Hector Santiago has had a couple of games to settle in as a Twin, and Paul Molitor expects that comfort level to start showing up in his pitching.

    “It’s a difficult thing, when a player gets traded, to take care of all the off-field arrangements that have to be made, and then just drop right in to playing,” the Twins’ manager said. “Hector has been going through that, and I expect his pitching will only get better as we go along.”

    Santiago has lost both of his first two starts as a Twin, going a total of 10 1/3 innings and allowing eight earned runs. It’s the first time this season that he’s lost back-to-back starts, and his task gets no easier today, with the World Champions in town. But Santiago beat Kansas City in one of his final starts for the Angels, allowing only two runs.

    He’ll face Edinson Volquez today, the Royals righthander who hasn’t recorded a win since July 9.

    Miguel Sano is out of the lineup today, and Molitor said the slugger will have an MRI on his right elbow tomorrow. The elbow has been bothering him since the Twins were in St. Petersburg last weekend, though it doesn’t affect his hitting. Sano said he doesn’t believe the injury is serious, but wants to make sure. Kennys Vargas, who homered twice in his last start on Thursday, takes Sano’s cleanup spot.

    Here are the lineups for today’s finale of the three-game series:



Orlando CF

Cuthbert 3B

Cain RF

Hosmer 1B

Morales DH

Perez C

Gordon LF

Escobar SS

Colon 2B


Volquez RHP




Dozier 2B

Grossman LF

Mauer DH

Vargas 1B

Kepler RF

Polanco 3B

Escobar SS

Centeno C

Rosario CF


Santiago LHP

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