Twins don't pull trigger on deals
Club wouldn't offer pitching prospects Baker and Liriano
BOSTON -- Sunday's non-waiver trading deadline came and went while the Twins played the Red Sox. After it expired, J.C. Romero was staying, Joe Mays wasn't going anywhere and ditto for Kyle Lohse."I told you guys I was going to sleep well," a worry-free Lohse said as he left the clubhouse still a Twin. He had said Saturday he wasn't affected by the rumors heading into deadline day. With Minnesota looking to land a bat to help it's slumping offense, the three pitchers had been at the forefront of trade rumors throughout the past month. But like the rest of the big leagues, the Twins did not pull the trigger on any major deals. "I would have liked to have made a deal if I could," Twins general manager Terry Ryan said. "I'm disappointed. But I couldn't with what was being discussed in the exchange." For trades completed after Sunday's 3 p.m. CT deadline, players must pass through the waiver process. A likely stumbling block in any talks heading into Sunday was that other clubs sought coveted Twins pitching prospects Scott Baker and Francisco Liriano, who are at Triple-A Rochester. "We didn't want to touch those two guys because they are closest to the big leagues for being in our rotation right now," Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said. "I didn't want to make a deal that didn't make sense," Ryan said. Media reports throughout the weekend said the Twins were pushing hard to trade for Rangers second baseman and slugger Alfonso Soriano. Other speculation had the club discussing sending Romero or Mays to the Red Sox for veteran third baseman Bill Mueller, first baseman Kevin Millar or third base prospect Kevin Youkilis. None of it came to fruition. Ryan would not comment on specific players involved in his talks with other GMs. "A lot of premature rumors. A lot of things we weren't going to do," Ryan said. "We just didn't match up." Gardenhire, who hadn't spoken to Ryan yet while talking to reporters after his club was swept by Boston in Sunday's series finale in a 4-3 loss, seemed confident earlier this week that a trade would go through. But on Sunday, he expressed little surprise that a bat couldn't be added. "It was iffy the whole way any way," Gardenhire said. "You have to have a partner. I know Terry was trying to do something. You have to have someone that wants to go in with you."
The Twins are reeling after a 3-8 road trip through Detroit, New York and Boston. They've lost six of their last seven games and just wrapped up a 12-16 July, where many solid pitching performances weren't supported by the sluggish lineup."We've just have to figure out how to get it done," Lohse said. "We've been trying to figure it out for a while. Something's got to change here, soon." At least on Sunday, what they had hadn't changed. They will have to win with the people in their own clubhouse. "I think we've been on edge for the last couple of weeks," infielder Nick Punto said. "Now that we know this is the team we've got, maybe some guys will relax. Hopefully, we'll start playing good baseball because have to start now. There's no time. It's getting too late."
Mark Sheldon is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.