CLEVELAND -- For the second time in two years, the Twins are facing a potential grievance from the players' union over their handling of a starting pitcher.
Last year, the union examined the Twins' handling of Francisco Liriano to see if the team intentionally kept him at Class AAA Rochester to minimize his big league service time. In the end, Liriano's grievance never was filed.
Now, Glen Perkins is considering his own grievance, people familiar with the situation said Saturday.
Perkins has been troubled by shoulder tendinitis and last pitched in Class A. If he is shut down for the season rather than promoted to the majors, it could cost him his chance to qualify for salary arbitration. Most players need three years of big league service time to become arbitration-eligible, but Perkins was on pace to qualify as a "Super-2," a special exception made for players who fall days short of the three-year mark.
The Twins have been frustrated with Perkins over the timing of various medical requests this season, and tensions mounted last week.
Perkins, 26, who had been on the disabled list since Aug. 9 for left shoulder tendinitis, pitched a scoreless inning for Class A Fort Myers and reported no pain.
The Twins activated Perkins from the DL and optioned him to Class AAA Rochester, at which point Perkins asked to see another arm specialist.
Perkins visited Dr. Timothy Kremcheck on Wednesday in Cincinnati and had dye injected into his left shoulder for an enhanced MRI exam. Though Perkins was cleared to pitch, he has to wait a few more days for the dye to clear and likely won't pitch for Rochester.
"You can't do anything unless a player feels comfortable," Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said. "We tried to send him to Rochester to pitch, but he didn't feel comfortable enough to do that, obviously, because he went and got another opinion. So I don't know where you go from there, other than have the winter to get ready for spring training."
Perkins is 6-7 with a 5.89 ERA this season, and since July 1, his ERA is 8.59.
Twins General Manager Bill Smith declined to comment on a potential grievance, as did Perkins, and his agent, John Courtright.Etc.
• Smith confirmed that the Twins will promote Justin Huber from Rochester in time for Tuesday's game in Toronto. Huber is batting .273 with 22 home runs and 76 RBI and will give the Twins another righthanded bat off the bench.
• Asked if the Twins plan to promote Anthony Swarzak from Rochester, Gardenhire said Armando Gabino would be better suited to pitch out of the bullpen. Smith and Gardenhire intend to finalize the plans this weekend.
• Liriano, who is on the DL because of left arm fatigue, said his arm feels better than it has all season. He has another throwing session planned today, followed by a one- or two-inning simulated game Tuesday. If all goes well, he could be activated from the DL and placed in the bullpen on Thursday, Gardenhire said.
• Joe Crede continues to show progress from his back injury and remains on track to face Liriano at the plate in Tuesday's simulated game.
• Gardenhire gave Jose Morales a start at catcher, with Joe Mauer in at designated hitter.