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07/31/07 12:30 AM ET

Notes: Some hoping for more moves

Hunter says Twins will miss second baseman Castillo

MINNEAPOLIS -- General manager Terry Ryan was adamant on Monday that his trade of Luis Castillo to the Mets for two low-level prospects was not a white flag signaling his belief that the Twins were out of the playoff race.

But that's how some of the Twins players are seeing it, especially if that's the only move that gets made before Tuesday's 3 p.m. CT trade deadline.

"I can't play GM, but at the same time I'm hoping something will happen, because we still feel that we have a chance here," Torii Hunter said after Monday's victory. "I don't know what's going to happen. Hopefully they'll give us something, because we lost Luis Castillo, who gets on base all the time and was making things happen and a good second baseman. I don't think too many people can fill that void, but hopefully we can get it done."

With the Twins trailing the Tigers by 6 1/2 games in the division race and six games behind the Indians for the Wild Card, Ryan is in a tough spot determining whether to sell some assets to build for the future or add some power to help for the present.

"Tough situation where we're at," manager Ron Gardenhire said. "We're not playing well enough to say we're going to be there the rest of the way, so he's on the teetering edge. It's just one of those things. He has to think of the organization and everything down the road."

Speaking to the media prior to Monday's game, Ryan did not rule out the possibility of another deal before the deadline or in August, a move Gardenhire would welcome.

"Terry is not closed to trying to go out and get a player still. We talked about that," Gardenhire said. "He's already talking about other players, going and taking a look at another bat. So he's not dumping. He's rearranging maybe and trying to find somebody that helps us."

Especially with the loss of Castillo, who was leading the American League in infield hits and batting .304, Hunter would welcome a deal that brought another bat to the lineup.

"Hopefully something happens," Hunter said. "Wednesday if we're sitting here and nothing happened, then I guess it was a bad deal."

Welcome home: Recently promoted third baseman Brian Buscher played his first career game in the Metrodome on Monday. Prior to the contest, Buscher was taking extra fielding practice at the hot corner to get used to the Metrodome's turf.

"This turf is really quick, and you've got to use your feet and your hands," Gardenhire said. "The ball is going to be quick here. He's going to have to move around and use his hands a little more, loosen them up a little bit, because it's going to be skipping and coming hard."

Buscher got his first two career base hits in his first two at-bats Friday in Cleveland, and he went 0-for-4 with an RBI on Saturday. He also made his first Major League error in his debut.

Cuddy update: Right fielder Michael Cuddyer, who is on the disabled list with a sprained right thumb, took batting practice with the club on Monday and seems to be progressing as anticipated.

"Cuddyer did fine. He even broke a bat off and his hand felt fine after that," Gardenhire said. "Obviously he's not throwing 100 percent right now, but he honestly looks pretty good."

Cuddyer was batting .289 before the injury. He injured the thumb while sliding into second base on July 19, and he is eligible to come off the DL on Friday. Cuddyer is expected to meet that goal, according to Gardenhire.

"He should be ready to go by Friday -- that's his target," Gardenhire said.

Road trip recap: The Twins finished their six-game road trip, 2-4, after losing the first four games. ... On Sunday, the Twins struck out a season-high 13 times. However, they have the second-fewest strikeouts (535) of any American League team this season. ... Minnesota hit just .139 with runners in scoring position on the trip. ... Sunday's game was just the second game this season in which both starters had 10 or more strikeouts in the game. Twins starter Matt Garza and Indians starter C.C. Sabathia each had 11.

Down on the farm: Triple-A Rochester was shut out by Scranton/Wilkes-Barre on Sunday, 3-0. Carmen Cali pitched two perfect innings of relief for the Red Wings, but the offense could only muster four singles off the Yankees. ... Double-A New Britain came from behind to defeat New Hampshire, 8-7, on Monday when they got two runs in the top of the ninth. Timothy Lahey blew his second save of the season, but he stayed on to get the win. Trevor Plouffe banged out a double and a home run for three RBIs, and Rashad Eldridge went 3-for-5 with a home run and two RBIs. ... Class A Beloit lost, 3-2, to South Bend when Danny Vais gave up two runs in the ninth inning, spoiling a seven-inning, two-hit effort by Matthew Fox.

Up next: The Twins continue their four-game set against the Royals on Tuesday when Carlos Silva (8-11, 4.76 ERA) takes on southpaw Jorge De La Rosa (8-10, 5.35) at 7:10 p.m. CT.

Leslie Parker is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.