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All around Target Field, the team's free in-house magazine is available with an eye-catching cover: Royce Lewis shouting, with the headline "Hungry for MORE!"

Ill-timed for sure, but the issue was planned and printed before the third baseman's Opening Day oblique injury. Thursday will mark four weeks since Lewis suffered the injury while running the bases, and the Twins are ready to reassess his condition.

"He'll have another visit with [Dr. Chris Camp, the team's team doctor] at the end of this week to get a sense for where he's at [in his] recovery," said Derek Falvey, the Twins' president of baseball operations. "Maybe even get another image, if the doctor decides that's the right thing to do, based on how much he's recovered."

The team is in no hurry to put a timeline on Lewis' return, but the 24-year-old infielder is, Falvey said.

"The early signs are, much like usual with Royce, that he's tracking a little bit ahead of what you normally think most people would," Falvey said of Lewis, who twice has missed an entire year because of knee injuries. "Ultimately, he's tracking in a good direction. He's got a good mindset about it, and we'll get him back on track as soon as the doctors say it's the right time."

Hitting assessment

On the strength of an 11-hit performance Monday night, the Twins entered Tuesday with a team batting average above .200 — at .201 — for the first time since the season's second week. But that still ranked 29th in the major leagues and was the worst average, by 26 points, through 21 games in Twins history.

Yet it was also higher than the batting average of seven Twins hitters, a slow start that has infected much of the lineup for nearly a month.

Falvey, though, said he remains confident in the team's hitting philosophy and the efforts of hitting coaches David Popkins and Derek Shomon to end the slump.

"You assess the process. You assess they way they go about it. You assess the feedback from players, and that continues to be really positive," Falvey said of a team that also ranked 28th in runs scored and 27th in OPS entering Tuesday. "We're not clicking the way we wanted to, and hopefully that'll come soon."

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Falvey said he sees plenty of evidence that the Twins are determined to turn things around.

"I remember the other day after one of our losses and we weren't feeling as good, I walked by the [batting] cages and there must have been five guys in there an hour after the game, still hitting and moving around. It's not for lack of effort or work. Sometimes you need to clear your head. But they're aware of it," he said. "The thing I always focus on … is how do they show up for their work? Does it look like they're dragging and they're feeling like there's no solution out of this? They're focused on the work they need to do, the good routines, making sure they show up and then try to carry it into a game."


Brooks Lee, the Twins' top infield prospect, has yet to play a game this season, and Falvey said it will be at least several weeks before that changes. That's because he has been diagnosed with a herniated disc in his back, an injury he suffered at the end of training camp in Florida.

— Minor league righthander Matt Canterino, working his way back from a strained muscle in his pitching shoulder, is throwing from 40-60 feet in Fort Myers "and feeling good," Falvey said. He could ramp up to bullpen sessions soon.

— Twins reliever Justin Topa threw 20 pitches in the bullpen Tuesday "and looked very good," Twins manager Rocco Baldelli said. Topa, a righthander acquired from Seattle in the Jorge Polanco trade, has yet to pitch this year after suffering tendonitis in his right knee during camp.

Saints top Rochester

The St. Paul Saints rocked Rochester Red Wings starter Jackson Rutledge for nine runs on six hits and five walks in two innings, and went on to win 15-9 at CHS Field on Tuesday. DaShawn Keirsy Jr. went 3-for-6 with three RBI for the Saints.