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Phil Miller

Reporter | University of Minnesota football
Phil has covered college football, basketball, the NBA (Utah Jazz) and major-league baseball (Minnesota Twins) since for more than 20 years.
Recent content from Phil Miller
With Santana's suspension over, he's set to rejoin Twins

With Santana's suspension over, he's set to rejoin Twins

As the Twins prepared to play game No. 80 on Friday, Ervin Santana checked into the team’s hotel across town. At the game’s final out, Santana’s steroids suspension had officially been served.
Royals find an opening to beat Twins in 10 innings

Royals find an opening to beat Twins in 10 innings

The Twins’ bats failed to back up Tomy Milone’s quality effort Friday in Kansas City.
Twins will give 16-year-old shortstop Javier record $4 million

Twins will give 16-year-old shortstop Javier record $4 million

The Twins agreed to a $4 million contract with 16-year-old Dominican shortstop Wander Javier, the team confirmed, outstripping the franchise record $3.1 million they paid Miguel Sano in 2010.
First hit not much, but Sano says it's first of many with Twins

First hit not much, but Sano says it's first of many with Twins

Miguel Sano hustled down the line, beat Mike Moustakas’ throw and ended up with a souvenir - the ball from his first MLB hit Thursday.
Twins defense warms to shifty managing by Molitor

Twins defense warms to shifty managing by Molitor

It’s too early to try to quantify how much of an effect all the movement is having on the Twins defense, but Molitor is convinced the effect is more than worth the effort.
Santana gives up two homers but wins second start

Santana gives up two homers but wins second start

Ervin Santana’s first pitch Thursday landed in the McCoy Stadium bullpen he had just warmed up in.
Now a reliever, Meyer gets call to make Twins' debut

Now a reliever, Meyer gets call to make Twins' debut

Moved to the bullpen out of desperation, Meyer reverted to his top-prospect form, giving up only one earned run in 17 innings as a reliever, a 0.53 ERA that included 20 strikeouts and just six walks.
Hicks to start rehabilitation in Rochester after elbow injury

Hicks to start rehabilitation in Rochester after elbow injury

The team might go with a seven-man bullpen for its upcoming games at Milwaukee and Cincinnati.
Twins notes: Tonkin demoted; no word on replacement

Twins notes: Tonkin demoted; no word on replacement

The team might go with a seven-man bullpen for its upcoming games at Milwaukee and Cincinnati.
Hughes solid while Sale can't stop Twins again

Hughes solid while Sale can't stop Twins again

The Twins clubbed ace Chris Sale for six runs, a remarkable achievement considering Sale had allowed only three runs in his last five starts combined.
Buxton's 'electrifying giftedness' distracts Twins manager Molitor

Buxton's 'electrifying giftedness' distracts Twins manager Molitor

“When he’s on the field, you don’t want to take your eyes off him. Every swing, if he puts it in play, you watch him run,” Molitor said.
Numbers go awry for Twins, Pelfrey in 6-2 loss to White Sox

Numbers go awry for Twins, Pelfrey in 6-2 loss to White Sox

Paul Molitor stuck with the stats and his starter, but Chicago pounced in the decisive seventh inning.
Twins find their elixir in a 13-2 romp over White Sox

Twins find their elixir in a 13-2 romp over White Sox

Byron Buxton showed off his baseball tools on offense and defense; Kennys Vargas went 4 for 4 with four RBI, including one of four Twins home runs.
Twins notes: Reliever Thompson says his slump is mostly mental

Twins notes: Reliever Thompson says his slump is mostly mental

The reliever's ERA in June is 14.54, and he has retired only 13 of the 23 batters he has faced in the month.
Twins flail, bullpen fails in 8-0 loss to the Cubs

Twins flail, bullpen fails in 8-0 loss to the Cubs

For the first time since May 6, the Twins have now given up more runs this season than they have scored.
Twins notes: Gibson's start is rare shorter outing for staff

Twins notes: Gibson's start is rare shorter outing for staff

The righthander gave up two runs but lasted only five innings against the Cubs.
Twins skidding their way back to Target Field

Twins skidding their way back to Target Field

The Twins' road trip had excitement, but also concluded Tuesday with a 1-4 record after another one-run loss at St. Louis.
Santana to get starts at Class AAA before rejoining Twins

Santana to get starts at Class AAA before rejoining Twins

The suspended righthander is slated to make his Twins debut July 5.
Twins' Hughes still not satisfied with stuff

