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May 5, 2008

Twins Climb to First Place Amongst Five-Game Winning Strea

The Minnesota Twins are in first place of the AL Central division for the first time in over a year after sweeping division rivals Detroit and Chicago.

The biggest victory of all came Sunday with a seven to six win over Detroit after falling behind by six runs in the first inning, according to the Pioneer Press.

Minnesota starting pitcher Boof Bonsor game up six runs in the first inning to a Tigers team that had scored only two runs in its previous two games. But Joe Mauer's two-run single in the seventh inning capped a comeback that put that gave the one and half game lead over Chicago for first place in the AL Central. Earlier in the week Minnesota won a pair against the then division leading White Sox, starting their current five game streak.

Mauer was very pleased with how the team responded after a dismal first inning. "I think that's huge for our pitching staff, to show that we're still going to go out there and try to put up runs for 'em," Mauer said. (Star Tribune)

Minnesota's lead could vanish quickly though as they begin a three-game series with Chicago on Tuesday.

April 20, 2008

Marijuana Debate Heating Up

The debate over legalizing marijuana for medicinal purposes is up, according to the Pioneer Press Monday.

The Marijuana Policy Product is launching a statewide television advertisement campaign to push for the ability of critically ill patients to be able to legally obtain the drug.

"I'm tired of being a criminal," said Lynn Rubenstein Nicholson of Minneapolis, who fell through a ceiling when she was ten and has suffered extreme pain ever since. Nicholson, 49, has used marijuana in the past for pain relief. (Pioneer Press)

The Minnesota Senate has already past a bill that would allow marijuana use for the treatment of such conditions like cancer, multiple sclerosis, and Aids. The House is expected to vote on the bill in the next three weeks. If it passed, it would then be up to Gov. Tim Pawlenty to pass the bill that would make Minnesota the 13th state legalize the drug for medical purposes, according to the Star Tribune.

Their is growing data that marijuana can be a beneficial treatment for diseases that cause extreme pain. In order to qualify to use it, a doctor must prescribe it. Patients would then need to register and carry an ID card that shows they have been advised by a health professional to use the drug, according to the Star Tribune.

At this point however it seems Gov. Pawlenty would be unlikely to pass the bill even if it did pass the house, because law enforcement does not back the bill, according to the Pioneer Press.

Wild Fall to Avalanche in Playoffs

The Minnesota Wild ended their season Saturday with a 2-1 loss to the Colorado Avalanche in game six of the opening round of the 2008 NHL playoffs, reported the Star Tribune.

The Wild came into their first round match-up with Colorado with home ice advantage and big dreams for the post season. But after gaining a 2-1 lead in the best of seven series, the Wild dropped three strait to the Avalanche, leading to their second first round exit in the last two years.

"To lose in the first round again is very disappointing," veteran Brian Rolston said. "[Colorado goalie Jose] Theodore definitely played a role in this series. In a series like this, a hot goalie can take you out. I think that's what happened." (Star Tribune)

The Wild could not solve Theodore all series, as the goalie stopped 199 out off 211 shots, according to the Pioneer Press.

Minnesota's top scorer and play maker, Mario Gaborik, was held in check all series long, only scoring one point in six games. Gaborik had been stellar in previous playoff series, scoring 23 points in 21 games. But Without him producing, the Wild didn't have much of a chance.

"If I was producing, I'm sure it would have made a difference," Gaborik said. "It was very tight out there. They did a great job defensively. I tried to find a way every game. Either it was tight or there was Theodore. Things didn't work out the way I wanted it to. I've just got to learn from this." (Star Tribune)

April 13, 2008

Muslim Public School Blurring Line Between School and Religion

A public charter school in Inver Grove Heights is coming under heavy scrutiny for promoting religion at a public school, reported the Star Tribune on Wednesday.

Tarek ibn Ziyad Academy (TIZA), is a K-8 charter school that shares the headquarters building of the Muslim American Society of Minnesota. It is illegal for public schools to promote or endorse religion, but there practices occurring at TIZA that suggests that is exactly whats going on, according to the Star Tribune.

TIZA's director, Asad Zaman, is a Muslim religious leader. A class called Islamic Studies is offered at the end of the day and the cafeteria only serves Islamic food.

Children are also forced to pray at assemblies, according Amanda Getz, a substitute teacher who taught at TIZA on March 14.

