When you cross 1st Avenue and walk down 5th Street towards the Twins' ballpark, you see that big "Target Field" logo and say to yourself: "Nice. Beautiful. We are so lucky."
Then you think: "Wow. Too bad they're terrible. Again."
On the morning of Aug. 2, 2013, the Minnesota Twins are 40-65, 15.5 games behind first place Detroit in American League Central Division.
On the morning of Aug. 3, 2012, the Minnesota Twins were 40-65, 12.5 games behind first place Chicago in the American League Central Division.
So, not much has changed in a year. In fact, this Twins team might be worse than last year's model.
Star Tribune writer Jim Souhan, in his usual eloquence, sums it up like this: "When the Twins picked their site for Target Field, fans were worried that a nearby garbage incinerator was going to stink up the joint. Compared to the stench emanating from the field Thursday, burning garbage would have smelled like rose petals."
Thursday. A soul-sucking 7-2 loss to the Royals, a Kansas City team which is a playoff contender thanks to a current nine-game winning streak. The last three were against the Twins.
Which leads to sentences like this, from Kansas City Star columnist Lee Judge: "When you play teams like Chicago and Minnesota, you need to beat up on them. That’s where you build your record."
That hurts. Back to the Star Tribune, and Howard Sinker, who writes a column entitled "A Fans View": "It simply bites to be a Twins fan right now, especially for those who have made the commitment to pay major league prices to watch what has transpired this year."
To the rescue, as soon as tonight: The Houston Astros, 36-71 in the A.L West.
Nothing will cure a depressed Twins fan quicker than a three-game winning streak.
And on the mound tonight, Samuel Deduno (7-4), who looks to win this career-best fourth straight start.
Don't look at the fine print, though. As the Associated Press game preview tells us: This is the first meeting between these teams since the Astros took two of three at Minnesota in 2009.