La Velle E. Neal III has covered baseball for the Star Tribune since 1998 (the post-Knoblauch era). Born and raised in Chicago, he grew up following the White Sox and hating the Cubs. He attended both the University of Illinois and Illinois-Chicago and began his baseball writing career at the Kansas City Star. He can be heard occasionally on KFAN radio, lending his great baseball mind to Paul Allen and other hosts. Mark Rosen borrows him occasionally for WCCO-TV.

Three Twins postgame thoughts from LEN3: Outfield, Polanco, Buxton

Posted by: La Velle E. Neal III Updated: June 27, 2014 - 11:58 PM


Here are three thoughts following the Twins' loss to Texas

OUTFIELD: This is not meant to bash Josh Willingham. The Twins signed him to hit. He's never been a great outfielder and he knows his limitations out there. For example, Delmon Young made mistakes in the outfield trying to do things he can't do. Willingham is not like that. But I felt he shouldn't have dived for the sinking fly ball in the fifth. He usually plays it safe there. But that play was rendered moot by the double off the wall. That was going to be a tough play for Willingham from the start. A more agile outfielder has a better chance at catching the second ball than Willingham does. What the Twins need to address during the offseason is getting someone who can cover ground in left field and at least have two guys with good range out there (because Oswaldo Arcia will be in right). Target Field is more pitcher friendly than hitter friendly, but the ERA of Twins pitchers is SUFFERING because there's only one player with range in the outfield. Arcia to DH? Don't think so. Because DH should go to Morales, if the Twins bring him back, or..........Kennys Vargas.

POLANCO: Jorge Polanco said his mother, Ynes, is coming to see him play. He plans to present her with the ball from his first major league hit. Polanco hit a two-run triple in the ninth inning on Friday. ``The kid, who knew what to expect? You're putting him into a big situation late in the game. We know he can hit. He's got to work on the defensive part, a lot of parts he has to work on. But the kid can swing the bat.''

BUXTON: Terry Ryan wasn't sure, but he thought Byron Buxton took batting practice on Wednesday. If not, then he's real close. That means he needs a few days of batting practice/full pre-game work then he'll probably play in a few camp games before the Twins will be ready to send him to a farm team. But it appears that he's getting closer to getting on the field.


 

Bottom 6th123456789RHE
Cleveland000201   381
Minnesota00110   220
Preview | Matchup | Lineup | Log | Wrap | Box
HR: CLE- M.Brantley (20) MIN- O.Arcia (19), K.Vargas (9)

