A Minnesota Twins Christmas Carol – Part Four
Pohlad is awakened yet again but this time isn’t even surprised. He has now come to expect interruption to his sleep on this bizarre Christmas Eve.
This time a man appears in a Los Angeles Dodgers jersey. Although the face looks familiar, he can’t quite place a name with it. Just at that moment, the man began to speak.
“My name is Royce Lewis, and I am the Ghost of Christmas Future,” the man said. “I am going to take you to the future so you can see where your penny-pinching has gotten your franchise.”
The year is 2030. The Twins’ last winning season, 2020, was a full decade ago. Players such as Balazovic, Canterino and Duran have all since left via free agency when the Twins claimed they couldn’t afford to keep them. Lewis himself was sent to the Dodgers for a handful of minor leaguers after winning the American League MVP award in 2026.
Pohlad is shocked to see the vast emptiness of Target Field during a game on a beautiful July night. Advertising has now taken over the entire stadium like moss on a tree. Ads are spray-painted on the outfield grass, an ad is projected into the sky above left field. Even the hot dogs now feature edible advertising right there on the bun.
One thing was missing, however: the fans. There were maybe 1,000 fans in attendance and most of those were in the former Metropolitan Club, which was now a VR-based sports book used to gamble on the outcome of games.
Inside the 3M Presents DraftKings SportsBook brought to you by Target in association with Land O’ Lakes were a series of televisions, each of them showing baseball games being played in front of full stadiums.
With hockey and football both declining in popularity due to violence and head injuries, baseball has surged back into the forefront of the American sports conversation. Stadiums from Vancouver to Miami were packed full of fans, but not Target Field.
“What happened? Why is Target Field so empty,” Pohlad asked. “What about the Target Field experience? Doesn’t anyone care about the Target Field experience?!”
“The Target Field experience can only carry you so far, Mr. Pohlad,” Royce Lewis says wistfully. “When you stopped spending money on the team, the fans stopped spending money on the team.
“There are no more profits to be had and the franchise value has declined a significant amount due to poor attendance and a poor reputation in general,” Lewis concluded.
That last part, the part about declining profits and franchise value, pushed Pohlad to the edge. He finally succumbed to emotion and began to sob. He swore from that point on he would change his ways.