Random Tuesday Twins Thoughts and Tidbits

Here is this week's installment:

  • This winter has been flying by. The Twins' pitchers and catchers report for Spring Training on February 18th. This is just 25 days away. Sneaky fast. Speaking of Spring Training and pitchers and catchers reporting, a former Twins who reported as a catcher in the 2011 Spring Training, Toby Gardenhire (yes the manager's son) officially retired after being granted free agency this off-season. He will be coaching baseball in the University or Wisconsin Stout. As a matter of fact he will be their head coach. He also got married last Saturday, so Gardy might be a grandpa soon.

  • This will be (almost) a Roy Oswalt-free post. I will update later as needed. To see all the updates so far, you can go here

  • In his first interview with the media as a Twin, Joel Zumaya was confident that he can throw 100 mph again, want to do it against the Tigers, but most importantly seems that he matured, expressing the desire to mix pitches and change speeds. And this comes from someone who in 2010 threw 85% fastballs, 1% change ups and 14% curves. Good to hear him saying that he will be mixing it up. Make sure that you read Phil Mackey's writeup on Zumaya at 1500ESPN.com. Probably the best written piece I read about Zumaya lately.

  • Every Twins' fan should own Seth Stohs' annual Minnesota Twins Prospect Handbook, which contains profiles about every player in the Twins' system. Great information and the 2012 issue is hot off the presses (and at a bargain price.) More information on how to get your hands on the handbook (and be the coolest kid on the block or around the office) is at Seth's blog or if you prefer an e-book for the price of a coffee and a scone at Starbucks, get it here.

  • And speaking of the Twins' minor leaguers, here is a great interview of Twins' prospect Max Kepler.

  • There is still plenty of time to give to The Bombay Teen Challenge the project that had former Twins' pitchers R.A. Dickey and Kevin Slowey climb up (and down) Mt. Kilimanjaro. The deadline is a week from today and about half of what needed to be raised has been raised.

  • From the Lists Department: Bill James gave his list of the 100 best pitching duets for 2011. Anthony Swarzak (12), Carl Pavano (62), and Scott Baker (66) were the Twins' starters mentioned. Dan Tylicki cratead a list of 40 more catastrophic moves (as in transactions) in MLB and the A.J. Pierzynski trade was ranked number 32 (for the Giants) Twins releasing David Ortiz was number 21. Of course number 1 was the Red Sox selling Babe Ruth to the Yankees. And Clay Davenport projects the Twins to win 68 games in 2012 (second worse record in the majors) and finish in the basement of AL Central 24 games behind the Tigers. Deja vu all over again. I don't buy it.

  • One particular Twins' prospect achieved something bigger than baseball in real life

  • 2012 Twins' organization Free Agents: 1B Jeff Bailey, RHP Andy Baldwin, C Jair Fernandez, C Steve Holm, SS Paul Kelly, 3B Chase Lambin, OF Jeremy Reed, and LHP Jake Stevens are still looking for a team. In total, there are 309 minor league free agents who are currently unemployed. Add about 113 MLB free agents not signed yet, and you might get the big picture of the baseball economy when the lights dim.

  • On a totally unrelated note, Ben Revere has his own web site. Check it out

  • Here is a great interview of Bobby Randall, former Twins' middle infielder in the mid 70s, by Jeremy Deckard of the Topeka Capital-Journal.

  • This is a great article by Adelaide Now about the grand-daddy of Aussie Pitching who happened to be the 10th Aussie living the country to sign with an MLB team. He was signed by the Twins when he was 17th, back when George H. W. Bush was the president of the US, and the Twins were just coming off their second World Series Championship. He actually spent all his pro career with the Twins and made it all the way to Fort Myers. After a 3 year tour of the US Independent leagues (2 yeast in the Frontier League and one in Northern League) he returned back to Australia, when George H. W. Bush's son was the US president.

The parting shot today is a video of Ron Gardenhire, Brian Duensing and Glen Perkins in the Twins' Caravan from Fox 9 News:

Twins Caravan 2012: Gardenhire, Perkins & Duensing: MyFoxTWINCITIES.com

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