Escobar homers in finale loss to Rangers

Escobar homers in finale loss to Rangers

ARLINGTON -- Ryan Rua hit his first career grand slam in an eight-run eighth inning to help cap off the Rangers' 14-3 comeback win over the Twins on Wednesday night at Globe Life Park.

Eduardo Escobar's two-run home run in the second gave Minnesota a 2-0 lead before the Rangers came back in the middle innings. Rua's grand slam and a three-run home run by Shin-Soo Choo were the final blows in the Rangers' big eighth inning.

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T.R. Sullivan has covered the Rangers since 1989, and for MLB.com since 2006. Follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger and listen to his podcast.

Dave Sessions is a contributor to MLB.com based in Texas that covered the Twins on Wednesday.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Santiago starts with late grandmother on mind

Twins' left-hander will go on bereavement list during series vs. Royals

Santiago starts with late grandmother on mind

ARLINGTON -- Twins lefty Hector Santiago started Wednesday's game against the Rangers with the memory of his late grandmother on his mind. Manuela "Nelly" Rivera passed away Tuesday at the age of 80, and Santiago said in a pregame statement that she will be remembered for her bravery and integrity in raising eight kids in Newark, N.J.

"She was a great role model for her kids, grandkids, and always supported her family and grandkids with their choices in life," Santiago said. "She lived life to the fullest and always had a smile on her face no matter how hard the times were.

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Dave Sessions is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Sano sparkles at plate, in field in Twins' rout

Sano sparkles at plate, in field in Twins' rout

ARLINGTON -- Miguel Sano put on a showcase performance at the plate and in the field Tuesday in the Twins' 8-1 victory over the Rangers, hitting a soaring homer that started a huge inning and making some nifty plays at third base.

So which mattered more to the slugger?

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Dave Sessions is a contributor to MLB.com based in Texas. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Twins ride hot Santana, big inning past Texas

Twins ride hot Santana, big inning past Texas

ARLINGTON -- Twins pitcher Ervin Santana continues to build on one of the best starts to a season in his career, holding the Rangers to one run over seven innings in an 8-1 victory at Globe Life Park on Tuesday.

The Twins, who had a season-high 14 hits, have won two straight over the Rangers to start this three-game series. They also have won four straight against the Rangers dating back to last season and 10 of 13 going back to 2015.

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T.R. Sullivan has covered the Rangers since 1989, and for MLB.com since 2006. Follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger and listen to his podcast.

Dave Sessions is a contributor to MLB.com based in Texas.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

O'Rourke headed for Tommy John surgery

O'Rourke headed for Tommy John surgery

ARLINGTON -- Relievers Ryan O'Rourke and Trevor May both saw Rangers team physician Dr. Keith Meister on Tuesday. O'Rourke got disappointing news -- the lefty will need to undergo Tommy John surgery -- while May had a positive post-op follow-up with the orthopedist who performed his Tommy John surgery in late March.

O'Rourke was diagnosed with a partially torn ulnar collateral ligament in his throwing elbow a day after he was moved to the 60-day disabled list. He was originally diagnosed with a strained flexor mass but had not progressed much since that diagnosis late in Spring Training.

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Dave Sessions is a contributor to MLB.com based in Texas. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Dozier double backs Hughes, bullpen vs. Texas

Dozier double backs Hughes, bullpen vs. Texas

ARLINGTON -- Brian Dozier hit a three-run double off Rangers starter Martin Perez and the Twins made it stand up with a 3-2 victory on Monday night at Globe Life Park. The Twins had lost seven of nine at home before opening their six-game road trip with a win and snapping the Rangers' four-game winning streak.

Twins starter Phil Hughes earned the win by holding the Rangers to two runs in six innings. He allowed six hits, walked one and struck out two, raising his record to 3-1 with a 4.71 ERA.

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Dave Sessions is a contributor to MLB.com based in Texas.

T.R. Sullivan has covered the Rangers since 1989, and for MLB.com since 2006. Follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger and listen to his podcast.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Twins' patience at plate paying off

Twins' patience at plate paying off

ARLINGTON -- Twins second baseman Brian Dozier seemed surprised when told, after Monday's 3-2 victory over the Rangers, that his team had drawn more walks than any other MLB team entering Monday.

