Young's scary crash into wall brings Twins' injury du jour

  • Article by: JOE CHRISTENSEN , Star Tribune
  • Updated: June 26, 2011 - 1:31 AM

Delmon Young went on the disabled list after he sprained his ankle and had to be taken off on a stretcher.

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MILWAUKEE — The Twins have suffered a shocking assortment of injuries this season, and Saturday might have brought the scariest one yet.

Delmon Young ran back, trying to catch a fly ball, and smashed his right foot into the left field wall at Miller Park before falling to the ground in obvious pain.

Young was carted off the field, and the injury was diagnosed as a sprained right ankle after X-rays taken at the ballpark showed no broken bones.

"Probably the best possible thing is a sprained ankle, because it looked a lot worse, so I guess we're lucky," Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said after his team's 11-1 loss to the Brewers, which stretched their losing streak to four games.

The Twins placed Young on the 15-day disabled list and recalled outfielder Rene Tosoni from Class AAA Rochester.

Young, 25, will have an MRI exam on Monday, when the Twins expect to have a better idea how much time he'll miss.

"Hopefully the MRI shows no ligament damage or anything," Young said. "It's not as bad as the sprain I had back in '03, before the draft, but it's the same foot, so hopefully that one doesn't cause any problems for this one."

Tosoni had been with the Twins until Friday night, when they sent him down to make room for Jim Thome to come off the DL. Players have to spend 10 days in the minors after being sent down, unless there's an injury. Surprise, surprise, the Twins had another one.

So four hours after landing in Rochester, N.Y., Tosoni learned he needed to get up early Sunday for a 6 a.m. flight to Milwaukee.

Young's injury came only one day after they learned that Justin Morneau will need surgery to relieve a pinched nerve in his neck, keeping him out at least six more weeks.

The Twins have used the DL 16 times for 13 players. Tsuyoshi Nishioka broke his left fibula on a play at second base on April 7. That injury didn't look as serious until the X-rays came back. Young also missed 19 games earlier in the year because of a strained oblique muscle.

"I don't know what it is this year, but it happens," Young said. "None of us want to get hurt. It's boring on the DL. It's boring to rehab. We're all looking forward to defending our Central Division championship, and it's really hard to do when everyone's watching the games right now."

Young batted .298 with 21 homers and a team-high 112 RBI last season. He has struggled this year, batting .256 with two homers and 20 RBI, but he had been heating up, batting .321 in June.

Gardenhire's concern was obvious as soon as Young hit the wall. Never mind that Yuniesky Betancourt was rounding the bases for an inside-the-park home run.

"I passed Betancourt rounding third," Gardenhire said. "I was out of the dugout, and I was just looking at Delmon, and it didn't look pretty. Once I got out there and saw the spike mark on that railing, I didn't like that too much, and he was in a lot of pain."

Young lost the ball in the lights and then retreated back toward the wall, only to have the ball bounce off his glove. He said his foot got caught on the bottom of the scoreboard and twisted all of his weight on the ankle.

"I couldn't feel my foot, and I saw spike marks on the scoreboard," he said.

Jason Kubel (sprained right foot) could return from the DL next week. For now, with Young, Morneau and Denard Span (concussion) also on the DL, the Twins likely will move forward with Ben Revere in center field, Michael Cuddyer in right, Luke Hughes at first base and either Jason Repko or Tosoni in left.

"We've got to hang on and do the best we can," Gardenhire said.

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