Got an email yesterday from someone wondering what was happening to Section 220 now that we're out of our season tickets at the Dome. I told the writer that it would become apparent soon.
Soon is now. Our posse's tickets at Target Field are in...
I've checked out the seats and we're closer to the playing field than we were in the front row of Section 220 even though we're in the fourth (top) row of our new section. At this point, it would be nice if we could fast forward through spring training -- with all roster questions having a satisfactory answer, of course -- and just start the regular season. Young219 (formerly known as Young220) bought me one of those Twins caps with ear flaps and a neckwarmer -- the ones you saw being worn by the Twins at Yankee Stadium in October -- and I'm ready for cold-weather baseball.
A few quick thoughts for now:
*Please don't complain to me about the new blog format. The amount of "sheriff's work" needed on the old blogs was getting ridiculous, mostly because of a (very) small group of commenters. La Velle and Joe are moving over, too. Here, you need to be registered at startribune.com to comment and you'll be commenting under your user name. There may be bugs along the way and, if you see one, you can email me here. You can always email me there!
*Nice to see the Twins avoid arbitration entirely, and nice to see Francisco Liriano's contract structured so he can hit some incentive bonuses out of the bullpen. If Liriano can reinvent himself as a hard-throwing lefty reliever, that would be a very good thing.
*If I'm Joe Mauer, I don't see any need to sign a contract before the season starts. Yes, it would make all of us happy if he signed sooner rather than later. But if there was ever a situation where a Twins player held 110 percent of the cards, this is it. The Twins are fortunate to be dealing with agent Ron Shapiro on this one because his track record includes satisfied big-name clients (Kirby Puckett and Cal Ripken) who struck good deals to remain with their original teams. The Pohlad empire was built, in part, on making the best deals possible. Mauer should be expected to do the same for himself and for the generations of Mauers to come.
*I won't be too surprised if Joe Crede is the Opening Day third baseman. His back issues have kept him from being a viable free agent this winter and I suspect the Twins could reach an agreement on another incentive-skewed deal -- and have him keep the position warm until they decide if Danny Valencia is ready.
*I hope everyone made their Food Shelf contributions from September's K-Bro challenge, which I suspect was the main motivator in the Twins overtaking the Tigers. (Forget Cuddyer and Denard and even Nick Punto's solid September. It was all about the food.)
*That's all for now. You'll see links and other blogs added to the page in the next few days. Also, you'll have to update your RSS feeds, if you follow me that-a-way.