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Mauer to rejoin Twins in Cleveland on Friday

Joe Mauer File photo

DETROIT — After going hitless in 10 plate appearances for Triple-A Rochester, Joe Mauer is scheduled to rejoin the Twins Friday in Cleveland — four weeks after he was sidelined with a neck injury and lingering concussion symptoms.

The slumping Twins certainly could use an offensive boost. Mauer was hitting .283 in 38 games. Only Eddie Rosario (.310) and Eduardo Escobar (.290) have higher averages after Thursday’s meek 3-1 loss to the Tigers.

“I don’t know if there’s a bad time to add Joe Mauer back into your lineup,” manager Paul Molitor said. “I know he’s been through a lot here since he went down. He seems optimistic about the last couple of days, despite not getting a hit. It’s good that he was able to get 10 plate appearances, and has affirmed that he’s ready to come help us.”

Mauer initially injured himself May 12 diving for a ball against the Angels in Anaheim. He played for another week before concussion symptoms forced him out of the May 18 game against Milwaukee at Target Field.

Molitor was asked whether Mauer should limit himself diving for balls at first base.

“There are some things that as you work your way back, you can’t really practice,” he said. “Some things are just going to happen, and how he responds to those things — I don’t think he’s going to change. He’s probably going to be the same player defensively, offensively, running the bases, and we’ll just be hopeful that nothing sets him back.”

HOF celebrations

Jack Morris and Jim Thome will be inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame July 29 in Cooperstown, N.Y., and feted with separate celebrations in August at Target Field.

The Twins will honor Morris, their 1991 World Series hero, Aug. 18 during the third game of a four-game series against Detroit, for whom the fiery right-handed pitcher starred during the 1980s.

An on-field pregame ceremony is planned, and the first 5,000 fans will receive a Jack Morris T-shirt.

Morris, who grew up in St. Paul, went 18-12 during the ’91 regular season for the Twins and won a pair of World Series games, including an epic 10-inning, Game 7 shutout to earn MVP honors.

Thome, who joined the 600-home runs club during his 2010-11 tenure with the Twins, will be celebrated Aug. 25 before Minnesota’s game against Oakland. He hit 37 home runs in 179 games for the Twins.

Meanwhile, manager Paul Molitor said he plans to attend the Hall of Fame induction ceremonies that weekend while the Twins are playing at Boston.

He would drive to Cooperstown Saturday morning July 28 and miss the final two games of the four-game series at Fenway Park.

“Playing hooky,” Molitor quipped. “It’s a special class for me.”

Molitor also grew up in St. Paul and competed against Morris in amateur city leagues. Alan Trammell, the former Tigers star shortstop, also is being inducted.

Molitor and his contemporary became close friends in the 1980s when they were offseason neighbors in San Diego.

Briefly

Infielder Gregorio Petit cleared waivers and accepted his assignment to Triple-A Rochester. He was released after the Twins re-signed reliever Matt Belisle.

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