Cuddy is our Buddy

I’m not really sure what to make of this, so I’m just going to lay the facts out there and let others draw conclusions… or not.

@mcuddy5 (Photo: JimCrikket, Knuckleballs)

If you follow Twins man-of-all-positions, Michael Cuddyer, on Twitter (@mcuddy5), you may have noticed a brief exchange last night between Michael and others about Mr. Incredible. I believe it started with a fan telling Cuddy that he looks like Mr. Incredible, to which Cuddyer responded that, no, that would be Jim Thome. That’s when things got interesting… at least from a Knuckleballs point of view.

Another tweeter forwarded Cuddyer a link to a web site that had an image of Mr. Incredible in a Thome Twins uniform. Since the link was condensed for use on Twitter, you had to link to it to find out where it linked to. I saw the re-tweet from @mcuddy5 and the comment that he thought the picture was great… and that’s about when my part of town lost electrical power. I spent the next hour and a half or so near my fireplace, reading by candlelight.

When the power came back on and I got around to firing the laptop back up, the first thing I did was check in here at Knuckleballs and glanced at the “Visitors” clicker. It didn’t look right. Doing a little digging just confused me more. Our counter widget showed we had had several hundred visitors in the past couple of hours.

Now… to a lot of our fellow Twins bloggers, that would probably be no big deal. But (and I know this may shock our loyal readers) there are weeks where we don’t get “several hundred visitors” to Knuckleballs, so this kind of activity was unusual, to say the least. Then I remembered the Cuddyer tweets.

Our Mr. Incredible, Jim Thome (Image: TD Davis)

A little investigating resulted in some good news and some bad news. The good news was that, yes, the condensed URL that a fan had sent to Michael and which he retweeted to his legions of followers was to one of CapitalBabs’ Knuckleballs posts. It included the image of Mr. Incredible as Jim Thome created by TD Davis (a friend of a friend of Babs’). The bad news is that the link was “bad” and for some reason wasn’t actually linking to the post. So the hundreds of new visitors were actually getting some kind of “page not available” message instead of seeing Mr. Davis’ terrific work of art… and our blog.

I sent @mcuddy5 a corrected link and I think others must have followed up with him as well… I admit I went to bed without spending much more time online… but this morning, it turns out we had over 900 visitors to our blog yesterday (and from the looks of things, most are now successfully reaching Babs’ Thome post) and a couple hundred of them took a peek at other pages as well as we ended up with something like 1,100 page views. By the time I got up this morning, thawed out, and looked in on the blog, we had another 150 or so visitors already this morning.

Seth Stohs wrote a piece this week for his SethSpeaks blog and the TwinsCentric blog on the Strib site about the way Twins fans, players and front office are interacting via Twitter. I have to admit that I’m very much a “minor league” Tweeter (@JimCrikket, if you must know), so maybe that’s why the effect of Cuddy’s retweet caught me so by surprise. Apparently this Twitter thing is popular.

As I stated at the outset, I’m not really sure what to make of this. I do think it’s great that Mr. Davis’ work got recognized and appreciated… I think it really is a cool image.

It doesn’t and won’t change what we do here, which is primarily just try to have fun and share our thoughts and opinions (for whatever they’re worth). But it was kind of fun seeing our numbers spike like that, even for just a day or two, and if a small number of those new visitors find their way back to us from time to time, that would be great, too.

– JC