Saturday, May 24, 2008

Game 48: Twins 9, Tigers 4

Kevin Slowey picked up his first win of the season and the Twins got back on track with a big win against the Tigers who are arguably most disappointing team in the MLB.

The Twins pulled back to .500 (24-24) while the Tigers fell to 20-28.

Highlights of the game include:

- Third baseman Mike Lamb hit his first home-run of the season in the 6th inning off of starter Armando Galarraga.

- Justin Morneau and Lamb combined for the Twins extra base hits. (2 doubles for Morneau and a triple for Lamb)

- Tigers manager Jim Leyland was ejected for arguing balls and strikes in the top of the 7th inning.

- Michael Cuddyer only left two men in scoring position.

Tonight's game will feature Boof Bonser (2-5, 5.25) vs. Nate Robertson (1-5, 6.08). Be prepared as the game may break several MLB scoring records with the quality of pitching put out by both teams.

Start time is 6:05 CT.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008


Today is the 8th anniversary of the incredibly unfortunate death of former Timberwolf Malik Sealy.

It was 8 years ago today that he was killed by a drunk driver while on his way home from celebrating Kevin Garnett's birthday in Minneapolis.

It was a shocking and utterly depressing occurance to happen to someone as great a player and person as Sealy was. It is still something that daily affects the lives of Kevin Garnett and Joe Smith.

It was a tough situation to get over when you lose a teammate, especially in that fashion,” said Smith. “Everybody was close with Malik. That was the type of person he was."

During the Cavs/Celtics series, Garnett and Smith would bump arms before they entered the game. The reason? That is where their tatoo's to honor Malik are located.

That final season for Sealy was a special one. He had been around the league a little bit after being a standout player at St. Johns during his collegiate career. He hit several game winning shots and was a great person to have in the locker room.

I will never forget being at a game that season against the Indiana Pacers. My dad and I had season tickets at the time but had moved to the 4th row behind the hoop where the Wolves finished the game shooting on.

The Wolves were down by 2 with about a second left and Sealy got the ball just to the left of the key and put up a prayer. The ball hit the backboard and went in to give the Wolves a win. To this day, I remember everyone going nuts and Sealy's teammates mobbing him on the ground and celebrating their last second win. It was a great night for the Wolves and for Sealy.

He will always be remembered by fans in Minnesota as a great guy and a great player. He will surely be with Kevin as he makes his march towards his first NBA title. We, like Kevin, should always keep "MS2" in our hearts.


Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Game 37: Twins 7, Red Sox 3

Things continue to fall in place for the first place Twins. This series against the Red Sox brought about many thoughts about how the teams have changed, mainly the Twins, in the last year. The Red Sox made a push for Johan Santana but Sox GM Theo Epstein did not want to part with any of his youngsters.

Any of you who caught some of the games know who I'm talking about. Jon Lester, Clay Buchholz and Jacoby Ellsbury namely. Instead, the Twins traded Santana to the Mets for Carlos Gomez and change. They also picked up Craig Monroe, Mike Lamb, Adam Everett, Livan Hernandez, Delmon Young and Brendan Harris.

The Twins took 3 of 4 from the defending World Series champions and did so handily. Strong pitching and timely hits did it for the Twins in the 3 wins they picked up. Other than the 3 homeruns on Sunday, the Twins scored all of their runs off singles and doubles.

Last night was no different. Craig Monroe hit a big double in the 5th that scored two runs and helped the Twins to jump ahead 6-3.

Hernandez (6-1, 3.90) has been getting great run-support that Johan Santana never could seem to get. If Santana got this kind of run support (31-5 in runs scored to runs allowed this month for Hernandez) then he may have had a nice Cy Young streak going.

Monroe is coming up big in the DH role as well. Batting .290 with 4 HR and 15 RBI, he has shown the consistent big hitting that the Twins have lacked since releasing David Ortiz several years ago.

This team is staying true to its small ball roots and it is definitely proving to be worthwhile at the moment. Keep in mind though Twins fans, this team is pretty new and fairly young. Expect some more ups and downs this year but for the moment, enjoy what they are doing and let's keep cheering them on.

Next game: 5/13 vs. Toronto Blue Jays. 7:10 start time

Slowey (0-2, 6.48) vs. Jesse Litsch (4-1, 4.24)

Sunday, May 11, 2008

ESPN Primetime

Sunday Night Baseball on ESPN is featured in the Dome tonight as the Twins and Red Sox face off for the third game of their four game series.

Tonight will feature Tim Wakefield (2-1, 3.33) against Nick Blackburn (2-2, 3.65) and the game will start at 7:05 pm.

Check back tomorrow for the full recap of the game.

