Morneau sits, will see specialist for wrist

The Twins first baseman might need a cortisone shot, but Ron Gardenhire hopes he will be back for Tuesday's game.

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Justin Morneau.

Photo: Mark Duncan, Associated Press

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Twins first baseman Justin Morneau missed Saturday's 8-1 victory over the Rangers and won't play in Sunday's series finale while his troublesome left wrist is examined.

Morneau, who has been playing with a sore wrist for about two weeks, will be examined by Twins hand specialist Dr. Tom Varecka and might require a cortisone shot.

"It makes no sense for me to stick him back in the lineup before Dr. Varecka sees him and makes sure we're on the right path," manager Ron Gardenhire said. "Take today and tomorrow and Monday's day off. By Tuesday, I think he'll regroup.

"This is a good time, whether he likes it or not. We know he likes to be in there and is trying to play through this thing, but the results haven't been very good."

Morneau also has been battling a pinched nerve in his neck that affects a shoulder, although he said the wrist is a bigger issue. He said earlier in the week that the wrist hurts whenever he uses it.

A new Mauer plan?

Gardenhire said spoke with Joe Mauer on Saturday, but he still wouldn't reveal when the catcher (bilateral leg weakness) is expected to play for the Twins.

Mauer worked out in Fort Myers, Fla., on Saturday. He will catch Sunday and Monday for Class A Fort Myers and either catch or be the designated hitter on Tuesday for the Miracle.

Reliever Joe Nathan (sore right elbow) will start workouts in Fort Myers on Wednesday. The plan is for him to throw live batting practice to Mauer. So, according to that plan, the earliest Mauer could re-join the Twins is Thursday for the series finale against the White Sox.

• Infielder Tsuyoshi Nishioka (broken left fibula) joined Class AAA Rochester on Saturday and is expected to play on Sunday at Toledo.

• Lefthander Glen Perkins (strained right oblique) was to start and pitch one inning for Rochester on Saturday and likely will pitch in relief Monday before re-joining the Twins.

Twins or Red Wings?

The Twins had only had four Opening Day starters in Saturday's lineup. Of the other five starters, four were in Rochester's Opening Day lineup.

How close to full health will the Twins get? Radio broadcaster Jack Morris looked at the lineup and said what probably is on the minds of Twins fans everywhere.

"[Will] we ever get our regular lineup back on the field together?" Morris said. "We're almost halfway through the season."

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