    Cleveland

     

    - Top 5th

    0

    2

  • Colorado

    Atlanta

     

    - Top 3rd

    0

    1

  • LA Angels

    Texas

     

    - Top 2nd

    0

    0

  • Kansas City

    Chicago White Sox

     

    - Bot 1st

    0

    0

  • Detroit

    Minnesota

     

    - Top 2nd

    0

    0

  • Milwaukee

    St. Louis

     

    - Bot 1st

    0

    0

  • Houston

    Oakland

    9:05 PM

  • Arizona

    San Diego

    9:10 PM

  • LA Dodgers

    Seattle

    9:10 PM

  • Kansas City

    Atlanta

     

    - H

    10

    14

  • NY Giants

    Detroit

     

    - H

    10

    3

  • Buffalo

    Cleveland

     

    - 2nd, 10:00

    0

    7

  • Miami

    Carolina

     

    - 2nd, 9:06

    9

    6

  • Arizona

    New Orleans

     

    - 1st, 5:23

    0

    0

No NBA games today

No NHL games today

No MLS games today