Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Twins Minor League Report (4/29): Harrison Gets Hot

Weather played an issue in Minneapolis, as the Twins couldn't get in the first game of their series with the Dodgers. The game will be made up as part of a split doubleheader on Thursday. Kyle Gibson was supposed to start on Sunday before a rainout and now he got pushed back to Wednesday. He should be well rested.

Some of the other speculation for Thursday is about who the Twins could call-up to be their 26th man for the doubleheader. The Twins could be looking at starting pitcher to start one of the games. Some of the options on the 40-man roster are left-handed pitchers Kris Johnson and Logan Darnell. Otherwise Gibson would need to pitch on short rest over the weekend. 

Rochester --, Charlotte -- (Postponed)
For the sixth time this season, the Red Wings were postponed because of weather. This is their fourth home game that was lost due to weather. 

Since Charlotte isn't scheduled to return to Rochester this season, this game will be made up when the Red Wings visit the Knights at the beginning of June. The exact date is yet to be announced but the series runs from June 3rd to June 6th. Rochester will be considered the home team for one of the games and get to bat last. 

New Britain --, Harrisburg -- (Postponed)
For the second time in five days, the Rock Cats were unable to take the field because of rain. It's been tough for the Rock Cats to get any rhythm as a club with all of their weather issues in the last month. The team is in the middle of a three game losing streak.

Today's contest is rescheduled as part of a doubleheader on Thursday evening. Taylor Rogers was the scheduled starter so he will be pushed back to one of the other starts in this series with Harrisburg. New Britain needs to find a way to start winning some ball games. 

Fort Myers 7, Bradenton 1
Matt Tomshaw got the Miracle started off on the right foot by throwing four innings of one-run ball. He struck out four and walked one. It was his first start of the season as he has been building up some arm strength over his first three appearances. Tim Shibuya covered the next two frames and only allowed one hit. There have been some rough outings for Shibuya this season so it was nice to see a clean couple of innings.

Five hitters had multiple hit games for the Miracle. Travis Harrison lead the way with a 3-for-5 night including a double and two RBI. It was his second three hit game in his last three appearances. Levi Michael and Aderlin Mejia each added a double of their own to the hit parade. Meijia matched Harrison with two RBI of his own. 

The Miracle have been on quite the roll during the last week as the club has won six of their last seven games. They will try to finish off the sweep of Bradenton tomorrow night with Brett Lee on the mound.  

Cedar Rapids 1, Kane County 2
In his longest start of the season, Ethan Mildren pitched six frames and scattered eight hits with four strikeouts. He allowed one earn run to lower his ERA to 2.50 on the season. Brandon Bixler picked a bad time to give up his first run of the season, a streak that lasted 11.1 innings and six games. He gave up a couple of hits and a walk which turned into the winning run for Kane County. 

Mitch Garver was the lone Kernels hitter with more than one hit. He went 3-for-4 with a double and a run scored. Chad Christensen ended a streak of 15 consecutive games reaching base after he went 0-for-4. Bryan Haar finally ended a rough hitless streak. He had been hitless in his last 21 at-bats coming into tonight but he went 1-for-4 to end the streak. 

Twins Daily Minor League Pitcher of the Day: Ethan Mildren, Cedar Rapids Kernels
Twins Daily Minor League Hitter of the Day: Travis Harrison, Fort Myers Miracle

Rochester- Scheduled Off Day
New Hampshire @ New Britain (6:00 CST)- Taylor Rogers*
Bradenton @ Fort Myers (6:05 CST)- Brett Lee
Kane County @ Cedar Rapids (6:35 CST)- Josue Montanez
*Scheduled to changed because of today's postponement

25-Man Roster Dissection: Sam Fuld

The Twins have gone through a little bit of a roster shake-up in the last couple of weeks. This lead to Darin Mastroianni returning to Toronto, the team the Twins originally claimed him from. Mastroianni was available because the Twins claimed Sam Fuld from the Oakland Athletics. Both of these players have similar skill sets so there was no reason to have them both on the roster.