"Teachers led the kids into the gym, where a man dressed in white with a white cap, who had been at the school all day," who Getz said was preparing to lead prayer. "The prayer I saw was not voluntary. The kids were corralled by adults and required to go to the assembly where prayer occurred." (Star Tribune)

Getz also said that there seemed to be no difference between the supposed after school activity of Islamic studies and any other class. She cited that the buses don't leave until after Islamic Studies, and that there were no other extra-curricular activities offered.

"I got the impression that Islamic Studies was a subject like any other," Getz said. (Star Tribune)

By law, schools cannot favor one religion by promoting after-school religious instruction for only one group.

TIZA has been using tax dollars since 2003 and took in almost $3 million in government grants last year, according to the Assyrian International News Agency.

The American Civil Liberties Union (ALCU) has launched an investigation of TIZA, and the Minnesota Department of Education has also begun a review, according to the Star Tribune. The question is what took them so long?

Liriano Rejoins Rotation

Francisco Liriano will rejoin the Minnesota Twins' pitching rotation Sunday after an 19-month absence due to Tommy John surgery, according to the Pioneer Press.

Liriano, 24, started the 2006 season with the Twins in the bullpen, but was soon moved to the starting rotation. On May 19, 2006, Liriano began what would be one of the most dominate stretches of pitching in recent baseball history.

In 121 innings in 2006, Liriano posted a sterling 12-3 record with a 2.16 ERA and 144 strikeouts. But on Sept. 13, 2006 Liriano had to walk off the mound with severe elbow pain, reported the Star Tribune. He had to have Tommy John surgery on Nov. 6, 2006, and was forced to miss all of the 2007 season.

Liriano has worked himself back into shape though and is ready to make his major league debut, part two.

"It's something big for me, my comeback game," Liriano said. "I'm going to go try to do the best I can." (Pioneer Press)

Everyone knows Liriano's best is outstanding, even though he has struggled somewhat recently. Liriano has posted a pedestrian 7.56 ERA so far this year in two minor league starts. But Twin's manager Ron Gardenhire knows the old Liriano is still in there.

"A few times out there (in spring training), he just dominated a couple innings where we were like, 'Oof,' " Gardenhire said. (Pioneer Press)

If Liriano can indeed return to his old form, it would be a big lift for the Twins.

"He could be huge for us,"Gardenhire said. "If he goes out and does his thing and tries not to overthrow the ball -- a lefthander in this league with good stuff can do a lot of damage. So, it's exciting." (Star Tribune)

April 7, 2008

High School Girl Dies in Bus Crash

A Pelican Rapids High School Girl was killed in a bus crash on Interstate 94 early Saturday, according to the Star Tribune.

Jessica Weishair, 16, was killed when a bus carrying students back from a spring break band trip in Chicago crashed and skidded into a ditch. She was pronounced dead on the scene according to some reports. (Pioneer Press)

There were a total of 47 students and chaperones on the bus when it crashed, dozens of whom were injured. Rescuers spent hours getting students who had arms and legs trapped out from under the bus, according to State Patrol Lt. Mark Peterson. (Star Tribune)

"All they said was it was dark, most of them were sleeping and didn't know what happened," said Mercy Hospitol spokeswoman Gloria O'Connell. (Pioneer Press)

The cause of the crash, which occurred at the intersection of Wright County road 37 and I-94, was not immediately determined, reported the Pioneer Press.

The bus was driven by Loren D. Ernst, 69. There was a second bus also transporting kids that were unhurt

"He is an experienced driver," said Jay Richards, co-owner of the company Richards Transportation Service in Moorhead to which the truck belonged to. (Star Tribune)

April 6, 2008

Twins Top Angels in Season Opener 3-2

The Minnesota Twins started the 2008 season off on the right foot with a 3-2 victory over the Los Angeles Angels at the Metrodome Monday, reported the Los Angeles Times.

In a game featuring longtime and fan favorite Twin Torii Hunter playing in the Metrodome as a opponent for the first time, the Twins were energized by two newcomers of their own.

Center fielder Carlos Gomez, acquired in the trade that sent Johan Santana to New York, had two hits and two runs in the game.

Free agent pitcher Livan Hernandez only allowed two runs in seven strong innings and was credited with the win.

Before the game Torii Hunter, signed to a $90 million dollar contract by the Angels in the off-season, drew a standing ovation from the home crowd which he dazzled with outstanding play over the past to years.

