Baseball's back

Although the Twins have lost their first two games in miserable fashion, it is good to have baseball back. The best news so far is the success of the new pace-of-game rules. Batters must stay in the box between pitches. A clock runs between innings and penalties are enforced if the pitcher and batter are not ready to go when the clock runs out. So far, the average time of game has declined by a whopping 11 minutes.

It is not that people are in a hurry to go home, it is more that the game sort of loses momentum both for the fans and the players when somebody like David Ortiz steps out and redoes his batting gloves between each pitch. When you look at tapes of old games on Youtube, boy did they move. Pitchers got the ball and pitched. Batters stayed in the box. These new rules are great.

I also am happy with the replay rules. It takes the outrage out of the obvious missed calls. With video technology what it is, why not use it? As for the strike zone, so far this season it seems like the umpires are doing pretty well. 

Meanwhile, the Twins pitchers are not doing well at all. Ervin Santana is out for 80 games for a drug suspension. Ricky Nolasco wasn't any good yesterday, and now he is going to go in for an MRI on his elbow. The Twins' bats have been silent. That won't last, but boy, if this bunch doesn't start producing, both on the mound and at the plate (and in the field), it is time to bring up the young brats and let them make their mistakes on the big stage. The Twins have some monstrous talent down in the minor leagues, and if the big team is going to lose, why not take a chance on: 1) Byron Buxton in center field 2) Miguel Sano at third 3) Trevor May and several other pitchers with strong arms.

Frank Viola had a disasterous first two seasons with the Twins. He was 4-10 his first season, 7-15 the second. Then he started reeling off Cy Young type seasons for the rest of his career. Are young players so fragile in the head these days that they can't handle a little failure before they succeed?