Old man triples

Twins manager Paul Molitor jokingly debated Friday whether Torii Hunter is still capable of hitting a triple as he nears 40. “Oh, I’m sure it’s in there somewhere,” he said. “He might need something [crazy] going on in the outfield, though.”

Molitor should know — only six players in major league history hit more triples than Molitor after their 40th birthday. Even Molitor’s 3,000th hit, at age 40, was a triple. The top 10 players in triples after their 40th birthday include six Hall of Famers and a seventh who would be if he were eligible:

Honus Wagner36

Sam Rice32

Pete Rose18

Steve Finley15

Luke Appling11

Ty Cobb11

Paul Molitor9

Omar Vizquel9

Jake Daubert9

Nap Lajoie9

The wheels fell off

By failing to hit a triple, Hunter finished with a single, double and homer for the 19th time in his career, and 12th time with the Twins; he also has two games with a single, double and triple but no homer. But that trails the Twins’ all-time leader in cycle near-misses: Kirby Puckett. The most three-quarter cycles in Twins history (with completed cycles):

Kirby Puckett (1)25

Tony Oliva (0)19

Joe Mauer (0) 18

Rod Carew (1)14

Torii Hunter (0)14

Michael Cuddyer (1)12

Kent Hrbek (0)12

Justin Morneau (0)10