Fuld had already made an appearance at Target Field earlier this season when he visited with the Oakland Athletics. He hit a home run in one of his 15 at-bats so maybe the Twins like what they saw from him. Fuld is probably most famous for his tenure with the Rays organization, where he became a fan favorite.

2013 Recap: .199/.270/.267, 2 HR, 0 2B, 17 RBI (119 Games)
Fuld played the most big league games of his career in 2013 but the results weren't exactly fantastic. He hit under .200 and his slugging percentage was actually lower than his on-base percentage. His defense in the outfield is good enough to play center field but he doesn't have the power numbers to get consistent playing time in a corner spot. The Rays continued to play Fuld even though he was hitting below his career numbers across the board. In 2012, Fuld played in limited action but he hit above his career average. He had 20 steals in 2011 but he played over 100 games and he hasn't gotten back close to that number in recent years.

Forecasting 2014: .236/.312/.368, 2 HR, 7 2B, 25 RBI (85 Games)
It's hard to know what kind of role Fuld will play with the Twins. He got some playing time in his first series with the club but some of that time was to give other players on the roster a break. He's 32-years old so there isn't a ton of upside to having him on the roster. His ability to back-up center field is a plus since Aaron Hicks might need to have an occasional mental break. Ideally, the Twins will be using other players on the roster on a more frequent basis and Fuld can serve as a late-inning defense replacement or a pinch runner. If Fuld does get more playing time, it will likely be due to the fact that one of the other regular outfielders suffered some kind of injury. This is probably not something the Twins would not like to see from a player on the fringes of their roster.

25-Man Roster Safety: On the Fringe

Monday, April 28, 2014

Examining Chris Colabello's Surprising Start

It has been quite the surprising first month of the season for Mr. Chris Colabello.

The older than average sophomore slugger had the opportunity to go play overseas this off-season but he wanted to continue to live out his big league dream. This probably would have been my choice too after it took him multiple seasons in independent baseball to even get a sniff of the major leagues.

Because of early season injuries to Josh Willingham and Oswaldo Arcia, Colabello has been a staple in the middle of the Twins line-up. Batting in the heart of the order has allowed him plenty of opportunities. Those opportunities have resulted in him leading the AL in RBI (Jose Abreu passed him over the weekend) while also being in second place in doubles.

Things have sure changed in a hurry for Colabello. In his rookie season, he batted under .200 with a .631 OPS. His strikeout total piled up as he whiffed 58 times in only 160 at-bats. Ten total extra-base hits were not nearly enough to make up for all of the swings and misses. Overall, these were the types of numbers the Twins wanted to see from a first baseman/corner outfielder.

Obviously somethings is going different so far this season. Colabello's batting average is over 100 points higher and his OPS has jumped over 200 points. He has been locked in at the plate and he looks like one of the best hitters in the American League.

Digging deeper into the numbers there are a few noticeable differences. So far this season, Colabello's line-drive percentage has increased from 13.7% last year to close to over 18%. He has cut down on his ground ball percentage and increased his rate of fly balls. Over the course of a season, this could result in more home runs and possibly more extra-base hits.

He also seems to be finding extra-base hits all over the diamond. Last season, the majority of his extra-base hits were to opposite field. Each of his three home runs this season has gone to a different part of the field. While most of his doubles have still been to opposite field, he has shown the ability to pull the ball to pick up an extra-base hit.

The only change Colabello made to his batting stance this offseason was moving his right foot a little closer to the plate. In his rookie season, opposing pitchers were able to pound the outside part of the strike zone against him. This is one of the reasons he had to collect most of his extra-base hits going to the opposite field. By slightly altering his swing, he's gotten better plate coverage and it seems to be working for him.

As a team, the Twins seem to be adopting a policy of not swinging to help the team to a hot offensive start. The club as a whole has taken an approach of "walking their way to wins" as players on the team are being patient and getting on base. Collabello is the lone batter in their top nine that has swung more frequently than last year but that can be expected with how he's been swinging the bat.

Hot starts in April don't always lead to prolonged success throughout the regular season. When the Twins roster is back to full strength, it is going to be hard for Ron Gardenhire not to write Colabello's name down on the line-up card.

He continues to surprise the baseball world and I doesn't seem like he would like to have it any other way.

