Joe Maddon was a nice diversion. Our own La Velle E. Neal reported that the Twins at least had preliminary discussions with Maddon’s representatives. We’re assuming that went nowhere. We wish it had gone somewhere. We’re guessing the Twins could have and should have tried harder. But it’s moot now, since most of the free world is reporting that Maddon to the Cubs will be a reality very soon.
The attention now returns to the Twins candidates we’ve known about for quite some time. While some of the discussion now could be recycled conjecture, the popular sentiment is that Doug Mientkiewicz is the third-party candidate here and that Paul Molitor and Torey Lovullo are the main challengers for the job.
Honestly, we liked Mientkiewicz the most of the three. If this were a real election, we would still vote our hopes, not our fears. But for reasons that boil down to not much more than instinct and a desire to see what is broken fixed, we would prefer Lovullo over Molitor.
Again, this is probably situational. Lovullo is younger (49 vs. 58), has a reputation for embracing a new way of thinking and has had success as a minor-league manager. He also comes from the outside and was a marginal major league player — something that seems to be a boon when it comes to being a manager, as opposed to being a superstar like Molitor. The theory is that someone who has struggled can relate better and teach better than someone who has excelled. We’re not sure we entirely buy it, but we see the logic and we also know the list of great players who became great managers is not a long one.
Had this been a decision the Twins were making after 2010, or even 2011, before the franchise went into a prolonged spiral, we would have been on board with Molitor with few questions asked. Perhaps it isn’t fair to downgrade his candidacy based on the feeling that he offers more of the same because in all reality he might offer a very different voice and direction for the Twins.
The strange thing is, we know a certain segment of the population would still view Molitor as a home run hire. And we know another segment would be bored to tears with that move. Lovullo is a riskier PR move, but perhaps a more savvy one?
At least we should know soon. Monday would mark the five-week anniversary of the search, and we’re not sure what the gift is for that kind of anniversary.
Vikings wide receiver Cordarrelle Patterson was asked on Thursday whether he’d be 100 percent on Sunday against the Redskins. He sounded like he took offense to the question about his health.
“Of course, man,” Patterson responded. “I’ll be out there no matter what. It’s going to be a big game for us. We’re going to be going on a bye week after that, so it’s big on us. We need to get this win.”
Patterson was in a walking boot after the overtime win over the Bucs, but it was removed a day after the game. Patterson wasn’t listed on the injury report on Wednesday. He had his left foot leaning against a pillar in the locker room while talking to reporters.
It’s good news for the Vikings offense, which witnessed Patterson receive a team-high 12 targets from rookie quarterback Teddy Bridgewater. Patterson had a season-high six catches for 86 yards against the Bucs, and he’ll look to carry that connection over into this week.
“It all starts at practice,” Patterson said. “You’ve got to have good practice habits. Me and Teddy, we had a good week last week trying to find me the ball. And it paid off Sunday, so this week just keep building on from there and trying to get more balls.”
Up until the Bucs game, Patterson didn’t have more than four catches in a game this season. His previous season-high in receiving yards was 61 against the Saints. Patterson has had a less than stellar season, but he hoping that will change after his recent performance.
“You’ve got to get good with the quarterback,” Patterson said. “It don’t matter how the game plan is with you. Sometimes the game plan can be around you, and you still don’t get the ball. You’ve just got to figure out the thing with your quarterback, and I feel like me and Teddy, we done hit and know where each other stands. Let’s just hope we can continue and build on from there.”