Minnesota Twins infielder Brian Dozier
Elizabeth Flores, Star Tribune
Brian Dozier will start at shortstop Monday
- Article by: La VELLE E. NEAL III
- Star Tribune
- May 6, 2012 - 10:21 PM
SEATTLE - When Brian Dozier joins the Twins on Monday, he will do so as the starting shortstop.
Twins manager Ron Gardenhire, on his weekly radio show on 1500-AM, confirmed that Dozier will start Monday when the Twins open a series against the Angels at Target Field.
"We need some offense. We need some life," said Gardenhire, who wasn't with the team during its weekend series in Seattle so he could attend his daughter's college graduation.
Dozier, 24, is batting .276 with a homer and 12 RBI in 28 games at Class AAA Rochester, cooling off after a hot start. The Twins still selected Dozier as a replacement for Justin Morneau, who is headed to the 15-day disabled list because of tendinitis in his left wrist.
What happens to Jamey Carroll? He has started every game and has drawn nothing but praise from the coaching staff for bringing stability to the infield.
Indications are that Carroll, batting .208, will start at second and third. But the 38-year-old might get a breather Monday.
"Jamey Carroll throughout his career has been a great utility man and he can play all three positions very well," Twins acting manager Scott Ullger said. "It might be a case where he's one of those guys who plays every day, but at a different position every day."Hendriks sent down
After Sunday's 5-2 loss to Seattle, the Twins sent righthander Liam Hendriks to Class AAA Rochester. That creates room for lefthander Scott Diamond to be added to the roster in time to face the Angels on Tuesday in Hendriks' place.
In four starts, Hendriks was 0-2 with a 9.00 ERA. The Twins' 2011 Minor League Pitcher of the Year, he has good stuff and isn't afraid to use all his pitches. But the 23-year-old Australian said he got away from what makes him effective while learning how to pitch in the majors.
"I won my spot out of spring training and didn't continue to win it during the season," Hendriks said. "I had a good game my first outing and then just went away from my game plan. I'll go down there and pitch and just try and get back to what got me here in the first place; that's throwing a lot of fastballs, getting ahead of guys, pounding the zone and being an aggressive pitcher."
Ullger agreed with Hendriks about being more aggressive, especially with his fastball.
"He's got to get command of that fastball again," Ullger said. "He had command of that fastball all of spring training, and then lost his command. That's No. 1. He's got have control of that fastball, then he can throw an occasional changeup and curveball."Blackburn still looking
Twins righthander Nick Blackburn continues to chase that elusive first victory of 2012.
He pitched the Twins into a 4-0 hole through two innings Sunday. He eventually made an adjustment and lasted six innings, giving up five runs on seven hits and three walks with four strikeouts. But the damage was done.
"It was one of those days that wasn't fun, wasn't fun at all," said Blackburn, 0-4 in five starts. "But you've got to keep working."
Blackburn's last victory was July 8 at Chicago against the White Sox. That was 12 starts ago for him, because he battled injuries late last season.Historic ineptitude
Coming into Sunday, the Twins had amassed only nine hits over their previous four games.
According to the Elias Sports Bureau, that is the fewest amount of hits over a four-game span in the modern era. That means 1900, folks. The Twins beat the previous mark of 10 hits, done by the California Angels in 1963 and the Cincinnati Reds in 1993.
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