In­juries big is­sue for Twins

The Morning Call - - VARSITY -

At one point dur­ing Sun­day’s se­ries fi­nale against the In­di­ans — the Twins’ fi­nal meet­ing in their home park this sea­son against the three-time de­fend­ing AL Cen­tral cham­pi­ons they are trying to un­seat — Rocco Baldelli’s team fea­tured two in­field­ers play­ing out of their nor­mal po­si­tions; the third-string catcher be­hind the plate; a pitcher who started the sea­son in Class A; and two out­field­ers who didn’t yet have a ma­jor league hit.

This prob­a­bly isn’t the way the rookie man­ager en­vi­sioned his first stretch drive to look.

For the Twins, the dinged-up out­num­ber the in­jury-free at this point:

DH Nel­son Cruz is play­ing de­spite a rup­tured ten­don in his left wrist, and missed the last two games when it be­came sore once more. He has spent two stints on the in­jured list be­cause of the wrist.

Out­fielder Max Ke­pler has been play­ing de­spite a “knot” in his left scapula, which forced him out of two games in the last week.

Ed­die Rosario en­dured a sore left shoul­der and el­bow on the Twins’ most re­cent road trip. The out­fielder has stayed in the lineup — though he’s hit­ting .161 with one ex­tra­base hit in Septem­ber.

Miguel Sano has a sore back that pre­vented him from play­ing Sun­day.

Sam Dyson? Sore bi­ceps. Mar­win Gon­za­lez? Stiff oblique. C.J. Cron? Both­er­some right thumb. Jake Cave, Kyle Gib­son and Mitch Garver? A va­ri­ety of con­di­tions that they’re fight­ing to over­come.

And the sea­son is over for out­fielder By­ron Bux­ton, who was set to un­dergo surgery on his in­jured left shoul­der.

CAR­LOS OSORIO/AP

Man­ager Rocco Baldelli, right, has the Twins atop the AL Cen­tral de­spite key in­juries.

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