…or almost two weeks in, at least. I don’t think anyone could have fathomed that, even only after two weeks, we would be looking at the Marlins as the top team in the bigs. We all thought that the Birds (O’s and Jays, that is) would be battling it out in the AL East — it’s just that we thought they would be battling for the 4th and 5th slot, not the 1st and 2nd. And it looks like the Mariners are playing how everyone thought they should be playing before last season.
Unfortunately, these pleasant surprises for the baseball world have been a nightmare for Twins fans like me. Are Gardy and the boys simply unlucky in having to face the teams that are pitching well and murdering the ball at the plate? Or are these teams faring well against an overrated and lackluster Twins team, getting a jumpstart against a weak Minnesota opponent this year? ‘Course, it’s difficult to say. But the fairweather reactions of Twins fans usually don’t come this early in the season, nor are they as easily provoked.
My wife keeps telling me it’s a long season, but I think the Twins (and Twins fans) ought know by now that every game counts. If we all didn’t get that message in ’06, then we sure should have received the ugly confirmation of it last year.
What I have seen so far in this Twins season are a lot of leads being blown various times throughout a game. “Here, why don’t you just take the lead back. We don’t want it.” Of course, that’s a negative attitude and an inaccurate assessment of the reality of things, but c’mon already… the gopher balls and the inability of the bullpen (or starters, for that matter) to hold a lead are exhausting to watch… or listen to. Dick Bremer doesn’t help matters on television — he feels like a pallbearer calling the game when it swings out of the Twins reach. At least John Gordon calls a good game on the radio and touches upon the failures with a “Well, that’s baseball for ya, folks.” type of attitude.
And behold, as I type, Blackburn just blew a 2-0 lead over the Angels in the fifth inning. Angels lead now 3-2. The same Angels team that has struggled to score runs this season. Ohhhhhh well.
Yes, dear, it is a long season, indeed.