SUBSCRIBE NOW Just 99¢ for your first month

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

Twins Alex Kirilloff ‘optimistic’ but still adjusting after wrist surgery

The outfielder had a cortisone shot on April 14 and was activated from the injured list on May 6

MLB: Oakland Athletics at Minnesota Twins
Minnesota Twins first baseman Alex Kirilloff runs home and scores against the Oakland Athletics on a single in the third inning Sunday, May 8, 2022, at Target Field in Minneapolis.
Bruce Kluckhohn / USA Today Sports
We are part of The Trust Project.

MINNEAPOLIS — Minnesota Twins outfielder/first baseman Alex Kirilloff has hit OK since returning from the 10-day injured list because of soreness and inflammation in his right wrist, .333 (4 for 12) since May 7. But the Twins’ first-round pick in the 2016 amateur draft said he’s still adjusting to hitting after surgery aimed at mitigating nagging soreness in the wrist.

“Overall, I can swing,” he said before Friday night’s game against the Cleveland Guardians at Target Field. “I feel like I can be effective, but I still feel like I’m in a little bit of a transition period to figuring it out after the surgery.”

Kirilloff had season-ending surgery last July but returned for spring training but in 10 games through Thursday didn’t have a single extra-base hit in 32 plate appearances. He had a cortisone shot in the wrist on April 14.

The issue, he said, is “a joint where the cartilage is pretty much gone,” causing bones to rub together. Doctors shaved some of that down to create space, he said, but he still feels it sometimes.

MORE MINNESOTA TWINS COVERAGE:
Pro
The left-hander gave up just two hits and a walk and struck out six in seven shutout innings in a 3-2 loss
Pro
The rookie right-hander is officially the hardest-throwing Twins pitcher, ever, but he’ll do more than close games
Pro
As long as Buxton is available in September or October, a scheduled day off in May or June shouldn’t be an issue.
Pro
Detroit’s 4-2, 10-inning victory snapped a six-game winning streak and dropped Minnesota to 14-4 in division games
Pro
Smeltzer is scheduled to pitch Thursday’s series opener against Kansas City
Pro
MINNEAPOLIS — The Twins’ winning streak has featured a little bit of everything.
Pro
The right fielder in a grand slam in the first and walked and scored the winning run in the ninth
Pro
Since being optioned back to St. Paul, the shortstop has played games at third base and in left field
Pro
The Twins rallied for five runs in the eighth inning and added another pair of runs in the ninth inning, turning that six-run deficit into one of their best wins of the season.
Pro
Pitcher Joe Ryan gave up one run in his 5 2/3 inning effort, and while he worked around traffic in all but two of his innings, he was able to limit the damage against him.

“I feel optimistic still,” he said. “I think it feels better than what it did before the shot, so all I can do is keep up what I’m doing in the training room and keep up what I’m doing with my rehab. Hopefully it kind of works itself out.”

ADVERTISEMENT

Kirilloff said he was told of another correctional procedure called an ulnar shortening osteotomy, which literally shortens the ulna to stop the bones from meeting. First, he said, doctors have to break the bone.

“The timeframe for that is pretty large for recovery,” he said. “I really hope it doesn’t get to that.”

Old pal, new skip

After a COVID outbreak among members of the coaching staff forced a postponement on Wednesday at Chicago, the Guardians played Friday without manager Terry Francona and placed one of their best hitters, Josh Naylor, on the COVID injured list.

The Guardians scrambled to put together a coaching staff from healthy big league coaches and some minor league staff. Pitching coach Carl Willis, who won a World Series with the Twins in 1991, is acting manager. Asked who would manage if he got ejected, Willis laughed.

“I’m not getting ejected,” he said. “I still can’t afford that.”

Second opinions

Falling somewhat under the radar during the Twins’ double-header on Thursday was the Twins’ move to put starter Chris Paddack on the 60-day injured list. The right-hander has been out with elbow inflammation since pitching just 2⅓ innings in a 4-3 victory over Oakland on May 8.

Paddack, 26, declined to be interviewed on Friday.

“We’re still working through some opinions on the medical side as far as what exactly the right course of action is at this point,” Baldelli said. “It could certainly lead to being a surgical set of circumstances and all that. But, we don’t know exactly what we’re dealing with yet. I think we have a good idea but I think we’re still gathering opinions.”

ADVERTISEMENT

Still recovering

The Twins were hoping right-hander Dylan Bundy could be activated from the COVID injury list and start on Saturday against the Guardians. That won’t happen, Baldelli said.

Instead, the team will call a pitcher up from St. Paul to make the start, likely against Cleveland righty Shane Bieber (1-2, 4.13 ERA).

Bundy was placed on the COVID list along with infielder Luis Arraez. Baldelli got it, too, and he and Arraez returned Thursday. It’s been tougher on Bunday, the manager said.

“Physically, he just needs some time to work his way back,” Baldelli said.

Briefly

Outfielder Kyle Garlick, on the 10-day injured list with a strain in his left calf, started what the Twins hope is a short rehab assignment at St. Paul on Friday. Baldelli said if all goes well, Garlick will likely join the team for a trip to Oakland and be in the lineup Monday against A’s left-hander Zach Logue. … Right-hander Cole Sands, who pitched two innings in a 5-0 loss to Houston on Thursday as the Twins’ 27th man, was placed on the Saints’ seven-day IL with a groin strain.

______________________________________________________

This story was written by one of our partner news agencies. Forum Communications Company uses content from agencies such as Reuters, Kaiser Health News, Tribune News Service and others to provide a wider range of news to our readers. Learn more about the news services FCC uses here.

Related Topics: MINNESOTA TWINSBASEBALL
What to read next
Pro
Aurora benefited from a Green Bay Glory own goal early in the second half and Green Bay earned an equalizing goal in the 89th minute for a 1-1 draw.
Pro
The 2015, 2017 and 2018 NBA champs earned the right to go for a another title in the best-of-seven NBA Finals, which will open in San Francisco on June 2.
Pro
Dantzler hopes his offseason work will get him back to being a regular starter. As a rookie in 2020, Dantzler started 10 of the 11 games he played but only started seven games in 2021
Pro
ST. PAUL — When Minnesota United scored an easy sixth-minute goal against Union Omaha on Wednesday, it looked like the top-flight MLS side would make quick work of the third-tier USL outfit in the U.S. Open Cup Round of 16 on Wednesday at Allianz Field.