He shouldn't have been, considering how the Twins' three runs scored Monday. In the fifth inning, the Twins loaded the bases on three walks off Rangers lefty Martin Perez, whom Dozier said was beginning to lose the ability to locate his fastball. Even Byron Buxton, the No. 9 hitter who had been struggling, hitting .109 with just two walks in 58 plate appearances this year, stayed patient and worked a two-out walk off Perez.

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Dave Sessions is a contributor to MLB.com based in Texas. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Sano appeals one-game suspension

Sano appeals one-game suspension

ARLINGTON -- The Twins will appeal the one-game suspension Major League Baseball imposed on third baseman Miguel Sano for his aggressive actions in Saturday's game against the Tigers in Detroit.

Sano and Tigers pitcher Matthew Boyd were tossed from the game after Boyd threw a pitch behind Sano. Twins pitcher Justin Haley had previously hit Tigers center fielder JaCoby Jones in the face with a fastball. Sano took issue with Boyd's pitch, walking toward the mound and pointing at Boyd before Tigers catcher James McCann stepped between Sano and the mound. Sano shoved McCann and the benches cleared.

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Dave Sessions is a contributor to MLB.com based in Texas. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Levine returns to old stomping grounds

Levine returns to old stomping grounds

ARLINGTON -- Sitting in the relatively foreign environs of the visitors' dugout at Globe Life Park, Twins general manager Thad Levine summed up his first trip back to the place he worked for 11 seasons with the Rangers as "emotional."

Levine, 45, worked as assistant GM for the Rangers under GM Jon Daniels from 2005 to 2016.

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Dave Sessions is a contributor to MLB.com based in Texas. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Gibson: Time to 'dig deep' amid rough stretch

Right-hander doesn't blame defensive miscues for 4th straight shaky start

Gibson: Time to 'dig deep' amid rough stretch

MINNEAPOLIS -- As a pitch-to-contact sinkerballer, Twins right-hander Kyle Gibson relies on his defense to help him be effective.

But the defense didn't help him on Sunday, and he didn't help himself much either, as he struggled for the fourth straight outing in a 13-4 loss to the Tigers at Target Field. Gibson was hit hard, allowing seven runs (six earned) on eight hits and two walks over 2 2/3 innings. He's now 0-3 with a 9.00 ERA in four starts.

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Rhett Bollinger has covered the Twins for MLB.com since 2011. Read his blog, Bollinger Beat, follow him on Twitter @RhettBollinger and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Kepler, Rosario HRs not enough in finale

Kepler, Rosario HRs not enough in finale

MINNEAPOLIS -- Alex Avila hit a two-run homer and three Tigers finished with three hits to back right-hander Michael Fulmer and lead Detroit to a 13-4 win over the Twins on Sunday at Target Field.

The Tigers beat up on right-hander Kyle Gibson, who allowed seven runs (six earned) on eight hits and two walks over 2 2/3 innings. He fell to 0-3 with a 9.00 ERA.

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Jason Beck has covered the Tigers for MLB.com since 2002. Read Beck's Blog, follow him on Twitter @beckjason and Facebook.

Rhett Bollinger has covered the Twins for MLB.com since 2011. Read his blog, Bollinger Beat, follow him on Twitter @RhettBollinger and listen to his podcast.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Vargas recalled, Boshers optioned after callup

Reliever sent to Triple-A after scoreless appearance in Sunday's loss

Vargas recalled, Boshers optioned after callup

MINNEAPOLIS -- After placing right-hander Justin Haley on the 10-day disabled list and optioning left-hander Adalberto Mejia to Triple-A Rochester on Saturday, the Twins recalled first baseman Kennys Vargas and left-handed reliever Buddy Boshers from Rochester on Sunday.

But after Boshers tossed 2 1/3 hitless innings in relief of Kyle Gibson in Sunday's 13-4 loss, he was optioned back to Triple-A Rochester. He surrendered one walk while throwing 30 pitches, and the Twins want another fresh arm for their upcoming series against the Rangers. Lefty Mason Melotakis was a candidate to be called up from Double-A Chattanooga, but instead the Twins placed Ryan O'Rourke (forearm) on the 60-day disabled list on Monday to clear space for right-hander Nick Tepesch, who was called up from Rochester.