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Episode 80: Tommy Watkins and Three Amigos

Paul is gone again, but we’re still here! While he’s gone we put pine tar all over our bodies and get ejected in the 2nd inning. You can download the new Talk to Contact (@TalkToContact) episode via iTunes or by clicking here.
The Twins won a double header against the Jays, but other than that things have been less than stellar for the team in the past week.  We dive into some stories from the week that was, including the acquisition of Sam Fuld and what it means for Aaron Hicks, the retirement of Jason Bartlett, and what to make of Chris Colabello.

It is an exciting time to be a podcast listener because this week Cody runs an interview for the first time in the history of the podcast as we chatted with the Cedar Rapids Kernels’ Hitting Coach, Tommy Watkins.  Watkins has coached several of the current Minnesota Twins and shares some of his baseballing knowledge with us.  

We also take some time to talk about the unhearlded pitcher Yohan Pino who has been pitching in Minors for 10 years without a MLB appearance.  Of coure, the usual – beer, baseball and the news to round out the show.

Enjoy the show.

If you enjoy our podcast, please take a couple extra minutes and rate and review us on iTunes. Ratings and reviews are pretty cool, you guys.

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Twins Minor League Report (4/22): Vicious Vasquez

Things were a struggle for Kyle Gibson on Tuesday night. The Rays pounced on him for seven runs and he was saddled with his first loss of this young season. David Price pitched nine strong innings and showed why he is one of the best pitchers in baseball.

The good thing is that it appears as if Brian Dozier is going to continue to hit a lot of home runs this season. Chris Colabello also seemed comfortable at the plate as he collected his second home run. He also saw 20 pitches over his four at-bats while no other Twins player saw more than 14.
Rochester 7, Pawtucket 5
Box Score
The Red Wings offense was very balanced as six different men had RBI in the game and most of the damage came in a six-run seventh inning. Chris Parmelee extended his hit streak to a season-long seven games. Eric Harris went 2-for-4 and scored two runs. Chris Rahl hit his fifth double and Wilkin Ramirez hit his second triple of the season. The team went 5-for-13 with runners in scoring position.

Logan Darnell started for Rochester and pitched five strong innings. He allowed two earned runs on three hits including six strikeouts and two walks. Yohan Pino did some fantastic work in relief by striking out nine hitters in only four innings of work.

With their 10th win of the season, the Red Wing matched their win total from last April. The team hasn't had a winning month of April since 2007 and they currently sit with a record of 10-8.

New Britain 2, New Hampshire 1
Box Score
This low scoring affair saw the Rock Cats squeak out their fifth victory of the season. Virgil Vasquez didn't pick up a decision in this game but he pitched seven scoreless innings by allowing three hits on only 84 pitches. It was his first start of the season after being used in relief in his first two appearances this year. Jim Fuller allowed the only run scored by New Hampshire but he ended up "earning" his first win of the season.

It was a doubles party for New Britain as Tony Thomas, Reynaldo Rodriguez, and Brandon Waring all collected a two-bagger. Rodriguez had a multiple hit game for the fourth time in his last seven games. Anderlin Mejia didn't join the doubles party but he had two hits and he scored a run. Because of some bad weather and poor play, this was New Britain's first victory since April 13th.  

Fort Myers 1, Jupiter 5
The Miracle couldn't get to Jupiter starter Scott Lyman as he tossed six scoreless frames. Jason Wheeler got hit around over 4.2 innings as the Miracle starter. He allowed five runs on seven hits with three strikeouts and a walk. Tyler Jones and Mason Melotakis combined to pitch the last 3.1 innings without allowing a hit.

Levi Michael was the lone Miracle batter with more than one hit. He went 2-for-4 and he has three multiple hit games out of the last eight. Travis Harrison cracked his first triple since 2012 in the rookie leagues. Max Kepler knocked in Harrison with a single to score the only run of the game.

Cedar Rapids 1, Peoria 4
In three out of his four starts this season, Ryan Eades has allowed three runs or fewer but the Kernels continued struggle to find ways to support his efforts. Tonight Eades tossed 5.2 innings of two-run baseball with five strikeouts. It was his third loss of the season. Josue Montanez took over for Eades and allowed one run over the last 2.1 frames.

