Results tagged ‘ Carl Pavano ’

Pavano to get second MRI on shoulder

CLEVELAND — Carl Pavano is set to fly back to Minneapolis to meet with team physician Dr. Dan Buss tomorrow, and will get a second MRI exam on his right shoulder on Monday.

Pavano, whose original MRI exam on May 11 revealed a strain in the front of his right shoulder, has been scuffling recently as he’s tried to pitch through the injury. The right-hander is 1-4 with an 8.25 ERA over his last five starts.

“We need to find out the physical state of the shoulder and everything else,” assistant general manager Rob Antony said. “And then we’ll sit down with Carl and talk about what we think is the best course of action at that point.”

Pavano, who hasn’t been on the disabled list since 2008, said he wants to stay in the rotation but it’s to the point where he needs to have his shoulder looked at again. He said his shoulder bothers him once he gets to around the 60-pitch mark and hasn’t been making any real progress in recent weeks.

“We’ve got to just find out where we’re at; this is part of the process,” Pavano said. “We’ve kind of exhausted a lot of things, so when you take steps to remedy something and things kind of stand still, you have to find other answers. So I think this is just another step in the process.”

Pavano, though, said he doesn’t think the injury will require surgery. But there remains a chance he’ll need extended rest — as much as six weeks — for his shoulder to get better. The Twins haven’t decided who will replace Pavano in the rotation if he misses his next start on Wednesday.

“I definitely think it’s to the point where it’s affecting me, that’s for sure, affecting my pitches,” said Pavano, who ranks 11th in the Majors in innings pitched dating back to 2009. “But I feel like it would have got a lot worse if it was something that’s going to require surgery or going to be career-threatening. I think it’s something that’s just weak and irritated and it’s causing me discomfort to the point where it’s affecting my strength.

“We’ll see where it goes, but I’m not too concerned about it being something that will affect me for the rest of the year. There’s just a possibility where I have to rest it a little bit and get it back stronger and get that irritation out of there. I think that may be the course we take, but we have to take this next step before making any other decisions.”

Twins announce Opening Day lineup

BALTIMORE — Twins manager Ron Gardenhire announced his lineup for Opening Day against the Orioles tomorrow at Camden Yards.

There were no surprises, but Ryan Doumit will be starting in right field over Trevor Plouffe, as Plouffe is starting the year in a super utility role.

And Justin Morneau will start the year as designated hitter with rookie Chris Parmelee getting his first Opening Day start at first base.

Gardenhire also said his two main setup relievers will be left-hander Glen Perkins and right-hander Jared Burton. He also mentioned left-handers Brian Duensing and Matt Maloney as the two guys he’d look to first if he needs a reliever in the middle innings.

More to come in today’s notebook. But here’s the lineup:

Twins:
1. Denard Span, CF
2. Jamey Carroll, SS
3. Joe Mauer, C
4. Justin Morneau, DH
5. Josh Willingham, LF
6. Ryan Doumit, RF
7. Danny Valencia, 3B
8. Chris Parmelee, 1B
9. Alexi Casilla, 2B

RHP Carl Pavano

Blackburn appears set to start home opener

FORT MYERS, Fla. — After tossing five innings against the Red Sox, Twins right-hander Nick Blackburn said he wasn’t sure when he’ll make his next start.

But pitching coach Rick Anderson said Blackburn’s next outing will be against Class A Advanced Fort Myers on Wednesday, and strongly hinted that he’ll start the home opener against the Angels on April 9 at Target Field.

“Figure the math,” Anderson said. “Five days after that, when is he throwing again? It’s the home opener.”

With Blackburn apparently scheduled to start in the home opener, the Twins are getting close to setting their rotation. Right-hander Carl Pavano will start on Opening Day in Baltimore on April 6 and left-hander Francisco Liriano appears set to start in the club’s second game.

