La Velle E. Neal III has covered baseball for the Star Tribune since 1998 (the post-Knoblauch era). Born and raised in Chicago, he grew up following the White Sox and hating the Cubs. He attended both the University of Illinois and Illinois-Chicago and began his baseball writing career at the Kansas City Star. He can be heard occasionally on KFAN radio, lending his great baseball mind to Paul Allen and other hosts. Mark Rosen borrows him occasionally for WCCO-TV.

Postgame: Twins' offense, Correia, Pelfrey

Posted by: La Velle E. Neal III Updated: July 2, 2014 - 7:38 PM

THE OFFENSE IS OFFENSIVE: And it could be ugly for a couple more weeks. There was a brief moment last month where Danny Santana took over the leadoff spot, Kendrys Morales signed and got off to a fast start, and the Twins looked like they had a balance in their lineup. Morales has floundered lately, Brian Dozier is in a 0-for-17 skid, Josh Willingham has tailed off and Santana and Joe Mauer are on the disabled list. ``Some guys are just going to have to step up,'' Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said. Chris Parmelee is taking advantage of this opportunity. Anyone else feel free to join him. Santana can come back the last day before the All-Star break begins. Mauer can return the first game after the break (but oblique injuries can linger). There's 11 games before both can be in the lineup again. Someone needs to step up. Can you hit? The Twins would like to speak with you.

CORREIA NOT BAD: Kevin Correia looked like he was going to get run out of the game early, but said he figured out why he was throwing the ball up in the zone and was able to get his mechanics straightened out. He lasted six innings, giving up just two earned runs. Correia said a month ago in Toronto that the numbers were bound to turn his way, and the son of a gun is right, if you look at the basic numbers. He's 2-3 with a 2.40 ERA in his last five starts.  The Twins have scored a total of 12 runs in those five starts and have been shutout twice. At least his ERA dipped under 5.00 today.

PELFREY SIGHTING:  Chatted with Mike Pelfrey today, who showed off the scar where he had ulnar nerve surgery. Pelfrey has begun some strengthening exercises and hopes to play catch in about a month. A comeback this year, however, looks unlikely. He hopes to be able to throw off of a mound by the first week in September but he wasn't sure if he would be able to pitch in a game before the season ends.

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