Before Sunday's split-squad game in Tampa, Fla., Twins second baseman Tsuyoshi Nishioka arranged a meet-and-greet with Yankees captain Derek Jeter. They met in the outfield shortly before the first pitch.
"Personally, I was a fan of Derek Jeter, so it was nice to meet him," Nishioka said. "And he remembered me from the World Baseball Classic."
It was during the 2006 WBC that Nishioka, who was on second base at the time, walked over to Jeter and shook his hand during a break in the action.
Nishioka had the upper hand in Sunday's game, going 1-for-3 with a stolen base and a run scored, as the Twins beat New York 9-2. Jeter was 1-for-3 but dropped a routine popup that allowed a run to score.
Nishioka influenced the game in several ways, showing the things he can do for the Twins.
"No doubt," said Twins bench coach Scott Ullger, who handled managing duties against the Yankees.
In the first inning, Nishioka bunted Denard Span over to second base. In the third, he pulled a curveball from Freddy Garcia down the right field line for a double, then stole third when Garcia didn't pay attention to him. Nishioka also helped turn a double play in the bottom of the third.
Batting with two strikes in the fourth, he grounded out to second, allowing Span to reach third -- a productive out.
"To me, he does everything you want a 1 or 2 hitter to do," Span said.Etc.
• Righthander Scott Baker gave up one run over four innings -- on a solo homer by Alex Rodriguez -- and came away pleased with his best outing of the spring.
• A one-hopper smacked Glen Perkins on his left arm in the sixth inning, but he said he'll be fine.
• Joe Mauer (left knee surgery) caught Brian Duensing's bullpen session, giving him two consecutive days of catching in the bullpen. He'll need a few more of those sessions before being ready to catch in a game but could return as a designated hitter later this week.
• Justin Morneau went 0-for-2 with a strikeout in the Twins' 6-3 loss to Philadelphia. It was Morneau's second game in three days, another step in his concussion recovery. Gardenhire said Morneau would have liked to play more than five innings and then return to the lineup Monday. But doctors have set up the schedule so Morneau will play Wednesday, after the team's only off day of the spring.
• Michael Cuddyer (wart removal, left foot) took batting practice with the Twins before their game in Fort Myers. He has been able to hit and throw but has yet to run full-speed. He said his foot is healing well and he is confident he'll be ready for the April 1 season opener.On deck
Fox Sports North will televise its first Twins game of the spring Monday, when the Marlins visit Hammond Stadium. Kevin Slowey will start, and Nick Blackburn will pitch in relief opposite Florida righthander Alex Sanabia. First pitch is 12:05 p.m.
LA VELLE E. NEAL III AND JOE CHRISTENSEN