It's Friday. Thankfully. And with Friday brings another edition of my offseason special -- Twins Bloggers: Get to Know 'Em!
Today, I have the pleasure of presenting Thrylos from The Tenth Inning Stretch. I first noticed Thrylos from some of the many insightful comments he'd leave on some of the other blogs I was reading, and after clicking on his URL I was amazed to find out that not only did he have great things to say in the comments I was seeing but he had amazing posts that really delve into some intricate aspects of the game. I've come to regard him as one of the premier must-reads in regards to all issues centered around pitching and pitching mechanics. There's no one else I'd rather consult than him. But without further ado -- let's hear from Thrylos!
NAME: Thrylos is good enough :)
HOMETOWN: Aberdeen (Scotland, not SD), then Minneapolis, then after many stops Lehigh Valley, PA
WHAT KEEPS YOU EMPLOYED OTHER THAN BLOGGING: I own and operate my own business; health sciences and computer-related.
FAVORITE COLOR: Black
FAVORITE FOOD: Sushi
FAVORITE MOVIE: The Sweet Movie or The Unbearable Lightness of Being (love long, twisted European movies)
FAVORITE BOOK: Too many to mention. Probably The Historian by Elizabeth Kostova
FAVORITE TYPE OF MUSIC: I listen to all (mostly). Alternative rock and New Wave top my charts. Funk (Prince and the Time) are close too.
FAVORITE SPORT TO WATCH OTHER THAN BASEBALL: Football.
FAVORITE SPORT TO PLAY: Does triathlon count as a sport? Baseball also (softball not that much). Never say no to a good game of tackle football, especially in the winter time when I have no races.
HOW DO YOU FEEL ABOUT THE VIKINGS/TIMBERWOLVES/WILD: I am the hugest Vikings fan in PA. World Champions this season. I do not bother with Basketball or Hockey.
WHAT MAKES BASEBALL SO GREAT TO YOU: Baseball is the only sport that about 20 people at the field, on the mound, behind the plate, at the batter's box, on the bases, in the coaching boxes, and in the dugout have to think before every single pitch and make some decisions. Of course, they will be second-guessed later. It is a mental game that requires a lot of skill as well. Very rare combination in team sports.
IF YOU HAD TO FOLLOW ANOTHER TEAM, WHICH AND WHY: I always followed the Mets in the NL. Really liked their mid 80s teams. These days I would not mind following the Phillies (they are my local team).
BEST EXPERIENCE AT A BALLPARK OTHER THAN THE DOME: 1991. Fenway. Got obstructed seat walk up tickets ($10 each) on the 1st base line and watched the Twins beat up the Red Sox.
OPINION ON INTERLEAGUE PLAY: It's ok, but since the teams in the same division often face different teams and the same teams in different parks is not always fair. NL teams are in severe disadvantage because they have to use utility players as the DH or a regular as the DH and a utility guy on the field.
OPINION ON THE UNBALANCED SCHEDULE: It's good. A lot like football. You grind it with your division to win it. As in football, weaker divisions are in a disadvantage for WCs but not a big deal. Help sell tickets as well. I suspect that the Twins draw more people playing the White Sox than the Orioles.
FAVORITE NON-TWINS PLAYER IN BASEBALL HISTORY: From the ones whom I have seen playing: Darryl Strawberry, Doc Gooden, Bo Jackson.
MOST HATED NON-TWINS PLAYER IN BASEBALL HISTORY: Jose Canseco. Before the current rivalry with the White Sox, the Twins had a huge rivalry with the steroid-pumped A's.
DID YOU EVER PLAY BASEBALL/SOFTBALL, WHAT POSITION: I pitched. Still pitch as a matter of fact, just not that effectively.
WHEN DID YOU BECOME A TWINS FAN AND WHY: Mid 80's. Hometown team.
BEST EXPERIENCE AT THE DOME: Hands down, the night after the Twins returned from beating the Tigers in 1987. The dome was in football configuration and me and 65000 others filled the place up. That was a hair-raising zen kind of fanhood experience.
EVER BEEN TO TWINS FEST? HOW WAS IT: Never had it, never will
EVER BEEN TO SPRING TRAINING? HOW WAS IT: Several times. Being on the East Coast I follow and watch several of the Twins' minor league teams so I have seen several of these players. And few places can beat Florida in March.
HAVE YOU EVER BEEN CIRCLED BY BERT?: No
HAVE YOU EVER CAUGHT A FOUL BALL OR HOME RUN BALL AT THE DOME?: 1991 a Chili Davis drive at right center.
Twins Player Specific-
FAVORITE TWINS PLAYER IN HISTORY: Kirby Puckett
FAVORITE CURRENT TWINS PLAYER: Kevin Slowey (Carlos Gomez was a close second)
FAVORITE OBSCURE TWINS PLAYER: Is Randy Bush obscure?
ARE THERE (WERE THERE) ANY TWINS PLAYERS YOU DISLIKE: I do not dislike anyone... Back in the day Rick Aguilera even though great at the field was not extremely approachable by the fans... Also I do not appreciate players who tried to handcuff the team for personal gain, like Chuck Knoblauch or who chose to go to other places like Torii Hunter. Also I think that some players help the team less than the press coverage about them suggests, which is a fact I dislike.
FAVORITE EXPERIENCE MEETING A PLAYER: A couple, and they are a bit different than a player/fan meeting (and I will leave out player names to protect the innocent): a. I had a working relationship with one Twins player when he was in college. I was his supervisor at his place of work. It was really surprising to find out that he was to play for the Twins a few years ago, b. Last summer, when my wife and I were vacationing in Florida, we were chatting for half an hour with an elderly couple. The man ended up being a (non-Twins) hall of famer and there was an incredible experience discussing baseball with someone like that and an extremely humbling experience to see how low key he was/in comparison to some of today's players.
CURRENT PLAYER YOU'D LIKE TO WATCH A GAME WITH: Kevin Slowey. I think that he looks like a guy who has a tremendous insight for the game.
MOST LIKE TO GO TO A BAR WITH: Jose Mijares. Looks like he can hold his alcohol and take care of the appetizers so I won't be tempted by them
MOST LIKE TO BE STRANDED ON A DESERT ISLAND WITH: (Not Mike Redmond, for obvious reasons.) Carlos Gomez. I might get a mile time down a few notches if I run with him. Plus, I could be throwing him 1000 sliders outside the zone daily so he learns how not to swing at them. Plus I can work on my Spanish.
MOST LIKE TO HAVE DINNER WITH: Pat Neshek. We both don't eat meat or chicken, so it would be an easy restaurant choice, plus I bet he is a great conversationalist
WANT TO BE THE FRONT MAN OF YOUR NEW BAND: Joe Nathan. Band is called "Twitched Sisters"
THINK SHOULD BE A MOVIE STAR: Joe Mauer. The Natural. But I can see Brian Buscher starring as "The Butcher" in a B horror flick.
YOU'D ASK FOR HELP ON A SCIENCE LAB: Brendan Harris.
YOU'D START A BUSINESS WITH: Mike Cuddyer; he'd make a good clown for kid's parties (and can do magic tricks)
EXPECTATIONS OF TARGET FIELD: The first Twins' World Championship in 19 years. A very interesting place to see a home game.
EXPECTATIONS FOR THE TEAM NEXT YEAR: World Series or Bust.