Twins ask judge to declare Metrodome lease void

Updated: January 9, 2006, 8:29 PM ET
Associated Press

MINNEAPOLIS -- The Minnesota Twins asked a Hennepin County district judge on Monday to rule that the team isn't obliged to play in the Metrodome after this season.

Twins add another lefty to 'pen
The Twins agreed Monday to a minor league contract with Darrell May, who will be playing for his seventh team in seven big league seasons.

May was 1-4 with a 6.78 ERA in 24 games last season, 22 for the Padres and two for the Yankees. He started eight games for the Padres, going 1-3 with 32 strikeouts in 59 1/3 innings. New York acquired May and Tim Redding from the Padres in July for pitcher Paul Quantrill.

Dennys Reyes and Gabe White agreed previously in the offseason to minor league contracts with the Twins.
-- Associated Press

"This thing is stone-cold dead," Twins lawyer Roger Magnuson told judge Charles Porter Jr., referring to a 1998-2003 agreement for the team to play in the dome.

However, the Metropolitan Sports Facilities Commission, which runs the Metrodome, said the Twins have a legal agreement to remain in the Metrodome until a new ballpark is built.

Porter said he'll rule in two weeks, but an appeal is expected no matter which side prevails.

The Twins contend they have no long-term agreement to play in the 24-year-old Metrodome and have operated there on a year-to-year basis since the 2004 season.

Corey Ayling, the lawyer for the Metropolitan Sports Facilities Commission, said the team has acted as if it were a long-term tenant and has essentially operated under a 1998 agreement that ran through 2003.

"Conduct and actions speak a lot louder than words," Ayling told the judge. "They have accepted all these checks and they behaved exactly as if this agreement had been signed."

Copyright 2006 by The Associated Press