The third starter is up in the air, but right-hander Liam Hendriks is the front-runner to make that start, as Scott Baker (elbow tendonitis) and Jason Marquis (family issue) aren’t likely to be ready to open the season. The Twins don’t need a fifth starter because of the off-day on April 10.

Blackburn didn’t turn his prettiest outing of the spring on Friday, but he was happy he was able to make an in-game adjustment to bounce back after a shaky first few innings against the Red Sox.

He gave up five hits — including a two-run homer to Cody Ross in the second frame — and walked two, but got out of a few key games and settled down after the third.

Through four Grapefruit League outings, Blackburn has a 2.25 ERA with 12 strikeouts and four walks over 16 innings.

“Today was as ugly as it’s been,” Blackburn said. “I was able to do some damage control but most importantly I made an adjustment during a game. Even though this is a spring training game, you still have adrenaline facing a lineup like that, and the fact that you can make an adjustment in the game was a big thing for me right now. I don’t think I could have done that a couple years ago.”

Game 21: Twins, Pavano struggle vs. Orioles

FORT MYERS, Fla. — The Twins saw their five-game winning streak come to an end in an 11-1 loss to the Orioles on Thursday at Hammond Stadium.

Minnesota will look to get back on track when they travel north to face the Yankees on Friday at Steinbrenner Field in Tampa.

What went right: Not too much, as the Twins gave up 14 hits and had just five hits of their own.

Joe Mauer went 2-for-3 with an RBI double and is now hitting .313 this spring. Ben Revere and Michael Hollimon both doubled as well. Revere is hitting .343, while Hollimon is batting .500. Chris Parmelee went 1-for-2 and is hitting .333.

Left-hander Brian Duensing was the only Twins pitcher not to give up a run, as he tossed a scoreless fifth inning. He’s yet to allow a run in six innings this spring.

What went wrong: Right-hander Carl Pavano got a preview of the team he’s going to face on Opening Day, and got shelled.

Pavano allowed six runs on eight hits, including a homer, a triple and three doubles. His ERA now stands at 6.11 this spring.

Matt Capps served up a solo homer to Chris Davis in the sixth before Brendan Wise gave up a two-run homer to Trent Mummy in the eighth. Glen Perkins also struggled, giving up two runs on four hits in one inning of work.

Justin Morneau continued his struggles at the plate, going 0-for-3 to see his average tumble to .091 (3-for-33. But he did hit a hard liner to left in the fourth before lining out to third in the seventh.

What they said: “It really picked up today as you saw,” Gardenhire said when asked if things are expected start to pick up after Wednesday’s off-day. “Everybody really rose to the occasion. No. It was a dead day really. We played about six or seven good ballgames in a row or so, but today was really dead.”

What’s next: Left-hander Francisco Liriano is set to start against the Yankees at Steinbrenner Field on Friday at 12:05 p.m. PT. Liriano has been excellent this spring, posting a 2.77 ERA with 18 strikeouts and two walks allowed over 13 innings pitched. Right-handers Alex Burnett, Jeff Manship and Jared Burton are also scheduled to pitch for the Twins. Right-hander Ivan Nova starts for New York.

Injury update: Twins right-hander Scott Baker (elbow tendonitis) pitched two scoreless innings in a Minor League game. But he also threw just 23 pitches, and could end up on the disabled list to start the season. … Trevor Plouffe participated in a light workout, as he’s still battling a strained right hamstring.

Game 11: Hughes gives Twins the win in extras

PORT CHARLOTTE, Fla. — Carl Pavano had his best outing of the spring, and Luke Hughes hit a solo homer in the 10th inning to help lead the Twins to a 2-1 win over the Rays at Charlotte Sports Park.

With their third straight win, the Twins improved to 6-5 on the season. They host the split-squad Blue Jays on Tuesday at Hammond Stadium.

What went right: Pavano looked sharp against the Rays in his third Grapefruit League start, surrendering one run on four hits over four innings. He got ahead of hitters, as he threw first-pitch strikes to 12 of the 15 batters he faced.