Chad Christensen did his best to keep the Kernels in the game as he went 3-for-4 with a run scored and a stolen base. He was also the only batter in the line-up that didn't strikeout at some point in the contest. Tanner Vavra had the only extra-base hit for Cedar Rapids, his fourth double of the season. The team left six men on base and went 1-for-6 with runners in scoring position.

Twins Daily Minor League Pitcher of the Day: Virgil Vasquez, New Britain Rock Cats
Twins Daily Minor League Hitter of the Day: Chad Christensen, Cedar Rapids Kernels

Rochester @ Pawtucket (5:15 CST)- Alex Meyer
New Hampshire @ New Britain (5:35 CST)- DJ Baxendale
Jupiter @ Fort Myers (6:05 CST)- Tyler Duffey
Cedar Rapids @ Peoria (11:00 CST)- Ethan Mildren

25-Man Roster Dissection: Caleb Thielbar

Glen Perkins, Anthony Swarzak, and some of the other names out in the bullpen get a little more press than other younger arms. This comes with the territory and their important role for the team. The younger arms in the Twins bullpen are just as important as they could be part of the next winning club in Minnesota.

Experience is always key to the growth of a team and some of these players have gained value able service time over the last couple of seasons. Because of poor starting pitching, the Twins relied a lot on their bullpen last season. There are positives and negatives that come out of this reliance. Hopefully, these pitchers didn't get wore down last year and they can continue to find success in 2014.

2013 Recap: 1.76 ERA, 0.82 WHIP, 39 SO, 14 BB (46.0 IP)
Thielbar didn't join the Twins organization until the 2011 season after being let go by the Brewers and taking a brief stop with the St. Paul Saints. After pitching for the three highest levels in the minors during 2012, he made his debut with the Twins last season and it doesn't seem like he will be looking back.Thielbar put together a very impressive rookie campaign as he was named the Twins Most Outstanding Rookie. The Minnesota native held opponents to a .149 batting average over 49 appearances. He set the club record by starting his career with a 17.1 inning scoreless streak. Thielbar also tied for fifth most appearances by an American League rookie.

Forecasting 2014: 3.55 ERA, 1.34 WHIP, 48 SO, 24 BB (55.0 IP)
It's tough to imagine things going as well for Thielbar as they did in his first season. He's already given up two earned runs over six innings pitched which has him sitting at a 3.00 ERA. There is always the stipulation that it has been a small sample size but he hasn't allowed a run in his last four appearances. Some members of the bullpen have struggled at this early juncture of the season and it could mean more high leverage situations for other younger pitchers. Jared Burton has looked horrible and someone like Thielbar could be eased into a late inning role over the course of the current campaign. It helps that Thielbar is a left-handed pitcher so the Twins can rely on him to come in against some tough lefties and get some big outs at the end of games. He might not be on pace for the same kind of year but he could be an important piece of the next winning team in Minnesota.

25-Man Roster Safety: On the Bubble (Only because he has options left)

Monday, April 21, 2014

Should Brian Dozier Move Back to Shortstop?

It has been rough start to the season for Pedro Florimon. He's collected six hits over 40 at-bats and he has two extra-base hits to his name. There weren't high offensive expectations for Florimon when the season began but he has clearly under-performed. He is a defensive first middle infielder but his offensive has become painful to watch. It's hard to know where the line should be set for Florimon to stay on the field.

One of the biggest holes for the Twins moving forward could be the gap at shortstop. Florimon was never meant to be a long-term solution but Minnesota's future at shortstop is a little cloudy. Danny Santana is lurking at Triple-A but there are questions about his defensive skills. Niko Goodrum is in the lower levels of the minors and it will likely be multiple years before he is ready for big league action.

So what could the Twins do to improve their shortstop situation in the short term?

An option that might not have been considered yet by the Twins could be moving current second baseman Brian Dozier back over to shortstop. Dozier played all but a handful of games in the minor leagues at shortstop and he played there for his entire rookie season in 2012. Because of his poor performance in his first season, the Twins decided to shift Dozier to the other side of the infield.