Friday, May 9, 2008

Neshek possibly out for season

Twins reliever Pat Neshek, who was injured while pitching yesterday, got some bad results from his MRI that was taken today. According to Le Velle E. Neal of the Star Tribune, Neshek was diagnosed with a partial tear of his ulnar collateral ligament (the one that is generally replaced in Tommy John surgery). He reports that Neshek will not be allowed to throw for at least three months, placing the time line at August 8th before he can even throw again, let alone pitch. This indicates that Neshek most likely will not pitch again this season.

This injury leaves an obvious hole in our bullpen, as Neshek was our top setup man. There are many people that could take over this role-

Juan Rincon - This is one of the most possible choices, as Rincon has a lot of experience and once held this role for the Twins. On the other hand, he has a 4.91 ERA and has allowed a run in 3 of his last 6 appearances. Though he will not be as trustworthy as Neshek, Rincon may be the Twins best option

Jesse Crain - Crain has been even less solid than Rincon in terms of his overall numbers this season. However, barring his 3-run inning against Detroit on April 15th, Crain has pitched pretty well this year.

Bobby Korecky - The former Triple-A Rochester closer, Korecky has shown that he can pitch a solid inning repeatedly. He could be a good option to hold the game until the Twins can get to Nathan in the ninth. With his lack of experience, though, Gardy will most likely keep him in a middle relief role.

Whoever gets the job, what's clear is that they will not be as dominating as Neshek has been the past few years. I have a feeling there will be a lot more frustrating 8th innings in the coming months than one would hope, and there is a small tear in an elbow ligament to thank for that. Get better soon Pat.

Thursday, May 8, 2008

Game 32: Twins 13, White Sox 1

The fortunes for the Minnesota Twins and Chicago White Sox traded places last night.

In Tuesday's game, the Twins were nearly no-hit by Gavin Floyd as the White Sox found a little pop in their offense. On Wednesday, the White Sox were the ones who struggled to find their offense and the Twins found plenty of offense in the most electric player in recent Twins history.

I, of course, mean the young spark plug named Carlos Gomez. Gomez went 4-5 with 3 RBI and became the first Twin to hit for the cycle since Kirby Puckett did it in 1986. Gomez raised his average to .282 and got the final single on an infield hit to acheive this great feat.

Livan Hernandez (5-1, 3.83) almost had the complete game shutout until Jermaine Dye hit a homerun with 1 out in the 9th. Hernandez has been a nice surprise to those outside of the Twins organization. I say this because not many people outside of the Twins clubhouse felt that Hernandez was really the answer to the departed Johan Santana. Last time I checked, the Twins and Mets had the same records and Hernandez has a 5-1 record to Santana's 3-2 record. Not a wash, but Hernandez is not doing anything to hurt the Twins.

Tonight's game features Lefty John Danks (2-3, 3.12) against Kevin Slowey (0-1, 8.10) who will be making his first start since pitching against the Los Angeles Angels on April 3rd.

Game time is 7:10 pm

Monday, May 5, 2008

Game 30: Twins 7, Tigers 6

The Twins continue to find ways to win...even if they probably shouldn't.

After a 45-pitch, 6 run first inning for Boof Bonser, you would think the Twins would have folded. The great part was that they got right back on that horse in the second inning.

Bonser came out and had a 5 pitch second inning much to the joy of interim manager Scott Ullger

"You come in and say, 'There's a lot of game left,' " Ullger said. "Well, there's the whole game left. So just chip away." (

Bonser showed that Ullger made the right move and the Twins offense picked him up later in the game. Joe Mauer had a big 2-run single in the 7th to take the lead for good as Joe Nathan pitched a scoreless 9th for his 11th save in 11 chances.

The Tigers continue to struggle and manager Jim Leyland refused to comment on any changes that will surely have to be made

"I'm not talking about that. There will be changes tomorrow," Leyland said. (

The Twins (16-14) now have a 1 1/2 game lead on the White Sox (losers of 3 straight to the Toronto Blue Jays this weekend) , who they start a three game series with on Tuesday in the Windy City.

That game will feature Nick Blackburn (2-1, 3.52) going against White Sox righty Gavin Floyd (2-1, 3.16) Tuesday night at 7:10 pm.

Sunday, May 4, 2008

Game 29: Twins 4, Tigers 1

The Twins pitchers continue to baffle the supposed to be powerful Detroit Tigers.

The Twins (15-14) moved into first place in the AL Central as Scott Baker lasted 3 innings, before re-aggrivating his right groin injury, and only gave up 1 hit and no runs with two strike outs. Releiver Brian Bass came up big with 4 innings pitched and only giving up 4 hits with no runs in relief for Baker.

Joe Nathan pitched a scoreless 9th for his 10th save in 10 attempts.

The Twins offense had big nights from Joe Mauer and Craig Monroe. Mauer went 3-4 with a double while Monroe went 2-3 with a 2-run home-run in the 7th inning.

Today's game will start at 1:10pm and will feature Boof Bonser (2-4) versus Kenny Rogers (2-3). Look for the regulars for both teams to get a good rest today.

