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.

Morales starts at first base today for Twins

Posted by: La Velle E. Neal III Updated: June 21, 2014 - 11:36 AM

Kendrys Morales will make his first start at first base for the Twins with Joe Mauer slotted as the designated hitter against the White Sox on Saturday. Morales has worked on ground balls at the position everyday with Mauer during batting practice since he joined the Twins.

“I’ve hit him plenty, and he can pick it,” Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said. “He’s always been able to move around. He was excited with a smile from ear-to-ear when I told him he would play first base today.”

This would mark Morales’ 330th career game at first base. He’s been used exclusively as a designated hitter up until this point.

“It’s very hard to play DH everyday and then one day maybe every 10 days you play first base,” Morales said. “I know that Mauer is the first baseman on the team.”

When asked to judge his ability at first base, Morales responded, “In the middle.”

Catcher Kurt Suzuki is also in the lineup at catcher following Friday night’s 5-4 win over the White Sox. Here's how the rest of the lineups look:

White Sox (35-39)

Adam Eaton (L), CF
Gordon Beckham, 2B
Conor Gillaspie (L), 3B
Jose Abreu, 1B
Adam Dunn (L), DH
Alexei Ramirez, SS
Dayan Viciedo, RF
Alejandro De Aza (L), LF
Tyler Flowers (S), C

Andre Rienzo, RHP

Twins (34-38)

Danny Santana (S), SS
Brian Dozier, 2B
Joe Mauer (L), DH
Kendrys Morales (S), 1B
Oswaldo Arcia (L), RF
Kurt Suzuki, C
Chris Parmelee (L), LF
Eduardo Escobar (S), 3B
Sam Fuld (L), CF

Kevin Correia, RHP



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