MINNEAPOLIS -- The Twins have been well-rested recently, as, entering Tuesday's doubleheader against the Marlins, they've played only four games since April 14 because of four postponed games and an off-day on Thursday.
Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said it's always nice for players to get time off during the long season but that it's been almost too much time off recently. It's caused the starting pitchers to throw on extra rest, and several relievers haven't thrown much over the last week.
"It's definitely something none of us have really been part of with this many games knocked out like this," Gardenhire said. "We've all been a part of doubleheaders and day-night doubleheaders, but we've just had a lot of stuff leading up to it. So we'll just do the best we can."
The Twins have been playing better baseball, as they enter Tuesday with a four-game winning streak that started on April 15. But Gardenhire said it's tough to call it a winning streak, because it's been hard to carry over any momentum with so many days off.
"We're undefeated this week, which is a good line, but it doesn't feel that way," Gardenhire said. "It feels like we're going about our business, but we haven't played a lot of baseball. During our win streak, I feel like we've been playing pretty decent. And we played well against the Angels at home and against the White Sox in Chicago, but there has been a lot of empty space in between."
Marlins manager Redmond returns to Minnesota
MINNEAPOLIS -- Tuesday marked the return of former Twins catcher Mike Redmond, who is in his first season as manager of the Marlins.
Redmond, 41, played with the Twins from 2005-09, and said he was happy to return to the Twin Cities. He joked that he never got a chance to play at Target Field as a member of the Twins, but did go 1-for-3 there as a visiting player in his last year in the Majors with the Indians in 2010.
Redmond also praised Twins manager Ron Gardenhire, and said he learned a lot from him during his time in Minnesota.
"He backed his players up," Redmond said. "He was always in our corner and we knew that, and we played hard for him. He made it pretty simple. He said, 'Hey, you guys play hard for me and play the game the right way, and you'll never have a problem.' That was true. We played hard. We went out there to win. I learned a lot from Gardy. I have a lot of respect for Gardy, and he knows that."
Gardenhire said he's happy for Redmond, who was known as one of the leaders in the clubhouse during his time in Minnesota and was always considered a potential manager.
"He's a great guy," Gardenhire said. "He's an ex-catcher, and he always was into the game and paying attention. So it's fun to see him over there. We all knew he'd be in this part of the game eventually."
Twins catcher Joe Mauer admitted it's a little strange seeing a former teammate managing in the big leagues, and he had nothing but praise for Redmond, who served as his backup for five seasons.
"We're still really good friends, so I'm happy for him to get that opportunity," Mauer said. "I think everybody in here knew that would be his next chapter in baseball. So it's different, but I'm very happy for him and proud of him that it happened this quick."
Gardenhire keeps doubleheader lineups status quo
MINNEAPOLIS -- Ron Gardenhire didn't find out the Marlins were flipping their starting pitchers in Tuesday's doubleheader until about 2 1/2 hours before Game 1, but the Twins' manager decided to stick with his original lineup.
The Marlins announced just a few hours before the first game that rookie right-hander Jose Fernandez would start Game 1 and would be followed by right-hander Ricky Nolasco in the nightcap.
But with both pitchers being right-handed, Gardenhire decided not to change his lineup for the first game. He said one change for the second game will be Ryan Doumit catching, as Joe Mauer started Game 1.
"We kind of had a plan for the second game, and that won't change much," Gardenhire said. "We want to use everybody and mix it up. And we know our catching situation with Doumit catching the second game."