Staff Directory 102061883

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
Park bangs another home run as Twins beat Red Sox

Park bangs another home run as Twins beat Red Sox

Park is likely to be added to the Twins' 40-man roster Thursday, the winner of a competition with Kennys Vargas to capture the designated hitter role he lost last season.
The Twins' Hector is quite the collector

The Twins' Hector is quite the collector

Pitcher Hector Santiago transforms basement into wall-to-wall sports shrine.
One year later, ByungHo Park settles in as DH for Twins

One year later, ByungHo Park settles in as DH for Twins

Manager Paul Molitor said roster moves are coming that will provide "a fair amount of clarity" about the remaining roster competitions. The designated hitter situation doesn't appear to be among them.
Twins' Duffey hopes to show he belongs in rotation

Twins' Duffey hopes to show he belongs in rotation

For the second spring in a row, Duffey is part of a two- or three-way competition for the final spot in the Twins rotation, and for the second spring in a row, it's come down to the final week of camp.
Santana returns looking sharp as Twins, Orioles tie

Santana returns looking sharp as Twins, Orioles tie

Ervin Santana, who left Twins camp two weeks ago to join the Dominican Republic team in the World Baseball Classic, struck out six Orioles in a four-inning stint.
Hughes has rocky outing in 8-4 Twins loss to Houston

Hughes has rocky outing in 8-4 Twins loss to Houston

Phil Hughes surrendered a home run to George Springer on his first pitch of the day against the Astros and lasted only two innings. His spring ERA jumped to 6.75.
Pressure? That's child's play for Twins reliever, young father Boshers

Pressure? That's child's play for Twins reliever, young father Boshers

Buddy Boshers' young daughter keeps the Twins' bullpen contest in perspective. "She keeps me pretty busy, from the time I walk through the door."
Dozier, Polanco homer, Hughes sharp in Twins win over Rays

Dozier, Polanco homer, Hughes sharp in Twins win over Rays

Brian Dozier slugged his first home run of spring training and Phil Hughes pitched five strong innings as the twins defeated Tampa Bay 4-2.
Big man Adalberto Mejia making bigger pitch to be No. 5 starter

Big man Adalberto Mejia making bigger pitch to be No. 5 starter

Adalberto Mejia shut down the Cardinals to continue a strong spring.
Twins defeat Tampa Bay 9-4; Mauer robbed of home run

Twins defeat Tampa Bay 9-4; Mauer robbed of home run

But the first baseman did manage to record his first RBI of the spring.
Granite's skill set is rock-solid for Twins

Granite's skill set is rock-solid for Twins

The Twins' top minor leaguer of 2016 has speed to burn, but that's not all.
Veteran Vogelsong makes bid for starting job, pleased with Sunday's outing

Veteran Vogelsong makes bid for starting job, pleased with Sunday's outing

Ryan Vogelsong, 39, likes where he's at right now.
Dee Gordon and the Twins' Nick Gordon meet on field as rivals

Dee Gordon and the Twins' Nick Gordon meet on field as rivals

It can't be easy being Dee Gordon's younger brother. You're trying to live up to your first-round-pick identity and get to the big leagues, and all anybody wants to do is make comparisons.
Twins use some power to defeat Miami 8-2, win seventh straight

Twins use some power to defeat Miami 8-2, win seventh straight

ByungHo Park, John Ryan Murphy and Dan Rohlfing hit home runs and Tyler Duffey gave up one run in three innings during his first start of spring training.
Boom: Hitting adjustment should help Sano make solid contact

Boom: Hitting adjustment should help Sano make solid contact

To restore his potency at the plate, Miguel Sano tinkered with his mechanics this offseason, namely working with former major leaguer Fernando Tatis
Four Twins prospects to pitch for Team USA vs. Twins in exhibition

Four Twins prospects to pitch for Team USA vs. Twins in exhibition

Each will throw an inning vs. Twins in an exhibition.
Twins rally for walk-off win in 10th inning

Twins rally for walk-off win in 10th inning

Chris Gimenez was thrilled to fight off a couple of sliders Monday and then line a single up the middle, which drove in the game-winning run in the 10th inning.
Outfield instructor Pickler brings fresh ideas to Twins

Outfield instructor Pickler brings fresh ideas to Twins

Twins manager Paul Molitor is impressed with the new coach's willingness to consider unconventional approaches — including new ways of examining statistics — in different situations.
Santiago strong for Twins in pre-WBC tuneup

Santiago strong for Twins in pre-WBC tuneup

Hector Santiago retired eight of the 11 batters he faced in 2⅔ scoreless innings, five of them via strikeouts, before departing to play for Team Puerto Rico in the World Baseball Classic as the Twins rallied for a 4-2 victory over the Nationals at The Ballpark of the Palm Beaches.
Pressly close to taking 'next step' as a veteran standout in Twins bullpen

Pressly close to taking 'next step' as a veteran standout in Twins bullpen

Ryan Pressly has gradually gained experience with the Twins, figured out how to attack hitters, and put himself on the precipice of becoming a bullpen virtuoso — and perhaps a star.
Spring training puzzle: Where will Mauer bat in Twins order?

