Thursday, May 18, 2006


If ever someone was destined for cult hero it is Boof Bonser. Legally changing your name from John to Boof is a good start. He’s 6’4 260, easily the largest Twin on the roster, enhancing his icon status. He also steps into the perfect opportunity to endear fans. After watching the temperamental Kyle Lohse continually regress, impatient fans are sure to find any reason to cheer for Bonser.

Whether Bonser can show better control is questionable. Bonser has always been generous with home runs in the minors. Compared to Lohse’s 8.92 era and average start under 5IP, and hissy fits to match, Bonser might enjoy an extended honeymoon with the Twins. All Bonser has to do is hold teams down for 5-6 innings and give the Twins a chance at winning. The quicker he can erase the memory of Loshe, the better. If Bonser manages to win his first two or three starts, the Metrodome is quickly filled with “Boooofs!

And what if he exceeds expectations? The Twins rally from 9 ½ games back to challenged the Detroit and Chicago in September. Suddenly Minneapolis is filled with “Bonkers for Bonser” T-shirts, The official Boof’s Goofs (or Boof Troop) section in left field, TV Specials, and Bob Dylan’s Ballad of Boof Bonser.

It is much more likely that any turnaround will be a result of Franciso Liriano and someone, anyone that can consistently produce runs. Realistically in a season quickly slipping away, a character named Boof could potentially provide some fun during a long summer.

-Rondell White had his 11 game hitting streak end. This improves his batting average to .187. In May he’s hitting (.286, .302, .381) with no home runs, although he does have four doubles, proving he can still hit for power.

-Scott Baker has pitched reasonably well for a number 5 starter. He is a rookie and struggles should be expected. He is giving up a lot of hits, but otherwise his K/BB ratio is 5.6, which differentiates him from Silva and Lohse. Quotes by Rick Anderson and Ron Gardenhire make it sound like Baker is Rick Ankiel and cant’ find the plate. The fact is he’s their second most consistent starter right now.

-With Torii Hunter playing well after a miserable start, his market value is at its peak. If the Twins fail to move him before the end of the year it will be a mistake.

-With Bonser and Liriano entering the rotation, the A.J. Pierzynski trade couldn’t have worked out better.