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Twins infielder Jamey Carroll

Elaine Thompson , Associated Press

TEAM NOTES

Message pitch at Carroll is unexpected

  • Article by: LA VELLE E. NEAL III
  • Star Tribune
  • May 21, 2012 - 6:47 AM

MILWAUKEE - A pitch thrown behind Jamey Carroll? The Twins' mild-mannered veteran infielder? How does that happen?

"I have no idea," Carroll said Sunday, after the Twins lost 16-4 to Milwaukee. "You have to ask them over there. If they were angry about something, they can enjoy being angry. I really don't know. I wasn't prepared or expecting it."

Plate umpire Hunter Wendelstedt ejected Brewers righthander Tim Dillard when his first pitch of the ninth inning sailed behind Carroll. Milwaukee manager Ron Roenicke protested, to no avail.

"They said he's got too good of command to throw a ball behind the guy," Roenicke said. "[Wendelstedt] said, 'You guys have been hit three times in the game, and that's what I saw.' "

Trying to get an explanation, Carroll was told by Brewers catcher Jonathan Lucroy that it was for when Nyjer Morgan was hit by a Jeff Gray pitch in the seventh inning.

"I heard Lucroy say it was Nyjer Morgan," Carroll said. "Then Hunter made us shut up and that it's part of the game and get in the box and let's go. So I really can't give you a definite [answer] because we got our conversation cut off."

The Brewers play the Twins on June 15-17 at Target Field.

"We were just trying to get through innings," Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said. "We weren't trying to hit anybody. Obviously, they felt something. We had no reason to throw at Morgan. He hadn't done anything to us. We pretty much stunk up the field. We don't need to throw at anybody, but I think they thought so."

The man can throw

Twins catcher Drew Butera was summoned to the mound in the eighth inning to spare the bullpen any more overuse. He pitched a scoreless inning, issuing a walk but giving up no hits.

But his arm was impressive; he threw a few pitches over 90 miles per hour, including one that hit 94 on the stadium radar gun. He struck out former Twins outfielder Carlos Gomez on a changeup.

"They asked me if I ever pitched," Butera said. "I said in high school. They said, 'Could you go out there?' I'll do anything to help the team. I never want to be in that situation because our team is out [of it]. Let's hope I never have to do it again."

Extra rest for Pavano?

The Twins haven't named a starter for Thursday's game against the White Sox in Chicago and could opt for a spot starter.

It would be Carl Pavano's turn to pitch that day, but the Twins have discussed giving the veteran righthander an extra day of rest to help him work through shoulder soreness.

Anthony Swarzak and Brian Duensing appear to be the top candidates to start in Pavano's place, with Francisco Liriano remaining in the bullpen for now.

"We might find a Thursday starter," Gardenhire said. "It would be in this clubhouse."

Jason Marquis' situation could affect their decision.

Pavano, by the way, had an average fastball of 87.75 mph with a max of 89.3 in Saturday's game, which was a little better than in previous outings.

Doumit update

Ryan Doumit has been slowed by a tight right calf suffered Wednesday, an injury that limited his availability over the three games in Milwaukee. He was intentionally walked as a pinch hitter Saturday, then replaced by pinch runner Erik Komatsu.

Gardenhire knew he had to pick his spots to use Doumit, but he hopes the catcher, who is tied for the team lead with 24 RBI, will be available for more duty this week.

"I'll give him as much time as I can," Gardenhire said. "I can use him in this pinch-hitting role until we make sure that calf is good."

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