Pavano, who threw 60 pitches, gave up his lone run on a single from Desmond Jennings after a double from Jose Lobaton. He also worked well with catcher Ryan Doumit, who threw out two attempting base stealers. The only misplay was when Jennings stole second despite a pitchout from Pavano, as the throw from Doumit sailed high.

Hughes also showed he’s progressing well in his recovery from a strained right shoulder suffered in a home-plate collision in his native Australia in early February. He played all 10 innings at second base, and went 2-for-4 at the plate, including the game-winning homer in the 10th off right-hander Albert Suarez.

“I think that’s a big lift for him,” Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said. “He’s been fighting through it because of the shoulder thing. He’s been set back a ways, so that’s a big deal for him hitting that homer.”

Shortstop Brian Dozier also had a good day at the plate, going 2-for-4 with a walk. He was robbed of a homer by the umpires in the first inning, when his deep drive hit the wooden deck above the left-field fence but it was ruled in-play. He settled for a triple off Tampa Bay’s projected Opening Day starter James Shields.

The bullpen also continued to impress, as Glen Perkins, Phil Dumatrait, Jason Bulger, Liam Hendriks, Tyler Robertson and Daryl Thompson each threw a scoreless frame. It was good to see Bulger get through an inning, as he entered the game with an 81.00 ERA.

What went wrong: It might be nitpicking in a win, but the offense didn’t exactly light up the scoreboard with two runs in 10 innings.

Joe Mauer, serving as designated hitter while playing in his first road game, went 0-for-2 with a walk and is batting .200 this spring. Trevor Plouffe went 0-for-4 with a strikeout to see his batting average drop to .118.

But the defense was solid yet again — outside of the botched pitchout — and the Twins have pitched well over their last five games.

What they said: “He got the ball and asked me if I’d sign it for him,” Gardenhire said about Bulger’s scoreless inning. “He said, ‘That’s the first time all spring you haven’t taken it from me.’ That’s entertainment.”

What’s next: Left-hander Francisco Liriano is set to make his third Grapefruit League start on Tuesday against the split-squad Blue Jays at 12:05 p.m. CT at Hammond Stadium. Lirano has yet to give up a run over five innings in Spring Training. Jared Burton, Matt Maloney and Sam Deduno are also scheduled to pitch for the Twins. Left-hander Brett Cecil starts for Toronto.

Injury update: Center fielder Denard Span stayed back at the club’s Spring Training complex on Monday to take some swings in the cage and see a chiropractor after missing Sunday’s game with neck stiffness. Span, who said the injury is not related to the concussion-like symptoms that plagued him last year, could return to the lineup on Tuesday. … Infielder Tsuyoshi Nishioka missed Monday’s game with a sprained left pinkie, and remains day to day.

Day 13: Grapefruit League play starts tomorrow

FORT MYERS, Fla. — After 13 days of workouts, the Twins are scheduled to open Grapefruit League play against the Rays tomorrow at 12:05 p.m. CT at Hammond Stadium.

The big news is that catcher Joe Mauer, first baseman Justin Morneau and center fielder Denard Span will be in the lineup against Tampa Bay’s David Price.

They’ll be batting in their usual spots in the order — first, third and fourth, respectively — and will be joined by by shortstop Jamey Carroll, right fielder Josh Willingham, designated hitter Ryan Doumit, third baseman Danny Valencia, left fielder Trevor Plouffe and second baseman Alexi Casilla in that order.

Ben Revere will start off on the bench with Price, a left-hander, on the mound, but will definitely see some action in the game. Others expected to play include Drew Butera, Rene Rivera, Chris Parmelee, Brian Dinkelman and Rene Tosoni.

Right-hander Carl Pavano will start for the Twins with several other pitchers on the list to throw, such as Brian Duensing, Glen Perkins, Matt Capps, Alex Burnett, Anthony Swarzak, Phil Dumatrait and Matt Maloney.

