Monday, May 3, 2010

Twins roster issues

It's unclear at this point how long Joe Mauer's going to be out with his bone bruised heel. Ron Gardenhire described it Sunday as more week-to-week than day-to-day, which sounds like disabled list material, but the team website lists May 3 as his possible return date.

That seems overly optimistic, but there's been no move to DL him.

Meanwhile, Pat Neshek's on the DL -- that's the move that cleared a spot for Wilson Ramos -- and Nick Blackburn's on family emergency leave, with Jeff Manship (above) in his place.

The rules for Blackburn's leave say he has to be gone at least three days and no more than seven. So he could miss another start -- that spot in the rotation comes up Thursday against Baltimore -- and Manship would obviously pick that up.

Right now, the Twins have 11 pitchers and 14 position players active. This is not Gardenhire's preferred roster split, and even for those fans who think 12 pitchers are too many, it's not helping the bench either, since Mauer can't play.

I'm guessing that by the time Blackburn has to be reactivated, they'll decide to put Mauer on the DL. Then the question will be whether to keep Manship up to serve as a long reliever or return him to Rochester and bring up another guy for Gardenhire's preferred mix-and-match relief strategy.

It probably won't be Jose Mijares, whose possible return is listed on that same webpage as mid-May.

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