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.

Phil Miller covered three seasons of Twins baseball, but that was at a different ballpark for a different newspaper. Now Miller returns to the baseball beat after joining the Star Tribune as the Gopher football writer in 2010, and he won't miss the dingy dome for a minute. In addition to the Twins and Gophers, Miller covered the Utah Jazz and the NBA for six years at The Salt Lake Tribune.

Twins (0-0) try to salvage final game of series against Royals

Posted by: La Velle E. Neal III Updated: May 1, 2011 - 12:04 PM

We found out this morning that Denard Span spoke at the end if the meeting following the 11-2 drubbing by the Royals,

Twins manager Ron Gardenhire, at the end of this speech, asked if any player had something to add. Span, who said he began boiling over with frustration during the Royals' eight-run eighth inning, stood up.

``I didn't plan on it,'' Span said, ``but, at my church, they say, `when the spirit moves you, it moves you.''

Span felt a player needed to say something.

``What are we going to do? Are we going to step up or are we going to lay down,'' Span said. ``I said I worked to hard to get here, we've worked too hard to get here.''

Gardy was going to give Span a day off but told him that after that speech he had to be in the lineup.

``I guess I put my foot in my mouth,'' Span joked.

Michael Cuddyer, who has played in 25 of 26 games, is getting the day off. This is the tough thing for a manager to do, try to get the team on track but also keep the big picture in mind and not wear out key players.

Tsuyoshi Nishioka is headed to Fort Myers, Fla., to continue his rehab of his broken left fibula, another sign that he's progressing well.

Twins (0-0)

1. Denard Span, DH
2. Jason Repko, CF
3. Justin Morneau, 1B
4. Jason Kubel, RF
5. Danny Valencia,3B
6. Rene Tosoni, LF
7. Luke Hughes, 2B
8. Drew Butera, C
9. Alexi Casilla, SS

Pitching: Carl Pavano, RHP

Royals (14-13)

1. Jarrod Dyson, CF
2. Mike Aviles, 2B
3. Alex Gordon, LF
4. Billy Butler, DH
5. Jeff Francoeur, RF
6. Wilson Betemit, 3B
7. Kila Ka'aihue, 1B
8. Matt Treanor, C
9. Alcides Escobar, SS

Pitching: Luke Hochevar, RHP


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