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Mientkiewicz rolls ankle, but X-rays negative

CLEVELAND (AP) -- Doug Mientkiewicz felt lucky, and for the first
time all season the Minnesota Twins did, too.

Brad Radke pitched eight shutout innings and the Twins finally
dodged another costly injury in a 3-0 win Thursday night over the
Cleveland Indians.

Mientkiewicz sprained his right ankle in the first inning when
he stepped on the foot of Cleveland pitcher Jason Stanford, who was
covering first base.

"If I had been wearing spikes, I would have broken my ankle
like Jason Kendall," Mientkiewicz said, referring to Pittsburgh's
catcher, who fractured his ankle on an ugly play at first in 1999.
"That's the first thing I thought of."

Radke (2-0) allowed four singles, struck out five and walked one
to help Minnesota take two of three games in the series. Joe Nathan
pitched the ninth for his first save since 1999 for San Francisco.

Corey Koskie homered in the eighth inning and Jacque Jones
connected in the ninth for the Twins, who weren't feeling too good
early on when Mientkiewicz went down.

The club has already placed outfielder Torii Hunter and catchers
Joe Mauer and Matt LeCroy on the 15-day disabled list with injuries
this season.

Minnesota manager Ron Gardenhire couldn't bear the thought of
losing another key player.

"We probably dodged a bullet there," he said.

Mientkiewicz was hustling down the line and lunged on his final
step when he landed on Stanford (0-1), who got his legs crossed up
before taking the throw.

"He landed right on my Achilles," Stanford said. "I got a
good gash on my heel."

Mientkiewicz was wearing rubber cleats. He hated to think about
what the outcome would have been if he had metal spikes on.

"That could have been gross for both of us," he said.

As he rolled around on the ground in pain, Mientkiewicz said he
feared for himself and his teammates.

"I was probably more scared than I should have been," he said.
"Then I thought, 'We don't have enough bodies out here.'
Hopefully, I can play tomorrow. I've played through worse."

Although Cleveland has been tough on him throughout his career,
Radke dominated the Indians. The right-hander gave up two singles
in the first but only two the rest of the way.

Cleveland didn't get a runner past second base against the
31-year-old, who is just 7-15 against Cleveland.

"I like beating those guys," he said.

The Indians' best scoring chance came in the fifth when Victor
Martinez reached on an error and Ben Broussard walked. But Radke
struck out Alex Escobar and popped up John McDonald before fanning
Matt Lawton.

The pitch to Lawton appeared to be too far inside, even Radke
thought so. But not to plate umpire Mike Winters, who may have been
annoyed with Lawton complaining about his calls during an at-bat in
the third inning.

"That's what happens when you argue pitches sometimes," Radke
said.

Offerman hadn't been in the field this season before coming in
for Mientkiewicz. And in the fourth, Offerman helped the Twins get
their only run off Stanford.

Offerman doubled with one out and scored on Koskie's single. But
Stanford got out of further trouble by striking out the next two
batters.

Koskie made it 2-0 in the eighth with his third homer, a shot to
right off Jack Cressend.

Jones hit his third an inning later off Indians closer David
Riske, whose struggles continue.

Stanford gave up one run and five hits in six innings.

Game notes
Nathan's other save came on May 1, 1999, at Houston. ...
After facing each other six times in the first 10 games, the Twins
and Indians don't play again until Aug. 13. ... The Indians
commemorated Jackie Robinson Day with a video tribute before the
game on their new giant scoreboard. In addition, fans received a
Jackie Robinson postcard to honor the day he broke baseball's color
barrier in 1947. ... Twins OF Shannon Stewart walked twice, giving
him 12 in 36 at-bats. ... Indians SS Omar Vizquel is five hits shy
of 2,000 and 12 games shy of becoming the 15th shortstop to play
2,000 games. ... Twins OF Michael Cuddyer made his first start in
left field and robbed McDonald of a hit with a diving catch in the
third.