MINNEAPOLIS – The twins’ field injuries had long since been out of control. And somehow, Thursday seemed to be getting worse even before the twins got some encouraging news.
Alex Kirilloff, prospectus no. 2 of Minnesota for MLB Pipeline, came out in the second inning of the Twins’ 7-5 walk-off win against the Yankees with a low-grade left ankle sprain, but appears to have avoided serious injury.
“I think he’ll be fine,” said Twins manager Rocco Baldelli. “Will it need a day or two? I think it is possible. … We will continue to monitor it. We will treat it and consider it a kind of daily problem.”
Kirilloff was slow to get up after falling on the right outside while attempting to play Gio Urshela’s triple from the block in the first inning. He retreated to the warning track in pursuit of the ball, before turning to play the carom. The ball bounced off the ground a lot and Kirilloff fell to the ground as he turned to chase it.
Kirilloff stayed in the game and scored at the bottom of the first, but was relieved before the Yankees made it to the pot at the top of the second.
It’s a good thing Byron Buxton will soon be back from his rehab assignment with Triple-A St. Paul, barring any setbacks, because the twins’ depth of outfield is almost completely exhausted.
Rob Refsnyder strained his left hamstring and Kyle Garlick suffered a sports hernia on Tuesday, leaving only two healthy wides on the Twins’ active roster – plus winger Nick Gordon, who entered Wednesday’s game in the middle of the pitch. . Gordon played center in the ninth inning of Wednesday’s defeat, which he noted was the first time he played on the outfield since he was 12.
The relatively encouraging news regarding Kirilloff’s condition is a fortunate development, considering that Buxton (hip strain), Max Kepler (left hamstring strain), Luis Arraez (right shoulder strain) and Jake Cave (stress reaction in the lower back) are currently sidelined besides Refsnyder and Garlick.
Buxton’s return is also expected soon after hitting two home runs and registering an outfield assist in his second rehab game for Triple-A St. Paul on Thursday. Arraez is expected to begin a rehabilitation assignment in the next few days after taking batting practice on the field for the first time on Wednesday.
Kirilloff was hitting .261 with four homers and 18 RBI in his first MLB season, having previously lost 16 games in May with a sprained right wrist.