Byron Buxton slid home with the winning run Tuesday night and suffered a shoulder injury.
The good news, Twins President of Baseball Operations Derek Falvey said, is that the inflammation in Buxton’s left shoulder does not involve his labrum, which was surgically repaired last year.
The bad news is that the Gold Glove center fielder is again sidelined, this time relegated to the 10-day injury list. The 26-year-old started the season with a left foot sprain that kept him out of opening weekend; that was his 13th injury in the past seven seasons, not including migraine issues.
LaMonte Wade Jr. was recalled from the St. Paul practice site to replace Buxton before Thursday night’s finale of a three-game series against the Brewers at Target Field.
“It’s really just some shoulder kind of muscle inflammation that is leading to some soreness,” Falvey said. “And with his history, we just want to make sure we get this right. We thought the best thing to do would be to shut him down for a period of time and we’ll see how it progresses over the next few days.
“When you have the surgery that he had, you’re going to go through some ups and downs with some soreness in that general area. That is not uncommon. … This is not something we think will be a long-standing issue for him.”
Garver also sidelined
Catcher Mitch Garver left Wednesday’s loss to the Brewers, wincing after swinging at an outside pitch in a sixth-inning strikeout. He went on the 10-day IL because of a low grade right intercostal strain.
“It’s a very mild strain in the intercostal area, in the rib cage,” Falvey said. “He feels OK, but I think he would’ve been down for at least a few days while we kind of worked it through.”
Ryan Jeffers was called up from the St. Paul site and made his major league debut against the Brewers.
Willians Astudillo was passed over for promotion, but Falvey said Astudillo would be on the taxi squad for the 10-game road trip to Kansas City, Cleveland and Detroit. Astudillo’s summer season was delayed after he tested positive for COVID-19 when reporting in July.
Jeffers was a second-round choice in 2018 and played at Class A Fort Myers and Class AA Pensacola last season.
“Had we been at a more traditional setting I would fully expected [Jeffers] to be playing in Double A, Triple A this year,” Falvey said, “so we felt he was close. Willians is still certainly in our mix and will be a part of the conversation and can play multiple positions … but we felt like Ryan was the best fit for the more regular role [Thursday].
“What we told Ryan is, when a young catcher comes up, your primary goal and your second and third goal is to help work with the pitchers and get those through a game and make sure you’re focused on the defense. Whatever happens offensively is kind of gravy after that.”
Eyes of the Hawk
Twins special assistant LaTroy Hawkins has been working with the team’s young pitchers, especially Jorge Alcala, who picked up his first major league victory Tuesday.
“He’s one of those guys, his stuff is there,” Hawkins said of the 25-year-old righthander, who came to the Twins in the Ryan Pressly trade with Houston two years ago. “I come in with the mental part of the game. I told him the other day, there’s not too many things you’re going to go through in the game of baseball, from now until the last day you pitch, that I haven’t gone through.
“So he’s been the guy I’ve kind of latched onto. When it’s time to play catch, he comes and finds me.”
• Lewis Thorpe, after giving up four runs in four relief innings in a 9-3 loss to the Brewers on Wednesday, was sent to St. Paul and replaced by Zack Littell.
• Starting pitcher Homer Bailey, out since late July because of biceps tendinitis, threw in the bullpen before Thursday’s game.
• Manager Rocco Baldelli said second baseman Luis Arraez (knee) was ready to return to play.