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The Sports Xchange, Published June 06 2013

Parmelee putting it all together for Twins

It may be now or never for Chris Parmelee to make his mark as a regular with the Minnesota Twins.

A first-round draft pick in 2006, Parmelee has yet to spend a full season in the majors. He made the team out of spring training this year for the first time in his career. But instead of taking advantage of the opportunity, Parmelee was slow out of the gate.

His batting average dipped to as low as .198, which happened in the middle of the Twins' recent 10-game losing streak.

Things have changed a bit in the last week. For one thing, the Twins have won more than they've lost, and Parmelee has been right in the middle of it.

"We're doing the same things," Parmelee said about the team, but could have easily been speaking about his own turn of fortune. "We've been putting some good swings on the ball in the previous games -- lineouts to some guys, and sometimes we were just getting under them."

Things have changed a bit in the past eight games, in which Parmelee is batting .360 (9-for-25). Parmelee homered twice in the Twins' four-game sweep of Milwaukee. He had a double, single and a walk against Seattle's Hisashi Iwakuma, who allowed four hits to the rest of the team.

Along with his hitting spike were some sparklers in the field during the last home stand. He tumbled into the photo deck to snare a foul pop. A long fly ball to right with two outs and a runner on third was flagged down by Parmelee just before crashing into the wall. He also played a carom off the wall and threw a strike to second base to catch a runner trying to stretch.

Parmelee even showed some aggressiveness on the base paths, twice going full-tilt from third on an infield grounder. He scored once. The other time he went in high and tried to jar the ball loose from the catcher.

What Parmelee can't do is look over his shoulder. The Twins have a number of talented corner outfielders in their minor-league system, including the highly touted Byron Buxton. Unless Parmelee can prove he's a solid, everyday major-league ballplayer, he might find himself back in the minors or with another organization.

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MLB Team Report - Minnesota Twins - NOTES, QUOTES

RECORD: 26-30

STREAK: Lost one

PAST 10 GAMES: 7-3

NEXT: Twins (Mike Pelfrey, 3-6, 6.66) at Royals (Wade Davis, 3-5, 6.16)

PLAYER NOTES:

--RHP P.J. Walters did not allow an earned run in six innings, but he suffered his first loss of the season after the Royals scored three unearned runs on Pedro Florimon's throwing error in the first inning. Walters lowered his ERA from 4.50 to 3.00.

--C Joe Mauer singled in the ninth and has hit in 23 of his past 26 games at Kansas City. He has a career .355 batting average (82-for-231) at Kauffman Stadium.

--Chris Parmelee went 0-for-3 and walked twice, snapping his six-game hitting streak. He hit .364 during the streak.

--SS Pedro Florimon committed a two-base throwing error in the first inning that led to three unearned runs. Florimon had not made an error in his previous 30 games, 29 of them starts, which was the longest errorless streak of his career.

--RHP Mike Pelfrey, who starts the series finale Thursday against the Royals, is 0-3 in his past five starts after giving up three runs on six hits in 5 1/3 innings on May 31 against the Mariners. He will be making his second career start against the Royals. His only start was April 9 when allowed six runs on eight hits in two innings.

QUOTE TO NOTE: "A tough night offensively for us. We put a lot of people on the bases. You can all see that big number, leaving 14 on base. (When) you leave that many men out there, you had plenty of chances." -- Manager Ron Gardenhire, after the Twins went 0-for-11 with runners in scoring position Wednesday.