The Minnesota Twins entered this week’s road series against the Chicago White Sox thinking rehabbing center fielder Byron Buxton might join them at Guaranteed Rate Field.
The plan isn’t coming together the way the organization initially hoped.
Buxton is set to arrive in Chicago ahead of Wednesday’s game, not to be in the lineup for the American League Central-leading Twins, but to have his left shoulder re-evaluated.
On the injured list since Aug. 3 due to a partial dislocation to the shoulder, Buxton reported feeling discomfort during batting practice in his rehab stint with Class-A Cedar Rapids. The Twins have temporarily halted his rehab assignment.
Although an MRI exam Tuesday revealed no structural damage, Buxton’s status for contributing to Minnesota’s playoff push remains questionable.
“The next step is we give it a day or two days and we get him here around our people, and then I think we’ll know a lot more,” Minnesota manager Rocco Baldelli said. “I think it’s good that he’s going to be here with our medical team and be around his teammates and things like that. I think it’s a positive thing as opposed to being back in Minnesota at this point while we’re on the road.”
Again acknowledging the testing and organizational meetings still to come, Baldelli said the Twins may consider bringing Buxton back to the lineup even if he weren’t 100 percent.
“I think there’s a conversation there,” Baldelli said. “There are a lot of guys here that are playing right now that are playing through some mild discomfort, pain, whatever you want to call it. Everyone in a baseball season does deal with something, but it has to be manageable.”
Minnesota won the series opener 3-1 on Tuesday behind solo home runs from Marwin Gonzalez and Jonathan Schoop and five strong innings from Michael Pineda. Meanwhile, the Cleveland Indians thumped the Detroit Tigers 10-1 to remain 3 1/2 games behind Minnesota in the division.
The Twins are set to start right-hander Jake Odorizzi (13-6, 3.57 ERA), who will be pitching on six days’ rest. That’s been a promising prospect for the All-Star, as Odorizzi is 5-0 with a 1.00 ERA when pitching on extra rest this season.
Odorizzi is 1-1 with a 2.61 ERA in two starts against the White Sox this season and 2-3 with a 3.22 ERA in eight career starts vs. Chicago.
White Sox lefty Ross Detwiler, who will be pitching on five days’ rest, will look to build upon a Thursday home victory against the Rangers. He struck out a career-high eight batters while allowing one run and three hits in six innings.
Detwiler (2-3, 5.51 ERA) boasts a 4.63 ERA in seven starts and an 8.03 ERA in five relief outings this year.
“I’d like to have a routine; I guess I don’t really need it,” Detwiler said. “But I like to have a routine, like to have everything in order. If you’re out of the bullpen, you don’t really have sidelines between starts. But it is what it is. Whenever they hand you the ball, you need to go out there and do your best.”
Detwiler is 1-0 with a 4.50 ERA in three appearances covering 10 innings against the Twins this season, including one start. He’s 1-0 with a 4.22 ERA against Minnesota over four appearances (one start) in his career.
–Field Level Media
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