Granted, this is from late last week, but we’re guessing Ron Gardenhire’s comments (from this interview on the website for 1500-AM) still ring true. Clearly, the Twins manager is fired up, frustrated and searching for ways to jumpstart his 7-20 club before it fades completely into irrelevance, which, at the current rate of winning, could happen by Memorial Day.
“I said my piece for about 15 minutes and didn’t calm down until I landed in Minnesota at about 6:30 in the morning,” Gardenhire said in an interview with 1500 ESPN on Friday.
“You could call it talk. Talking is normally a conversation between two people. But no, nobody else was talking, believe me, I was doing the talking. …
“After that no-hitter — which is a tough one, because the guy really pitched well and all those things. And he’s one of the best pitchers in the league, and he got us. Still all the little things, you hold them in, you hold them in until you can’t hold them in any longer.
“I laid it on the line and probably hurt some feelings, which that’s OK too. We have to play better. We have to get some things done here, and some people aren’t living up to what we thought out of spring training, and there’s going to be changes. There’s no doubt there’s going to be changes. We can’t continue like this.”
It’s refreshing, in a sense, to hear Gardenhire speak so candidly while expressing the same kind of dismay that Joe B. Construction Worker feels. The only problem, as we see it, is that the changes Gardenhire alludes to seem almost implausible. There aren’t many in-house options, the payroll is maxed out and few players on the Twins roster serve as attractive trade bait.
Change is good, especially when, 27 games into a 162-game season, the Twins far too often look lethargic. Perhaps the first of those changes is one that’s happening tonight in the opener of a three-game set against the Angles: highly touted youngster Brian Dozier replacing Jamey Carroll at shortstop — though Carroll figures to remain a fixture in the lineup while bouncing around the infield.
The next move we’d like to see? Kidnapping Francisco Liriano and replacing him in the rotation with Brian Duensing.