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Judge in Twins Case: Work Together

April 5, 2002

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) _ Lawyers for the Minnesota Twins’ landlord and the team were told by a judge Friday to work together on a plan for handling documents that baseball wants to keep confidential.

The Metropolitan Sports Facilities Commission, which runs the Metrodome, obtained an injunction that forced the team to honor its lease this season and is continuing the case to prevent the Twins from being eliminated after the 2002 season.

In its lawsuit, the commission has asked for a range of documents, including internal plans by major league baseball to reduce the number of teams.

Hennepin County District Judge Harry Seymour Crump told both sides at Friday’s hearing to develop a joint order he could sign setting out procedures for the sides to review the documents to determine what should be public.

If there are disagreements, Crump said, they should come to him.

Roger Magnuson, a lawyer for the Twins and major league baseball, said trade secrets should not be publicly disclosed. He said he was pleased with Crump’s instructions.

Kathleen Brennan, a lawyer commission, had argued that under the state’s data practices law, documents in the commission’s possession generally ought to be considered public information.

Corey Ayling, another commission lawyer, said that under Crump’s procedure the commission will be obligated to keep information provided by the owners confidential unless the judge rules otherwise.

Crump said he did not want the confidentiality issue to interfere with his order to baseball owners to produce the documents by April 16.

The judge heard arguments Thursday on a motion by the owners to dismiss the lawsuit and is required to rule within 90 days.

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