Five by 8 – 5/26/10: Twins rain on fans’ parade

1) The Twins couldn’t beat the Yankees in 6 innings last night, so Major League Baseball took it out on the fans. So far in 2010, we’ve had our first opening day at Target Field, we’ve had the first raptor, the first squirrel, the first day game, the first night game and last night we got the first application of the rain-check policy. The game was scoreless in the sixth against the Yankees when the rain came. The game was delayed, then suspended. The game will be completed before today’s game, but fans who bought tickets for last night’s game won’t be able to watch the conclusion of last night’s game. Baseball rules say a six-inning game is an official game. The fans paid to see a game; they got a game, the Twins said.

“What a joke! The Twins completely ripped off the fans tonight!” WCCO’s Mark Rosen tweeted. Actually, it’s the umpires who made the call.

What could they have done? Waited? The curfew in baseball is 1 a.m. and by 10, the rain had stopped, according to some fans. But more rain was on the way.

There is, of course, a greatness to outdoor baseball. But when we were traveling down memory lane before the stadium was built, we forgot a few things about its hazards.

And now, our favorite squirrel baseball videos:

More nature news: There’s a robin roosting in the foliage of a plant for sale at a Cub in Duluth.

2) 223 years ago yesterday, the Constitutional Convention started meeting in Philadelphia. For many months, it made the Minnesota state government seem like a well-run machine. Eventually, out popped the U.S. Constitution. One wonders what the Founding Fathers would say if we could go back in time and tell them that starting now, an account — @SecretDelegate — is providing updates on the Convention, on a thing called a computer, run by magic called electricity? The true identity of the delegate will not be revealed until the Constitution is signed.

Unlike Minnesota lawmakers, the Founding Fathers apparently went drinking with each other from time to time.


3) Should government step in to ensure that users of Facebook own their privacy? The New York Times is hosting a spirited debate today.

“And once again, as on multiple other occasions when Facebook unilaterally changed the way it handles our personal information, some observers shrug and conclude that technology simply “moves too fast” for the law to handle. I don’t know which is more exasperating, Facebook’s tone-deaf approach to privacy or the defeatist chatter that follows,” says William McGeveran, a professor at the University of Minnesota Law School.

Facebook is announcing new privacy settings today — which is different than what they did earlier this week, adding settings that defaulted to lack of privacy without telling anyone .

MPR’s Midmorning will tackle this issue tomorrow. Incidentally, want to follow me on Facebook? Me, neither.

4) How come U.S. citizens aren’t as excited to be U.S. citizens as people who aren’t, and then are? Aguibou Barry of St. Cloud is one of our newest citizens, after a ceremony yesterday in St. Cloud. But his daughters had to stay in school and couldn’t attend. “I wish they could be here,” Barry said, “because I did this for them.”

A commenter on the St. Cloud Times’ Web site nails it:

THIS is the kind of story that should be told more often. The VAST majority of immigrants that come here legally are appreciative of their opportunity and excited about their future. Usually, we only hear about the ones that are disenchanted – or never should have come to begin with. Anyone that can’t see the positives in a story like this has other “issues” that prevent them from being a TRUE American at heart.

5) Bill Hinkley has died. The folk music giant was on the first A Prairie Home Companion show. He provided the folk in the folksiness of the show.


Candidates for governor of Minnesota have been announcing their running mates ahead of a June 1 filing deadline. Would a candidate’s choice of running mate ever decide your vote?


Midmorning (9-11 a.m.) – First hour: Greece’s bailout and the future of the Euro.

Second hour: Memories of stock market’s steep decline at the end of 2008, and Wall Street’s recent roller coaster ride, might be giving many investors pause. Two market watchers share their thoughts on where the value is, and what to avoid.

Midday (11 a.m. – 1 p.m.) – First hour: Karl Marlantes on his best-selling novel about the Vietnam War, called “Matterhorn.”

Second hour: Live broadcast from the National Press Club, featuring President George W. Bush’s daughter, Barbara Bush, speaking about global health.

Talk of the Nation (1-3 p.m.) – First hour: NPR political editor Ken Rudin.

Second hour: A look at gays serving in the military in other countries.

All Things Considered (3-6:30 p.m.) – MPR’s Mark Steil has one of the bright spots for employment. The health sector has grown in size and importance statewide. In some areas job growth and wages outpace the average. Blue Earth County has seen health care employment and wages grow faster than the county average. But some of the fastest-growing jobs are very low-paying. And a growing health sector reflects growing health costs, which are problematic for the economy.

National Public Radio reports on California’s last car assembly plant, which shut down earlier this year. But now, it has a new lease on life. Electric sedans will roll off the assembly line there. And that means thousands of former workers will be lining up for jobs again.