Posted at 6:00 AM on May 9, 2007
by David Zingler
It’s near 6 pm on Tuesday and I am standing in the Twins clubhouse by Jason Tyner’s locker. Michael Cuddyer, Matt Guerrier, Joe Nathan and Jessie Crain are engaged in a game of cribbage nearby. Glen Perkins is watching.
Joe Mauer and Mike Redmond are chatting to my right. Mauer says something and leaves. I approach Redmond with a few questions on my mind:
ME: There have been a lot of injuries so far this year, that’s bad for the team, but it has opened up playing time for you. How’s that been?
REDMOND: It’s always nice to play. Obviously, if I am playing that means we got some guys hurt. But, what do you do? That’s the nature of the game – guys get hurt…The games go on and you’ve got to go out there and win ballgames.
ME: Are you going to grow sideburns – you’ve got a little bit – to replace Mauer?
REDMOND: No, no, there’s no way, man – nobody can replace Joe and what he brings day in and day out to this team. All I can do is go out there and grind it out and do the best I can. Hopefully, I’ll be able to do it and help out our pitchers.
ME: I’ve heard some in the media say that if the Twins play you too much, you will wear down. Do you disagree with that?
REDMOND: That’s their opinion. People in the media don’t know what I am capable of doing.
ME: Do you hear stuff like that?
REDMOND: Sure, I’ve heard stuff like that. I don’t worry about that stuff, I go out there and give it everything I’ve got, everyday, (but) I don’t think that that will prove it one-way or the other.
ME: It’s almost like you’re cursed, you do so well in limited duty (that people don’t want you to play everyday).
REDMOND: You know what man, I’ve been fighting stereotypes and labels my whole career and…that’s the way it goes – I don’t really think too much about that. I know what I can do and I am going to do the best I can.
ME: You had an interesting (major league) debut. You went three for three and were pinch hit for.
REDMOND: Three for three, with a homerun and I got pinch-hit for in the ninth. For Greg Zaun (laughs).
ME: (laugh) Welcome to the big leagues.
REDMOND: That was one of my welcome to the big league moments (laughs). No, really, it was a great day.
ME: I read that you grew up a fan of Pete Rose, is there any part of your game modeled after him?
REDMOND: Well…not really, but I think I play hard…play aggressively…I’m not fast, but I do like to get dirty.
ME: Do you think he should be in the Hall of Fame?
REDMOND: I think he should – yeah.
ME: Do you think he should be reinstated?
REDMOND: I think you would probably have to reinstate him to put him in the Hall of Fame. I think by his numbers alone, he should be in the Hall of Fame.
ME: Have you ever met him?
REDMOND: I haven’t met him.
ME: Were you surprised we he came out and admitted gambling (on baseball)?
REDMOND: Sure, it was surprising, but at least he came out and admitted it.
Posted at 10:59 AM on May 9, 2007
by David Zingler
Did anyone else notice A.J. Pierzynski’s visible disgust with David Aardsma after he air-mailed the first pitch of what was supposed to be an intentional walk of Nick Punto in the 8th inning last night? The controversial catcher looked back into the dugout and shrugged his shoulders as if to say, “Are you going to come get this guy or what?”
When Aardsma caused A.J. to leave his feet on the second pitch, he looked around with his arms out, acting like he wanted nothing to do with Aardsma, which only antagonized the crowd to further jeer his teammate. Pierzynski had a great run here and netted the Twins Joe Nathan, Boof Bonser and Francisco Liriano, so I hate to call him out, but you can’t do that to teammate, especially on the road. Catchers are supposed to be a supportive, calming influence on their pitchers. I guess A.J. missed that memo. Thankfully, the next two pitches were on target. It was painful to watch.
What a weird and wonderful night….