Twins' Hughes still not satisfied with stuff

Hughes, always an extreme fly ball pitcher, now leads the American League in home runs allowed.
Byron Buxton's Twins debut: a start-to-finish blur

Byron Buxton's Twins debut: a start-to-finish blur

The Twins’ prized rookie is touted as a five-tool player, but there was no doubt which one he showed off in his major league debut: speed. Major league speed.
Pelfrey battered by Rangers as Twins drop their fifth in a row

Pelfrey battered by Rangers as Twins drop their fifth in a row

The righthander allowed eight runs in 3⅔ innings against the Rangers.
Top prospect Byron Buxton makes his debut today

Top prospect Byron Buxton makes his debut today

Byron Buxton, the Twins’ most highly prized prospect since Joe Mauer was drafted in 2000, was called up after Aaron Hicks' elbow injury and Torii Hunter's suspension.
Hunter starts his two-game suspension

Hunter starts his two-game suspension

The outfielder, who wasn't feeling well Saturday, withdrew his appeal.
Hicks' late gaffe costs Twins in 6-2 loss at Texas

Hicks' late gaffe costs Twins in 6-2 loss at Texas

Aaron Hicks dropped a would-be third out flyball in center, allowing two late runs as the Twins dropped their fourth straight game.
Hunter: 2-game suspension from MLB 'a little harsh'

Hunter: 2-game suspension from MLB 'a little harsh'

Torii Hunter is in the lineup for tonight's Twins' series opener in Texas as he appeals a two-game suspension for an eighth-inning outburst Wednesday.
Molitor satisfied with Mauer despite dip in average

Molitor satisfied with Mauer despite dip in average

As the Twins’ season reaches its 60th game, three-time batting champion Joe Mauer is batting .260, his lowest average so late in a season.
Plouffe typifies Twins' offensive struggles

Plouffe typifies Twins' offensive struggles

The Twins offense has fizzled on their current homestand, with the team scoring only 10 runs in the first five games.
Twins manage only one hit in loss to Kansas City

Twins manage only one hit in loss to Kansas City

Trevor Plouffe’s triple was all the Twins could muster as the Royals took AL Central lead.
Loyalty to friend tinges Escobar's return as a starter

Loyalty to friend tinges Escobar's return as a starter

Eduardo Escobar is delighted to be the Twins’ starting shortstop once again, but feels bad for the demotion of Danny Santana.
Morales celebrates 'anniversary' by thumping Twins

Morales celebrates 'anniversary' by thumping Twins

A year ago, Kansas City designated hitter Kendrys Morales signed a free-agent contract with the Twins. On Monday, he beat them with a two-run homer.
Pelfrey's masterpiece keeps Twins in first place

Pelfrey's masterpiece keeps Twins in first place

Which would have been a crazier prediction last winter: That the Twins would play a June series with the AL Central lead at stake? Or that they would wish Mike Pelfrey was pitching in it?

Power-hungry Twins call up Vargas; Santana sent down

The Twins have been operating without much power in the middle of the lineup, and on Sunday, they decided to do something about it.Kennys Vargas…
Mauer's botched bunt sparks blunder-filled victory

Mauer's botched bunt sparks blunder-filled victory

There were five errors, eight infield hits, some outfield misplays and at least four baserunning blunders as the Twins took a one-game lead in the AL Central by splitting their series in Boston.
Twins notes: Hunter joins elite home run club

Twins notes: Hunter joins elite home run club

A blast onto a billboard atop the Green Monster was Torii Hunter’s 200th in a Twins uniform, making him the seventh player ever to reach that milestone.
'Frustrated' Milone used anger to his advantage in Rochester

'Frustrated' Milone used anger to his advantage in Rochester

The Twins' Tommy Milone, who has been on an impressive run pitching in the minors, will start Thursday’s game against the Red Sox.
Dominant May, perfect bunt give Twins a split

Dominant May, perfect bunt give Twins a split

Trevor May gave up just two hits in seven innings Wednesday night, shutting down the Red Sox at Fenway Park. Danny Santana helped out, too.
Twins notes: Tonkin called up as Molitor preps for 'bullpen day'

Twins notes: Tonkin called up as Molitor preps for 'bullpen day'

Reliever Michael Tonkin will be the Twins’ 26th man Wednesday, eligible to pitch under an MLB rule that allows teams to add a player for doubleheaders.
Twins offense disappears again at Fenway in 1-0 loss

