Friday, I was working at TwinsFest, but I still managed to do more than just stand around and give directions to fans. I was stationed inside the Schwan Center where the biggest players were signing autographs, and here’s some of the more interesting things that happened:
- Jim Thome had to briefly leave his session so he could go to the bathroom. It was amusing looking at his sheepish grin as he said, “Don’t worry, I’m coming back!” to the crowd as he exited the room.
- Remember Pork Chop Guy? Well, he was at TwinsFest. I got to share with him my side of the story, and his friend took a picture of us. Too bad I didn’t think to have a picture taken with my phone so I could post it here…
- Very few people went through the Gardenhire/Nathan line for the last 20 minutes of their session, so I got to talk to them for a bit. I brought up Rob Delaney being designated for assignment and claimed by the Rays, and Gardy admitted that he knew Delaney would be claimed. He also mentioned that he hopes Pat Neshek can get his velocity back up to what it used to be (don’t we all). As for Nathan, he was a bit bored towards the end and Michael Cuddyer was signing next, so he left this drawing for Cuddy on the table:
- I finished early so I was able to watch a Q&A with Bill Smith, Dave St. Peter, and Jim Pohlad. Being off-duty, I felt I could ask a question to Smith, and so I asked why the Twins liked Dusty Hughes enough to claim him off waivers, and why they chose to designate Rob Delaney for assignment. Unfortunately, I didn’t get the answer I was hoping for, as Smith spent most of his time explaining the whole process of these two transactions. However, he did say basically the same thing that was reported in the Star Tribune (Hughes pitched well against the Twins last season in 10 games), and also that they felt Delaney could be passed through waivers. I wanted a better explanation why they felt they could risk losing Delaney, but I suppose this will have to do.
Finally, if you plan on getting autographs in the Schwan Center, I strongly urge you to get in line as soon as possible. People were waiting outside the building for over an hour (my estimate) and many of them still failed to get autographs of the players they wanted because the building filled up quickly and we had to halt fans at the doors to allow the people inside to clear out. If you do choose to brave the outdoors to get that single autograph, then make sure to bring a jacket or get there early.