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Former Twins News - 4/11/2014 11:17:12 PM   
SoMnFan


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DENVER (AP) -- Justin Morneau laces up his cleats right next to the locker once belonging to Todd Helton, the first baseman whose shoes he's now trying to fill.
Merely a coincidence, though. The Colorado Rockies slugger selected that space in the clubhouse only because good friend Michael Cuddyer resides on the other side.
Morneau insists he's not trying to replace the retired Helton, only ''do the things I'm capable of doing.''
He's certainly off to a solid start, hitting .387 and scooping up just about everything thrown in his vicinity at first - just like Helton used to do.
''Justin's not trying to be Todd Helton,'' said Cuddyer, who was Morneau's longtime teammate in Minnesota. ''Justin's a relentless worker and continues to get better, to make our team better. He's not coming in here and worrying about filling Todd Helton's shoes, because nobody can do that. Helton's an icon.''
Certainly was, trotting out to first base for 17 seasons. But No. 17 went out on his own terms, leaving after last season as the franchise's all-time leader in virtually every offensive category.
Morneau just happens to be next in line.
And while maybe a younger player might struggle under the lingering shadow of Helton, Morneau doesn't give it a second thought.
''I've been around long enough to know, when you start trying to do too much or start trying to be somebody else or do more than you're capable of, that's really when you get yourself in trouble,'' said Morneau, whose team opens a three-game series in San Francisco on Friday. ''I just try to keep it simple. I know what kind of player I am.''
It certainly hasn't taken Morneau long to feel right at home with his new teammates or at hitter friendly Coors Field, where he's 7 for 18 with two doubles in five games.
''This is a good place to be,'' said Morneau, who turns 33 next month. ''I'm getting a lot more comfortable, kind of getting to know everyone's sense of humor - who you can have some fun with, who you can mess with.''
Cuddyer knew Morneau would be an instant fit, which is why he vigorously campaigned to bring him to town in the offseason.
The only potential red flag with Morneau was his health. The left-handed hitting Morneau was sidelined with concussions in both 2010 and 2011, along with a DL stint in 2012 for a sore right wrist. But he played in 127 games last season with Minnesota and 25 more with Pittsburgh after he was traded by the Twins on Aug. 31.
''That's more games than anybody in this clubhouse,'' said Cuddyer, who has a hit in all 10 contests this season. ''Obviously, with his health over the last couple of years, people were wondering about his performance on the field. But that was one thing I was definitely not worried about. I'm looking forward to him getting back to being extremely productive.''
After all, Morneau is a former American League MVP and four-time All-Star.
Asked if he's feeling more and more like his old self, Morneau grinned and said: ''I feel like myself today.

''As far as health, I feel good running out there every day. You want it to stay that way all the way through September and October. Right now, feels good.''
There was no question Morneau would produce at the plate. His glove was another consideration.
Sure, he's always been a top-notch fielder, his .996 career fielding percentage the second-highest among active first basemen. But he was stepping in for Helton, who was one of the best in the business.
Granted, Morneau has made two fielding errors, but he's impressed his infielders with his ability to dig throws out of the dirt.
''I feel very comfortable with him,'' said Nolan Arenado, who won a Gold Glove last season. ''He's a big target, which is nice.''
Then again, Cuddyer always felt Morneau's glove work was somewhat undervalued.
''It's hard to say he was underrated when he was an MVP and a four-time All-Star, but his defense was for sure underrated,'' Cuddyer said. ''He's just a good baseball guy.''

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RE: Former Twins News - 4/12/2014 12:00:50 AM   
djskillz


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Good stuff. Hoping Justin gets it going good (Denver's air might help him?). I'm in Denver now and was really hoping to see the Rox play this weekend.

That clubhouse is something else; always started with O'Dowd and Helton and now Cuddy and Morneau continue the tradition.

Helton; one hell of a guy and athlete. Heard an awesome Helton story from RA Dickey a couple of months back: Apparently when Helton was Peyton's backup QB at UT there was a scrimmage for the baseball team in the spring (Dickey was the stud All American pitcher for UT at the time). Helton ran down from the spring football practice field, in football cleats and half a football uniform, stepped onto the baseball field (with only a couple warmup swings) and hit a homerun on the 2nd pitch he saw, then went back marching up to the football field. Ridiculous. RA said it is still one of the most amazing things he ever saw.

< Message edited by djskillz -- 4/12/2014 12:13:36 AM >


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RE: Former Twins News - 4/12/2014 12:05:28 AM   
SoMnFan


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Cool Dustin.
I've heard Helton stories also. Love those.
Some guys can do it all.

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RE: Former Twins News - 4/12/2014 12:27:54 AM   
twinsfan


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quote:

ORIGINAL: SoMnFan

Cool Dustin.
I've heard Helton stories also. Love those.
Some guys can do it all.

Mauer: HOF catcher and coulda-been HOF quarterback. And possibly All-star NBA shooting guard.

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RE: Former Twins News - 4/12/2014 12:30:52 AM   
SoMnFan


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Read my mind.
Still the best QB in MN, currently ..... 

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RE: Former Twins News - 4/12/2014 12:33:31 AM   
twinsfan


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quote:

ORIGINAL: SoMnFan

Read my mind.
Still the best QB in MN, currently ..... 

Until we draft............

















some no-name in the 6th round.

Scratch that. Mauer will still be the best.

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RE: Former Twins News - 4/12/2014 12:36:16 AM   
SoMnFan


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JJ Hardy sat out his fifth straight game tonight with back spasms.
O's off to a rough start.
Hope he gets healthy and they can compete all year.
That's one hell of a division ... again.

