BALTIMORE Twins outfielder Torii Hunter turned down a recent offer from the Twins to negotiate a contract extension, preferring to wait until the end of the season.
Hunter, for most of the season, has publicly hoped that the club would open talks but now feels it's more important to focus on trying to help the club reach the playoffs.
"I'm not trying to be a distraction for myself or my teammates or even the fans," Hunter said.
Both Hunter and his agent, Larry Reynolds, denied a Fox television report that he turned down a four-year, $56 million offer from the club.
"They didn't offer me nothing like that," Hunter said with a grimace. "That's one of the reasons I don't want to talk, because of speculations like that."
It's unclear if the Twins, instead, suggested some parameters for a deal. Twins General Manager Terry Ryan, reached while watching Class AA New Britain play, declined to comment.
Hunter is making $12 million this year and wants to remain with the club and not leave via free agency. On July 13, he admitted that the five-year. $90 million extension signed by Seattle's Ichiro Suzuki raised the bar on what he'd like to sign for.
Hunter also has made headlines for defending Gary Sheffield's comments on how Latin players have been treated and for commenting on Joe Mauer's pain threshold.
Reynolds insisted that Hunter has not decided to leave the Twins.
"We've determined that it's in everybody's best interests to wait until after the season," Reynolds said, "and Torii doesn't want to be a distraction to the playoff hunt."
Twins righthander Scott Baker will make his scheduled start today after his wife, Leann, gave birth to the couple's second son on Friday night.
Easton Timothy Baker entered the world weighing 6 pounds, 9 ounces at Willis Knighton Piermont Hospital in Shreveport, La.
Scott Baker was to rejoin the club Saturday so he could make his next start. The Twins won't have to call up righthander Kevin Slowey as an emergency starter. Slowey will make his scheduled start today for Class AAA Rochester.
Ryan was in attendance on Thursday when lefthander Glen Perkins threw for Class AA New Britain.
"He threw the ball fair," Ryan said. "His velocity was right about 90 [miles an hour]. He didn't have control and command, as you would expect in a rehab situation. He held up and had no setbacks."
Perkins, coming back from a strained muscle near his shoulder, is scheduled to pitch again on Tuesday but may need more time.
|Philadelphia - LP: K. Kendrick||2||FINAL|
|Washington - WP: J. Zimmermann||5|
|Baltimore - WP: C. Tillman||10||FINAL|
|Toronto - LP: S. Nolin||6|
|Minnesota - LP: S. Deduno||0||FINAL|
|Detroit - WP: A. Sanchez||6|
|Chicago Cubs - LP: S. Feldman||4||FINAL|
|Cincinnati - WP: B. Arroyo||7|
|Cleveland - LP: J. Masterson||1||FINAL|
|Boston - WP: J. Lackey||8|
|NY Yankees - WP: D. Phelps||9||FINAL|
|Tampa Bay - LP: R. Hernandez||4|
|Pittsburgh - LP: A. Burnett||1||FINAL|
|Milwaukee - WP: M. Estrada||2|
|Miami - LP: R. Webb||3||FINAL|
|Chicago WSox - WP: N. Jones||4|
|LA Angels - WP: J. Vargas||5||FINAL|
|Kansas City - LP: L. Hochevar||2|
|Oakland - WP: P. Neshek||6||FINAL|
|Houston - LP: J. Veras||5|
|San Diego - LP: E. Stults||2||FINAL|
|Arizona - WP: B. McCarthy||5|
|St. Louis - WP: L. Lynn||7||FINAL|
|Los Angeles - LP: C. Capuano||0|
|Texas - WP: J. Grimm||9||FINAL|
|Seattle - LP: J. Saunders||5|
|Colorado - WP: T. Chatwood||5||FINAL|
|San Francisco - LP: T. Lincecum||0|
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