DETROIT -- Twins pitcher Nick Blackburn left the team to attend to a family matter today, so Kevin Slowey will pitch in Blackburn's place on Friday in Cleveland, with the Saturday's starter to be determined, Manager Ron Gardenhire said.

Joe Mauer and J.J. Hardy sounded confident that they'll be back in the lineup Friday, and Justin Morneau is hopeful.

The 3-0 loss today to Detroit was the Twins' first shutout loss since Aug. 29, 2009, and they also lost their first series of the season. Gardenhire mentioned a lack of patience at the plate and said it was too bad the team wasted a good performance by Carl Pavano, who pitched through a neck injury.

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