Overworked bullpen needs rest

Twins relievers have thrown 314 innings this season, including seven on Sunday in a loss to Oakland. Only Kansas City (327 2/3) and Colorado (326 1/3) have had busier bullpens.

As August nears, there could be a bigger price to pay for Twins starters not pitching deep into games -- tuckered-out relievers.

Entering Sunday, the Twins had five relievers among the league's top 25 in innings pitched. Anthony Swarzak was third with 45 1/3 innings. Alex Burnett was seventh.

Twins manager Ron Gardenhire has kept his fingers crossed that the rotation would stabilize more. After Francisco Liriano pitched eight innings on Friday, the bullpen worked four innings on Saturday and seven on Sunday.

It's strange to get into bullpen overuse right after the All-Star break and with a 13-man pitching staff, but the Twins have created such an issue.

"No bullpen can sustain that," Gardenhire said. "It's just not going to happen. The workload in the first half was enough. No bullpen will be able to handle that pressure."

Dozier disclosure

Brian Dozier entered the season with only a half-season at Class AA under his belt, so the Twins knew there would be rough edges when they called him up in May.

When asked how much progress Dozier has made, Gardenhire said: "He's had his moments when he is OK."

Dozier needs to clean up some things if he's going to be productive player. He was 2-for-4 on Sunday with an RBI.

"I still think he gets sloppy with his glove a little too much," Gardenhire said. "He makes plays a lot harder than they should be. He plays really deep, and we have had a lot of conversations about shortening the field up a little bit."

Gardenhire said Dozier corrects himself when told to come in but then gradually drifts back. Dozier also was part of a poor relay in Saturday's game that displeased Gardenhire.

Offensively, Dozier has a little pop in his bat, but Gardenhire wants him to shorten his swing and cut down on fly balls.

It sounds like a laundry list, but all indications are that the Twins will keep Dozier in the starting lineup.

"We're picking out a lot of stuff, but I'm just telling you the little things he's going to have to get better at," Gardenhire said. "He'll get there. It's just a process. It doesn't happen overnight."

Etc.

• Fans cheered wildly as new Wild winger Zach Parise, signed as a free agent about two weeks ago, threw out the first pitch to Justin Morneau. Former University of North Dakota teammate Drew Stafford, now with Buffalo, accompanied him.

• Rochester reliever Luis Perdomo has been named Twins minor league player of the week after tossing 2 1/3 scoreless innings with no hits, no walks and two strikeouts.

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Cincinnati 0 Top 6th Inning
Pittsburgh 0
Minnesota 0 Top 5th Inning
Baltimore 5
NY Yankees 0 Bottom 5th Inning
Toronto 1
Philadelphia 0 Bottom 5th Inning
NY Mets 1
Boston 8 Top 3rd Inning
Tampa Bay 1
Miami 0 Bottom 2nd Inning
Atlanta 0
Cleveland 0 Bottom 1st Inning
Kansas City 0
Detroit 0 Bottom 1st Inning
Chicago WSox 0
Texas 1 Top 1st Inning
Houston 0
Chicago Cubs 0 Bottom 1st Inning
St. Louis 0
Colorado - C. Bergman 8:40 PM
Arizona - J. Collmenter
Oakland - J. Lester 9:05 PM
LA Angels - J. Weaver
Los Angeles - D. Haren 9:10 PM
San Diego - A. Cashner
Washington - J. Zimmermann 9:10 PM
Seattle - F. Hernandez
Milwaukee - W. Peralta 9:15 PM
San Francisco - R. Vogelsong
Green Bay 9/4/14 7:30 PM
Seattle
(21) Texas A&M 52 FINAL
(9) So Carolina 28
Wake Forest 10 FINAL
ULM 17
Boise State 13 FINAL
(18) Ole Miss 35
Tulane 31 FINAL
Tulsa 38
Rutgers 41 FINAL
Washington St 38
Weber State 14 FINAL
(19) Arizona State 45
Temple 37 FINAL
Vanderbilt 7
BYU 21 2nd Qtr 8:45
Connecticut 0
(6) Jacksonville St 0 2nd Qtr 15:00
(8) Michigan State 21
Bowling Green 0 1st Qtr 2:29
Western Ky 14
TX-San Antonio 8:00 PM
Houston
Colorado State 8:00 PM
Colorado
UNLV 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
Arizona 9/4/14 7:00 PM
TX-San Antonio
Pittsburgh 9/5/14 6:00 PM
Boston College
Washington St 9/5/14 9:30 PM
Nevada
Houston 7:00 PM
Sporting Kansas City
Ottawa 3 13:06
Montreal 8
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
Hamilton 9/7/14 12:00 PM
Montreal
Saskatchewan 9/7/14 3:00 PM
Winnipeg
Minnesota 9:00 PM
Phoenix
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