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Rhett Bollinger has covered the Twins for MLB.com since 2011. Read his blog, Bollinger Beat, follow him on Twitter @RhettBollinger and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Catcher Gimenez keeps it simple on mound

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Catcher Gimenez keeps it simple on mound

Veteran Chris Gimenez is no stranger to the mound. Over the course of a nine-year career and before Sunday, the backup catcher had taken the hill three times, first in 2014 for the Rangers and twice in 2016 for the Indians. So when Twins pitching suffered a tough day during a 13-4 loss to the Tigers on Sunday, skipper Paul Molitor knew that he had a bit of an ace in the hole with Gimenez.

Ryan Pressly was the Twins' sixth pitcher of the game, and after allowing three runs on three hits in the ninth inning, Molitor decided to make the move. He only needed someone to get one more out to end the frame. Enter position player pitching pro Chris Gimenez.

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Polanco, Castro clutch, but Twins fall short

Polanco, Castro clutch, but Twins fall short

MINNEAPOLIS -- In a feisty game that saw the benches clear in the fifth inning after Tigers left-hander Matthew Boyd threw behind Miguel Sano, Nicholas Castellanos homered in the third and came through with a go-ahead RBI double in the sixth to lead the Tigers to a 5-4 win over the Twins on Saturday at Target Field.

"That's not how you draw it up, for sure," Tigers manager Brad Ausmus said. "We needed a win and we got it."

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Rhett Bollinger has covered the Twins for MLB.com since 2011. Read his blog, Bollinger Beat, follow him on Twitter @RhettBollinger and listen to his podcast.

Jason Beck has covered the Tigers for MLB.com since 2002. Read Beck's Blog, follow him on Twitter @beckjason and Facebook.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Sano, Polanco displaying defensive prowess

Molitor impressed with infielders' athleticism, range

Sano, Polanco displaying defensive prowess

MINNEAPOLIS -- One of the biggest question marks heading into the 2017 season for the Twins was how third baseman Miguel Sano and shortstop Jorge Polanco would fare defensively.

Sano was making the move back to third base full time after last year's failed experiment in right field, while Polanco played almost exclusively at second base at Triple-A Rochester in 2016 before playing shortstop for the Twins down the stretch. But both have been pleasant surprises, leading to an overall solid defense for Minnesota, which has helped the pitching staff.

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Rhett Bollinger has covered the Twins for MLB.com since 2011. Read his blog, Bollinger Beat, follow him on Twitter @RhettBollinger and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Twins take advantage of wild Verlander for win

Twins take advantage of wild Verlander for win

MINNEAPOLIS -- The Twins used a patient approach against Justin Verlander, drawing six walks against the veteran ace, including three as part of a six-run sixth inning capped by a three-run homer from Eddie Rosario in a 6-3 win over the Tigers on Friday night at Target Field.

Verlander, coming off a start in which he gave up nine runs in four innings against the Indians, got through five scoreless frames before it unraveled in the sixth with three straight walks. The six walks he surrendered were the second most in his career, and the most since he walked seven as a rookie in 2006.

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Rhett Bollinger has covered the Twins for MLB.com since 2011. Read his blog, Bollinger Beat, follow him on Twitter @RhettBollinger and listen to his podcast.

Jason Beck has covered the Tigers for MLB.com since 2002. Read Beck's Blog, follow him on Twitter @beckjason and Facebook.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Falvey scouts McKay in advance of Draft

Falvey scouts McKay in advance of Draft

MINNEAPOLIS -- With the Twins holding the No. 1 pick in the 2017 Draft, chief baseball officer Derek Falvey continues to scout top prospects, and he watched the University of Louisville's Brendan McKay pitch on Friday night.

Falvey, who saw Southern California high schooler Hunter Greene strike out 12 batters on April 8, witnessed McKay struggle against Duke, allowing five runs over six innings in Game 1 of a doubleheader. McKay struck out seven but allowed six hits, including a triple and a homer, and walked three.

