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.

Gardenhire hopes leading off ignites Bartlett

Posted by: Phil Miller under MLB Updated: March 15, 2014 - 12:01 PM

    PORT ST. LUCIE, Fla. -- The Twins are conducting a competitioin for the center field job. Or so Ron Gardenhire has heard.

    But the Twins' spring schedule has been a little travel-centric this spring, with five bus rides of roughly two hours or more already, trips that only about half the players make at a time. Tired of simply reading reports about his possible center fielders, the Twins' manager brought all four potential contenders with him today, and two of them will be in the starting lineup.

    Aaron Hicks will start in center (and bat second, a little unusual) while Darin Mastroianni starts in left. They'll play five innings, then give way to Alex Presley and Jermaine Mitchell, all so Gardenhire can better gauge where each stands with two weeks remaining in spring camp.

    Oh, and that unusual batting order? It's so Jason Bartlett can lead off and get as many plate appearances as possible. The Twins are waiting for Bartlett to show he can still hit -- "We're looking for some veteran leadership on this team," Gardenhire said of the 34-year-old infielder -- but he's now 0-for-19 in camp. He hit a couple of balls hard yesterday, but both were caught; Gardenhire said he hopes that Bartlett is beginning to regain some confidence.

    Here are the lineups for Saturday's game with the Mets (or what Mets are left; much of the team is in Las Vegas for a weekend exhibition series against the Cubs):

TWINS

 

Bartlett 2B

Hicks CF

Plouffe 3B

Arcia DH

Colabello 1B

Parmelee RF

Mastroianni LF

Fryer C

Santana SS

 

Diamond LHP

 

METS

 

den Dekker RF

Murphy 2B

Young CF

Satin 3B

Clark 1B

Recker DH

Teagarden C

Burgamy LF

Reynolds SS

 

Gee RHP

ADVERTISEMENT

more twins blogs

See all similar bloggersFull story

ADVERTISEMENT

Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters

ADVERTISEMENT