MINNEAPOLIS -- In the eighth inning of Minnesota's victory over Oakland, Twins manager Ron Gardenhire thought about having new outfielder Shannon Stewart take some fly balls after the game.
His coaches talked him out of it, since Stewart was pretty tired. But the new guy's arrival seemed to help provide his new teammates some much-needed energy.
"He just led us to a win," manager Ron Gardenhire said, partially in jest. "That's what I'm calling him -- our leader."
Stewart was in the leadoff spot as the designated hitter and, using borrowed bats, went 0-for-5: popping out, grounding out three times and reaching on a fielder's choice. But his presence, plus the rejuvenation from a three-day All-Star break, gave the Twins a lift.
"It's nice to see him in our uniform," Gardenhire said. "We're excited to have him."
Stewart didn't arrive at the ballpark from his home in Miami until about two hours before the game, and his equipment didn't make it in time from Toronto.
"It's got to go through some sort of quarantine, I guess. I don't know," Gardenhire joked before the game.
Traded by Toronto to the Twins for outfielder Bobby Kielty, Stewart will probably split his time between DH and right field while -- the team hopes -- providing more of an on-base and running threat in the top spot in the order.
He's an average fielder without a strong arm, but the Twins aren't concerned about that.
"The fans might not have paid attention to him in Toronto, but we understand how good a player he is," said first baseman Doug Mientkiewicz, who was a teammate and opponent of Stewart's while rising through the little-league and high-school ranks in the Miami area.
"He's got the ability to win ballgames by himself," Mientkiewicz said.
Stewart admitted to being a little nervous before the game, but Gardenhire met with him shortly after he showed up at the Metrodome.
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