Despite a temperatures below freezing and wet snow, 49,596 fans packed the Metrodome, the most in 15 years according to the Los Angela Times. Thank goodness for the dome.

"It's nice to be inside today," Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said. "We wouldn't be playing in too many other places, that's for sure." (Associated Press)

Despite the less than ideal weather, the Twins will still be eager to get into their new ballpark in 2010, reported the Associated Press.

"I'll be happy once we get out of this place," Twins first baseman Justin Morneau said. "The benefits of the new stadium far outweigh having to deal with a little weather once in awhile." (Associated Press)

March 29, 2008

Twins Lock up Closer Nathan for Four Years

The Minnesota Twins Signed Closer Joe Nathan to a four-year, $47 million contract Monday, reporter the Pioneer Presshttp://www.twincities.com//ci_8686162?IADID=Search-www.twincities.com-www.twincities.com.

The deal will make Nathan, 33, the second highest paid closer in all of baseball, only behind Mariano Rivera of the New York Yankees. If any closer deserves that kind of money though, its Nathan, who went 4-2 with a 1.88 ERA and 37 saves last season. Since 2004 he has recorded 160 saves for the Twins, which ties him for the leagues best over that period of time with Rivera.

Nathan was in the final year of his previous deal, which was set to pay him $6 million. That will now be replaced by the $11.25 million he is set to make in each year of this new contract. The deal also includes a $12.5 million team option for 2012. The Twins had plenty of money to use to lock up Nathan after the departure of Johan Santana, Torii Hunter and Carlos Silva, which left the team significantly under their budgeted payroll.

The Twins now have four major components of their team locked up through 2010, when the new ballpark open. They include Joe Mauer, Michael Cuddyer, Justin Morneau and Nathan.

Nathan cites manager Ron Gardenhire and Rick Anderson as reason why he wanted to remain a Twin, according to the Associated Press.

"With the way they handle the pitchers here, they take care of us," Nathan said. "They worry more about careers than they do seasons. They think long term more than they do short term." (Associated Press)

High School Coach Turned in for Providing Alchohol to Minors

David Albrecht, a Woodbury High School Assistant Wrestling Coach, has been accused by five of his wrestlers for offering them bear at the state high school wrestling tournament according to police, reported the Pioneer Press Monday.

Albrecht, 21, walked into a St. Paul Hotel room Feb. 29 with a case of beer and two high school girls, according to the search warrant affidavit filed in Ramsey County District Court. He then offered beer everyone in the room according to the document. In the room were five Woodbury high school wrestlers, all underage, according to the Star Tribune.

The wrestlers left the room, but when they returned and Albrecht was still there they reported him to school authorities, according to Dennis Lazenbury, father of one of the boys in the room.

Albrecht has not been charged yet, but is being investigated for providing alchohol to minors, which is a gross misdemenor. Albrecht was a former wrestler at Woodbury and was in his first year as assistant coach.

"My son, it bothered him a lot that he was put in that situation," said Lazenberry."The kids stuck together and did the right thing in an awkward situation."
(Star Tribune)

March 10, 2008

St. Paul Man Shot and Killed at Bar

A St. Paul man was shot and killed outside a bar in St. Paul's East Side early Saturday morning, reported the <u>Star Tribune.

Blaine Christofferson, 39, was shot Cherry Pit bar around 2:30 a.m. Saturday. After being shot he was transported to Regions Hospital where he was pronounced dead after a short period of time, according to Kare 11 News.

Two men who knew Christofferson connected with the killing are expected to be charged soon, according to police. Although they are not positive police are pretty sure this was not a random shooting but that the tho parties did know each other, according to Kare 11 News.

Christofferson was on the other end of a similar incident in 1989 only about a mile from were he was shot Saturday. He was convicted for his association with an armed robbery attempt that ended up with a drug dealer dead. He was charged along with three other men connected to the killing, which involved a dispute over money. Christofferson plead guilty to attempted aggravated robbery and serving two years in prison.

Jason Fyten, 25, is the son of the man shot in the 1989 incident. "I'm sorry it happened to him and it's too bad he didn't seem to change his life around so it didn't happen to him," Fyten said. (Star Tribune)

Minnesota Takes Second Place in the Big Ten Wrestling Tournament

The Minnesota Gophers placed 2nd at this years Big Ten Wrestling Championships held March 8-9 at Williams Arena at the University of Minnesota.

