NEW YORK -- Outfielder Oswaldo Arcia remains a candidate for the American League Rookie of the Year Award, but he has fallen into a slump.
Arcia, 22, entered July hitting .284 with an .817 OPS but went into Friday's action hitting .262 with a .739 OPS. He has only one extra-base hit this month, coming on a double against the Yankees on July 2 at Target Field.
He spent extra time working on his swing before Friday's game against the Yankees, and manager Ron Gardenhire is confident he can turn it around.
"He's just overswinging," Gardenhire said. "He's swinging at pitches out of the zone and getting away from swinging at balls [in] the strike zone. It looks like he's trying to hit the ball back to Venezuela. So we just need him to shorten his swing."
Gardenhire has no intention of stepping down
NEW YORK -- Manager Ron Gardenhire addressed his job security on Friday, saying he has no plans to walk away from the Twins despite their struggles.
Gardenhire's comments came a day after a prominent, longtime columnist for the Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Patrick Reusse, wrote that it was time for him to part ways with the club. Gardenhire, who has been managing the Twins since 2002, read the article but disagrees with the premise.
"It's never good when somebody starts out with, 'Goodbye, Gardy,'" Gardenhire said. "I think it was an entertaining article, let's put it that way. But as a manager, when people start writing things like that, it's not very good."
Gardenhire admitted that it's been a struggle recently, as the Twins entered Friday's series opener against the Yankees 15 games under .500 after dropping 11 of their last 12.
"It's not easy," he said. "It's a tough go. I feel for my coaches and the guys in the clubhouse, who are trying so hard. I don't get much sleep trying to figure out what to do next to try to turn this thing. So yes, I understand the situation where we're playing some kids, but my job is to find a way to win games, and we haven't been able to do that, so I don't feel too good about it."
Gardenhire believes in the club and said that his goal remains helping to turn it around in the second half of the season. He hasn't talked to ownership about his job status but said he has a good relationship with the Pohlad family.
"As long as they keep me here, I'll try to figure it out," he said. "But if they decide they want to do something, that's what they decide."
He hasn't tired of managing, despite the fact that he's in his 12th season with the Twins, who combined to lose 195 games in 2011 and '12.
"I like managing," he said. "I like running the ballclub. I have a lot of fun doing it. I get to see a lot of really good players on both sides. It's the best seat in the house, but it's also sometimes the hottest seat in the house, too. It goes with the territory."
General manager Terry Ryan gave Gardenhire a vote of confidence before Friday's game, calling reports that Gardenhire and the Twins could part ways inaccurate.
"It doesn't bother me at all, because there's no validity to it," Ryan said. "He and I are the leadership of this organization, and we take accountability. He is basically in the clubhouse and in the dugout, and I'm in charge of the whole operation, and we both are feeling like we're letting the people down. It's as simple as that."
Morneau, Doumit back in action for Twins
NEW YORK -- After Justin Morneau and Ryan Doumit were held out of the lineup on Thursday with soreness stemming from a week of playing on artificial turf, they both returned against the Yankees on Friday.
Morneau was back at first base and batting fourth, and Doumit made the start at designated hitter and hit fifth. The Twins returned to natural grass at Yankee Stadium after playing the Blue Jays and Rays on turf.
"It's just the turf beating the living fire out of our legs," manager Ron Gardenhire "[Morneau] is not getting any younger now. He's going to go through some of those things, and it was just a lot of days of him running around. So he was just a little sore."
Doumit was also hurting from catching 13 innings on Wednesday night, but he did appear as a pinch-hitter on Thursday, drawing a walk.
"Doumit was really sore yesterday with his legs and back and everywhere else because of that stuff," Gardenhire said. "Plus, he caught 13 innings. So we had a couple of guys beat up yesterday. So we just have to work our way through it, and getting off that turf should help us."
Gardenhire also shook up the lineup by moving right fielder Chris Parmelee into the two-hole for just the second time this season behind leadoff hitter Brian Dozier.
"We're just kind of ad-libbing as best as we can," Gardenhire said. "[Parmelee] takes pitches. So we'll see what happens. We figure if Doze gets on, maybe he can hook a ball through the hole. We're really searching here for what will work, because nothing has been working recently."