Found July 03, 2013 on
Fox Sports North:
New York Yankees
MINNEAPOLIS -- Twins outfielder Josh Willingham will be sidelined at least a month after having arthroscopic surgery on his left knee Wednesday. The procedure was done to repair a torn meniscus in his knee; he's also letting a bone bruise heal in the meantime.
With Willingham out, the door is now open for a few players to see more playing time in his absence. Oswaldo Arcia got the start in left field on Wednesday against the New York Yankees, while Clete Thomas started in right. Outfielder Chris Parmelee also figures to get more playing time in right field as Twins manager Ron Gardenhire shuffles his lineup over the coming weeks.
"As I told the outfielders, we're going to kind of do the best we can to keep everybody swinging," Gardenhire said before Wednesday's game. "Arcia's going to get plenty of at-bats. Parms is going to get plenty of at-bats. We'll use Clete. We'll mix and match as best we possibly can. These guys are going to get to play a little bit now and see if they can take advantage of it. We'll see what happens."
Twins general manager Terry Ryan wouldn't put a timetable on Willingham's return, but Willingham said after Tuesday's game that he expects to be out four to six weeks.
Aaron Hicks is also back in the fold after he was activated from the disabled list prior to Tuesday's game. If not for Willingham's injury, though, Hicks still likely would have been on his rehab assignment with Triple-A Rochester.
Hicks doubled in his first at-bat in his return Tuesday but is still batting just .186 entering Wednesday's game. But he does provide an upgrade defensively in center field over Thomas, who certainly held his own while Hicks was on the DL.
"You look at Aaron, he's an above-average defender, very athletic," Gardenhire said. "He covers a lot of ground; good instincts out there. He's our future, and we want him out there. Clete did a really nice job for us filling in, and he'll get plenty of playing time up here because of that."
Tough stretch for the bullpen: What was once a strength for the Twins earlier this season has been a weakness over the last several games. Minnesota's bullpen has been among the best in baseball but blew a lead in Monday's game against the Yankees and gave up four more runs in Tuesday's 7-3 loss.
The last few days have left Gardenhire scratching his head as the games have gotten into the late innings.
"We're trying to figure out who to go to right now," Gardenhire said. "These guys have been very, very good for us. We have a lot of confidence in them. But right now we're kind of scuffling through there, trying to find the right mix and match and kind of work some things out with these guys."
Set-up man Jared Burton gave up three runs in Monday's loss and left-hander Brian Duensing followed him by allowing four runs (three earned). Tuesday, right-hander Anthony Swarzak gave up four runs in the loss.
There have been a few bright spots in the bullpen, however. Rookie left-hander Caleb Thielbar pitched a scoreless inning Tuesday and has now made 15 appearances (16 23 innings) without allowing a run to start his career. Casey Fien has allowed just one run over his last 13 innings (14 appearances).
"Casey's been throwing really well, and (Thielbar) has been throwing really well lately," Gardenhire said. "We'll try to get them in the right situations, depending on how deep the starter goes, and work our way through with the other guys."
Ramirez returns to Minneapolis: Outfielder Wilkin Ramirez was back in the Twin Cities on Wednesday to undergo testing for his concussion. Ramirez hasn't played since May 25 after suffering a concussion in a game against Detroit, and he endured a setback during his rehab work in Fort Myers, Fla.
"He jarred his head when he dove for the ball," Ryan said. "Unfortunately, he got dizzy and so forth, so we left him down there for three or four extra days because you don't want to put a guy on an airplane with that."
Ryan said Ramirez landed in Minneapolis on Tuesday, and he was at Target Field on Wednesday. A timetable for his return still remains uncertain.
"Now we're going to end up going through the same process again," Ryan said. "And then we'll send him out on a rehab (assignment) again."
Follow Tyler Mason on Twitter
BEST OF MAXIM
AROUND THE WEB
If you have that coveted front row seat even if it’s for a 4th place vs a 3rd place team hey its FRONT ROW!! I know the Yankee name always draws a crowd but who on the Yankees is exciting right now? NOBODY!
The Twins are only in 4th because the White Sox are horrendous and on the verge of blowing up the team like all my jerk neighbors with their fireworks.