The Gophers qualified nine out of ten weight classes for the NCAA Championships to be held in two weeks, but had no champions in the tournament. All four of the Gophers finalists lost close matches in the final round: Jayson Ness at 125 pounds, Manual Rivera at 141, Dustin Schlatter at 149 and Gabe Dretsch at 174. The Gophers finished with 112.5 teams points, finishing second to rival Iowa, who had 125 team points.

The Hawkeyes qualified nine wrestlers for nationals as well. They also had one champ, Brett Metcalf at 149, who beat Minnesota's Schlatter in a highly anticipated title bout.

The tournament was the first time that the Gophers have had there entire regular lineup wrestling together, according to the Minnesota Daily. Schlatter had missed most of the season with a hamstring injury, and his brother C.P. at 157 and Roger Kish at 184 both missed significant time during the season as well. Unfortunately the injuries may still be an issue with the latter two, as both C.P. Schlatter and Kish had to injury default out of their semi-finals match.

The Gophers had a 12.5 point lead over Iowa after Saturday's wrestling, according to the Star Tribune, but were unable to make it hold up. The overall attendance for the event was 19,891 over the course of the three sessions of the tournament,

Missing Fridley Girl Found

A 4-year-old missing Fridley girl was found alive and safe in Minneapolis Friday, according to the Pioneer Press.

Police found the Anastasia Jones with her non-custodial mother and her boyfriend, according to Janell Rasmussen, spokesperson for the Bureau of Criminal Apprehension..The mother, 19-year old Miracle Angel Flowers, had taken Jones from the Hennepin County Medical Center where she was visiting, reported the Star Tribune.

Witnesses were able to describe Jones and the care her mom was driving, and police called for an Amber Alert Friday afternoon. The car was a 1996 Sebring convertible, and the driver possible may have been 37-year-old Marlon Keith Jackson, according to the Pioneer Press. The alert was sent to the media and posted on electronic billboards along the highway. The car was found abandoned just a few hours latter, and by around 12:30 p.m. on Saturday police had found Jones.

Flowers had recently lost her parental rights to Jones, and she and her boyfriend are now in custody.

The disappearance of Jones Friday triggered the first Amber Alert of the year. The Amber Alert is a public notification program that was started in 2002. Since the program was started an Amber Alert has been enacted 22 times.

March 3, 2008

Woman Thrown Into Traffic in Road Rage Incident

A Prior Lake woman was thrown into oncoming traffic on Hwy. 169 by a man in a road-rage Monday, according to the Star Tribune.

Jennifer Boulden, 34 and mother of five, had just made a legal U-turn when she missed her exit to Shakopee, when the man behind her started honking and motioning for her pull over. She pulled her car over and the man was screaming at her.She got out and walked over to his truck to apologize. When the man continued cursing and yelling Boulden tried to call 911. The man then seized her phone and threw it into the road, and then picked up Boulden herself and tossed her into the road.

"I remember rolling over and hearing skidding brakes. A lady got out and stopped traffic. A man ran and scooped me up and carried me to side of road," Boulden said. (Star Tribune)

Boulden was released from St. Francis Regional Medical Center in Shakopee on Thursday, but may need surgery after suffering two herniated discs in her spinal column, as well as both a severely injured lower back and right leg.

Scott County investigators are not sure that they will ever catch the man who threw Boulden into traffic, as he sped off from the scene quickly and no one could get his license plate number, according to Kare 11 News.

All the information the authorities have so far is that the main was driving a truck, likely with a camper shell. Neither Boulden or any of the witnesses could provide a description of the man or the truck.

"It's going to be very difficult unless another witness comes forward," said Captain Greg Muelken of the Scott County Police. (Kare 11 News)

March 2, 2008

Vikings Sign Big Time Free Agent

The Minnesota Vikings agreed to a six-year contract with free agent wide receiver Bernard Berrian Saturday, addressing the teams need for an upgrade at the receiver position, reported the Star Tribune.

Berrian, formerly of the Chicago Bears, signed a six-year deal worth $42 million, including $16 million in guaranteed money.

Berrian, 27, was the Viking's number one free agent target. The Vikings have already been busy this off season, signing both safety Madieu Williams and fullback Thomas Tapeh to long term deals. Tapeh played college football at the University of Minnesota. The Vikings came into the off season $37 million under the salary cap, and has showed a willingness to spend it.

