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Playing hardball

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) -- A citizens group that wants to keep the Minnesota Twins from moving out of state plans an informational picket at Tuesday's All-Star Game in Denver.

"We picked one of baseball's most sacred and traditional games as the place to have a heart-to-heart talk with baseball fans from across the country," said Joe Marble, who founded Citizens United for Baseball in Minnesota late last year.

The trip's purpose is "to help educate baseball fans on the importance of keeping the great tradition of baseball alive by not allowing Major League Baseball to move teams with long storied traditions from cities and states which cherish them," the group said in a news release Monday.

Representatives from the group also plan to present a stadium funding plan that would encourage a partnership with Major League Baseball and local communities.

The Twins want a new stadium, but efforts to approve a new publicly financed ballpark failed this year in the Legislature. As well, voters in North Carolina defeated a stadium tax referendum in May that would have helped suitor Don Beaver in his quest to buy the team and move it there.

The Twins have started preliminary talks over renegotiating their lease at the Metrodome.