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.

Twins try to stop the party in Oakland

Posted by: La Velle E. Neal III Updated: September 19, 2013 - 7:16 PM


Oakland's magic number to clinch the A.L. West is 5, so if the A's win three of the four games in this series, there's a chance the Rangers could lose twice and a party could break out on the half baseball/half football field at O.co Coliseum.

The mission, if the Twins chose to accept it, is to stop the party.

And if they hold off Oakland's celebration, they might have to keep Detroit from partying at Target Field next week,  The Tigers are closing in on a division title as well.

They have their healthy regulars in the stating lineup tonight. Let's see if they can play the spoiler role this weekend.

Speaking of health, Joe Mauer reported to Target Field today and got in some cardio work. So he definitely improved over the last few days and now it's a matter of how much and how quickly he can add to his workouts and get in a few games before the season is over.

Twins (65-86)

1. Alex Presley, CF
2. Brian Dozier, 2B
3. Trevor Plouffe, 3B
4. Oswaldo Arcia, RF
5. Ryan Doumit, DH
6. Josh Willingham, LF
7. Yosmil Pinto, C
8. Chris Parmelee, 1B
9. Pedro Florimon, SS

Pitching: Kevin Correia, RHP

Athletics (89-63)

1. Coco Crisp, CF
2. Josh Donaldson, 3B
3. Jed Lowrie, SS
4. Brandon Moss, LF
5. Josh Reddick, RF
6. Seth Smith, DH
7. Stephen Vogt, C
8. Daric Barton, 1B
9. Eric Sogard, 2B

Pitching: Dan Straily, RHP

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