Even an optimist has to conclude that last night's Twins game couldn't have gone much worse. Forget about the glass being half full when you use more than half your rotation -- and your best emergency starter out of the bullpen -- in one game ... and still lose. Since we were out covering high school football last night, we didn't have the misfortune of watching it in person or even on TV. But hitting the refresh button on our Blackberry GameCast almost made it worse. We can't even describe all that went wrong. Luckily, La Velle had five hours to think about it and write about it.

Most people would agree, we think, that a game like that is far worse than an absolute spanking. Hence, 30-27 OT still resonates far more painfully than 41-donut.

But we're not here to pick at old scabs. Rather, we're here to speculate about fresh ones. Questions and/or scenarios to ponder for the comments:

*How important do you think it is for the Twins to not just win the AL Central, but do it with enough cushion that they aren't making that mad scramble at the end of the year?

*How important do you think it is for the Twins to not just win the AL Central, but to finish with a better record than Texas, thus gaining the home-field advantage in the ALDS?

*Think about the absolute worst game you could imagine for the Twins. Now write it down in detail. Now compare it to last night's game. Are they similar?