Spring training puzzle: Where will Mauer bat in Twins order?

The question of where to slot the three-time batting champion is becoming a ticklish matter as Joe Mauer reaches the later stages of his career.
Park homers again, Santana throws two shutout innings in 9-6 win

Park homers again, Santana throws two shutout innings in 9-6 win

ByungHo, as he wants to be called, homered for the second time.
Twins' day at camp: Buxton using spring training to move out of comfort zone

Twins' day at camp: Buxton using spring training to move out of comfort zone

For Buxton, that means improving his running game, and particularly against lefthanders. He has the speed to successfully steal against lefties, but he admits, not always the guts.
After rough debut, hard-throwing Chargois seeks bullpen spot

After rough debut, hard-throwing Chargois seeks bullpen spot

When the Twins' young righthander returned home for the winter in Sulphur, La., his family surprised him with a keepsake that he wanted no part of keeping.
Twins minor league manager Quade OK after scary car accident

Twins minor league manager Quade OK after scary car accident

"We can't believe we're not dead," Mike Quade said after his SUV was rammed from behind by a car going close to 50 miles per hour.
Challenges abound in Twins camp as first spring game arrives

Challenges abound in Twins camp as first spring game arrives

Competition in Fort Myers for spots in the Twins rotation and bullpen, along with DH and bench roles, could be fierce. The team opens Grapefruit League play Friday vs. the Rays.
Adrianza looking for elusive job security with Twins

Adrianza looking for elusive job security with Twins

Ehire Adrianza is in Twins camp to kick off spring training - his third organization in a month after being released by San Francisco and Milwaukee.
Twins pitcher Gibson tossing out traditional training methods

Twins pitcher Gibson tossing out traditional training methods

The 29-year-old former first-round draft choice decided he had to do something drastic after muddling through a discouraging season that included six weeks on the disabled list and a fat ERA.
Twins loading up on starting pitching candidates

Twins loading up on starting pitching candidates

Roughly a dozen arms will audition for a starting staff in flux. "It doesn't matter if you have a spot, you still have to prove it," Ervin Santana said
Seven organizations in nine seasons: Twins catcher Gimenez is a survivor

Seven organizations in nine seasons: Twins catcher Gimenez is a survivor

Since reaching the majors in 2009, Chris Gimenez has been waived, designated for assignment or nontendered seven times, including once the day after he signed a contract.
Breslow worked his angles to get back with Twins

Breslow worked his angles to get back with Twins

Craig Breslow altered his pitching motion, charted results and created a market for an aging lefty.
Molitor says he wants the 'challenge' of the Twins

Molitor says he wants the 'challenge' of the Twins

Under watchful eye of new front office, Molitor returns as Twins manager.
New Twins regime's changes to routine won't be obvious at first

New Twins regime's changes to routine won't be obvious at first

The Twins' new era begins Tuesday, when Derek Falvey and Thad Levine oversee their pitching staff's first workout in Fort Myers, Fla. You will have to look closely, though, to notice any subtle changes.
Twins add veteran workhorse reliever Matt Belisle

Twins add veteran workhorse reliever Matt Belisle

Belisle, a 36-year-old righthander who has pitched for the Reds, Rockies, Cardinals and Nationals, has agreed to a one-year contract worth $2.05 million.
Twins earmarked for more than $13 million in MLB draft

Twins earmarked for more than $13 million in MLB draft

The bankroll is the biggest of any team (though teams can add additional spending space through trades), and the most money the Twins have been allowed to spend in one year since baseball adopted the draft-slotting system in 2012.
Escobar finds role in Twins infield in limbo again

Escobar finds role in Twins infield in limbo again

For the third time in four years, Escobar will report to camp in Fort Myers, Fla., with the creeping feeling that he is considered Option B at shortstop.
Twins' Castro strives to catch on with teammates, fans

Twins' Castro strives to catch on with teammates, fans

New Castro has been studying video of each of the Twins pitchers since signing a three-year contract in November, and he spent TwinsFest getting to know them personally.
Twins, May both hope his relief days behind him

