10/13/2002 11:57 pm ET
MLBeat: Mohr made noise with bat
By Mark Sheldon / MLB.com
ANAHEIM, Calif. -- Outfielder Dustan Mohr certainly made the most of a tough situation.
Despite starting many regular-season games in right field, Mohr did not start a game in the ALDS against Oakland or the first two games of the ALCS with Anaheim. A hot-hitting Michael Cuddyer started those seven games in his place.
After two hits in two pinch-hit at-bats in four games vs. the A's, Mohr joked that at least he was batting 1.000 in the playoffs. Cuddyer's defensive struggles in Game 2 prompted Twins manager Ron Gardenhire to start the defense-minded Mohr again.
"He's part of the team here," Gardenhire said. "He got a chance to play the last couple of days, and he played his butt off, like he had all year."
Mohr led the Twins in the ALCS with a .417 batting average (5-for-12), including a double and single in Game 5's 13-5 season-ending defeat. His team-first, always-battling approach fits the Twins perfectly.
"Come playoff time, it doesn't matter who's out there," Mohr said. "You have to give your best effort. Keep playing for nine innings. You never know what can happen."
Regardless of the playing time, it's been quite a trip for the rookie.
"It's all gone by so fast," Mohr said. "Being together through this whole thing, with everything that's happened this year, it's been a time in my career that I'll never forget."
No Eddie today: When the Twins took a 5-3 lead in the top of the seventh inning against Anaheim, the juices started flowing for closer Eddie Guardado. He comes to the ballpark prepared to pitch every day, but his anticipation increased as he waited to be needed in the ninth inning.
"You could taste it, believe me," Guardado said. "I hoped I get the opportunity to come in."
He would never get the chance.
During the Angels' LCS-record-breaking 10-run, 10-hit seventh inning, the Twins almost emptied their bullpen in attempt to stem the rally. Five pitchers were used, to no avail.
Only Guardado, who saved a club-record 45 games this season, and veteran Mike Jackson were left in the bullpen. Guardado said he couldn't believe what he was seeing.
"It was tough to swallow out there, to see that," he said. "Then again, when you have a hot team like Anaheim, things like that are going to happen."
Good luck to Halos: Only moments after the Angels sent the Twins home for the winter, Minnesota's players were already pulling for Anaheim in the World Series. They will be watching and rooting.
"Good luck to those guys in the World Series," catcher A.J. Pierzynski said. "Hopefully, they win it for the American League."
With Rally Monkey bouncing in the background, the Twins fell victim to the ultimate rally. Will they need him vs. the Cardinals or Giants in the next round?
"I don't think those guys need a Rally Monkey," center fielder Torii Hunter. "The way they played -- I think they can go out there and they can win this thing. I hope they do."
Power outage: By hitting no home runs against the Angels in the five games, the Twins set a new ALCS record for fewest homers. The 1972 A's and the 1991 Blue Jays previously shared the record with one home run.
Jacque Jones was 2-for-20 (.100) in the series. Hunter and Cristian Guzman were both 3-for-18 (.167).
Mark Sheldon is a reporter for MLB.com and can be reached at
firstname.lastname@example.org. This report was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.