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Rhett Bollinger has covered the Twins for MLB.com since 2011. Read his blog, Bollinger Beat, follow him on Twitter @RhettBollinger and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Bullpen coughs up lead in loss to Indians

Bullpen coughs up lead in loss to Indians

MINNEAPOLIS -- Trevor Bauer threw 6 1/3 solid innings, and Carlos Santana connected on a pair of RBI doubles to lift the Indians to a three-game sweep over the Twins with a 6-2 win on Thursday afternoon at Target Field.

Cleveland trailed by a run heading into the seventh after another strong outing from Twins right-hander Ervin Santana, but rallied for three runs. Carlos Santana tied it with an RBI double off lefty Taylor Rogers, who walked Michael Brantley for the go-ahead run after an intentional walk to Francisco Lindor. The Indians got an insurance run on another bases-loaded walk from Jose Ramirez.

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Rhett Bollinger has covered the Twins for MLB.com since 2011. Read his blog, Bollinger Beat, follow him on Twitter @RhettBollinger and listen to his podcast.

Tyler Mason is a contributor to MLB.com and covered the Indians on Thursday.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

After Santana exits, Indians get to bullpen

After Santana exits, Indians get to bullpen

MINNEAPOLIS -- After limiting the Indians to one run over six innings on Thursday, Twins right-hander Ervin Santana was in line to become the first pitcher in the Majors to reach four wins, to go along with his 0.64 ERA.

But the bullpen couldn't hold a one-run lead in the seventh, with three relievers combining to allow three runs in an eventual 6-2 loss at Target Field. Some of it was simply bad luck -- with Yandy Diaz reaching on a comebacker off right-hander Tyler Duffey's leg and Roberto Perez reaching on an infield single that had an exit velocity of 54.3 mph -- but it also came down to execution with Taylor Rogers allowing the game-tying RBI single to Carlos Santana before the Twins walked two runners home after an intentional walk to Francisco Lindor.

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Rhett Bollinger has covered the Twins for MLB.com since 2011. Read his blog, Bollinger Beat, follow him on Twitter @RhettBollinger and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Duffey's numbers improving in relief

Duffey's numbers improving in relief

MINNEAPOLIS -- It's only been four relief appearances and 8 2/3 scoreless innings, but right-hander Tyler Duffey is showing positive signs about his move to the bullpen.

Duffey, who posted a 6.43 ERA in 26 starts last year, has struck out seven and walked one, while allowing five hits to the 33 batters he's faced. His stuff is also playing up in the bullpen, according to Statcast™, as he's seen his velocity tick up while increasing his spin rates on his fastball and curveball.

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Rhett Bollinger has covered the Twins for MLB.com since 2011. Read his blog, Bollinger Beat, follow him on Twitter @RhettBollinger and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Gordon continues hot start

Gordon continues hot start

Class A Advanced Palm Beach right-hander Junior Fernandez put his tough start to the season behind him in a truly dominant manner on Wednesday night, retiring the first 19 batters he faced en route to tossing eight scoreless innings to pace the Cardinals in a 7-0 shutout of Tampa.

The win was the first of the season for the Cardinals' No. 10 prospect, who allowed one hit and one walk, while striking out six and generating nine ground-ball outs.

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Mike Rosenbaum is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @GoldenSombrero. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Twins fall as Hughes' struggles continue

Twins fall as Hughes' struggles continue

MINNEAPOLIS -- Jose Ramirez and Edwin Encarnacion hit two-run homers, while Francisco Lindor connected on a two-run triple and extended his hit streak to 12 games with a single in the first to help the Indians to an 11-4 win over the Twins on Tuesday night at Target Field.

The offense backed Indians right-hander Josh Tomlin, who went six innings, surrendering three runs on seven hits to get his first win of the year and lower his ERA to 11.68, as he had previously allowed 13 runs in his first 6 1/3 innings.

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Rhett Bollinger has covered the Twins for MLB.com since 2011. Read his blog, Bollinger Beat, follow him on Twitter @RhettBollinger and listen to his podcast.

Tyler Mason is a contributor to MLB.com based in Minnesota and covered the Indians on Tuesday.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Kepler's misplay on routine fly proves costly

Kepler's misplay on routine fly proves costly

MINNEAPOLIS -- The Twins' outfield defense is one of their major assets this season, but right fielder Max Kepler made a costly error on a routine fly ball from Jose Ramirez in the first inning of Tuesday's 11-4 loss to the Indians, leading to two unearned runs scoring.