Head Coach Brad Childress felt the need to upgrade his receiving corps this off season, sighting the positon as a weakness last season.

"We have the running game where we want, and you don't want to be one-dimensional in this league because (opposing defenses) can gang up on you, whether you're only passing it or running it, so this will help us average that out," Childress said. (Pioneer Press)

Last season with Chicago, Berrian led the team in catches (71), receiving yards (951) and receiving touchdowns (five). He views him self as the Vikings new number one receiver, according to the Pioneer Press, as does Childress.

February 25, 2008

Eagan Man Sues St. Paul On Housing Enforcement

An Eagan property owner filed a federal lawsuit Friday against St. Paul officials for violating fair housing laws, reported the Minneapolis Star Tribune.

Robert McCampbell, 52, alleged that city officials are violating housing laws by trying to reduce the number of low-income rental units, which has had an impact in minorities such as African-Americans. He says that officials are illegally shutting down apartments with minority tenants by using the by using the building code enforcement system. The lawsuit states that repeated building inspections and condemnations raised costs and drove out low-income tenants.

McCampbell owns two apartment buildings in the Payne/Phalen neighborhood between 2001-2006, with most of his tenants being minorities, according to the <u>Pioneer Press. McCampbell alleged that city officials made it seem like the minority tenants were not welcome in St. Paul and made racist comments toward them

In the lawsuit McCampbell claims that Andy Dawkins, the director of the city's Neighborhood Housing and Property Improvement department from, "strongly suggested in 2005 to low-income landlords that the bottom tier of tenants should be eliminated from St. Paul." (Star Tribune)

Dawkins denied treating tenants different based on race, saying that he is only trying to hold landlords accountable for keeping their buildings up to code.

February 18, 2008

Gophers Basketball Team Falls to Rival Wisconsin

The Minnesota Gophers were on the wrong end of a 56-65 loss at the hand of the Wisconsin Badgers Saturday, all but ending their hope for an NCAA tournament bid, reported the Star Tribune.

Senior guard Lawrence McKenzie three-point basket with just under nine minutes less to play pulled the Gophers even with the Badgers, but the Gophers match Wisconsin run away as they missed their next seven shots in a row.

"It's kind of been our whole deal this whole year," Gophers said senior center Spencer Tollackson. "We haven't really been able to close out the games. I thought we did some things well tonight. Some guys stepped up. We just couldn't finish it." (Star Tribune)

Though admitting the Gophers missed to many late shots, Tubby Smith was not very happy with the officiating of the game, according to the Pioneer Press. Wisconsin took over twice as many foul shots than the Gophers for the game.

Though not likely to make the NCAA tournament, anything over the Gopher's abysmal 9-22 record last year is an improvement. The Gophers are currently 15-9 overall, and 5-7 in the Big Ten, with six games left before the Big Ten Tournament. At the point the Gophers seem likely destined for the NIT tournament, barring a huge run at the conference tourney.

Four-Year-Old Boy Beat to Death


Carla Poole was arrested Sunday Feb.10th for beating four-year-old Demond Reed to death, reported the Star Tribune.

Poole 37, cousin of Demond's father, Tony Reed, agreed to take Demond in when Reed was sent to the Hennepin County workhouse for marijuana possession, according to the Pioneer Press.

Poole had said that the boy had been taken by a woman named Shawna Williams when Reed’s girlfriend came to pick him up. According to Demond’s grandmother, Charmon Brown.

The story and the name were completely made up as Demond was already dead at that point. Police found the body a few days later in a garbage bag in a closet of Poole’s duplex in North Minneapolis.

Police say that Demond was beaten for wetting his pants. Poole had two of her four children, ages four and six, hold down Demond while she beat him. At least one of the other two children witnessed the beating.

Poole contemplated calling the 911, but eventually decided not to out of fear, according to one of Poole’s children, and 11-year-old girl. The boy had a seizure and threw up, and eventually stopped breathing. The next morning the 11-year old said Demond’s body was “frozen?. (Pioneer Press) Poole through a blanket over Demond and moved him to the closet two days later.

