Friday, July 27, 2007

Comings and Goings

A trade was made, and the new player will be in the lineup here tonight. But it’s the Indians making the move, not the Twins. Cleveland added Kenny Lofton, sending minor-leaguers to Texas for the former Indian.

Torii Hunter sounds resigned to leaving Minnesota over the next few days, even talking about what it would mean to be back in the pennant race. He still wants to stay, he keeps saying, and wants to be in the race with the Twins. But everyone seems to regard this weekend as win-or-else, and if it’s ‘else,’ Hunter sounded ready for Terry Ryan to move him to a contender.

“It’s baseball. Sometimes you don’t want it to happen, but what can you do?” Hunter said. “The nice thing is, I would be going to a contender, to a team that wants me.”

Brian Buscher is here and sounds like he can’t believe it’s real. He said he would have been happy staying in Double-A all season; now he’s jetted through the system and arrived in the majors. He’ll play third base tonight and tomorrow, though probably not Sunday against C.C. Sabathia. With Buscher in the lineup, Nick Punto moves to shortstop tonight, because his numbers against Paul Byrd (5 for 18) are much better than Jason Bartlett’s (1 for 15). You get the idea that that sort of shuffling might become pretty standard, at least if Buscher hits.

The lineups:

Castillo 2b
Tyner rf
Mauer c
Morneau 1b
Hunter cf
Kubel lf
White dh
Buscher 3b
Punto ss

Bonser p

Sizemore cf
Lofton lf
Martinez 1b
Hafner dh
Peralta ss
Blake 3b
Nixon rf
Shoppach c
Barfield 2b

Byrd p