With two outs in the first, Ramirez lifted a high fly ball to right off right-hander Phil Hughes, and Kepler camped under it, but it deflected off his glove as he tried to make the catch with one hand. It allowed Michael Brantley to score from second, and Ramirez to reach second with a two-base error. Ramirez later scored on an RBI single from Lonnie Chisenhall, putting the Twins in an early 3-0 hole.

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Rhett Bollinger has covered the Twins for MLB.com since 2011. Read his blog, Bollinger Beat, follow him on Twitter @RhettBollinger and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Carew rallies for organ donation awareness

Hall of Famer received heart, kidney from former NFL player Reuland

Carew rallies for organ donation awareness

LOS ANGELES -- Rod Carew has been blessed with new life, thanks to a heart and kidney transplant, and the Hall of Famer has turned his attention to saving the lives of others by raising awareness for heart disease and organ donations.

Carew, 71, was in good spirits and looking healthy on Tuesday morning during a news conference at the Encino Little League Baseball Park. It's been four months since Carew received the organs during a 13-hour operation.

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Austin Laymance is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Indians series an emotional reunion for Falvey

Francona: Minnesota exec 'was a favorite' in Cleveland

Indians series an emotional reunion for Falvey

MINNEAPOLIS -- Twins chief baseball officer Derek Falvey admitted it was a little strange to have his former organization, the Indians, in town for a four-game series that began Monday night at Target Field.

Falvey, 34, got his start in baseball with the Indians as an intern in 2007 before working his way up to assistant general manager. He was hired by the Twins last offseason after Cleveland made its run to the World Series. Falvey said he mostly misses the people he worked with, but that he has never had any second thoughts or regrets about taking Minnesota's top post in baseball operations.

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Rhett Bollinger has covered the Twins for MLB.com since 2011. Read his blog, Bollinger Beat, follow him on Twitter @RhettBollinger and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Twins squander chances to derail Indians

Minnesota misses twice on bases-loaded opportunities

Twins squander chances to derail Indians

MINNEAPOLIS -- Before Monday's game, Twins manager Paul Molitor acknowledged he spent some time with chief baseball officer Derek Falvey to get more information on Cleveland's players, considering Falvey had worked for the Indians since 2007 before getting hired by Minnesota this offseason.

It appeared the Twins had the book on hard-throwing right-hander Danny Salazar early, as six of the club's first eight batters reached safely. But Minnesota mustered only one run the first two innings, allowing Salazar to settle in to claim a 3-1 victory. It was more of the same in the ninth for the Twins, loading the bases against closer Cody Allen with two outs, only for Joe Mauer to fly out to shallow center to end it.

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Rhett Bollinger has covered the Twins for MLB.com since 2011. Read his blog, Bollinger Beat, follow him on Twitter @RhettBollinger and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Twins' offense stalls in support of Gibson

Twins' offense stalls in support of Gibson

MINNEAPOLIS -- Danny Salazar settled down after scuffling early, and was backed by two RBIs from Michael Brantley, including a solo homer, to lead the Indians to a 3-1 win over the Twins on Monday night at Target Field.

Salazar allowed a combined six baserunners in the first two innings, but escaped trouble, allowing just one run. He went six innings, scattering seven hits and two walks with seven strikeouts to get his first win of the year and improve his ERA to 3.57. He finished strong, striking out the side in his final inning.

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Rhett Bollinger has covered the Twins for MLB.com since 2011. Read his blog, Bollinger Beat, follow him on Twitter @RhettBollinger and listen to his podcast.

Tyler Mason is a contributor to MLB.com based in Minnesota and covered the Indians on Monday.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Max Kepler is watching you, Cody Allen

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Max Kepler is watching you, Cody Allen

Sometimes, when you're a pitcher standing out on the mound all by yourself, it can feel so lonely. Like you're the only person on the field. The only person on earth.

That definitely wasn't the case for Cody Allen in the ninth inning of the Indians' 3-1 win over the Twins on Monday.

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