Twins’ Kepler making plays in the field, at the plate
FOX Sports North
Max Kepler, Twins outfielder (↑ UP)
Kepler has spent the past week hitting home runs and making spectacular catches. The 25-year-old outfielder made a Byron Buxton-like play in center field and hit his 13th home run of the season during a game against the Toronto Blue Jays on Monday. He homered in back-to-back games to start the week.
Jason Zucker, Wild forward (↑ UP)
Zucker parlayed his first 30-goal season into a five-year, $27.5 million contract Wednesday, signing a few days ahead of a potential arbitration hearing. It's a major development for the Wild, who control one of their top scorers through his age-31 season at a very manageable $5.5 million cap hit.
T.J. Oshie, Capitals forward/Warroad native (↑ UP)
Warroad, Minn.'s day with the cup has finally arrived. Oshie brought the Stanley Cup to his hometown (his family moved to Warroad when Oshie was in high school but you go ahead and try telling the people of Hockeytown that) on Tuesday, which was declared "T.J. Oshie Day" by mayor Bob Marvin. Oshie rode around in a Lincoln convertible once ridden in by FDR, hung out with fellow Warroad native Gigi Marvin (and her Olympic gold medal), took photos in front of the town's water tower and more before departing for the Twin Cities.
Stephen R. SylvanieStephen R. Sylvanie-USA TODAY Sports
Brian Dozier, Twins second baseman (↓ DOWN)
A frequent subject of trade rumors, Dozier hasn't been making a great case for himself over the last few weeks. He's just 2-for-19 at the plate over the Twins' last five games and 7-for-40 over their last 10.
USA TODAY SportsBrad Rempel
Matt Dumba, Wild defenseman (↑ UP)
Dumba cashed in over the weekend, signing a five-year, $30 million contract that runs through his age-28 season. The 23-year-old proved himself last season, registering a career-high 14 goals and 50 points, while leading the Wild in average ice time during the playoffs and filling in admirably alongside Ryan Suter with Jared Spurgeon ailing down the stretch.
USA TODAY SportsBrace Hemmelgarn
Rebekkah Brunson, Lynx forward (↑ UP)
The Lynx are now sending four players to the All-Star Game. Brunson will replace Los Angeles Sparks forward Nneka Ogwumike, who is sidelined with an illness and joins teammates Maya Moore, Seimone Augustus and Sylvia Fowles. It's the second year in a row that the Lynx have sent four players to the All-Star Game, and the fourth time in franchise history, a WNBA record.
Gary A. VasquezGary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports
Pat Elflein, Vikings center (↓ DOWN)
It's a procedural move, but Elflein will start camp on the physically unable to perform (PUP) list. The second-year center suffered an ankle injury in the NFC Championship Game that required offseason surgery.