My two favorite things on the planet are sports and music. Even though it obviously doesn't apply, to me the stereotype still sticks out that music geeks, the real hip brainiac types (not the salt of the Earth music fans who like John Mellencamp), can't like sports and vice versa. So when there's crossover with a band I like and sports, my ears naturally tend to perk. I mean, let's be honest: you don't typically hear Sufjan Stevens singing about the Lions (although a Barry Sanders track was sorely missing on Greetings From Michigan.
That's why I love The Hold Steady. Somehow, they've managed to be rock n' roll everymen AND hits with all the holier-than-thou MP3 bloggers. They drink lots of beer (and sing about it), they're fat, plain, and look like factory workers, and they make really good music. As singer Craig Finn puts it, "the Hold Steady, we're all sort of sports guys... we're more likely to be drinking beer and eating wings and watching baseball rather than collecting some obscure 7-inch."
So the Minnesota band was thrilled to hear that the Twins were playing their music between innings. So thrilled that they agreed to record a localized version of "Take Me Out to the Ballgame." Hear it at their MySpace page. And buy Boys and Girls in America, for "Stuck Between Stations" alone.