In the minor leagues, Dozier was never lights out when it came to defense at shortstop. As he moved up the ladder, he was able to improve his fielding percentage and cut back on some of his defensive miscues. The 2011 season was his last full season in the minors and he only had nine errors in close to 400 chances at shortstop.

When the Twins brought Dozier up in 2012, people wanted to see some promising signs after suffering through the poor play of Tsuyoshi Nishioka. Dozier struggled in the field with 15 errors in 413 chances. His offense wasn't nearly enough to overcome his defensive flaws so the Twins were forced to try something different.

Last season was a breakout campaign for Dozier as he smacked a team record 18 home runs from his new position at second base. He also played terrific defense and it looked like the Twins might have solidified one of their middle infield positions for the foreseeable future.

The Twins aren't likely to make a major position switch like this with Dozier in the middle of the season. It's more convenient for the player and the team if they have an entire offseason to adjust to the switch. If Minnesota were to move Dozier, he wouldn't get to every ball but he could be passable and his power from the position would be a welcome upgrade.

There are other second baseman working their way through the Twins minor league system and it might be nice to have Dozier back at his original position. For now, the Twins are scoring plenty of runs even with Florimon in the line-up on a regular basis. A drastic move might not be necessary...

at least not yet...

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Episode 79: Brian Dozier is Robinson Cano and Other Lies

Happy birthday to our very own Jay Corn!  As a birthday present to Jay, Paul skipped the show!  Without him Eric is free to heap all of the praise in the world on Brian Dozier, and he does. You can download the new Talk to Contact (@TalkToContact) episode via iTunes or by clicking here.

Jay Corn revisits his prediction that Josmil Pinto will hit 25 home runs (which is not looking so bad right now), and we wonder what might happen to Pinto’s playing time when Josh Willingham and/or Oswaldo Arcia return from the DL and Chris Herrmann goes back to AAA.  The jabbering continues with Logan Darnell, one of three AAA left handers in the Rochester starting rotation.  Lots of beer talk this week, and Eric is a little over excited about his “bready beer” and then the gang goes Around the League.

Enjoy the show!

You can follow Eric on Twitter (@ERolfPleiss) or read his writing at Knuckleballs Blog, you can find Paul on Twitter (@BaseballPirate) and read his writing at PuckettsPond.com, and you can find Mr. Jay Corn on Twitter (@Jay__Corn)!

If you enjoy our podcast, please take a couple extra minutes and rate and review us on iTunes. Ratings and reviews are like syrup for our metaphorical banana walnut pancakes.

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Twins Minor League Report (4/15): Kernels Streak Ends

For the second Tuesday in a row, weather played havoc on the Twins farm system. Only half of the teams were able to get on the field and both of those teams didn't exactly like the results on the night. Some hitters continued their hot starts to the year but the pitching seemed to be the biggest problem on this night

Fans who braved the weather at Target Field got to see Phil Hughes get off to a great start before giving up a chunk of runs in the sixth inning. The Blue Jays have held the Twins number in recent years. Since 2010, Toronto has a 21-7 record versus Minnesota and things haven't been pretty during that stretch.
Rochester --, Pawtucket -- (Postponed)
Today's game between Rochester and Pawtucket was postponed due to inclement weather. The teams will play one game tomorrow (Wednesday) at 2:35 CST and they will make up today's game as part of a doubleheader on Thursday. The first game of the doubleheader is scheduled for 12:05 CST and game two will start approximately 30 minutes after the conclusion of game one. Scott Diamond was scheduled to make his third start of the year before the weather acted up. He is off to a rough start after allowing eight earned runs in five innings of work through two starts.

New Britain --, New Hampshire -- (Postponed)
The weather in the Northeast part of the US was not cooperating when it came to baseball action. Much like Rochester, New Britain wasn't able to play their game on Tuesday evening. It will be made up at some point later this season. DJ Baxendale was scheduled to make his third start of the year. He currently has a 5.91 ERA after giving up seven runs over 10.2 innings on the mound.

