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The Twins Beat

La Velle E. Neal III and Phil Miller report on the Twins from wherever they make news

Morneau on roster as Team Canada tries to qualify for Olympics

Baseball Canada announced its 28-player roster for a team that hopes to qualify for the 2020 Olympic Games, and there's a familiar name on the list: Justin Morneau.



The former Twins first baseman, 38, was the American League MVP in 2006 and retired following the 2016 season, partly because of concussion-related issues.

Morneau won a National League batting title with Colorado in 2014. Morneau now works on Twins broadcasts, and is one of 11 players on the Team Canada roster with big league experience, along with Michael Saunders, Phillippe Aumont, Chris Leroux, Adam Loewen, Scott Mathieson, Dustin Molleken, Dalton Pompey, Scott Richmond, former Twin Rene Tosoni and Rob Zastryzny.

Baseball Canada made the announcement Tuesday.

Team Canada will play in the WBSC Premier 12 event Nov. 2-17 in South Korea and Japan. Canada is in Group C with Cuba, South Korea and Australia. The top two teams in each of the three groups advance to the Super Round.

Two teams from the tournament will earn spots on the Tokyo Olympics.

Ernie Whitt will manage the team, with a coaching staff that includes Larry Walker.

Canada will travel to Okinawa later this month for exhibition games before opening the tournament Nov. 6 against Cuba.

The Canadian roster:

Pitchers (13)

Phillippe Aumont - Gatineau, QC
Brock Dykxhoorn - Goderich, ON
Chris Leroux - Mississauga, ON
Adam Loewen - Surrey, BC
Brandon Marklund - North Vancouver, BC
Scott Mathieson - Aldergrove, BC
Will McAffer - North Vancouver, BC
Dustin Molleken - Regina, SK
Daniel Procopio - Toronto, ON
Dylan Rheault - Garson, ON
Scott Richmond - Vancouver, BC
Evan Rutckyj - Windsor, ON
Rob Zastryzny - Edmonton, AB

Catchers (2)

Kellin Deglan - Langley, BC
Dustin Houle - Penticton, BC

Infielders (7)

Wes Darvill - Richmond, BC
Charles Leblanc - Laval, QC
Jordan Lennerton - Langley, BC
Jonathan Malo - Joliette, QC
Justin Morneau - New Westminster, BC
Eric Wood - Oshawa, ON
Andy Yerzy - Toronto, ON

Outfielders (6)

Gareth Morgan - Toronto, ON
Connor Panas - Etobicoke, ON
Dalton Pompey - Mississauga, ON
Tristan Pompey - Mississauga, ON
Michael Saunders - Victoria, BC
Rene Tosoni - Port Coquitlam, BC

Coaching Staff 

Ernie Whitt (Clinton, MI) – Manager
Larry Walker (Maple Ridge, BC) - Coach
Denis Boucher (Lachine, QC) – Coach
Tim Leiper (Whittier, CA) – Coach
Greg Hamilton (Peterborough, ON) – Coach and Director National Teams

Yankees maintain 5-1 lead over Twins in Game 3

The Yankees-Twins lineups for Game 3 at of the American League Division Series at Target Field (7:40 p.m., FS1) have been posted. Switch hitting Marwin Gonzalez starts at first base against Yankees righthander Luis Severino, meaning C.J. Cron is on the bench. Left-handed hitting Jake Cave gets another start in left field.



Jake Odorizzi is in a must-win situation on the mound; the Twins trail the best-of-five series 2-0.

Jake Cave is in left field, while Eddie Rosario is in right. Twins manager Rocco Baldelli said before Game 3 that there was no major reason for moving Rosario to right field so late in the year. But there's obviously something that the Twins have seen in Rosario that has led to the decision.

Gonzalez is at first over Cron for matchup purposes, not health. In fact, Badelli said that health is not a factor in any of his lineup decisions for Game 3.

Gonzalez is the only Twin with a home run off Severino. Nelson Cruz is 4-for-8 against him. Eddie Rosario is 0-for-4 against him -- but that doesn't include the home run he hit off of Severino in the Wild Card game two years ago.

The Twins will wait to see who's left standing after tonight's game before determining a starter for Game 4, provided they win tonight. This is an elimination game, and Baldelli said all hands are on deck to get through this one.

DJ LeMahieu 1B
Aaron Judge, RF
Brett Gardner, CF
Edwin Encarnacion, DH
Giancarlo Stanton, LF
Gleyber Torres, 2B
Gary Sanchez, C
Didi Gregorius, SS
Gio Urshela, 3B
Max Kepler, CF
Jorge Polanco, SS
Eddie Rosario, RF
Mitch Garver, C
Luis Arraez, 2B
Miguel Sano, 3B
Marwin Gonzalez, 1B
Jake Cave, LF