Posted at 8:39 AM on July 10, 2006
by David Zingler
C: Joe Mauer .378/.446/.535, 7 HR, 45 RBI, 22 2B
Brings steady to another level. 22 doubles indicate more power is on the way.
Prediction: .350ish BA, 16 HR, 90ish RBI
1B: Justin Morneau .300/.352/.587, 23 HR, 73 RBI
Not an All Star, but he is the team’s offensive MVP.
Prediction: .290ish BA, 41 HR, 135ish RBI
2B: Luis Castillo .274/.336/.348, 2 HR, 29 RBI, 8 SB
A definite upgrade, but after a hot start you had to think his numbers would be better.
Prediction: .290ish BA, .350ish OBP
3B: Nick Punto .298/.384/.376, 12 RBI & Tony Batista .236/.303/.388 5 HR, 21 RBI
A miserable position; getting rid of Batista was a plus and I like Punto, but not as an everyday third baseman.
Grade: D+ (Punto C+, Batista F)
Prediction: Punto - .270ish BA, .350ish OPB
SS: Jason Bartlett .312/.411/.390, 8 RBI & Juan Castro .231/.258/.308, 14 RBI
It was a good week when Batista and Castro were banished. Bartlett looks to be on his way.
Grade: C- (Bartlett B, Castro D)
Prediction: Bartlett - .285ish BA, 360ish OBP
LF: Shannon Stewart .299/.355/.377, 21 RBI & Jason Kubel .293/.326/.489
It’s hard to grade this position because Stewart missed so much time and so many others, led by Kubel, put in time in his place.
Prediction: Stewart - similar to current stats, more time on DL. Kubel - .280ish BA, 17 HR
CF: Torii Hunter .264/.345/.443, 14 HR, 49 RBI, 6 SB
Hunter has done about as well as expected. He is key if the Twins hope to make a legit run at the playoffs.
Prediction: .260ish BA, .330ish OPB, 26 HR, 90ish RBI
RF: Michael Cuddyer .268/.362/.498, 11 HR, 48 RBI, 20 2B
One of the more pleasant surprises, looks to have found his power stroke.
Prediction: .270ish BA, .355ish OPB, 21 HR, 90ish RBI
DH: Rondell White .189/.209/.215 0 HR, 15 RBI, 181 AB
White’s play is a mystery. Hopefully, he will find his stroke during his Triple A “rehab” stint.
Prediction: Kubel and Stewart split time in this spot.
Bench: Mike Redmond, Luis Rodriguez, Lew Ford, Terry Tiffee, Ruben Sierra
Redmond has been outstanding, L-Rod solid, Ford shaky, Tiffee a bit part and Sierra an afterthought.
Stay tuned for the pitchers...
Posted at 2:19 PM on July 10, 2006
by Ben Tesch
The AP put together a little interactive tour of PNC Park in Pittsburgh, which you may know already is the home of the 2006 All-Star Game.
I always find it interesting when things considered unique to specific places/parks (famous beer vendors, interesting food, special box seats/clubs, etc) are in reality pretty much everywhere, in some sort of similar but different way.
Posted at 9:08 PM on July 10, 2006
by Josh Lee
The big news of the day is that Francisco "Santaninho" Liriano will be going to the All-Star Game after all. Liriano takes the place of Jose Contreras, who opted to rest his arm after having pitched on Sunday. This means that Twins fans (as well as fans of strikeouts, winning, and justice) can finally put down their pitchforks and torches and head home to watch the game tomorrow.
While you're celebrating Liriano's vindication, though, be sure to pause for a moment and mark the end of the Ruben Sierra era in Minnesota. The Twins released the ex-slugger today, thus erasing one more of their off-season acquisitions from the roster. On the plus side, this means that while the AL beats the stuffing out of the poor beleaguered NL tomorrow, we can while away the time trying to guess who the Twins will call up to replace Sierra on the roster. Will Rondell White make his triumphant return? Will Jason Tyner or Josh Rabe get the big call? Or does Terry Ryan have a sneaky trade up his sleeve?