GameChat: Twins @ Indians, 6:05 pm

It feels like every week since the All Star break has been a “big week”… and I guess most of them have been big. But the upcoming week is a BIG week.

While the Twins are visiting Cleveland for three games against the Indians this weekend, the Bitch Sox are hosting the struggling Royals. Then the Twins visit The (Prison) Cell for the last three head-to-head games between those teams of the season. It’s pretty clear that whatever slim hopes the Sox have rest on them significantly closing the 6-game gap by which they currently trail the Twins. Let’s keep the pressure on and put this thing away early!

Let’s take a glance at today’s news (the Twins stuff is courtesy of LaVelle from his Strib blog)

Danny Valencia ia back in the lineup! It’s great that Gardy has been able to be conservative in his handling of Valencia and a big thank you goes to Matt Tolbert for stepping in and allowing the Twins to make sure Valencia didn’t have to be rushed back. Let’s hope that hammy is fully healthy and ready for the stretch run.

Little Nicky Punto has been reactivated from the DL but his hamstring isn’t quite healed yet. He’s available to play defense, but not pinch run.

Jose Mijares is throwing well and may be reactivated from the DL tomorrow.

Jim “Mr Incredible” Thome should be recovered from his abdominal strain in time to DH tomorrow.

Jason Repko is back with the team after some time off to be with his wife for the birth of their daughter.

Jeff Smith, manager of the Twins’ AA affiliate in New Britain, has joined the team as an extra coach (I’ll be polite and NOT mention the Rock Cats’ record this year… but clearly this promotion was not a reward for his team’s success).

Finally, it has been a bad week to be a former Twin and current Met. Luis Castillo is catching a fair amount of PR heat for being one of three Mets who failed to show up for a “voluntary” trip to Walter Reed Medical Center for a visit with wounded servicemembers and for the second season in a row, Johan Santana’s season has come to a premature end due to injury. (I hope you’re enjoying all those big bucks you left the Twins to make, Johan… while you watch the postseason from your couch… again. No, I’m not bitter… really… ok, maybe just a little.)

So on to tonight’s game!

I always have trouble urging the Twins to do significant damage to the Indians… no matter what I type, it just seems to come out politically incorrect. So I’ll just say WIN TWINS!

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TWINS @ INDIANS
Span, CF Brantley, CF
Hudson, O, 2B Cabrera, A, SS
Mauer, DH Choo, RF
Kubel, RF Hafner, DH
Cuddyer, 1B Nix, J, 3B
Young, D, LF LaPorta, 1B
Valencia, 3B Crowe, LF
Hardy, SS Donald, 2B
Butera, C Marson, C
Pavano, P Carmona, F, P

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1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
Minnesota 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 3 0
Cleveland 0 1 0 0 1 0 0 0 x 2 6 0

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Gotta say this for our guys… when they decide to lose a game, they can do it without wasting a whole lot of time. The Twins fell to the Tribe and Fausto Carmona 2-0 in a game that took less than two hours to play.

A triple by Denard Span and singles by Jason Kubel and JJ Hardy were all the Twins managed to accomplish on the night as Carmona breezed through the last 5 innings or so.

Carl Pavano nearly equaled Carmona’s effort, spreading 6 hits and a walk in yet another complete game effort. He did give up a HR to Anthony LaPorta.

It’s too early to tell whether the Sox will gain any ground tonight. As this is being written, they’re tied with the Royals 1-1 in the 5th and Ozzie is in the process of getting tossed from the game for arguing the second balk call against Mark Buehrle. Let’s hope the Landed Gentry can pull this off and the Twins burn the assbats before the game tomorrow night! – JC

UPDATE: Yeah, that friggin AJ screwed the Twins over again last night. His 8th inning hit drove in two runs to give the Bitch Sox the win over the Royals. Ah well, come the first week of October, AJ and his buddies will be packing up the spikes and I’m not sure he’s even going to have a job in Chicago next season. – JC

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