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MINNESOTA SPORTS ROUND-UP: Twins lose to Yankees thanks to three-run homer

MINNEAPOLIS  --  Carlos Beltran smacked a three-run homer to power the Yankees to a 7-4 win over the Twins at Target Field. 

Zelous Wheeler also went deep in his big league debut for New York, which snapped a five-game slide.  Masahiro Tanaka allowed four runs in seven innings to improve to 12-3.  David Robertson picked up his 19th save.  Phil Hughes gave up seven runs in six-and-a-third innings for the loss against his former team.  Kurt Suzuki scored and knocked in a run for Minnesota, which has lost two in-a-row.


The Twins and Yankees are back on the field this afternoon at Target Field with a 2:10 p.m. first pitch.  Kyle Gibson (7-6, 3.77 ERA) goes for Minnesota as New York counters with Chase Whitley (3-2, 4.70).  Gibson is 4-1 with a 1.54 ERA in six home starts, and he's 2-0 with a 0.45 ERA over his last three, tossing 15 consecutive scoreless innings.  The Yankees look to move back above .500 and continue their road dominance of the last-place Twins on Friday in the second of a four-game set.  New York (42-42) came into this series batting .223 overall and .141 with runners in scoring position while averaging 3.1 runs over a 2-9 stretch. The Yankees scored 13 runs during a five-game home slide prior to this 11-game trip leading into the All-Star break.  They've won six straight at Target Field while scoring 44 runs. New York last won seven straight in Minneapolis from 2002-03 at the Metrodome.


The Minnesota Twins and the Minnesota National Guard announced plans for the team's 11th annual Armed Forces Appreciation Day to honor veterans and active service members from all five branches of the U.S. Armed Forces. This year the Minnesota Twins will commemorate the 70th anniversary of D-Day.  Thomson Reuters has generously donated 1,000 tickets for active and retired members of the U.S. Military, which have been distributed by the military Family Assistance Centers throughout the state. Through the Treats for Soldiers program, many Thomson Reuters Champions Club season ticket holders and suite holders have generously donated their seats and suites to wounded service members and their families. Gold Star Families, whose family members have served and died while on active duty in the Armed Forces of the United States of America or its allies, will also be hosted in donated suites.  A special pregame ceremony is planned prior to the 1:10 p.m. game against the New York Yankees. Fans are encouraged to arrive by 12:15 p.m. to see the pregame elements.


The Minnesota Timberwolves announced the team will host an open scrimmage at Target Center on July 9 at 7 p.m. This free event is open to the general public and features the Wolves 2014 NBA Summer League roster, giving fans a first look at 2014 draft picks Zach LaVine and Glenn Robinson III. Following the scrimmage, Timberwolves members will have access to an exclusive autograph session with the entire team.  For more information on the scrimmage and details on how to become a member to gain access to the exclusive autograph session, fans can contact a Wolves membership sales representative at 612-673-1234.  The entire Timberwolves preliminary round schedule is as follows:

July 12        vs Dallas Mavericks        Thomas & Mack Center    5:30 p.m. CDT July 13        vs Washington Wizards    Thomas & Mack Center    9:30 p.m. CDT July 15        vs Chicago Bulls        Thomas & Mack Center    3:30 p.m. CDT


The Minnesota Lynx were without Seimone Augustus last night which meant Monica Wright had to step into the line up and fill some pretty big shoes.  Wright did just that, scoring a season high 17 points as the Lynx beat the San Antonio Stars 91-84.  Wright scored the Lynx first six points on a pair of 3's and added another before the first quarter drew to a close.  Lindsay Whalen also scored 22 points while Maya Moore added 21.  Augustus missed her second straight game with bursitis in her left knee.  The Lynx have won four of their last five and are 3-0 against the Stars this season.


Dear Fay, trained by Mac Robertson, won the $60,000 Princess Elaine Stakes Thursday at Canterbury Park. The 5-year-old mare was bred and is owned by Bo Vujovich of Inver Grove Heights, Minn. and was ridden by Justin Shepherd.  Dear Fay raced well off the pace in the early stages of the one and one-sixteenth mile turf race.  Dear Fay closed in the stretch to win by 1 1/4 lengths over Go Go Jill in 1:42.81. Talkin Bout finished third. Dear Fay returned $20.00 to win.  The co-featured $60,000 Blair's Cove Stakes went to Ragged Edge, who is owned and was bred by Cheryl Sprick and Richard Bremer of Lake City. Ragged Edge is trained by Bernell Rhone and was ridden by Martin Escobar. Final time for the one and one-sixteenth mile turf race was 1:41.67. Ragged Edge, who won by two lengths over Sheer Trick, returned $17.60 to win. A crowd of 17,682 wagered $355,506 on the 12-race program. Total handle was $1,115,662.


There's a big Fourth of July celebration this afternoon at Canterbury Park in Shakopee today.  Independence Day horse racing begins at 12:45 p.m. and a wiener dog warm-up race featuring dachshunds is scheduled after race 8 (4:30 p.m).  The annual hot dog eating contest follows race 5 and the track is offering free Hormel hot dogs all day.  Canterbury Park served more than 23,000 hot dogs to crowd of over 14,000 race fans last year.  General admission is $8 while kids under 17 and parking are free. 


The St. Paul Saints offense was stymied for the first six innings, but after an injury to Fargo-Moorhead RedHawks starter Taylor Stanton forced the bullpen into action the bats awoke.  Unfortunately, the late game rally fell a little short as the Saints lost 5-4 on Thursday night in front of 9,331 at Midway Stadium.  The Saints head out on the road for a three-game series against the Gary SouthShore Railcats at U.S. Steel Yard beginning on Friday night at 7:10 p.m.  The Saints send RHP Nick Barnese (3-4, 3.44) against Railcats RHP Morgan Coombs (3-4, 506).