Twins offense disappears again at Fenway in 1-0 loss

Just as it did a year ago, the Twins offense disappeared Tuesday. “It’s a park that’s more famous for 15-10 [scores] than 1-0s,” Paul Molitor said. “So it’s been strange.”
Boston weather fouls Twins' starting rotation

Boston weather fouls Twins' starting rotation

After Mike Pelfrey starts Tuesday, the team will have some decisions to make.
Twins notes: Fien returns to Twins with new role

Twins notes: Fien returns to Twins with new role

Casey Fien was activated Friday, though he understands his setup role in front of closer Glen Perkins belongs to Blaine Boyer, at least for the moment.
Twins done in by Toronto's home runs, Buehrle

Twins done in by Toronto's home runs, Buehrle

Mark Buehrle went the distance after a slow start for the Blue Jays, and Chris Colabello finished the job with a ninth-inning home run off Glen Perkins.
Twins notes: Danny Santana hunts for success

Twins notes: Danny Santana hunts for success

The sophomore season hasn’t been easy for the Twins’ standout rookies of 2014.
Pelfrey shines, Twins win again over Boston

Pelfrey shines, Twins win again over Boston

Following a rain delay at Target Field, the Twins jumped out to a 2-0 lead over the Red Sox and held on for their fourth straight victory. Mike Pelfrey allowed just one run for the second straight start.
Nolasco gets 100th victory as Twins crush Red Sox

Nolasco gets 100th victory as Twins crush Red Sox

Each Twins player in the starting lineup collected a hit and Trevor Plouffe broke open the game with a three-run homer.
Milone and his 0.28 ERA wait for call-up from the Twins

Milone and his 0.28 ERA wait for call-up from the Twins

Milone may be collecting Class AAA scoreless innings like pocket change, but he also has the misfortune of doing so during the Twins’ longest extended stretch of starting-pitching effectiveness in years.
MLB Insider: All of baseball's stats converge in St. Paul

MLB Insider: All of baseball's stats converge in St. Paul

To millions of fans, loving baseball means loving the numbers it generates, and that thirst for mathematical exploration has exploded in the Internet era, even among players themselves.
Francisco Liriano's super slider the next challenge for Twins

Francisco Liriano's super slider the next challenge for Twins

The Twins will face Liriano, whose slider electrified Minnesota during a memorable rookie year in 2006, but became frustratingly inconsistent after elbow surgery sidelined him for 18 months.
Rivals in AL Central help to toughen up Twins

Rivals in AL Central help to toughen up Twins

The Twins say they have discovered something thrilling during an unusually Central-heavy first six weeks to the season: They can compete.
Twins send Vargas to minors in search of his swing

Twins send Vargas to minors in search of his swing

Kennys Vargas, who went 0-for-1 as a pinch hitter in the Twins’ 11-3 loss on Sunday, has not been the power source in the middle of the lineup that manager Paul Molitor wants to see.
Once again, Twins' finish needs some polish

Once again, Twins' finish needs some polish

Tampa Bay small-balled Twins starter Kyle Gibson, eviscerated Minnesota’s bullpen and piled up 19 hits, failures that obscure the overall successes of the weekend, after the Twins took two out of three.
Twins notes: Bad day includes rare video challenge loss

Twins notes: Bad day includes rare video challenge loss

For just the second time this season in the eight instances that Paul Molitor has challenged a call, the ruling wasn’t overturned.
Ugly all around as Twins thumped by Tigers 13-1

Ugly all around as Twins thumped by Tigers 13-1

Sloppy at plate, in field and on mound, the Twins lost their seventh of nine to the Tigers and ended their road trip with a 3-3 record.
Twins notes: Stretching keeps Suzuki flexible as he nears milestone

Twins notes: Stretching keeps Suzuki flexible as he nears milestone

Kurt Suzuki didn’t have much time Wednesday to talk about reaching 1,000 games in the major leagues. He had to go stretch. Again.
Nolasco strong, Twins offense erupts in Detroit

Nolasco strong, Twins offense erupts in Detroit

Five weeks to the day after his actual debut, Ricky Nolasco finally looked like the pitcher his new manager was expecting to see.
Hicks' mission: Prove he belongs in the big leagues

Hicks' mission: Prove he belongs in the big leagues

Manager Paul Molitor will be watching Hicks’ focus, which has been a problem for the 2008 first-round pick in the past. That might be the best indicator of whether, at 25, he has matured, the manager said.
Twins can't cash in on Detroit; Tigers win in 10th

