"You're worried about the DH," Macha joked to a reporter who asked about his plans. "I haven't really looked at the Twins much. There are other things on my mind right now, like winning one [game]."
Before the Brewers snapped their nine-game losing streak in Thursday's game at Pittsburgh, outfielder Jody Gerut traveled home for the birth of a child. During the game, catcher Gregg Zaun exited in the second inning with a strained right shoulder and will be placed on the 15-day disabled list.
Help is expected for Friday's series opener from former Twin Carlos Gomez, who should be activated off the disabled list, and he presumably would jump right into the starting lineup against his former team.
But while Gomez is likely to make his return to the lineup in the first series between the two clubs since the trade, Twins shortstop J.J. Hardy's chances of returning to face his former team this weekend are not so optimistic.
Hardy, who was eligible to return Thursday after heading to the disabled list with a deep bone bruise in his left wrist, has been feeling better, but remains unable to do anything more than hitting off a tee.
"It's going to be close, I think," Hardy told MLB.com over the phone. "I'm not going to throw it totally out of the window because I want to play. I've played catch, I've taken grounders with no problem. Swinging the bat still hurts.
"So, I don't know. I'm kind of shooting to get back this weekend, but realistically, I don't know if it's going to happen."
In a move to boost their bullpen, the Twins went to 13 pitchers before their series in Boston. Though they originally expected to send one of those pitchers down when activating Hardy, the Twins still plan to go back to a 12-man pitching staff as they return home and open up Interleague Play with the Brewers.
Before Thursday's game, manager Ron Gardenhire said the club would likely make a roster move to add another infielder. He added that he expected Hardy's return would most likely be in time for the Twins' upcoming three-game home series with the Yankees.
Brewers: Villanueva earns first save of season
With veteran closer Trevor Hoffman sidelined as he worked on his mechanics, the Brewers went to right-hander Carlos Villanueva in the ninth inning on Thursday night. Villanueva shut down the Pirates, facing only three batters, to earn his sixth career save and close out the Brewers' 4-3 victory. Over the club's previous nine games, Brewers relievers had an 11.20 ERA, which raised the bullpen's overall ERA from 4.85 to 6.17 for the season.
Twins: Blackburn off to strong start
Right-hander Nick Blackburn has been a pleasant surprise for the Twins this season, going 4-1 with a 4.63 ERA through his first seven starts. In those seven starts, Minnesota has posted a 6-1 record. Blackburn has gone six innings or more five times, seven or more four times and has four quality starts on the season. Friday should be a good test for Blackburn, who is 0-1 with a 6.39 ERA against the Brewers in his career.
In snapping its nine-game losing streak, Milwaukee avoided what would have been the ninth losing streak of at least 10 games in franchise history. The Brewers' longest losing streak came in 1994, when they lost 14 in a row. They've also posted losing streaks of 12 games twice, 11 games once and 10 games four times. ... Of his six career saves, Villanueva has notched four against the Pirates. ... The Twins lead the all-time series against their former American League rivals with a 219-204 record. In Minnesota, the Twins are 117-94 against Milwaukee, with a 68-58 record at the Metrodome and 49-36 record at Metropolitan Stadium.
Fri, 5/21 8:10 PM ET
Twins light up scoreboard against Crew
The Twins scored seven runs in the first inning, chasing Brewers starter Dave Bush to the bench before the frame ended. Minnesota finished with 17 hits and Nick Blackburn earned his fifth victory of the season.
|Gomez, C, CF||4||1||2||3||0||1||1||.288|
|Escobar, A, SS||3||1||0||0||0||0||2||.236|
2B: Braun (12, Blackburn), Inglett (3, Blackburn).
HR: Gomez, C (3, 8th inning off Blackburn, 2 on, 1 out).
TB: Braun 3; Lucroy; Counsell 2; Inglett 2; Gomez, C 5.
RBI: Gomez, C 3 (9).
Runners left in scoring position, 2 out: Fielder 2; Lucroy.
Team RISP: 1-for-4.
Team LOB: 5.
E: Counsell (3, throw).
Outfield assists: Braun (Cuddyer at 1st base).
DP: 3 (Escobar, A-Fielder, Braun-Inglett-Fielder, Inglett-Escobar, A-Fielder).
2B: Punto (4, Bush), Span (8, Suppan), Morneau (11, Suppan), Plouffe (1, Suppan).
TB: Hudson, O 3; Cuddyer; Plouffe 3; Punto 2; Kubel; Morneau 4; Span 4; Young, D 3.
RBI: Cuddyer 2 (25), Kubel 4 (20), Young, D 2 (18), Plouffe 2 (2), Punto (10), Span (18), Morneau 3 (32).
2-out RBI: Plouffe; Morneau.
Runners left in scoring position, 2 out: Punto; Kubel; Plouffe.
SF: Kubel; Young, D.
GIDP: Mauer 2.
Team RISP: 8-for-16.
Team LOB: 8.
DP: (Plouffe-Hudson, O-Morneau).
Pitches-strikes: Bush 36-17, Suppan 59-32, Vargas, C 38-20, Stetter 26-13, Coffey 12-9, Blackburn 91-58, Mijares 19-14.
Groundouts-flyouts: Bush 1-1, Suppan 4-1, Vargas, C 1-4, Stetter 0-1, Coffey 2-1, Blackburn 12-7, Mijares 2-2.
Batters faced: Bush 10, Suppan 17, Vargas, C 10, Stetter 5, Coffey 5, Blackburn 29, Mijares 6.
Inherited runners-scored: Suppan 2-0, Coffey 3-1.
Umpires: HP: Ed Rapuano. 1B: Tom Hallion. 2B: Ron Kulpa. 3B: Lance Barksdale.
Weather: 64 degrees, cloudy.
Wind: 5 mph, R to L.
Venue: Target Field.
May 21, 2010
Compiled by MLB Advanced Media