Twins anxious to get on field
By Dan Myers
MINNEAPOLIS — Heavy rain and even some snow washed out the series opener between the Los Angeles Dodgers and Minnesota Twins at Target Field on Tuesday.
The game was rescheduled for 6:10 p.m. CT Thursday as the second game of a split doubleheader.
The postponement marked the first time in the stadium’s four-plus years that consecutive games were cancelled. Minnesota’s series finale against the Detroit Tigers on Sunday was also a washout.
Sunday’s projected starter for Minnesota, right-hander Kyle Gibson, was originally pushed back to Tuesday. He will get an extra day again and is set to pitch Wednesday.
Los Angeles was scheduled to send right-hander Zack Greinke to the hill on Tuesday. He will be pushed back to Wednesday as well.
“I’ve thrown two (bullpen sessions) this week because of the weather,” Gibson said. “The factor is not going to be ready to pitch. It’s more gonna be, I gotta transition from the Tigers to the Dodgers and learn their information. I hadn’t looked at anything because I didn’t think I’d be starting against them.”
In that regard, Gibson said the extra day might be beneficial.
“That’s where the preparation changes,” Gibson said. “Spring training and the first four starts have prepared me for whatever comes my way, day seven or day five. The coaching staff does a good job of making sure we’re ready physically. It’s more the mental preparation.”
As recently as the weekend, right-hander Mike Pelfrey was originally scheduled to start Tuesday. The rainout against the Tigers pushed him back to Wednesday. Another washout means he will start the first game of the doubleheader on Thursday. From there, it’s anybody’s guess as to what happens next.
“Gibson’s gonna start tomorrow and Pelfrey is going to start the first game of the doubleheader, and then we go from there and we’ll figure out who’s starting after that,” Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said.
Twins players went through workouts and cage sessions on Tuesday afternoon to try and stay sharp. They have not played a game since Saturday, when they defeated the Tigers 5-3. For many, the three straight days off has been the longest stretch of down time in two months.
“All the guys said the same thing, it feels like they haven’t been out there in a year and it’s only been a few days,” Gardenhire said. “This is a little different. Mother Nature is winning right now.”
With forecasts in the Twin Cities calling for continued rain and wind into Thursday, the prospect of playing Wednesday is also in question. But the Dodgers only come to Minnesota once this year, and the two teams have only a handful of days off in common the rest of the season to make any games up. With that in mind, the wait to play the game Wednesday could be a long one.
“Hopefully, we can play,” Twins second baseman Brian Dozier said. “You don’t want to start getting makeup games in the dog days of August on your off days. That makes it even tougher.”