Twins can't cash in on Detroit; Tigers win in 10th

The Twins had their chances Tuesday night in Detroit. But the Tigers pounced when it mattered, winning in 10 innings.
Twins hitting coach Brunansky earns players' trust

Twins hitting coach Brunansky earns players' trust

Tom Brunansky, a holdover from Ron Gardenhire’s staff, was the first hire for Paul Molitor's staff, too.
Twins give Aaron Hicks another shot at the majors

Twins give Aaron Hicks another shot at the majors

The 25-year-old outfielder will join the Twins in Detroit; Shane Robinson has been placed on the Family Emergency List by the team.
Twins notes: May plays it too safe

Twins notes: May plays it too safe

The righthander threw first-pitch strikes to 11 of 24 batters.
Twins hitters struggle against Salazar, Indians

Twins hitters struggle against Salazar, Indians

Cleveland pitcher Danny Salazar struck out 11 Twins in seven innings in the Indians' 8-2 victory Sunday.
Twins continue their climb in Cleveland

Twins continue their climb in Cleveland

The Twins again broke out the offense on Saturday, winning 7-4 for their 10th victory in 12 games.
Twins notes: Circumstances lead Mauer, Dozier to 'hug it out'

Twins notes: Circumstances lead Mauer, Dozier to 'hug it out'

The photo of Brian Dozier and Joe Mauer hugging in the infield Friday night after colliding while Mauer caught a pop-up got noticed.

Twins notes: Inherited baserunners don't concern Perkins

In adding the four-out save to Glen Perkins’ responsibilities, Twins manager Paul Molitor has also introduced the closer to something else he hasn’t seen in awhile: baserunners.
Twins bring back Bernier to replace injured Nunez

Twins bring back Bernier to replace injured Nunez

With Eduardo Nunez unable to swing without soreness, the Twins placed him on the 15-day DL after Tuesday’s game, and called up Doug Bernier.
Twins win streak stopped with 2-1 loss to Oakland

Twins win streak stopped with 2-1 loss to Oakland

An eighth-inning rally faltered for Twins after they had been stifled by Oakland starter Jesse Chavez. Minnesota had just five hits, all singles.
Twins notes: Arcia out at least two weeks with hip injury

Twins notes: Arcia out at least two weeks with hip injury

When Oswaldo Arcia caught a fly ball, wound up and threw it home in the fourth inning Sunday, he successfully prevented White Sox baserunner…
Twins fall behind early, rally and hold on to beat Oakland

Twins fall behind early, rally and hold on to beat Oakland

The Twins now own a five-game winning streak, their longest in more than two years, and at 14-12, they are two games above .500 for the first time since May 21.
Twins give Rosario his first crack at major leagues

Twins give Rosario his first crack at major leagues

Eddie Rosario was summoned to the major leagues Monday when Oswaldo Arcia was placed on the disabled list because of a sore right hip.
Twins back at .500 with 5-3 victory over White Sox

Twins back at .500 with 5-3 victory over White Sox

Trevor Plouffe and Torii Hunter hit home runs to lead the Twins to a 5-3 victory on Saturday afternoon at Target Field. It’s their third straight win and moves the team to 12-12 on the season.
Twins notes: Catchers making progress throwing out base runners

Twins notes: Catchers making progress throwing out base runners

Saturday was the third time over the week the Twins threw out two baserunners in one game.
Milone 'shocked' by demotion to Class AAA

Milone 'shocked' by demotion to Class AAA

Tommy Milone was sent to Class AAA Rochester after Friday’s 1-0 victory over the White Sox to make room for Ricky Nolasco, who will start Saturday.
Gibson grinds his way to shutout win over White Sox

Gibson grinds his way to shutout win over White Sox

With zero margin of error to work with, Kyle Gibson worked his way out of trouble Friday. His reward was a 1-0 victory over the White Sox.
Fien goes on disabled list; Tonkin called up from Rochester

Fien goes on disabled list; Tonkin called up from Rochester

With Casey Fien injured, righthanded reliever Michael Tonkin is headed to Minnesota and will rejoin the Twins bullpen.
Price, Tigers too much again for Twins

Price, Tigers too much again for Twins

David Price was staked to an early lead, and a chance to turn the tables was blown.
Twins bench struggling Vargas

Twins bench struggling Vargas

Kennys Vargas was on the Twins’ bench for a second day in a row Monday. A thousand miles away, in Knoxville, Tenn., Miguel…
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