Souhan; Maeda’s Success Last Year May Have Been a Fluke [PODCAST]
The Twins lost 7-6 Tuesday night in the first game of a 3-game series at Chicago against the American League Central Division leading White Sox. Star Tribune Sports Columnist Jim Souhan joined me on WJON today. He says Kenta Maeda was successful last year in a new league with many hitters who were unfamiliar with him. That in addition to his command last season could be the reason why he hasn't been as effective this season. He says it's possible that the shortened season was a fluke or not enough of a sample to see how good Maeda actually is. Souhan did say that it appeared that Maeda was squeezed a bit by the umpire last night and a few plays here and there could have led to a much different outcome.
Twins 3rd base prospect Jose Miranda hit 3 home runs in his triple-A debut for the St. Paul Saints yesterday. Jim says if the Twins were a rebuilding team they may consider moving on from Josh Donaldson to open playing time for Miranda but he doesn't think that will be the case. Donaldson is under contract for next season and the Twins have indicated that they won't trade away players that can help them be winners next season.
Kirill Kaprizov won the Calder Trophy in the NHL given to the rookie of the year in the league. Jim says Kaprizov not being a unanimous decision doesn't mean much. Kaprizov was named on 99 of 100 ballots for the Calder Trophy. Souhan says there is no indication that the Wild are close to a contract extension with Kirill Kaprizov. He says situations like these can change quickly with just one phone call. Souhan cited the Danielle Hunter situation that went from a possible holdout to a contract extension in a day.