Fort Myers 4, Charlotte 6
Box Score
Fort Myers held 2-run leads at two different points in this game but it still wasn't enough. Tim Shibuya surrendered four runs including a three-run home run in the eighth inning to see the victory slip away. Jason Wheel started the game and gave up two runs on eight hits. He struck out three and walked two. It was the first time this season he allowed more than one earned run in a start.

Levi Michael continued his hot hitting streak by going 3-for-4 with a run scored. He has gone 7 for his last nine and he has been on base in 9-of-11 plate appearances. Dalton Hicks collected the only extra-base hit for the Miracle, his third double of the young season. Max Kepler had two hits for the second time this season and he ended a six-game hitless streak.

Cedar Rapids 5, South Bend 7
Box Score
The Kernels were off to a scorching start with victories in six straight games. Cedar Rapids starter Ryan Eades got beat-up as he allowed five earned runs in three innings. On the positive side, he did record five strike outs but South Bend pounded out eight hits. Josue Montanez came on in relief and struck out six of the eight outs he recorded while limiting the Silver Hawks to one run.

Mitch Garver has started 12 games for the Kernels and he has five home runs so far. His fifth home run of the season put him in first place in the Midwest League in home runs and total bases. Tanner Vavra collected a hit to extend his hitting streak to seven games. Bryan Haar hit a two-run homer, his second in three games.

Twins Daily Minor League Pitcher of the Day: Josue Montanez, Cedar Rapids Kernels
Twins Daily Minor League Hitter of the Day: Levi Michael, Fort Myers Miracle

Pawtucket @ Rochester (2:35 CST)- Scott Diamond
New Britain @ New Hampshire (9:35 CST)- Taylor Rogers*
Fort Myers @ Charlotte (9:00 CST)- Tyler Duffey
South Bend @ Cedar Rapids (6:35 CST)- Ethan Mildren
*Subject to change because of today's weather delay

Monday, April 14, 2014

25-Man Roster Dissection: Kyle Gibson

Minnesota's pitching rotation had some rough moments at the beginning of the season. This weekend's series with the Royals helped to get things moving in the right direction. Even with the tough patches, one of the strongest members of the rotation has been Kyle Gibson. He's earned victories in each both of his starts this season and he has a miniscule 1.59 ERA.

There were questions in the spring about whether Gibson would make the team or not. Scott Diamond, Vance Worley, and Sam Deduno were all out of options so many felt they would be given the chance to start the year in Minnesota. Poor performances from a couple names on the list and a strong spring from Gibson earned him the final spot and a chance to prove his first round pedigree.

2013 Recap: 6.53 ERA, 1.75 WHIP, 29 SO, 20 BB (51.0 IP)
In his first full season back from Tommy John surgery, there were positive signs from Gibson at the Triple-A level. His posted an ERA under 3.00 and he racked up 87 strikeouts in a little over 100 innings on the mound. With how bad the rotation was pitching in Minnesota, there were some who were clamoring to see Gibson at the big league level well before he made his debut. He made 10 starts for the Twins in the second half of the season and there were some bumps and bruises along the way. He allowed seven home runs and his BB/9 and SO/9 rates were well below his marks in the minor leagues. There can be some fatigue on a pitchers arm at the end of season especially one that hadn't pitched more than 95.1 innings in any minor league campaign. There was still some hope for Gibson at the end of last season and fans were left wonder what to expect moving into 2014.

Forecasting 2014: 4.40 ERA, 1.47 WHIP, 86 SO, 52 BB (130.0 IP)
Gibson's good start to the season doesn't mean he will be in the hunt for this year's Cy Young Award. His ERA will go up and he won't be able to win all of the starts that he makes. To this point in the year, he has walked more men (8) than he has struck out (6) so that will be a trend to keep an eye on. The ball has stayed in the park so far this year but it has been a small sample size. It would be nice to see him last a little longer into games as he has been averaging less than six innings pitched. The Twins bullpen is going to need any break it can get this year and it always helps when the starter can pitch into the seventh inning. There shouldn't be any reason for the Twins to send Gibson down to Rochester since he is 26-years old and the team needs to see what they have in him for the future. He does have minor league options left so there is a chance the team could send him down but hopefully Gibson continues to pitch well enough so that won't be an option for the team.

