MINNESOTA SPORTS FAN DAILY: Thursday, August 31, 2017

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MSF Daily: 8/31/17

Twins vs White Sox in Game 2 of 3:

The Twins took the lead early again on Wednesday at Target Field. Joe Mauer had a big day all around. I hope there are some videos out there that show his defense Wednesday, but he also got the scoring started as he flipped the bird to the same shift that has haunted for the last half-decade:

Joe Mauer went 1 for 3 with a walk and can taste a .300 BA again. He currently sits at .296. You can say what you want about the contract but he has had a hell of a season so far this year.

1-0 Twins after 1 inning

Eddie Rosario gave the Twins some breathing room in the 3rd. He has had a career season.

3-0 Twins after 3 innings

While the Twins are slowly building their lead, Berrios is quickly handling the Chicago offense.

In the 5th, the Twins would really take control. Garver tripled earlier in the inning and Adrianza tripled to score Garver and Vargas.

5-0 Twins after 5 innings

The Twins would really turn things into a laugher with Mike Pelfrey on the mound in the 7th. Rosario hit his 2nd homerun in the game and Adrianza hit his 2nd triple of the game. Both getting an RBI.

An infield RBI Single by Dozier would score another.

8-0 Twins after 7 innings

Berrios would get pulled going into the 8th inning, just because of the blowout. There was no point in keeping him in. He ended the game with an 11 K shutout, where he surrendered just 4 hits.

Things would get even better for the Twins’ hitters in the 8th. Escobar, Garver, Adrianza, Vargas, and Dozier were all involved in an inning that would result in 3 more runs.

The Twins bats were on fire.

Perkins ruined the shutout in the 9th…

FINISH: 11-1 TWINS WIN

The Twins are now 69-63 on the season. At 10:50 PM on Wednesday, that is good for a 1.5 game lead over the Angels and Orioles for the 2nd Wild Card. They are just 1 game behind the Yankees for the first spot and home-field advantage in the 1-game playoff.

Thursday, the Twins will try to get the sweep at Target Field. It will be Colon vs Miguel Gonzalez who has a 4.30 ERA.

(Stat help from ESPN)



Gophers vs Buffalo in Season Opener:

We finally get to watch some real football on Thursday. You know, football that matters. Football that counts against your record at the end of the season. Real F****** FOOTBALL.

The team on the field will be in maroon and gold and many of the can’t get into a downtown bar, BUT it is football.

According to ESPN, the Gophers are favored by 26 points so it shouldn’t be much of a game. But there are many things to watch for.

First, I want to see Fleck on the sideline. We have all seen him out in public and on TV and through the radio. We haven’t seen him on the TCF Bank sideline against another school. I want to see how he harnesses his energy in the hectic atmosphere of a college football sideline.

Second, I want to see who looks better at QB. Will Demry Croft be able to claim the job and look forward to the next 3 years? If he can claim the job in his Sophomore (RS) season, what may the future hold? Otherwise, it will be Conor Rhoda, who doesn’t have the same arm, touch, spiral, or foot speed as Croft, but has the experience.

Fleck is using this game as a barometer to measure his QB’s and who is ready to lead the team into the Big Ten season. Both guys will get playing time. With the advantage of lopsided talent on their sideline, the Gophers should be able to move the ball. If one of the QB’s struggle, it will stick out.

Third, I will be watching the Gophers Secondary. After losing so many guys, the secondary is young but talented. Led by Sophomore, Antoine Winfield Jr, it is a depleted group after losing seniors and others due to a sexual assault scandal last season.

It is a young group. Here are the role’s expected to be played according to TheDailyGopher.com. All of these guys should see the field regularly:

Seniors:

  • Duke McGhee (RS) – Starting CB
  • Adekunle Ayinde (RS) – Depth
  • THE END

Juniors:

  • Antonio Shenault – Starting CB
  • Jacob Huff – Depth
  • THE END

Sophomores:

  • Antione Winfield Jr. – Starting Safety
  • Zo Craighton – Depth

Freshman:

  • Kiandre Thomas (RS) – Starting Safety
  • Adam Beck – Depth
  • Ken Handy-Holly – Depth
  • Justus Harris – Depth
  • Rey Estes – Depth

Vikings vs Dolphins in final Preseason Game:

The biggest question going into the last preseason game for the Vikings is whether or not Mike Zimmer will play his starters..

He told reporters, on Tuesday, that he was considering it:

“I’ve made up my mind, but I haven’t told the team yet or anything like that. I haven’t told the coaches yet either,” he said. “After the other night, I feel like they should play, but we’ll see.”

With all the injuries the Vikings have dealt with over the last couple seasons, you would think Zimmer would be the last coach to think about playing starters in the 4th preseason game. However, the poor performance Sunday might have pushed him over the edge. Here is more from Ben Goessling:

Beyond that, we will likely have a Mitch Leidner sighting. That could be interesting.

We will be watching the Gophers.

MSF Daily by Eric Strack @RealMNSportsFan

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