Saturday, May 3, 2008

Game 28: Twins 11, Tigers 1

The Twins defeated the suddenly surging Detroit Tigers 11-1 last night.

They won the game by racking up 16 hits on 3 Tigers pitchers (4 were used overall), 5 extra base hits (4 doubles and a triple off the baggy by Jason Kubel) and a strong 7 inning, 8 hit and 1 earned run (a solo home-run by Magglio Ordonez) outing by Livan Hernandez.

The Tigers struggled to figure out Hernandez who baffled them with fastballs that barely made 90 mph and change-ups and curveballs that barely hit 65. He kept them off balance and did a great job getting out of jams. It came down to groundball outs and flyouts that Hernandez got.

Both teams left a good amount of runners on base (Detroit, 8 / Minnesota 9) but the Twins capitalized when they needed to.

All around it was a solid game by the Twins against a team, despite their sluggish start, who has been playing well as of late. The only concern was when Carlos Gomez was attempting to steal second in the 5th inning and was hit in the helmet by Ivan Rodriguez's throw. He was carted off the field but is reported to be okay.

Game two of the three game series will start at 6:10 pm tonight as Scott Baker, who returns from a groin injury last week against Texas, will face off against Justin Verlander.

Also, our thoughts go out to the entire Gardenhire family as manager Ron Gardenhire's brother suddenly passed away this week at his home in Oklahoma. Gardy will return in due time and until then 3rd base coach Scott Ulger will take over mangerial duties.

Check back tomorrow for a recap of tonight's game.

Friday, May 2, 2008

Land O' Links

Happy Friday!

We here at Court's Sports want to apologize for the extreme delay between posts here. As you know, my partner and I here on the site are both finishing up our school year and things have been pretty hectic.

Needless to say, with Owen's year winding down soon and my tennis season having ended, we will be getting you your news and links on the regular.

To ease you all back into the swing of things around here...TODAY'S LINKS! We've got a nice mix of sports and entertainment for you today.


- This is a touching story about one of the most famous voices in Professional sports. It will be a sad day in boxing when he no longer stands in the middle of the ring and gets everyone psyched.

- I continue to be involved in discussions (or arguments, depending on who you ask) with friends of mine who are Boston sports fans. No more than 10 years ago, just about every team in Boston was a complete embarassment to whatever sport they were in. Now all of a sudden with their success, articles like this are written. Let's get two things straight...1) Boston, you're welcome for your success (ex: Randy Moss, Kevin Garnett, David Ortiz, Lawrence Maroney) and 2) Keep in mind that 10 years ago, articles were written like this about you. Where's Belichek's humble pie when you need it? I want to see the Celtics win it all, but if they get upset by the Hawks...I'll move on.

- This made me throw up a little bit in my mouth. The early stages of Ashton and Demi. This is definitely one of those "we should have known..." sort of things. Referring to the eventual demise of Tom Cruise.

- The Miami Dolphins keep on adding to their pretty successful draft from last weekend. If you can, scroll down to the bottom right and click on the "Dolphins Draft busts/successes" slideshow. Some of the pictures are pretty funny and some are just the usual. By the end of it, I just thought "What would have happened had Ace not found Snowflake and Dan Marino?"

- I was just as happy as the next person to see the Rockies make their slightly improbable ( I say slightly because...well, come's the National League. Even the Cubs have a chance) run through the playoffs last year. It's a tough break for them with Tulowitzki going down but I am sure that they will be able to find some more lightning in a bottle right? As long as they finish within five games above or below .500, they'll be okay.

- I wish that some day I can get to a point in my career where I can just start sending out text messages that make ESPN. I have a feeling that the next one will be from Deshawn Stevenson that reads " gonna beat Lebrawn N lern to read" On that note, I came across an interview where a sportswriter said that Deshawn Stevenson was "good" for the playoffs. Reasons? He brings excitement and edge to an otherwise boring NBA Playoffs. I agree that the playoffs have been a little boring but I can't stand watching this guy play. He's like a mix of J.R. Rider, Ron Artest and those kids who can barely get into community college.

- Two words: Who Cares?

- One word: Surprised?

- I think that Justin Timberlake put it simply: "Cry Me a River"

And finally, the article of the day. You know what? I think, whether you want to or not, that this really just sums up the state of Minnesota. Still stuck in the 70's & 80's for the most part and no one really seems to care. I hope that this kids parents keep every memory of this honor. The best part is that his brother won it a few years ago, so they are really running a dynasty right now. Hopefully they've got a little girl waiting in the wings for her shot at glory.

One final quick note, find your way over to ESPN and check out the story about former Tennessee point guard Chris Lofton's struggle with testicular cancer. This story should open all our eyes to the idea that there may be more to someone than meets the eye. We should all keep that in mind the next time we decide to criticize a player for not working hard enough, or missing even the easiest of shots.

Have a great Friday and enjoy the weekend!