Twins, May both hope his relief days behind him

Healthy again after an injury-filled 2016, Trevor May has been promised a shot at a starting role, just as he was last year. This time, though, he believes the opportunity is legitimate.
Former Twins manager Kelly to be honored with statue at Target Field

Former Twins manager Kelly to be honored with statue at Target Field

Tom Kelly managed the Twins from 1986 to 2001, winning a pair of World Series titles.
Andy MacPhail, Michael Cuddyer to join Twins Hall of Fame

Andy MacPhail, Michael Cuddyer to join Twins Hall of Fame

Thirty years ago, Andy MacPhail built Minnesota's first World Series champion. Twenty years ago, Michael Cuddyer joined the Twins organization as a first-round draft pick.
Eggum takes big step forward as Gophers' interim wrestling coach (Jan. 6)

Eggum takes big step forward as Gophers' interim wrestling coach (Jan. 6)

Brandon Eggum, a J Robinson assistant after his wrestling days ended in 2000 and his top aide for five seasons, was hastily handed the reins when Robinson was fired last fall.
Buxton embracing simplified approach to 2017 Twins season

Buxton embracing simplified approach to 2017 Twins season

The center fielder hopes his September success means his days of big-league misery are behind him.
Twins pitcher Gibson avoids arbitration, gets raise to $2.9 million

Twins pitcher Gibson avoids arbitration, gets raise to $2.9 million

Kyle Gibson quadrupled his salary on Friday, the biggest raise among four Twins arbitration-eligible pitchers who settled on 2017 contracts with the team on Friday.
New Twins management says 'expect more activity' on roster in coming weeks

New Twins management says 'expect more activity' on roster in coming weeks

Dozens of veteran free agents remain unsigned, one month before spring training camps open, and only one big-name player has been traded since last season ended.
Twins won't stop listening to offers for Brian Dozier

Twins won't stop listening to offers for Brian Dozier

General Manager Thad Levine said the team never will put an artificial time limit on any transaction that could improve the team.
Toby Gardenhire joins Twins organization as minor-league instructor

Toby Gardenhire joins Twins organization as minor-league instructor

As former Twins manager Ron Gardenhire prepares for a new job this spring, his son (and former Twins farmhand) Toby Gardenhire is doing the same.

Twins to add Jeff Pickler to coaching staff

Jeff Pickler, a former SEC Player of the Year and professional scout who has spent the past two seasons in the Dodgers' front office, has been hired for Twins manager Paul Molitor's coaching staff for 2017
Hall of Famer Rod Carew undergoes successful heart, kidney transplant

Hall of Famer Rod Carew undergoes successful heart, kidney transplant

Former Twins superstar Rod Carew had a 13-hour operation Friday in Los Angeles to receive a heart and kidney transplant. Carew, 71, had been living with a left ventricular assist device since September 2015.
This isn't the first college football players boycott

This isn't the first college football players boycott

There have been several incidents involving player protests, including ones at Missouri and Oklahoma last year.
Twins looking for veterans in bullpen

Twins looking for veterans in bullpen

"If you have veterans for the eighth inning, ninth inning, they can shoulder the load and take the stress off the kids," GM Thad Levine said.
Plouffe 'curious' about what's next after being waived by Twins

Plouffe 'curious' about what's next after being waived by Twins

Trevor Plouffe, who has spent most of the past five seasons as the Twins' third baseman, has been waived and will become a free agent.
Twins boss Falvey on Mauer: 'He'll be here helping us out'

Twins boss Falvey on Mauer: 'He'll be here helping us out'

Derek Falvey and Thad Levine talked to fans about Joe Mauer, Byron Buxton and Neil Allen on Thursday night.
Twins considering options including 'very difficult decisions' with players

Twins considering options including 'very difficult decisions' with players

In the Twins' annual question-and-answer session for ticket holders Derek Falvey and Thad Levine hinted they are willing to trade even the most popular current players.
New Twins bosses won't deal in payroll exacts

New Twins bosses won't deal in payroll exacts

Twins new chief baseball officer Derek Falvey was blunt last week about how much money he and GM Thad Levine will have at their disposal: He doesn't care.
Arizona trip for GM meetings was a Twins baptism for new bosses

Arizona trip for GM meetings was a Twins baptism for new bosses

Derek Falvey and Thad Levine found time to circulate with peers from other teams and agents but, "our primary objective was more internally focused," Levine said.
Twins' Perkins about halfway through shoulder rehab program

