NEW YORK – It was only an infield single. But a hit is a hit and Eddie Rosario could use a few more of them.
The Twins left fielder didn’t play Friday but ended an 0-for-24 skid with a hit Saturday, then beat out a grounder hit to second baseman D.J. LeMahieu in the fourth inning of Sunday’s 4-1 loss to the Yankees.
“I liken it to the very beginning of the year when I know after the very first few games he didn’t have any hits and then we look up and he has 11 home runs a couple of weeks later,” manager Rocco Baldelli said. “It happens in this game when you play long enough. You’re going to go through little spells where you don’t get hits. But he’s hit several balls hard over the stretch.”
After bashing nine homers over a 12-game span last month, Rosario has been sitting on 11 homers since April 26, a span of 31 plate appearances. With New York lefthander James Paxton on the mound Friday, it was a good time as any for Rosario to get a break.
The Twins are headed to Toronto, where Rosario is batting .226 and has not homered in 13 games at Rogers Centre. But Baldelli said he believes Rosario can get hot at any time. He has left Rosario alone during his slump because he feels the quality of at-bats are fine.
“Sometimes when you address something you’re addressing it — it can be taken as if there’s an issue,” Baldelli said. “There’s no issue here. He’s a good player who hasn’t had a hit in a few games and is swinging the bat fine.”
Sunday’s game time was pushed back three hours, to 3 p.m. Central, in attempt to avoid expected midday showers. When the first pitch was thrown, the temperature was 51 degrees and backed by a blustery wind.
The forecasted high temperatures during the three-game series in Toronto are 61 degrees Monday, 56 Tuesday and 46 Wednesday. It won’t matter, of course, since the Blue Jays play in a stadium with a retractable roof.
Add the series in Houston last month, and the Twins will have played six games in controlled climate this season. It’s a welcomed development since the chill on the days the Twins play just won’t go away.
The Twins have played in only two outdoor games when the game-time temperature was at least 70 degrees, most recently April 20 in Baltimore, where it was 73.
They have played 13 games in which the first pitch was made at 49 degrees or lower, including three times when it was in the 30s.
“It’s following us,” Twins righthander Kyle Gibson said.