Even-keeled Twins keep fo­cus

Baltimore Sun - - BASEBALL -

MIN­NEAPO­LIS — The home club­house in Min­neapo­lis on Sun­day was silent af­ter the fi­nal game of the se­ries was lost in dis­tress­ing fash­ion, a fifth de­feat in the last seven con­tests for the Twins that let the surg­ing In­di­ans cre­ate an­other tie for the AL Cen­tral lead.

As play­ers packed for a road trip, mi­nus the usual up­beat mu­sic blar­ing in the back­ground, the mood in the room was hardly somber or tense. Even hav­ing the would-be winning run get thrown out at the plate in the ninth in­ning and the team’s top re­lief pitcher give up a grand slam in the 10th didn’t qual­ify as a dev­as­tat­ing de­vel­op­ment amid the 162game grind of base­ball.

Par­tic­u­larly not un­der the su­per­vi­sion of rookie man­ager Rocco Baldelli, whose per­pet­u­ally re­laxed and up­beat de­meanor has had more of an in­flu­ence on these Twins in his first year than any strate­gic de­ci­sion or lineup change.

“We’re in a pretty good frame of mind,” Baldelli said fol­low­ing Sun­day’s 7-3 loss to the In­di­ans. “. ... We have a very sta­ble club­house.”

The Twins sur­prised even a sig­nif­i­cant fac­tion of their own or­ga­ni­za­tion by tak­ing a lead that reached 111⁄ games on June 3.

The In­di­ans over­took the idle Twins on Mon­day night for first in the di­vi­sion with a 6-5 win over the Red Sox in Cleve­land.

The Twins now trail the In­di­ans by a half-game.

“If it was a sprint, Cleve­land would have had a bad year when they didn’t start so hot. It’s a marathon,” Rogers said, “and this group will keep do­ing what it has been do­ing, and we will see what hap­pens.”

LYNNE SLADKY/AP

First-year man­ager Rocco Baldelli has the Twins in “a pretty good frame of mind.”

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