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 postgame thoughts from LEN3: The offense. Diamond. The Brewers.

Posted by: La Velle E. Neal III Updated: May 19, 2012 - 12:06 AM

Here are three things to chew on following the Twins' 11-3 win over the Brewers:

 1. The offense should be better than what it showed in recent weeks. There are too many professional hitters with too many career plate appearances to get no-hit, one-hit and three-hit in a span of a week. When the key members of the offense are healthy, the quality of at-bats improve and everyone feeds off each other. The Twins scored their first six runs tonight with two outs. Good timely hitting. Justin Morneau's sacrifice fly was to left field, so he didn't try to do too much. Joe Mauer squared up some balls tonight.

Good quote here from Brian Dozier about hitting with these veterans. "Every now and then I like to come in here and see how I did (on video) and Mourny was quick to tell me, 'Just watch. You'll learn more by watching more than anything.' That's what I've been taking from that.''

Dozier should have had a double in the first inning, but Norichika Aoki went Willie Mays on Dozier drive with a back-to-the-infield catch. Dozier struck out in the fifth and sixth but came back with a solid single in the eighth. I like watching the kid play.

2. Some people on twitter want to get mad at Gardy for not pinch hitting for Scott Diamond in the sixth with the bases loaded. The second-guessers really came out after Diamond faltered in the bottom of the inning and had to be replaced. You don't pinch hit for a pitcher who was throwing the ball that well at that point of the game. I would have done the same thing. The way he was throwing, who would have seen a hanging curveball to Braun in the bottom of the inning?

3. The Brewers aren't good. Some people were telling me tonight that the Brew Crew's defense has always been shaky but they were able to hit their way around it in the past. Not right now. They made four errors on Friday and a couple were really bad. Good things could happen when you put the ball in play here.



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