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Familiar script takes toll on Twins, but club says it’s ready for uphill battle

Minnesota Twins' Michael Cuddyer (5) is congratulated by

Minnesota Twins' Michael Cuddyer (5) is congratulated by Jim Thome after Cuddyer hit a two-run home run during the second inning of Game 1 of baseball's American League Division Series against the New York Yankees on Wednesday, Oct. 6, 2010, in Minneapolis. Credit: AP

Perhaps Minnesota could use some Red Sox inspiration.

Before the Twins took the field for their Friday morning workout at the Stadium, first baseman Michael Cuddyer talked about the recently aired ESPN 30-for-30 documentary, “Four Days in October.” 

“Maybe we should put that on the TVs and watch it,” Cuddyer said with a smile, referring to the episode that chronicled Boston’s improbable comeback after trailing the Yankees 3-0 in the 2004 ALCS.

The Twins, who were swept by the Yanks in last year’s ALDS, face the same bad fortune.

“It’s definitely a challenge that we’re all up for,” Thursday night’s starting pitcher Carl Pavano said. “It’s not the first challenge we’ve had this year. It’s a long season so we’re going to go out there, put every step forward and have a good game.”

That, of course, is easier said than done. The Yankees' 5-2 Game 2 victory marked the 11th straight postseason loss for the Twins. Eight of those have come against the Yanks, who trailed in each of those games.

“We get the lead, they get a hold of it and they come back and beat us. Yeah it’s tough,” said Cuddyer. “It does wear on you but at the same time you cant’ look at those past games – once they get a guy on you can’t say ‘Oh God, here we go again.’ You have to figure out a way to get over that hump.”

The flight from Minnesota to New York late Thursday night was a quiet one, Pavano said. The feeling on the plane is an all-too familiar one for these Twins. But, they’re confident this series will have a different result.

“Obviously we have something to lose but you have to go out there and play like you don’t,” said Cuddyer. “We’re not expected to win now anyway, so go out there and play loose and treat it as a one-game series. That’s the message: win tonight.”

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