February 11, 2008

University of Minnesota Tuition Expected to Surpass $10,000

The price of tuition at the University of Minnesota will almost certainly surpass 10 grand for the first time, reported the Star Tribune.
The tuition hike has been expect for while, but Friday any glimmer of hope to keep the price-tag of the University from reaching five figures was doused, even though the increase won't officially be released until April.
"I don't see any possibility that we can roll it back," said University President Robert Bruininks following a presentation to the school's regents Friday. (Star Tribune)
The increase is attributed in part to not enough money coming from the state government. The increase is expected to be 7.5 percent more that previous tuition for families making over $150,000 per year and 5.5 percent for families making less.
Tuition at the University has been increasing by more and more for the past four decades.
According to the Pioneer Press undergraduate tuition and fees at the University rose 10 percent during the 1970s, 42 percent in the 1980s, 37 percent in the 1990s and 66 percent in the first seven years of this decade, making it one of the most expensive state universities in the entire country.
This is an alarming fact for students, who are finding it more and more difficult to pay for college every year. Bruininks said that 60.5 percent of students graduating in four years receive loans and the average debt is about $20,500 when talking to the regents on Friday.
"Compared to what our parents paid for school, it's ridiculous," said Anthony West, a freshman from Mahtomedi. (Star Tribune)

Police Find Body of Missing 4-year-old.

The body of a four-year-old who had disappeared for a Minneapolis home was discovered Sunday by the police, reported the Pioneer Press.
Police have been searching for Demond Reed as well as Shawna Williams, 38, since Wednesday when they disappeared from a home in north Minneapolis where Reed lives with relatives, reported the Star Tribune.
"We really, I don't think, have a clue," said Sgt. William Palmer of the Minneapolis Police Department as to why Reed left the home. (Star Tribune)
Reed had been left with relatives since he was brought to Minneapolis by mother his to visit his incarcerated father. Her mother then returned to Chicago, but has since come back to the Twin Cities.
The police are investigating the death as a homicide, but no charges have been filed yet. They did take a woman into questioning but would not say how the woman is related to the boy. The woman Reed left with, Williams, is believed to be an acquaintance of the relatives which Reed had been staying with.
Though it is being investigated as a homicide, the cause of death is still unknown.
"A lot of the details in this case have been fairly unclear," said Palmer. (Pioneer Press)

February 4, 2008

Presidential Candidate Clinton comes to Minneaplis

Presidential Candidate Hillary Clinton spoke to a crowd of nearly 4,000 people at Augsburg College in Minneapolis on Sunday, reports the Star Tribune.
Clinton talked for over 30 minutes on topics ranging from affordable health care to protecting the environment. The stop was one of many across the nation for Clinton in a last ditch effort to gain some votes before the primaries on Tuesday. Minnesota is one of 24 states that will be holding primaries on Tuesday. Clinton's visit comes on the heals of democrat party rival Barack Obama speaking in front of nearly 20,000 at the Target Center Saturday.
According to the Pioneer Press, Clinton was slightly ahead of Obama in a statewide poll the final week before the primaries.
That was taken before candidate John Edwards dropped out of the race though. A deciding factor may be who the Edwards supporters not choose to vote for. Former Edwards supporter Will Labovitch, 28, of South St. Paul, attended both the Clinton and Obama and events and is leaning towards Clinton.
"The trouble is it felt like a church revival, not a political campaign rally," Labovitch said of the Obama event. "I think I might give Hillary a shot." (Pioneer Press)

Santana traded to Mets

The Star Tribune reported wednesday that Twins star pitcher Johan Santana has been traded to the New York Mets for four prospects.
In exchange for Sanatana, the Twins accepted Minnesota accepted outfielder Carlos Gomez and pitchers Deolis Guerra, Kevin Mulvey and Philip Humber from the Mets. The Twins have been knowingly shopping Santana for several months, but many have blamed them for being too patient and not accepting earlier alleged deals from the New York Yankees and Boston Red Sox.
The Twins have been publicly ridiculed for making this deal which dealt the two time cy-young winner Santana for a handful of prospects not even sure bets to make the Twins opening-day roster this spring. Even though Santana still had one-year left on his current contract, the Twins were looking to trade him now as they were not expecting to re-sign him once his contract was up, due to his incredibly high anticipated price tag. Despite the seemingly lopsided trade Twins owner Bill Smith believes he made the right move in dumping Santana now.
"It would have been a distraction. ... Every day the home media, the visiting media, every day, wants to know where you're going to be next year," said Smith."It would have been a little bit of a distraction, I think, for everybody on the team." (Pioneer Press)
The Santana trade is tough to swallow for Minnesota fans, especially since another hometown favorite, Torii Hunter, has already departed this off-season.