The Twins are happy with the way camp has gone so far, especially considering Mauer, Morneau and Span have been healthy and have participated in every workout without any issues. The only real setback was right-hander Joel Zumaya tearing his ulnar collateral ligament last weekend.

But for the most part, Twins general manager Terry Ryan and manager Ron Gardenhire are pleased with what they’ve seen so far, and are excited for Grapefruit League play to begin.

“It’s always good to get the games started,” Ryan said. “We’ve been here three extra days this year, so it’s been a little different for us. But now it’s time to get out there and see how we start competing against other clubs.”

Said Gardenhire: “These guys are working their tails off. We’ve got a couple of new people that are pretty fun to watch, so it ought to be interesting. I’m like everybody else, I can’t wait to see what happens.”

Other notes from today:

- Span, who crashed headfirst into the center-field fence yesterday, reported no problems today: “I was curious to see how I’d feel this morning but when I woke up this morning my head and my neck felt fine,” Span said. “Just my back was a little sore. So it was a lot better than I was expecting. It was a big relief. It showed me how far I’ve come this offseason.”

- Infielder Luke Hughes took batting practice and threw from 120 feet for the first time since suffering a sprained right shoulder in his native Australia in early February. He said everything went fine and he’s hoping to DH in a game on Sunday.

- The Twins offered various opinions about Major League Baseball adopting an expanded postseason format with the addition of a second Wild Card with the two Wild Cards playing in a one-game playoff to advance to the Division Series. In short, Ryan and Span were totally in favor of it, while Gardenhire thinks it’s unfair that it’s just a one-game game after a grueling 162-game season. Look for more details in today’s notebook at Twinsbaseball.com, which should also include video of Span giving his opinion on the subject.

Photos from today:

Day 11: Twins hold simulated game, “B” game

FORT MYERS, Fla. — It was a busy day at the Lee County Sports Complex, as the Twins held their first simulated game of the spring this morning before hosting the Red Sox in a “B” game at Hammond Stadium.

In the simulated game, right-handers Jason Marquis and Jeff Gray each pitched, while hitters such as Trevor Plouffe, Chris Parmelee and Alexi Casilla batted with different scenarios laid out for the defense.

It allowed Twins defenders to work on relay throws, positioning and decision-making while also allowing the hitters to face live pitching.

The big scare was Denard Span running into the center-field fence, but he said he was OK. But I’ll definitely check with him tomorrow to make sure he’s still doing OK.

As for the “B” game, the Twins picked up their first victory with a 6-5 win over the Red Sox.

Twins right-handers Scott Baker and Nick Blackburn got through without any issues, and were followed by Jeff Manship, Liam Hendriks, Jason Bulger, Carlos Gutierrez, Tyler Robertson, Brendan Wise and Deolis Guerra. Of the group, only Gutierrez really struggled, allowing two runs on hit and three walks while only recording two outs.

Offensively, the Twins were paced by first baseman Aaron Bates, who hit a two-run homer, and designated hitter Brian Dinkelman, who had two hits and two RBIs. Shortstop Brian Dozier also had two hits, while J.R. Towles and Joe Benson added RBI singles.

But the Twins no longer are playing for the Mayor’s Cup, according to Twins manager Ron Gardenhire, now that the Red Sox moved into the new JetBlue Park in Fort Myers. The Cup used to be a battle between the Red Sox, representing the city, and the Twins, representing the county, but they now both play in unincorporated Lee County.

“There is no more Mayor’s Cup,” Gardenhire said. “We took the Cup; we got the Cup. The Cup’s in somebody’s cabin now, in Minnesota.”

Other notes:

- Gardenhire said Carl Pavano will start the Grapefruit League opener against the Rays on Saturday at 12:05 p.m. CT. The Twins also have split-squad action on Sunday with left-hander Francisco Liriano scheduled to start against the Rays in Port Charlotte at 12:05 p.m. CT and right-hander Terry Doyle slated to pitch against the Red Sox at their new park in Fort Myers at 12:35 p.m. CT.

