Phil Miller covered three seasons of Twins baseball, but that was at a different ballpark for a different newspaper. Now Miller returns to the baseball beat after joining the Star Tribune as the Gopher football writer in 2010, and he won't miss the dingy dome for a minute. In addition to the Twins and Gophers, Miller covered the Utah Jazz and the NBA for six years at The Salt Lake Tribune.

Monday update: Rating Carson's arm; Florimon's calming presence; and how a scribe got Pearl Jammed

Posted by: Phil Miller under Twins game coverage Updated: August 20, 2012 - 11:41 AM

In his first weekend with the Twins, Matt Carson went 5-for-12 and made an impressive throw to third base from right field Saturday. A scout at Safeco Field on Sunday said Carson’s arm rates with the best in the majors, saying it gets an 80 for accuracy on a 20-80 scale. Carson, 31, also struck out in a key spot Sunday and misjudged a ball that sailed over his head for a double, helping Seattle pull away in the seventh inning. Still, he made a good first impression.

“I like what I’ve seen and like what he can do,” Manager Ron Gardenhire said. “We know he’s a good defender. You saw him throw a guy out at third base with a pellet. He moves around smooth out there, and offensively, he’s taken some swings.”

FLORIMON 'QUIETS THE WHOLE POSITION'

Pedro Florimon, 25, also had pretty good overall first weekend with Minnesota, going 3-for-9 with a double and a triple, and making all the plays defensively at shortstop. Like Carson, he failed to come through in some key spots at the plate, but that was a team-wide epidemic, as the Twins went 3-for-38 with runners in scoring position for the weekend.

“I think you’re seeing a pretty fluid shortstop out there,” Gardenhire said. “He’s pretty confident. He kind of quiets the whole position down out there. He’s in control and has a good feel for the game. At the plate, I think righthanded, which is pronounced as his best side, you saw him pretty aggressive with a better swing. His lefthanded swing is more of a contact swing.”

IT'S ONLY ROCK-N-ROLL

According to family legend, Dave Christensen had a preparatory class for the CPA exam at the St. Paul Civic Center on June 9, 1975, the same day the Rolling Stones hit the Civic Center stage on their Tour of the Americas.

My dad loves his rock-n-roll, though he’s more of a CCR guy, and at age 22, he basically had back-stage access to the Stones that night, as Mick and Keith uncorked “Brown Sugar” and “Get off of my Cloud.” But with a wife and a 21-month-old son at home, and more studying to do for the exam, Dave C headed home, turning his back on the music.

I thought of this Saturday, as word spread through the Twins clubhouse that Eddie Vedder was going to be a special guest during batting practice. The Pearl Jam lead singer is good friends with FSN analyst Ron Coomer through their connections with the Cubs.

Sure enough, Vedder was right by the dugout with his wife and two daughters, posing for pictures with Twins players, some of whom were seriously star struck. The other Twins beat writers on the trip -- John Shipley from the Pioneer Press and Rhett Bollinger from MLB.com -- had easy access to Vedder and were blown away by how friendly he was.

Me? I was in the press box, staring down our first deadline for Sunday editions, trying -- OK, yes, probably reaching -- to put something interesting together for the cover of the sports page. That story is here. A year from now, I probably won’t remember what I wrote, but I’ll still be kicking myself for missing Eddie V, whose songs were like anthems for me early in college. It’s something family members will be razzing me and my dad about for years.

* Programming note: La Velle is covering the rest of this road trip for us. Those of you following me on Twitter (@JoeCStrib) probably realize this is a good thing for everyone involved.

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