Tuesday, September 06, 2005

Silva Speaks Out

First Brad Radke was "suicidal" about his run support, and although that was out there, I understand his frustration. But the most agreeable comments on the Twins offensive wooes came from Carlos Silva, speaking to the Star Tribune this morning. Silva nearly pointed fingers, but he certainly singled out the position players and their lack of effort. "The only thing I know, man, is that every time I go out there, I give 100 percent because I like to win and I hate to lose. It looks like a lot of guys in here don't want to play the game the right way," said Silva. "For me, I hate to see losses like that, and it is not easy for us... every time we go out there, we try to do the best we can do. ..."

But hit hardest with this comment: "I'm not going to mention any names, but I know this team, and I know we can play better than this.If you throw nine innings with one run and lose 1-0, you lost. That's nice to say, 'I pitched nine innings and only gave up one run,' but what happens the other times? If someone thinks that way, and I know a lot of guys think that way -- just worried about pitching and worry about yourself -- it is not going to work."

I couldn't agree more. I'd like to be the first to praise Carlos for his words. I know he'll get bashed for it, by Gardenhire, Anderson, and commentators, cause he needs to not call out his manager and such. But to me, its just like the Ford situation a while back. And Ford was right then. These guys aren't playing fundamental baseball the way the Twins are supposed to. And excuses aren't working. You can't just go out and pitch and expect to win. Santana had a great game this weekend, striking out 10 Indians, but one mistake, one homer, and no win. The lack of fundamentals, execution, professional hitting, patience, and good defense is killing this team, their chances to do anything this postseason, and yes, Santana's second Cy Young Award that he clearly has earned these past two months.

Not every team has an honest player who puts it right, but Silva choose well. Jim Souhan wrote a good article in Sunday's paper that I feel summarizes the situation: The pitching is there. We have plenty of it and its some of the best in the majors. But it doesn't matter. Because our hitters have no patience. The presence of one or two (that would be better) professional batters would change everything for this offense. One or two more runs a game and all the sudden we have 95 wins and a great team. It doesn't have to be Soriano. Souhan mentioned free-agent-to-be Bill Mueller. His name came up in possible trades and he may work. Good light hitter with a good on-base percentage. And that would mean we could move Cuddyer to his natural position of second. Two birds down. There's the possibility of a Brian Giles as well, who could protect Mauer and Morneau and take pressure off of them. We have the money and we need to spend it right. I know I shouldn't concede yet, but we gotta start thinking 2006.

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