Jim Souhan analyzes the local sports scene and advises you to never take his betting advice. He likes old guitars and old music, never eats press box hot dogs, and can be heard on 1500ESPN at 2:05 p.m. weekdays, and Sundays from 10 a.m.-noon.

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Heading back to the heat

Posted by: Jim Souhan under All-Stars and honors, Ron Gardenhire, Target Field, Twins fans, Twins management, Twins offense, Twins transactions, NBA playoffs Updated: July 20, 2011 - 7:17 PM

Coming back to town after a quick vacation to San Francisco. This is the first time I've ever left a sunny day in California dreading that Minnesota is much hotter.

We went to the Dodgers-Giants game on Monday night, and I believe this was my first visit to AT&T Park since the 2002 World Series.

This might be the one ballpark you'd want to visit if you've already been spoiled by Target Field. Because it has the one thing that Target Field doesn't have: A bay.

It's a beautiful setting, and if you head up to the upper deck, you can see the bay, and the lit-up Bay Bridge, and the kayakers, and the lights of the city. The Giants, like the Twins, play a Journey song during seventh-inning stretch, but theirs is ``Lights,'' a song about the bay.

(Although it sounds like Journey's Steve Perry first wrote the song about the lights of ``LA,'' but didn't like the sound of that and changed it to ``the bay.'' Which is good editing.

Anyway, I"ll be home tonight, then leaving for Cooperstown on Thursday, preparing with photographer Carlos Gonzalez to cover the weekend festivities culminating with Bert Blyleven's induction into the Hall of Fame on Sunday.

A few points on the Twins, from afar:

-No, calling Kevin Slowey up to start one game of the doubleheader made no sense. He hasn't pitched well at Triple-A yet, why would he be ready to beat the Indians?

-Much of the Twins' dominance of the division over the last 11 years is due to pitching depth. This is no time to whine about them being forced to start Anthony Swarzak and Scott Diamond. And both pitched well enough to win, had the Twins taken advantage of the Indians' weak pitching that was lined up for Monday.

-The Twins hoped to go 8-4 on the post-All Star-break homestand. If they take 3 of 4 from the Tigers, they will have done so. Even if they split with the Tigers, they will be positioned to chase these teams until the last weekend of the season.

Yes, they'll have to beat good teams to do so, given the difficulty of the upcoming schedule. But shouldn't you have to beat good teams to make the playoffs?

A few points on the Wolves:

-You could do worse than Mike Woodson. The guy teaches half-court offense, ball movement and strong defense. The Hawks apparently stopped listening to him after a while, and he failed in the playoffs, but he's young enough and ambitious enough to benefit from those lessons.

Actually, Woodson might be ideal for the Wolves, because he would fight back against David Kahn's ridiculous notion that the Wolves should run more.

I think Don Nelson would be a hoot to have around for a year or two, before he drove everyone in the organization crazy and alienated a couple of key players. I don't think he's a good fit for the long haul, but he'd hasten the Wolves' return to relevance.

A point on Tiger Woods:

-It's not unusual for celebrities and sports stars to go through scandals and personal problems. What offends me more about Tiger Woods is that he always seems to be looking for a scapegoat.

He got rid of swing guru Hank Haney, and now he's fired caddy Steve Williams. I'm not a fan of either man's work. I felt Woods won despite Haney, and Williams could be a cad when he was on Woods' bag. But neither are the cause of any of Woods' current problems.

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Upcoming: I'll be blogging and tweeting from Cooperstown all weekend. I'll also be doing Sunday Morning Sports Talk from Cooperstown. The Gardenhire Show is 9:30 on Sunday, followed by SMST from 10-noon, with Tom Pelissero in the studio.

 

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