Results tagged ‘ Twins ’

Opening Day

Opening Day is finally here for the Twins.

And it’s certainly an exciting one for first baseman Justin Morneau, who makes his long awaited return to action after missing most of last season with a concussion suffered July 7 here in Toronto.

Morneau, though, told a large group of reporters before the game that he’s trying to control his nerves, as it’s not his first game in 2011 after playing in 11 Grapefruit League games to get ready for the season.

“It’s not like it’s my first game of the year,” Morneau said. “I’m usually more nervous about the first game of Spring Training than Opening Day. But it’s exciting to play on Opening Day with the butterflies and all that comes with it.”

With that in mind, here’s a look at the lineups for the Twins and Jays for tonight’s game at Rogers Centre.

Twins:

1. Denard Span, CF
2. Tsuyoshi Nishioka, 2B
3. Joe Mauer, C
4. Justin Morneau, 1B
5. Delmon Young, LF
6. Michael Cuddyer, RF
7. Jason Kubel, DH
8. Danny Valencia, 3B
9. Alexi Casilla, SS

RHP Carl Pavano

Jays:

1. Rajai Davis, CF
2. Yunel Escobar, SS
3. Jose Bautista, RF
4. Adam Lind, 1B
5. Aaron Hill, 2B
6. Edwin Encarnacion, 3B
7. Travis Snider, LF
8. Juan Rivera, DH
9. J.P. Arencibia C

LHP Ricky Romero

Hello again!

Hey everyone,

As I’m sure many of you are now aware, I’m on the new Twins beat reporter at MLB.com. I already introduced myself a little bit on Kelly Thesier’s blog a few weeks ago, but now that I have a blog of my own, I’ll introduce myself one more time.

So here’s a longer version of my background in case you’re interested:

I was born and raised in sunny Southern California, growing up in Glendora, a suburb of Los Angeles, and attending Damien High School in La Verne, Calif. I also graduated from USC —  where I covered the football, basketball and baseball teams — before joining MLB.com in 2008 as an associate reporter covering the Angels.

I stuck around MLB.com after that season, covering mostly the Angels and Dodgers with plenty of other assignments in between the last two seasons. I’ve been fortunate enough to cover the World Baseball Classic, the 2010 All-Star Game and the last three postseasons, as well as plenty of other amazing events.

It was a great experience serving in somewhat of a utility role, and I feel it helped prepare me for the Twins beat. Baseball has always been my first love and so to be on beat covering a franchise like the Twins has always been a dream of mine.

I’ll also give you a fair warning that sometimes I can come off as somewhat as a stathead, as I read Moneyball while in high school and have learned to embrace advanced statistics on sites such as Fangraphs and Baseball Prospectus. I’ll have a blog post coming later in the week about how I plan to integrate some sabermetric stats into my day-to-day coverage, but for the most part I plan to keep advanced statistics limited to this blog because I know there are plenty of readers who have yet to fully embrace or understand this statistical revolution.

And as some of you know, I’ve never been to Minnesota, although I’ve have heard great things about the state and of course, Target Field. Luckily, however, I also already received some great advice from Twinkie Town about Minnesota and the Twins, so if you haven’t read it yet, take a look.

I’m also obviously very thankful for this opportunity, and appreciate all the support Twins fans have already showed via Twitter.

Speaking of Twitter, you can follow me at @RhettBollinger, or if you’d rather email me you can reach me at rhett.bollinger@mlb.com.

I look forward to bringing you more coverage here at MLB.com, and can’t wait for Opening Day tomorrow.

- Rhett

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