- Gardenhire said he’ll announce his lineups for Saturday’s game tomorrow morning. Morneau, Mauer and Span are all expected to play, but all said they have yet to be notified if they’ll be in the lineup.

- Scott Baker joked about third-base coach Steve Liddle being forced to be the home-plate umpire early in the “B” game: “I thought maybe the umpire was squeezing me a little bit,” Baker said with a grin. “We’ll work through it.”

Here’s video of Plouffe hitting a double against Marquis in today’s simulated game.

And photos from today:

Day 11: Gearing up for tomorrow’s “B” game

FORT MYERS, Fla. — It was a light day of workouts, as only a few pitchers threw live batting practice today because the club is preparing for tomorrow’s “B” game against the Red Sox.

Twins manager Ron Gardenhire announced his starting lineup for the game, which starts at 1 p.m. at Hammond Stadium and is free to public.

The Twins will use nine pitchers in the game, as starting pitchers Scott Baker and Nick Blackburn will be followed by Liam Hendriks, Jeff Manship, Jason Bulger, Carlos Gutierrez, Tyler Robertson, Brendan Wise and Deolis Guerra.

Among position players, the starters are catcher J.R. Towles, first baseman Aaron Bates, second baseman Pedro Florimon, third baseman Ray Chang, shortstop Brian Dozier, left fielder Ben Revere, center fielder Joe Benson, right fielder Rene Tosoni and designated hitter Brian Dinkelman.

The Red Sox plan to use pitchers Alfredo Aceves, Daniel Bard, Clayton Mortensen, Jesse Carlson, Tony Pena, Alex Wilson, Will Inman and Justin Thomas, according to Red Sox beat reporter Ian Browne.

But the big news today was Justin Morneau clarifying his earlier statements about how if he continues to suffer from concussion-like symptoms, he won’t have a career. Here’s the full story on what he said today.

Joe Mauer also talked with the media and said he’s feeling just fine and can’t wait for Saturday’s Grapefruit League opener against the Rays. Be on the lookout on Twinsbaseball.com for more on Mauer.

Other notes from today:

- Luke Hughes (shoulder) threw for the first time today, and reported no problems. He says he’ll throw up to 90 feet tomorrow and hopes to take batting practice. He could play in his first Spring Training game next week.

- Gardenhire is waiting to announce who will start the club’s Grapefruit League opener on Saturday against the Rays. My guess is that it’s Carl Pavano considering Baker and Blackburn throw tomorrow and Francisco Liriano throws on Sunday. It could be Jason Marquis, but I bet Pavano gets the nod.

- Twins GM Terry Ryan on Morneau and Denard Span: “I don’t worry about Justin any more than I worry about Span; they had the same symptoms, but both of them are doing wonderful.”

Photos from today:

Mauer starts at first (Game 86 vs. White Sox)

CHICAGO — After playing in 863 games, including 741 behind the plate, Joe Mauer will be making his first career start at first base tonight against the White Sox.

Twins manager Ron Gardenhire announced the move yesterday, but made it official today, batting Mauer third and starting him at first base with Drew Butera getting the nod at catcher, as he’s Carl Pavano’s personal catcher.

“Mauer is playing first base,” Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said. “With [Jim] Thome in the lineup, this is a good thing, and with Butera catching Pavano it’s a normal thing. So the way to keep his bat in the lineup, as we talked about a number of times, is to have him at first base. It gives him a chance to rest his legs a little bit and get away from squatting.”

Mauer, who started taking ground balls at first base during batting practice on June 27, hasn’t played the position since appearing in one game there with Class A Fort Myers in 2003. He last saw extended time at first back when he played 13 games there with Class A Quad Cities in 2002.

“I think he’s got a little anxiety about playing first base, but I think that’s normal,” Gardenhire said. “It’s been a long time since he’s done that. But I told him, once he gets out to first base, he’s going to see it’s easy compared to what he’s been doing all these years.”

