Span, Valencia out after car accident
CLEVELAND — The Twins’ season keeps getting stranger and stranger.
The Twins, who have had their fair share of injuries as they’ve utilized the disabled list 24 times, had their most bizarre injury news of the season tonight.
Twins manager Ron Gardenhire announced before their game against the Indians that center fielder Denard Span and Danny Valencia were out of the lineup because they were involved in a fender bender last night while driving from Target Field to the Minneapolis-St. Paul Airport.
Span, driving in his Range Rover, was following Valencia — the passenger in his Range Rover Sport with his fiancée Jocelyn driving — when they encountered stop-and-go while turning from I-35 onto Hwy 62 West, and Span failed to stop and rear-ended Valencia’s car.
Both suffered whiplash and complained of headaches because of the accident, and were held out of the lineup as a result.
“It’s not funny but it’s typical,” said Gardenhire, who still couldn’t help but laugh when telling the story. “So that’s the reason why they’re really not in the lineup. Danny has a little bit of a stiff neck and Span is OK, and says he feels fine, but probably not a good night to start him out there.”
Valencia and Span were able to joke about the accident, as both cars suffered only minor damage, but it was still a scary moment, as all three passengers suffered whiplash and Valencia’s fiancée was checked out by doctors today.
“We all have whiplash,” Valencia said. “I have a headache right now, and instantly had a headache when it happened. So it’s unfortunate. But I was more concerned about [Span] because of his concussion symptoms. But I was happy he was doing better than I expected.”
Span, who has been dealing with concussion-like symptoms and migraines ever since he suffered a concussion in a home-plate collision on June 3, said the crash re-triggered his symptoms “a little bit.”
“It still hurts,” Span said. “I’m not going to lie. My head hurts and my neck is a little sore. I’m laughing but it’s not funny to be honest with you. It’s been a rough year for me. I just played Wednesday so for something like this to happen has been rough for me. But it could’ve been worse.”
With Valencia and Span out, only Matt Tolbert and Rene Rivera are available off the bench for tonight’s game. Luke Hughes is starting at second base, while Ben Revere is starting in center field.
“We need a rabbit’s foot,” Valencia said. “We have bad luck. And it’s unfortunate because when you think it can’t get any worse, it does. Yesterday was a positive day considering we had a great walk-off win and our first win in about two weeks, and then the next thing you know I think I had a bomb dropped off on my car.”