Adding up -- and coming up threes

Heading to a series with Arizona and Harmon Killebrew's funeral on Friday with a winning streak, the Twins can't help but think that the departed star is looking out for them.

view larger photos

  

OAKLAND, CALIF. - The Twins on Thursday scored in the first inning for the third consecutive game.

They hit three home runs in a game for the first time all season.

And they will bring a three-game winning streak into Friday's series opener in Phoenix against the Diamondbacks.

"You really can't make it up,'' Twins President Dave St. Peter said.

The Twins headed to Arizona on Thursday night as relaxed as they've been all year. And their offense Thursday afternoon looked as potent as it has all year during an 11-1 rout of the Athletics. Why now?

"I definitely think he is looking down on us,'' Twins outfielder Michael Cuddyer said. "I have no question about that.''

"A lot of stars aligned up for us right now,'' Twins manager Ron Gardenhire added.

The Twins wondered about three-plicity as they prepare to attend the funeral on Friday for the greatest No. 3 in Twins history, Harmon Killebrew.

"If he's up there helping us,'' Cuddyer said, "I'm glad.''

They are preparing for a weekend series against the Diamondbacks in Phoenix -- near Killebrew's home in Scottsdale. So coaches and players will be out in force on Friday for the noon service. It's a sad event, but what a coincidence that the Twins are scheduled to be there.

Team officials are flying in from the Twin Cities. Hall of Famers Frank Robinson and Robin Yount will join Twins Hall of Famers Bert Blyleven, Rod Carew, Paul Molitor and other Twins greats.

Carew, Molitor, Gardenhire, Cuddyer, Tony Oliva, Frank Quilici, Justin Morneau and Joe Nathan will be pallbearers. The Twins players were humbled by their inclusion in the program.

"It's just an honor to be asked,'' Morneau said. "They asked me if I wanted to do it. I said, 'Of course.' It's hard to put into words. He was just an amazing person. I'd do anything they asked."

Cuddyer, who developed a good relationship with Killebrew through the years, said he was shocked when he was asked to be a pallbearer.

"Definitely the biggest honor of my life,'' he said.

Killebrew died Tuesday morning after a five-month battle with esophageal cancer. The Twins went out that night and had three hits, gave up three hits and won 2-1 -- the combined score, of course, being three.

That victory ended a nine-game losing streak.

"Nine games in a row we had lost, and we lost every game on the homestand,'' Cuddyer said. "It was weighing on us. It was tough. Harmon passes away, and that weighs on you as well. To be able to smile after that game was nice.''

Their 11 runs and 16 hits on Thursday are season highs, as every Twins starter reached base. Righthander Nick Blackburn, 3-4, has a 1.63 ERA in his past four starts.

As great as they felt following Thursday's game, they all know Friday is going to be a tough day as they remember Killebrew.

It will be especially tough on Gardenhire, who developed a great friendship with Killebrew through the years and got a thrill out of seeing him in uniform during spring training.

"It's going to be a real hard morning for all of us,'' Gardenhire said, "and hopefully we'll be able to get to the ballpark and go about our business. But it will be a real hard morning for us, saying goodbye."

  • related content

  • Justin Morneau gets in hitting groove

    Friday May 20, 2011

    The big Canadian is starting to get his swing in sync, with a homer, double and two RBI on Thursday.

  • Game recap: Twins 11, Oakland 1

    Thursday May 19, 2011

    The DH went 3-for-5 with a homer, double and two RBI.

  • Series preview: Twins at Arizona

    Friday May 20, 2011

    A THREE-GAME SERIES AT CHASE FIELD

  • Killebrew funeral today

    Friday May 20, 2011

    Harmon Killebrew's funeral in Peoria, Ariz., will begin at noon and will be televised on FSN and Ch. 11.

  • From left, the Minnesota Twins' Justin Morneau, left, Denard Span (2) and Delmon Young (21) greet each other at the end of their baseball game against the Oakland Athletics in Oakland, Calif., Thursday, May 19, 2011. Minnesota won the game 11-1.

