Found February 23, 2012 on The Victory Formation:

Just about a year ago, I extolled the joys of Target Field and pointed out that the Minnesota Twins finish to 2010 was better than expected. 2011 was going to be a different year. When I said different, I didn’t mean a 63-99 season. Last year was bad, just all around bad. It started out bad in spring training when Joe Mauer didn’t catch a game until mid-March, and then went downhill from there. The new 2B/SS Tsuyoshi Nishioka broke his leg a week into the season, and was an atrocious fielder and hitter when he came back. Sadly, the rest of the infield suffered from the same fielding problems all year. Delmon Young reverted to Delmon Young. The pitching staff, who lack a big power ace, tried to pitch to contact. That only works when the team can actually field the ball

To solve the problem, the Twins replaced general manager Bill Smith with former general manager Terry Ryan. This is a good thing, since Bill Smith never showed he could competently be a GM (so bad, but not Kenny Williams bad). Terry Ryan rebuilt the team . . . by cutting payroll. Some high priced talent (Michael Cuddyer, Jason Kubel) was allowed to walk and were replaced with comparable (Josh Willingham) talent at a lower price. The infield is upgraded some, with Jamie Carroll taking Nishioka’s place at 2b/SS and Ryan Domut as backup catcher and 1B. But, for the most part, this is a very similar Twins team to 2011.

And that is the important thing to remember with the 2012 version of the Minnesota Twins, there have been no major changes from 2011 to 2012, just like there were no major changes from 2010 to 2011. What does that mean, exactly? Well, it means that I have no Earthly idea on how the Minnesota Twins are going to do this season. I really can’t fathom them displaying the same level of ineptness as last year, nor do I see them runnin away with the AL Central a la 2010. With the power of the Detroit Tigers, and the improvement of the Cleveland Indians, the odds of the Twins making the post season is thin. I expect a .500 record to be the best they can do this year. More realistically, I’m guessing 70-75 wins this year and a solid third place finish.


Twins' Nishioka could see time at third base

One day before official team workouts begin, the Minnesota Twins welcomed first baseman Justin Morneau, who arrived to camp Thursday. Things will start to get interesting Friday when position players join the pitchers and catchers in full-team workouts. In all, Minnesota will have 67 players in Fort Myers, Fla., this year for spring will track reports...

With Morneau at camp, Gardenhire optimistic

Twins first baseman Justin Morneau made his first appearance at big league camp on Thursday, and he is expected to participate in the club's first official workout on Friday.

Concussion May Cut Morneau’s Career Short

Recently, Minnesota Twin’s first baseman Justin Morneau dropped hints that if his concussion-like symptoms comeback, he’s not going to continue playing baseball, according to Jim Souhan of the Minneapolis Star-Tribune. “Well, I don’t think there will be a career if it’s something I’m dealing with,’’ Morneau said. “That’s the reality of the whole thing. I’m

Wednesday (How many games will Joe Mauer catch?) edition: Wha' Happened?

Good times.

Twins post workout notes: Hughes, Willingham, Doumit, Burroughs

Sean Burroughs brought multiple gloves to camp and manager Ron Gardenhire plans to look at him at third base, second and first.

Morneau reports for Twins spring training

Justin Morneau has reported for duty for Minnesota Twins spring training.

Twins' Morneau reports to camp (AP)

Justin Morneau has reported for duty for Minnesota Twins spring training. The slugger visited the team's spring training facility in Fort Myers, Fla., on Thursday, one day before the team is scheduled to hold its first full-squad workout. Morneau has missed 174 games the last two seasons because of a concussion and injuries to his shoulder, neck, wrist and foot.

Baseballs to golf balls: Twins tee up

After practicing on the diamonds, the Twins hit the links to participate in the 14th annual Lee Regional Cancer Tournament. Joe Mauer shows us his sweet swing and Drew Butera shows off his daring fashion sense.

Morneau returns for Twins after concussion issues

FORT MYERS, FLA. (AP) - Justin Morneau is healthy and ready to go for the Minnesota Twins. But he knows there are no guarantees that the concussion issues of the last two seasons are over.Morneau says he'll fully participate during the team's first full-squad workout on Friday. He says he's ...

Twins' first rule of camp: Forget the 99

Ron Gardenhire is trying to purge his memory of all of last year's losses. Having healthy stars is the best way to do it.

Justin Morneau admits concussion problems are career-threatening

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Fight or flee? Joe Mauer, Buster Posey told to take different approaches

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