Mauer, who is borrowing one of Michael Cuddyer’s gloves, took grounders during early batting practice before tonight’s game, as Gardenhire gave him pointers about positioning, holding on runners and how to handle bunts and slow rollers.

“Just all the little things to make sure even though we’ve talked about it all before to reiterate it,” Gardenhire said of his talk with Mauer. “I don’t want him to get killed over there. A ball up the line he needs to catch the ball and get off the line and do a catcher sweep tag. I don’t want him jumping into the basepaths or anything like that.”

Lineups for the 7:10 p.m. CT start at U.S. Cellular Field:

Twins (38-47)

1. Ben Revere, CF
2. Alexi Casilla, 2B
3. Joe Mauer, 1B
4. Michael Cuddyer, RF
5. Jim Thome, DH
6. Danny Valencia, 3B
7. Rene Tosoni, LF
8. Tsuyoshi Nishioka, SS
9. Drew Butera, C

RHP Carl Pavano (5-6, 4.19 ERA, 3.90 FIP, 2.23 K/BB)

White Sox (43-45)

1. Juan Pierre, LF
2. Omar Vizquel, 3B
3. Paul Konerko, 1B
4. Adam Dunn, DH
5. Alex Rios, CF
6. A.J. Pierzynski, C
7. Alexei Ramirez, SS
8. Mark Teahen, RF
9. Gordon Beckham, 2B

RHP Phil Humber (8-4, 2.69 ERA, 3.51 FIP, 2.42 K/BB)

The Butera-Pavano connection (Game 81 vs Brewers)

MINNEAPOLIS — Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said yesterday that Drew Butera will continue to be Carl Pavano’s personal catcher, but that will be the only such situation moving forward, as Joe Mauer is expected to work with the other four starters.

Gardenhire stuck to his word today, as Butera is in the lineup against the Brewers and Mauer is serving as designated hitter.

The personal catcher relationship between Pavano and Butera started last year, but Pavano does have similar numbers working with both catchers.

In 28 starts with Butera, Pavano has a 3.89 ERA and 2.55 K/BB ratio, and in 30 outings with Mauer, he has a 4.20 ERA and a 3.62 K/BB. So while Mauer clearly has Butera beat in terms of Pavano’s strikeout-to-walk ration, Pavano has given up 14 homers with Butera behind the plate and 24 when working with Mauer.

Mauer, who is expected to be back at catcher tomorrow, spoke to the media today about how he’s feeling behind the plate and about his timing, as he’s carrying a six-game hit streak into today’s game and picked up three hits last night. The full story on Mauer will be posted later today as part of the Twins Notebook.

UPDATE: As Parker Hageman of Over The Baggy pointed out, there’s also a big difference when it comes to the run game between Butera and Mauer with Pavano. I looked up the stats, and with Butera at backstop, Pavano has allowed 20 stolen bases with eight runners getting caught stealing, while with Mauer, he’s allowed 32 stolen bases with just two runners getting thrown out.

Lineups for the 6:05 p.m. CT start at Target Field:

Brewers (44-39)

1. Rickie Weeks, 2B
2. Nyjer Morgan, CF
3. Ryan Braun, LF
4. Prince Fielder, 1B
5. Mat Gamel, DH
6. Yuniesky Betancourt, SS
7. Mark Kotsay, RF
8. Jonathan Lucroy, C
9. Craig Counsell, 3B

LHP Chris Narveson (5-5, 4.42 ERA, 3.91 FIP, 2.05 K/BB)

Twins (35-45)

1. Ben Revere, CF
2. Alexi Casilla, 2B
3. Joe Mauer, DH
4. Michael Cuddyer, RF
5. Danny Valencia, 3B
6. Luke Hughes, 1B
7. Jason Repko, LF
8. Drew Butera, C
9. Tsuyoshi Nishioka, SS

RHP Carl Pavano (5-6, 4.24 ERA, 3.30 FIP, 2.31 K/BB)

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