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RE: Former Twins News - 4/12/2014 12:54:33 AM   
twinsfan


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Sadly, Bobby Kielty finally retired.

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RE: Former Twins News - 4/12/2014 12:56:17 AM   
twinsfan


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But Braden Harris is still playing. He's with the Dodgers' AAA affiliate in Albuquerque.

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55% of Republicans think the Earth is 5,000 years old. All kinds of people believe all kinds of crazy things. You just gotta move on, man.

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RE: Former Twins News - 4/12/2014 12:58:34 AM   
twinsfan


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Scott Baker is with the Rangers organization at AAA Round Rock. He's already 2-0 with a 1.00 WHIP in 12 innings. I think he'll be up with the Rangers soon and probably lead them to the playoffs.

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55% of Republicans think the Earth is 5,000 years old. All kinds of people believe all kinds of crazy things. You just gotta move on, man.

-James Carville - 12/15/20 - The Beat with Ari Melber
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RE: Former Twins News - 4/12/2014 1:06:14 AM   
SoMnFan


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quote:

ORIGINAL: twinsfan

But Braden Harris is still playing. He's with the Dodgers' AAA affiliate in Albuquerque.


Had a shot at the big club last year , but Punto CLEARLY out-played him in ST ......  

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RE: Former Twins News - 4/12/2014 1:12:25 AM   
twinsfan


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quote:

ORIGINAL: SoMnFan

quote:

ORIGINAL: twinsfan

But Braden Harris is still playing. He's with the Dodgers' AAA affiliate in Albuquerque.


Had a shot at the big club last year , but Punto CLEARLY out-played him in ST ......  

So all this time...........Gardy was right.

_____________________________

55% of Republicans think the Earth is 5,000 years old. All kinds of people believe all kinds of crazy things. You just gotta move on, man.

-James Carville - 12/15/20 - The Beat with Ari Melber
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RE: Former Twins News - 4/12/2014 1:12:55 AM   
twinsfan


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SMF, what's your Gardy name?

http://gardynickname.com/

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55% of Republicans think the Earth is 5,000 years old. All kinds of people believe all kinds of crazy things. You just gotta move on, man.

-James Carville - 12/15/20 - The Beat with Ari Melber
Post #: 13
RE: Former Twins News - 4/12/2014 1:17:37 AM   
twinsfan


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Man I wish we still had Cuddy

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55% of Republicans think the Earth is 5,000 years old. All kinds of people believe all kinds of crazy things. You just gotta move on, man.

-James Carville - 12/15/20 - The Beat with Ari Melber
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RE: Former Twins News - 4/12/2014 1:26:46 AM   
SoMnFan


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quote:

ORIGINAL: twinsfan

SMF, what's your Gardy name?

http://gardynickname.com/


Mellsy, of course.


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RE: Former Twins News - 4/12/2014 1:31:41 AM   
twinsfan


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Miles is Koppsy. Who'da guessed?

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55% of Republicans think the Earth is 5,000 years old. All kinds of people believe all kinds of crazy things. You just gotta move on, man.

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RE: Former Twins News - 4/12/2014 1:43:46 AM   
SoMnFan


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Whats yours?  Dahlski? MattyDog?

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RE: Former Twins News - 4/12/2014 1:53:09 AM   
twinsfan


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Dahlsy

The thing failed when I put Slowey in.

Was expecting Slowdog, of course.

Got Slowsy.

I also put in Blackburn. Almost got what I expected, which should have been Blackie. Got Blackbsy. So close.

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55% of Republicans think the Earth is 5,000 years old. All kinds of people believe all kinds of crazy things. You just gotta move on, man.

-James Carville - 12/15/20 - The Beat with Ari Melber
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RE: Former Twins News - 4/12/2014 1:54:17 AM   
SoMnFan


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Yeah, true .. the real Gardy is much cooler ....

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RE: Former Twins News - 4/12/2014 2:11:35 AM   
McMurfy


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I got Dombsy.
Thanks Gardy.

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RE: Former Twins News - 4/12/2014 3:12:47 AM   
SoMnFan


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Dombsy.
That's clever.
And much easier.


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RE: Former Twins News - 4/12/2014 3:14:47 AM   
SoMnFan


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Thankfully, none of us have last names like Pussenkamp, or Dickhausen, or Cummings, or Tittmann or ..... you get my drift .....

< Message edited by SoMnFan -- 4/12/2014 5:55:56 AM >


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RE: Former Twins News - 4/14/2014 11:33:40 AM   
bparlin


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Punto just wins. That's all.

Butera is catching for the Dodgers right now...

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RE: Former Twins News - 4/14/2014 12:16:05 PM   
TJSweens


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quote:

ORIGINAL: SoMnFan

Thankfully, none of us have last names like Pussenkamp, or Dickhausen, or Cummings, or Tittmann or ..... you get my drift .....


Reminds me of the birthday segment of Lunch With Casey. You could always tell when the high school students were on vacation. Some of the names that scrolled by were classics like Pat McGroin, Dick Stroker, Wilma Fingerdo

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RE: Former Twins News - 4/14/2014 9:21:20 PM   
SoMnFan


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My boy JJ Hardy returns to the lineup and lifts the O's to a 7-1 win over the Rays tonight.
JJ was 3-4 with two doubles, an rbi, and 2 runs scored. And was flawless in the field, as usual.
And he did every one of those things slowwwwwwwwwly, just to piss Gardy off.

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