Chris Parmelee has...
MINNEAPOLIS -- On the first day of the international free agency period, the Minnesota Twins have agreed to terms with a pair of Dominican prospects.
Outfielder Lewin Diaz agreed to a 1.4 million contract, while third baseman Roni Tapia reached an agreement for 550,000, according to a release from the Dominican Prospect League.
Diaz, 16, is a 6-foot-4, 210-pound left-handed hitting...
MINNEAPOLIS -- Kyle Gibson's much-anticipated major league debut lived up to the hype as the former first-round pick earned a win against Kansas City. His second start was a different story.
On Thursday, Gibson had a rude awakening against the New York Yankees. In just his second career big league start, the rookie right-hander had perhaps the worst outing of his professional...
Those smiles on the faces of the Minnesota Twins? Those are the smiles of ballplayers who know they’ll never have to face Mariano Rivera in the ninth inning again.
While Rivera has received a lot of creative gifts from opposing teams during his farewell tour through the big leagues, the Twins had perhaps the best one Tuesday night. Minnesota presented Rivera with what it called...
Chris Parmelee's diving catch over the right side wall Thursday might have been one of the few highlights for the Minnesota Twins over the Fourth of July holiday series against the New York Yankees this week — but it was a good one.
After a few precarious moments, the first baseman shook off the crash landing into the first row and returned to the game with the ball firmly...
MINNEAPOLIS -- As Yankees closer Mariano Rivera has made his farewell tour this season before retiring at the end of the year, he's been given gifts by many teams.
The Minnesota Twins may have had the most creative one yet.
Before Tuesday's game at Target Field, the Twins presented the 43-year-old Rivera with a rocking chair. It wasn't an ordinary chair, though: it...
The New York Yankees have ended their second five-game slide of the season, but they haven't had much success lately when Phil Hughes has been on the mound.
The Minnesota Twins, meanwhile, rarely lose when Samuel Deduno pitches at home.
This matchup of right-handers could help the Twins even this four-game set Tuesday night, as Deduno looks to improve to 4-0 at Target Field this...
As a follow-up to my preview where I said the Twins would land Kohl Stewart at #4 (nailed it), here's a look at the rest of the players the Twins selected. Looking at the early rounds, the Twins continued to pursue pitching and nabbed a bunch of catchers, which is definitely a weak spot in the system. After that they went all over the board grabbing some outfielders and even...
Minnesota Twins' outfielder Josh Willingham was scratched from Monday night's lineup against the New York Yankees with discomfort in his left knee.
As reported by Rhett Bollinger and Kelly Erickson of MLB.com,
"Willingham, who was slated to start at designated hitter, has been
dealing with a sore left knee throughout the season and had a cortisone
You might say calling this gift from the Minnesota Twins to Mariano Rivera a Chair of Broken Dreams is based on past experiences against the pitcher.
Before Tuesday game at Target Field, the Twins gave the legendary New York Yankees closer a custom-made rocking-chair composed entirely of broken bats — a clever homage to Rivera’s famous cutter pitch, which has broken more...
CC Sabathia won his 200th career game to stretch his winning streak over Minnesota to nearly six years, and Robinson Cano hit a tying two-run double to spark the New York Yankees in a 3-2 victory over the Twins on Wednesday night.
Cano fueled the three-run sixth against Twins starter PJ Walters (2-5), who was pitching for his job. Trevor Plouffe homered against Sabathia (9-6), but...
The Yankees beat the Twins again last night, continuing their dominance over Minnesota which began after Ron Gardenhire was named manager. Unlike the previous game, there were no records set last night. They got a lead, the bullpen made it close and Mariano Rivera came in to close it out. Yankees win, theeeeeee Yankees win.Speaking of Ron Gardenhire, it was he who came up with the...
I’ve been seeing more and more of this:
Mauer with a sac-fly RBI to bring in Florimon.
— Minnesota Twins (@Twins) July 4, 2013
So then I asked myself…why is it no longer just a regular “sacrifice fly”? Why does it have to be qualified as a “sac-fly RBI” or the like? I decided to just look up “sacrifice fly” in the baseball glossary just to be sure I didn’t...