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Updated: March 30th, 2011 1:38pm
Twins Daily: Scott Baker throws five strong in team's 20th spring win

Twins Daily: Scott Baker throws five strong in team's 20th spring win

by Tom Pelissero
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Jason Kubel and Brian Dinkelman each drove in a run in the eighth inning of the Minnesota Twins' 2-0 victory over the Atlanta Braves in Wednesday's exhibition finale at Turner Field.

The skinny

Scott Baker threw five shutout innings and struck out four in his final tune-up.

It was the first scoreless outing this spring for Baker, who allowed three hits and a walk. He finished spring with 20 strikeouts, five walks and a 2.66 earned-run average in 23 2/3 innings.

Jason Repko doubled to lead off the eighth inning, then came home on a two-out double by Kubel, who scored moments later on Dinkelman's single. Glen Perkins, Kevin Slowey, Carlos Gutierrez -- who escaped a bases-loaded jam in the eighth -- and Andrew Baldwin each threw an inning to close out the win.

The Twins finished the exhibition schedule 20-12.

Who's hot

• CF Denard Span singled in each of his first two at-bats, finishing the spring by reaching base in a 13th consecutive game. In that stretch, Span hit .366 (15-for-41), drew four walks, stole five bases and scored 12 times.

• Hitting behind Span, 2B Tsuyoshi Nishioka reached on a scratch single in the first inning, giving him hits in 16 of his last 17 games.

Who's not

• SS Alexi Casilla struck out with the bases loaded in the fourth inning and finished 0-for-2, wrapping spring with a .208 batting average (10-for-48). He had only one extra-base hit (a double on March 8 against Pittsburgh) but did draw six walks and was hit by two pitches to raise his on-base percentage to .296, with two sacrifices.

Numbers game

.152: 1B Justin Morneau's spring batting average (in 33 at-bats) after his 0-for-3 performance on Wednesday.

.160: Morneau's batting average last spring, which he followed by hitting .347 in April and .400 in May with 11 home runs and 36 RBIs.

Health watch

No significant concerns.

On deck

The Twins have an off-day Thursday.

Coming up

• Friday: Regular-season opener at Toronto, 6:07 p.m. RHP Carl Pavano vs. LHP Ricky Romero.
• Saturday: at Toronto, 12:07 p.m. LHP Francisco Liriano vs. RHP Kyle Drabek.
• Sunday: at Toronto, 12:07 p.m. RHP Nick Blackburn vs. LHP Brett Cecil.

Tom Pelissero is Senior Editor and columnist for He hosts from 6 to 8 p.m. weeknights and co-hosts from 10 a.m. to noon Sundays on 1500 ESPN Twin Cities.
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