25-Man Roster Safety: Loosely Locked-In

Friday, April 11, 2014

DVD CONTEST: 1991 World Series Box Set

If you listened to this week's episode of Talk to Contact, you heard us discuss the details of a contest for a great DVD box set. A+E Networks has graciously given us two copies of the 1991 World Series Collector's Edition Box Set, a $69.99 value on MLB.com. They are having a great deal on digital downloads of their products because of Opening Day. 

To celebrate the new season, A+E Networks Home Entertainment has launched a digital download sale on nearly 100 great programs from Major League Baseball, encompassing some of the league’s best TV programming, special documentaries and features, as well as the annual crowning achievement: the Official World Series Film, from 1943 to the present day.

Allowing fans to watch everything from their favorite teams and players to some of the greatest moments in Major League Baseball history anywhere a smartphone or tablet can go, MLB’s digital downloads have never been easier to attain!  Until April 15, simply visit www.iTunes.com/MLB to purchase any of the specially-priced programs, including:
·         100 Years of Wrigley Field
·         All-Time Bloopers
·         Angels Memories
·         Astros Memories: The Greatest Moments in Astros Baseball History
·         Baseball Seasons: 2004
·         Bloopers: Baseball’s Best Blunders
·         Bryce Begins
·         Detroit Tigers: Hometown Heroics
·         Fenway Park Centennial – 100 Years as the Heart of Red Sox Nation
·         Game 162
·         Letters from Jackie: The Private Thoughts of Jackie Robinson
·         Major League Baseball Official World Series Films, 1943-2013
·         Major League Baseball’s All-Century Team
·         MLB 25: Greatest Postseason Home Runs
·         New York Mets: 50 Greatest Players
·         Pride and Perseverance: The Story of the Negro Leagues
·         Prime 9 Vol. 1 (TV Episodes 9 x .5 hr)
·         Sudden Death Baseball
·         Superstars: Impact Players
·         Superstars: World Powers
·         The Best of the Home Run Derby
·         This Week in Baseball, Season. 1 (TV Episodes 17 x .5 hr)
·         World Series: History of the Fall Classic

Here's what you need to do to enter:
2. Think of a creative nickname for a current member of the Twins organization (players, coaches, and front office staff are all in play).
3. Send us a tweet using the hashtag #TwinsNickname and we will pick out our top two
(Don't let Jay Corn win this contest!)

It's as simple as that. Have fun and we look forward to reading your entries.

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Talk to Contact: Episode 78

For the first time in a long time we have a full week of Twins baseball to talk about on the podcast. We talk about Ron Gardenhire's 1000th managerial win, a couple of disabled list moves that brought both Chris Herrmann and Darin Mastroianni back to the Twins, and pontificate on what early season attendance numbers mean for the club going forward. You can download the new Talk to Contact (@TalkToContact) episode via iTunes or by clicking here.

We're running a promotional giveaway. Make sure to listen to the end for the details and your chance to win a 1991 World Series box set (#TwinsNickname).

We are joined by Jeremy Nygaard (@jeremynygaard) of Twins Daily's Hang out and Talk Twins video/podcast (@TwinsHangouts) to discuss the roster moves, the Twins payroll in 2014 and what it means for the future of the franchise and if bringing in Stephen Drew is still a valid discussion point.

You'll also hear the weekly standby's hitter/pitcher of the week, and around the league. We had to put the Down on the Pond segment on hold this week, but next week we'll be taking a closer look at Twins AAA pitcher, Logan Darnell.

Thanks for the download. You can follow Paul on Twitter (@BaseballPirateor read his writing at Puckett's Pond,  Jay Corn is on Twitter ( @Jay__Corn), and you can find Eric on Twitter (@ERolfPleissand read his writing at Knuckleballs!
If you enjoy our podcast, please take a couple extra minutes and rate and review us on iTunesRatings and reviews have magical iTunes powers that will help the bullpen remember how to get outs.
Follow me, @NoDakTwinsFanon Twitter. Check out the Talk to Contact Podcast (@TalkToContactor email the show: talktocontact@gmail.com