Twins make first roster cuts of Spring Training
FORT MYERS, Fla. — The Twins made their first roster cuts of Spring Training this morning, as they reassigned right-handed pitchers Bryan Augenstein, Nick Blackburn, Alex Meyer, Lester Oliveros and Esmerling Vasquez to Minor League camp.
Blackburn, who underwent surgery on his right wrist in January, and Oliveros, who had Tommy John surgery in August, are both currently out with injuries. Blackburn is expected to return in May while Oliveros is likely out until August, but neither pitcher is on the 40-man roster.
Meyer, who was acquired in the trade that sent Denard Span to the Nationals, was the most impressive pitcher of the group before being reassigned. Meyer, ranked as the No. 40 overall prospect by MLB.com, tossed five scoreless innings in Grapefruit League play with three strikeouts and two walks.
Meyer, 23, is expected to start the season at Double-A New Britain after posting a combined 2.86 ERA with 139 strikeouts and 45 walks in 129 innings split between Class A Hagerstown and Class A Advanced Potomac last season.
Vasquez, who had a 5.68 ERA in six starts with the Twins last season, had a 6.75 ERA in 2 2/3 innings in Spring Training. He’s not on the 40-man roster and is expected to start at Triple-A Rochester.
Augenstein, meanwhile, made only one appearance in Spring Training. The non-roster invite, who pitched for Tampa Bay’s Triple-A affiliate last season, gave up a run in one inning against the Pirates on Feb. 25.
Also, here are the lineups for the Pirates and Twins with Oswaldo Arcia set to make his debut after missing the first 15 games with a strained intercostal muscle.
1. Starling Marte, LF
2. Travis Snider, RF
3. Andrew McCutchen, CF
4. Gaby Sanchez, 1B
5. Brandon Inge, 3B
6. Clint Robinson, DH
7. Ivan DeJesus Jr., 2B
8. Tony Sanchez, C
9. Jordy Mercer, SS
LHP Jonathan Sanchez (Mike Zagurski, Stolmy Pimental, Vic Black, Brooks Brown, Bryan Morris)
1. Aaron Hicks, CF
2. Eduardo Escobar, 3B
3. Josh Willingham, DH
4. Ryan Doumit, C
5. Oswaldo Arcia, RF
6. Darin Mastroianni, LF
7. Jeff Clement, 1B
8. Brian Dozier, 2B
9. Pedro Florimon, SS
RHP Liam Hendriks (Alex Burnett, Jared Burton, Pedro Hernandez, Luis Perdomo, Caleb Thielbar, Tim Wood)