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Los Angeles - WP: C. Kershaw 14 FINAL
Chicago Cubs - LP: E. Jackson 5
Boston 3 Bottom 7th Inning
Baltimore 1
Milwaukee 2 Bottom 8th Inning
Pittsburgh 0
Toronto 3 Top 8th Inning
NY Yankees 5
Washington 3 Top 8th Inning
Miami 2
Chicago WSox 4 Top 7th Inning
Tampa Bay 3
NY Mets 2 Top 7th Inning
Atlanta 0
Cleveland 3 Top 6th Inning
Minnesota 2
Detroit 5 Top 5th Inning
Kansas City 0
Seattle 4 Top 4th Inning
Houston 1
Arizona 1 Bottom 5th Inning
Colorado 3
Cincinnati 1 Bottom 5th Inning
St. Louis 2
Philadelphia - D. Buchanan 8:35 PM
Oakland - J. Lester
Texas - L. Bonilla 9:05 PM
LA Angels - H. Santiago
San Francisco - T. Hudson 9:10 PM
San Diego - O. Despaigne
San Diego 9/21/14 12:00 PM
Buffalo
Dallas 9/21/14 12:00 PM
St. Louis
Washington 9/21/14 12:00 PM
Philadelphia
Houston 9/21/14 12:00 PM
NY Giants
Minnesota 9/21/14 12:00 PM
New Orleans
Tennessee 9/21/14 12:00 PM
Cincinnati
Baltimore 9/21/14 12:00 PM
Cleveland
Green Bay 9/21/14 12:00 PM
Detroit
Indianapolis 9/21/14 12:00 PM
Jacksonville
Oakland 9/21/14 12:00 PM
New England
San Francisco 9/21/14 3:05 PM
Arizona
Denver 9/21/14 3:25 PM
Seattle
Kansas City 9/21/14 3:25 PM
Miami
Pittsburgh 9/21/14 7:30 PM
Carolina
Chicago 9/22/14 7:30 PM
NY Jets
NY Giants 9/25/14 7:25 PM
Washington
(5) Auburn 20 FINAL
(20) Kansas State 14
Connecticut 7 3rd Qtr
So Florida 14
Old Dominion 9/20/14 11:00 AM
Rice
Troy 9/20/14 11:00 AM
(13) Georgia
Georgia Tech 9/20/14 11:00 AM
Virginia Tech
Eastern Mich 9/20/14 11:00 AM
(11) Michigan State
Iowa 9/20/14 11:00 AM
Pittsburgh
Bowling Green 9/20/14 11:00 AM
(19) Wisconsin
Maryland 9/20/14 11:30 AM
Syracuse
Tulane 9/20/14 11:30 AM
Duke
Hawaii 9/20/14 1:00 PM
Colorado
Marshall 9/20/14 1:00 PM
Akron
North Carolina 9/20/14 2:30 PM
East Carolina
Army 9/20/14 2:30 PM
Wake Forest
Virginia 9/20/14 2:30 PM
(21) BYU
(6) Texas A&M 9/20/14 2:30 PM
SMU
Rutgers 9/20/14 2:30 PM
Navy
Central Mich 9/20/14 2:30 PM
Kansas
Utah 9/20/14 2:30 PM
Michigan
Florida 9/20/14 2:30 PM
(3) Alabama
Louisville 9/20/14 2:30 PM
FIU
Fla Atlantic 9/20/14 3:00 PM
Wyoming
Indiana 9/20/14 3:00 PM
(18) Missouri
San Jose St 9/20/14 3:00 PM
Minnesota
Texas State 9/20/14 3:00 PM
Illinois
Massachusetts 9/20/14 3:00 PM
Penn State
Georgia State 9/20/14 5:00 PM
Washington
Appalachian St 9/20/14 6:00 PM
Southern Miss
Miss State 9/20/14 6:00 PM
(8) LSU
Northern Ill 9/20/14 6:00 PM
Arkansas
Middle Tennessee 9/20/14 6:00 PM
Memphis
Utah State 9/20/14 6:00 PM
Arkansas State
Miami-Ohio 9/20/14 6:00 PM
Cincinnati
Idaho 9/20/14 6:00 PM
Ohio U
Ball State 9/20/14 6:00 PM
Toledo
(14) So Carolina 9/20/14 6:30 PM
Vanderbilt
(4) Oklahoma 9/20/14 6:30 PM
West Virginia
Ga Southern 9/20/14 6:30 PM
South Alabama
UNLV 9/20/14 7:00 PM
Houston
(22) Clemson 9/20/14 7:00 PM
(1) Florida State
Miami-Florida 9/20/14 7:00 PM
(24) Nebraska
New Mexico 9/20/14 7:00 PM
New Mexico St
California 9/20/14 9:00 PM
Arizona
Louisiana 9/20/14 9:30 PM
Boise State
(2) Oregon 9/20/14 9:30 PM
Washington St
San Diego St 9/20/14 9:30 PM
Oregon State
Texas Tech 9/25/14 6:30 PM
(25) Oklahoma State
Appalachian St 9/25/14 6:30 PM
Ga Southern
(12) UCLA 9/25/14 9:00 PM
(15) Arizona State
Middle Tennessee 9/26/14 7:00 PM
Old Dominion
Fresno State 9/26/14 7:00 PM
New Mexico
(1) Florida State 9/27/14 2:00 AM
NC State
Duke 9/27/14 2:00 AM
Miami-Florida
North Carolina 9/27/14 2:00 AM
(22) Clemson
Colorado 9:00 PM
Real Salt Lake
Toronto 9:00 PM
Brt Columbia
Edmonton 9/20/14 6:00 PM
Hamilton
Calgary 9/21/14 12:00 PM
Montreal
Ottawa 9/21/14 3:00 PM
Saskatchewan
Montreal 9/26/14 6:00 PM
Ottawa
Saskatchewan 9/26/14 9:00 PM
Edmonton
Hamilton 9/27/14 5:30 PM
Winnipeg
Brt Columbia 9/27/14 8:30 PM
Calgary
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