Twins' Perkins about halfway through shoulder rehab program

Glen Perkins' lengthy recovery from extensive shoulder surgery means that the former Twins closer will have to win back a job in the bullpen in 2017.
Brunansky out as Twins hitting coach; first base coach Davis let go

Brunansky out as Twins hitting coach; first base coach Davis let go

The Twins also announced they will retain pitching coach Neil Allen, third base coach Gene Glynn, bullpen coach Eddie Guardado, assistant hitting coach Rudy Hernandez and bench coach Joe Vavra.
New Twins execs happy to keep Paul Molitor at the helm

New Twins execs happy to keep Paul Molitor at the helm

The manager is effusive in his praise of his much younger newsuperiors, and vice versa.
New Twins execs happy to keep Paul Molitor at the helm

New Twins execs happy to keep Paul Molitor at the helm

The manager is effusive in his praise of his much younger newsuperiors, and vice versa.
Larkin has 'picture-perfect' memories of '91 World Series-winning hit

Larkin has 'picture-perfect' memories of '91 World Series-winning hit

It's a moment that has been replayed countless times, including regularly on the scoreboard at Target Field. Gene Larkin remembers the nerves and the anxiety of extra innings in Game 7, even 25 years later.

Brian Dozier named Twins MVP, most improved player by Twin Cities sportswriters

He was named MVP as the team's end of season awards were announced.
Ongoing success for Cleveland creates 'awkward' gap for Twins decisions

Ongoing success for Cleveland creates 'awkward' gap for Twins decisions

The Twins' front office is in an odd limbo for now, preparing for important decisions about the team's future without the team's new top baseball executive having any input.

Buxton leads off, sets base-rounding record

MLB's Statcast system timed Byron Buxton at 14.05 seconds around the bases, the fastest time ever recorded in the system's two seasons
Santiago shuts down White Sox as Twins win 6-0

Santiago shuts down White Sox as Twins win 6-0

Brian Dozier, stuck on 99 RBI, left the game with a sore leg muscle and is unlikely to play Sunday.
Worst Twins ever: Loss No. 103 sets team record

Worst Twins ever: Loss No. 103 sets team record

The 2016 Twins are the least successful team that Minnesota has ever witnessed in 56 seasons of Major League Baseball. A meek defeat in Chicago sealed that mark.
Suzuki expects he's moving on after three years with Twins

Suzuki expects he's moving on after three years with Twins

As it turned out, the Twins' Sept. 23 loss to Seattle in Target Field was probably Kurt Suzuki's farewell to Minnesota.

Kennys Vargas needs more than just power to win a job

Vargas said he understands the crowd at first base for the Twins, but he is optimistic he will be given a shot next year.
Tying team mark for losses, Twins finally score more than once in an inning

Tying team mark for losses, Twins finally score more than once in an inning

Not since the 1942 Philadelphia Phillies went 109 innings without a multiple-run inning had any major league team suffered through such a lengthy offensive drought.
Dozier is a pretty good thief, too

Dozier is a pretty good thief, too

While Brian Dozier continues his pursuit of Rogers Hornsby's home-run record for second basemen, he's pulled alongside a few other legendary names with his remarkable season in stolen base success as well.
Twins offensive slump continues in 11-inning loss to Kansas City

Twins offensive slump continues in 11-inning loss to Kansas City

The Twins haven't scored more than one run in an inning in two weeks and moved within one loss of tying their single-season record for losses.
Derek Falvey part of 'first-class' operation with Indians

Derek Falvey part of 'first-class' operation with Indians

Falvey, who is expected to be formally named to his new post sometime in the next week, will try to bring that level of success to Minnesota, where the Twins are headed toward a new franchise record for futility.
How's Mauer's health? 'I feel terrible'

How's Mauer's health? 'I feel terrible'

Joe Mauer's past few months have been ruined by the strained quads he suffered in Atlanta on Aug. 16, while scoring from first base on a double.
Duffey's strong outing, Sano's home run end Twins losing streak

Duffey's strong outing, Sano's home run end Twins losing streak

The Twins avoided their 100th loss of the season with a 3-2 win over the Mariners. Tyler Duffey pitched seven strong innings.
Twins reliever Chargois hopes to hit 100 mph

Twins reliever Chargois hopes to hit 100 mph

J.T. Chargois, a second-round pick in 2012, hit 99 miles per hour three times during Thursday night's loss to Detroit
Twins' Vargas on his future: 'I need to hit home runs'

Twins' Vargas on his future: 'I need to hit home runs'

Kennys Vargas intends to discover whether his readjusted swing carries him as far as some of the tape-measure blasts he's hit this month.
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