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: Pelfrey on the mound as the Twins go for a sweep in Anaheim.

Posted by: La Velle E. Neal III Updated: July 24, 2013 - 3:11 PM

A wheelchair-bound Twins fan got on the elevator at Angel Stadium with me and a bunch of Angels fans this morning. The doors closed. Then there was a pause before the fan said, ``I know you guys are all mad at me.''

``Nooooo. Why would we be mad at you?'' a woman replied.

The Twins fan grinned and said: ``Because we are going to sweep your team.''

``Out! Out!'' the Angels fans barked as he got off on his floor, laughing.

The Twins haven't swept a series here since August of 1996, but have a chance to do so today if Mike Pelfrey can handle the Halos offense and the Twins get after Jered Weaver.

Drew Butera, called up to replace Joe Mauer while he's on paternity leave, is expected to arrive just before game time. Paternity leave can last as short as one day but no longer than three. After three days, that player has to be placed on the restricted list - and he won't be paid, So everyone expects Mauer to be back in time for Saturday's game in Seattle.

Glen Perkins and Casey Fien have logged innings and pitches in recent days and aren't available today. Anthony Swarzak and Ryan Pressly will get the call if needed, and Jared Burton will close if the Twins have a lead in the ninth inning.

Chris Herrmann is starting in right field today. Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said he though about starting Hermann in left field because that's where he's seen him play, but Rochester manager Gene Glynn told him that Herrmann sees the ball very well in right.

Former Twin Eddie Guardado, recently inducted into the Twins Hall of Fame, visted the clubhouse before the game. Guardado grew up in Stockton, Calif.

Twins (43-54)

1. Clete Thomas, LF - 4-for-8 this series, HR
2. Doug Bernier, 2B
3. Justin Morneau, DH
4. Ryan Doumit, C
5. Chris Herrmann, RF
6. Trevor Plouffe, 3B
7. Chris Colabello, 1B
8. Aaron Hicks, CF
9. Pedro Florimon, SS

Pitching: Mike Pelfrey, RHP

Angels (46-52)

1, J.B. Shuck, LF
2. Mike Trout, CF
3. Albert Pujos, DH
4. Mark Trumbo, 1B
5. Howie Kendrick, 2B
6. Alberto Callspo, 3B
7. Chris Ianetta, C
8. Collin Cowgill, RF
9. Erick Aybar, SS

Pitching: Jered Weaver, RHP


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