John Shipley / St. Paul Pioneer Press
MINNEAPOLIS — After the Twins earned an American League wild-card spot last season, their first postseason appearance since 2010, many baseball watchers were expecting even more from Minnesota this season. Certainly more than they're getting right now. President of baseball operations Derek Falvey and general manager Thad Levine made offseason moves to bolster the rotation and bullpen, and add power to the lineup, and a solid start had the Twins leading the AL Central for most of the first two weeks of the season.
MINNEAPOLIS — The Twins know they want and need Byron Buxton back in center field. How they'll get him there remains something of a work in progress. Nursing the fractured big toe on his left foot, Buxton will travel with the Twins to for a four-game road trip against the White Sox in Chicago starting Thursday, May 3, but doesn't appear close to returning from the disabled list. He was injured when he fouled a ball off the toe in Ft. Myers, Fla., where he was on a rehab assignment after being placed on the DL because of migraines.
Jamal Crawford wasn’t the first Timberwolves player to be asked about the third quarter of their playoff game against Houston on Monday, but he was the first to suggest that only video would truly tell what happened. “Well, obviously,” he began, “we have to watch it first.” I don’t know, man.
ST. PAUL — The Wild played on an ice sheet this season composed in part of water from all around the state, brought by fans throughout the season, part of a campaign the team called "This is Our Ice." Next year, perhaps, they can tweak it. "This is Our Team (and You're Stuck with It)."
ST. PAUL—Even for a franchise accustomed to disappointment, in a sports market accustomed to having the football pulled away at the last second, the Minnesota Wild are straining credulity. After finally gaining a toehold in their first-round playoff series with the Winnipeg Jets with a lopsided victory on Sunday, the Wild were hours from puck drop in a game they fully expected to win Tuesday when the good vibrations crashed on them like a snow cliff sliding off the roof in the warm April sun.
Football is always a topic of conversation among Kendricks brothers Eric and Mychal, but it carried more weight this offseason after Mychal and the Philadelphia Eagles beat the Vikings in the NFC Championship game, then the New England Patriots in Super Bowl LII at U.S. Bank Stadium in February. “Obviously didn’t end well for us, but it was good for my brother and that’s good for the family,” Eric Kendricks said Monday. “It’s one of the things we dreamed of growing up and playing the sport.”
MINNEAPOLIS—The Twins are optimistic about their weather issues being behind them. They were scheduled to fly out of snowy Minnesota for Puerto Rico on Sunday afternoon, April 15, although the forecast for the opener of a two-game series against Cleveland on Tuesday, April 17, calls for a 40 percent chance of thunderstorms. "Yeah, how about that?" manager Paul Molitor said before a light workout at Target Field on Sunday.
MINNEAPOLIS — Kids love a snow day; major league baseball teams do not. Less than three weeks into the 2018 season, the Twins on Friday, April 13, postponed their second game of the season because of snow, with Saturday's matinee against the White Sox almost sure to follow, leaving big scheduling headaches for both teams. Friday's game was called at 3:10 p.m. and will be rescheduled for a date to be determined. Rain moving through the metro on Friday was expected to turn to snow in the evening and continue on and off through Saturday evening.
MINNEAPOLIS — The Timberwolves are in the playoffs for the first time in 14 years, which at least is a milestone and at best is an accomplishment. It's been a long time since the NBA playoffs were in Minnesota, so it seems petty to nitpick at the way the Timberwolves got here, with an overtime win in what amounted to a play-in game against the Denver Nuggets on Wednesday at Target Center.
ST. PAUL—Jared Spurgeon went through a full, long practice on Tuesday at Xcel Energy Center but remains questionable for Game 1 of the Stanley Cup playoffs Wednesday night at Winnipeg. "He's getting better," coach Bruce Boudreau said. "It's still a game-time decision tomorrow." Spurgeon hasn't played since partially tearing a hamstring in a March 13 loss against Colorado. He practiced full on Monday and passed one test Tuesday practicing again. "We still have to see how it responds after two days, so nothing's for sure yet," he said.