CLEVELAND – Darin Mastroianni is fast, but his leg is healing slowly. And the Twins outfielder’s latest setback could delay his return until the second half of May.
A CT scan on his left ankle Wednesday revealed that the stress reaction that landed him on the disabled list remains an issue, and the team’s doctors have advised him to keep wearing a walking boot for another week.
“I don’t think it’s healed as much as they hoped,” Twins assistant GM Rob Antony said.
The boot also serves as a deterrent to keep the overeager Mastroianni from constantly pushing himself. “He’s the type of guy who would try to do stuff,” Antony said. “I know he’s been walking around with a bat, starting to get a little stir-crazy.”
Even when he discards the boot, he will require probably another week to get ready to play again, Antony said. And since Mastroianni has been out since April 15, “there’s probably a pretty good chance he’ll have to go out and get some at-bats to get in game-playing condition,” Antony said.
That means a rehabilitation assignment in the minor leagues. It also means Oswaldo Arcia’s time in the majors has been extended, because Antony and manager Ron Gardenhire don’t sound inclined to tinker with the roster in his absence.
“We’ve got a couple of guys in the minor leagues. [Joe] Benson is not where we want him to be offensively yet. Clete Thomas is down there playing the living fire out of it, but he’s got things to work on; that’s why we sent him down there,” Gardenhire said. Mastroianni might be hurt and Aaron Hicks is not hitting yet, he said, but “we’re trying to ride this out.”
“We had a saying in Southern California,” Vance Worley said Friday. “If you want to get to the big leagues, go to Long Beach State. If you want to win a [College] World Series, go to Fullerton.”
That first part is true, as Worley was reminded when the Twins arrived here. His old Long Beach State roommate Bryan Shaw has been a surprise standout in the Indians bullpen this season, and Worley hopes to visit with him while the Twins are here.
“But there are a lot of us” in the major leagues these days, Worley said. “I see guys in a lot of cities.”
In fact, there are 13 current big leaguers who played for the 49ers, and Worley said eight players were drafted from the team his junior year, including Shaw in the second round and himself in the third.
“It’s crazy. But that was a great team, a great group of guys,” Worley said.
• Tim Wood’s rehab assignment at Class AAA Rochester ends May 15, so the Twins still have nearly two more weeks to evaluate the righthander as he returns from a groin injury. The Twins either have to restore him to the big-league roster or risk losing him via waivers. Trouble is, the Twins bullpen has been pitching exceptionally well lately, and Wood has not. In 6⅔ innings, he has given up five earned runs.
• Lefthander Rafael Perez has reported to Rochester and is ready to pitch again after offseason shoulder surgery.
• Deibinson Romero, held up for three months by visa problems, has arrived in Fort Myers, Fla., and will remain in extended spring training until the Twins determine the Dominican infielder is ready to start a minor league season, most likely at Rochester.
• The April 19 game vs. the White Sox in Chicago that was postponed by cold will be made up at 1:10 p.m. Aug. 9 as part of a split doubleheader. Sounds like neither team was eager to sacrifice an off day to make it up, especially since both teams have other makeup games to reschedule.