Twins' Sano sad to see Cruz go: 'He's my dad'
"He's my dad," Sano said Thursday after the Twins fell 3-2 to the Los Angeles Angels, according to Do-Hyoung Park of MLB.com. "He's my guy and everything. And I hope he comes back next year to the Twins' organization. I saw him cry, and I'm crying too when I saw him like that."
The Twins dealt Cruz - their 41-year-old All-Star designated hitter - to the Rays for a pair of pitching prospects. Cruz spent two-plus seasons in Minnesota, slashing .304./386/.598 with 76 homers and 191 RBIs across 258 games.
Sano wore Cruz's pants during Thursday's contest as a tribute to his former teammate. He went 1-for-3 with a walk while batting cleanup and playing first base.
"I heard that after the game, actually," Twins manager Rocco Baldelli said, according to The Athletic's Aaron Gleeman. "I didn't know it during the game. They both wear pretty good-sized pants, so to the eye, I couldn't tell any difference."
Cruz described the trade as "heartbreaking" even though he was bracing for a move out of Minnesota. He said he'll "definitely" consider re-signing with the Twins when he hits free agency after the season.
Minnesota sunk to 41-56 with its latest defeat and has now lost six of its last eight games.