  • TWINS 11, OAKLAND 1

    Up next: Three-game series at Arizona • Game 1: 8:40 tonight • TV: FSN (1500ESPN)

  • get related content delivered to your inbox

  • manage my email subscriptions
8:10 PM ET123456789RHE
MinnesotaT. Milone (0-1)000
Kansas CityJ. Guthrie (10-10)000
@theBallpark
Preview | Matchup | Lineup | Log | Wrap | Box

ADVERTISEMENT

Chicago Cubs - J. Arrieta 11:35 AM
Cincinnati - D. Axelrod
NY Yankees - H. Kuroda 12:08 PM
Detroit - K. Lobstein
Colorado - J. Lyles 2:45 PM
San Francisco - Y. Petit
Tampa Bay - J. Hellickson 6:05 PM
Baltimore - B. Norris
Atlanta - M. Minor 6:10 PM
NY Mets - J. Niese
Cleveland - C. Carrasco 7:10 PM
Chicago WSox - J. Danks
Minnesota - T. Milone 7:10 PM
Kansas City - J. Guthrie
Texas - N. Tepesch 7:10 PM
Houston - C. McHugh
Oakland - S. Gray 9:05 PM
LA Angels - C. Wilson
Atlanta 5:00 PM
Jacksonville
Detroit 6:00 PM
Buffalo
Indianapolis 6:00 PM
Cincinnati
Kansas City 6:00 PM
Green Bay
NY Jets 6:00 PM
Philadelphia
St. Louis 6:00 PM
Miami
Carolina 6:30 PM
Pittsburgh
New England 6:30 PM
NY Giants
Washington 6:30 PM
Tampa Bay
Baltimore 7:00 PM
New Orleans
Chicago 7:00 PM
Cleveland
Denver 7:00 PM
Dallas
Minnesota 7:00 PM
Tennessee
San Francisco 7:00 PM
Houston
Arizona 9:00 PM
San Diego
Seattle 9:00 PM
Oakland
(21) Texas A&M 5:00 PM
(9) So Carolina
Wake Forest 6:02 PM
ULM
Boise State 7:00 PM
(18) Ole Miss
Tulane 7:00 PM
Tulsa
Temple 8:15 PM
Vanderbilt
Rutgers 9:00 PM
Washington St
Weber State 9:30 PM
(19) Arizona State
BYU 8/29/14 6:00 PM
Connecticut
(6) Jacksonville St 8/29/14 6:30 PM
(8) Michigan State
Bowling Green 8/29/14 6:30 PM
Western Ky
TX-San Antonio 8/29/14 8:00 PM
Houston
Colorado State 8/29/14 8:00 PM
Colorado
UNLV 8/29/14 9:30 PM
Arizona
Penn State 8/30/14 7:30 AM
UCF
Troy 8/30/14 11:00 AM
UAB
(7) UCLA 8/30/14 11:00 AM
Virginia
Western Mich 8/30/14 11:00 AM
Purdue
(5) Ohio State 8/30/14 11:00 AM
Navy
Appalachian St 8/30/14 11:00 AM
Michigan
Ga Southern 8/30/14 11:30 AM
NC State
Boston College 8/30/14 2:00 PM
Massachusetts
West Virginia 8/30/14 2:30 PM
(2) Alabama
Rice 8/30/14 2:30 PM
(17) Notre Dame
(10) South Dakota St 8/30/14 2:30 PM
(24) Missouri
Fla Atlantic 8/30/14 2:30 PM
(22) Nebraska
California 8/30/14 2:30 PM
Northwestern
Marshall 8/30/14 2:30 PM
Miami-Ohio
UC Davis 8/30/14 3:00 PM
(11) Stanford
Arkansas 8/30/14 3:00 PM
(6) Auburn
(16) Clemson 8/30/14 4:30 PM
(12) Georgia
Liberty 8/30/14 5:00 PM
(23) North Carolina
Ohio U 8/30/14 5:00 PM
Kent State
Louisiana Tech 8/30/14 6:00 PM
(4) Oklahoma
Idaho 8/30/14 6:00 PM
Florida
Stephen F Austin 8/30/14 6:10 PM
(20) Kansas State
Fresno State 8/30/14 6:30 PM
(15) USC
Southern Miss 8/30/14 6:30 PM
Miss State
Texas-El Paso 8/30/14 7:00 PM
New Mexico
North Texas 8/30/14 7:00 PM
Texas
(1) Florida State 8/30/14 7:00 PM
Oklahoma State
(14) Wisconsin 8/30/14 8:00 PM
(13) LSU
South Dakota 8/30/14 9:30 PM
(3) Oregon
(25) Washington 8/30/14 9:30 PM
Hawaii
Utah State 8/31/14 6:00 PM
Tennessee
SMU 8/31/14 6:30 PM
(10) Baylor
Miami-Florida 9/1/14 7:00 PM
Louisville
Ottawa 8/29/14 6:30 PM
Montreal
Winnipeg 8/31/14 3:00 PM
Saskatchewan
Toronto 9/1/14 12:00 PM
Hamilton
Edmonton 9/1/14 3:30 PM
Calgary
Brt Columbia 9/5/14 6:30 PM
Ottawa
Calgary 9/6/14 6:00 PM
Edmonton
Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

question of the day

Poll: How sure are you that the Twins are on the road to improving?

Weekly Question

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

 
Close