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Twins scrimmage: Hughes sharp in debut; Buxton whiffs 3 times

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Before the Minnesota Twins begin their real Spring Training schedule, they warmed up with an intrasquad scrimmage today at Hammond Stadium in Fort Myers, Florida.

Team Paul Molitor defeated Team Terry Steinbach by a score of 5-3, but no thanks to top prospects Byron Buxton and Miguel Sano. According to the Star Tribune, the dynamic duo combined to go 0-5 at the plate, with Buxton striking out three times. "Welcome to Day 1," Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said.

However, MLB blogger Rhett Bollinger took note of Sano providing solid defense. He reportedly made a few nice plays and had no trouble throwing runners out at first base.

Phil Hughes pitched four scoreless innings while allowing two hits and striking out four. 20 of his 26 pitches were strikes. Hughes, who pitched for the Yankees last season, is ditching his slider and going back to throwing a curveball and a cutter.

"I feel like my curveball can be a better pitch than the slider was," Hughes said, via FOX Sports. "So that's the idea. I'm mixing in my cutter, which I kind of abandoned last year for the slider, so the cutter is a little bit firmer and something I can use as more of a situational pitch than an out pitch."

The big hit of the game came off the bat of outfielder Wilkin Ramirez, who smashed a three-run homer into a brisk wind. He hit it off right-handed reliever Lester Oliveros.

Here were the starters, according to La Velle Neal III.

Team Paul Molitor

1. Byron Buxton, CF
2. James Beresford, 2B
3. Wilkin Ramirez, LF
4. Miguel Sano, 3B
5. Kennys Vargas, 1B
6. Brandon Waring, DH
7. Max Kepler, RF
8. Eric Freyer, C
9. Doug Bernier, SS

Team Terry Steinbach

1. Aaron Hicks, CF
2. Danny Santana, SS
3. Kurt Suzuki, C
4. Chris Parmelee, RF
5. Chris Colabello, 1B
6. Deibinson Romero, 3B
7. Jermaine, Mitchell, LF
8. Jorge Polanco, 2B
9. Chris Rahl, DH

Minnesota opens the real Spring Training schedule Friday at noon against the Boston Red Sox.

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