Gibson seeking second opinion

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Kyle Gibson will have his ailing right elbow examined on Monday in New York.

Photo: Carlos Gonzalez, DML - Star Tribune

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DETROIT - Twins pitching prospect Kyle Gibson will fly to New York on Monday to seek a second opinion on his right elbow.

Gibson, who was shut down after a July 22 appearance for Class AAA Rochester, will be examined by Dr. David Altchek, the same doctor who operated on Twins closer Joe Nathan's elbow in March 2010.

Twins doctors have diagnosed Gibson with a partially torn ulnar collateral ligament. Their plan was to have Gibson go through several weeks of rehabilitation, then try to throw during instructional league. If Gibson had problems then, he would have surgery.

But Gibson indicated last week that he might seek a second opinion, just in case. Many players seek more than one opinion, and the Twins historically have had no problems with that.

Gibson was 3-8 with a 4.81 ERA at Rochester in 18 starts, 0-5, 6.47 over his past eight outings,

If Gibson needs surgery, he will miss the entire 2012 season, a season in which he was expected to crack the starting rotation.

Cuddyer setback

Michael Cuddyer, before leaving Comerica Park on Tuesday, told manger Ron Gardenhire, "I'm in the lineup [Wednesday].'' He went through a full pregame workout and felt ready to go.

But the night didn't go well. Cuddyer arrived at the park Wednesday with his neck worse than it was Tuesday. So he wasn't available to play and will have an MRI on his neck in the Twin Cities on Thursday to make sure it's not something worse.

Cuddyer missed the entire road trip after injuring his neck while taking his final swing during early batting practice. The Twins were a couple of hours from being able to field a fully healthy lineup for the first time since April 7.

Of the starting position players, Cuddyer and Danny Valencia are the only ones to have avoided the disabled list. "And I'm still trying to avoid the DL," Cuddyer said.

And that's not all

Matt Tolbert can't swing a bat because of a sprained left wrist suffered Monday. He entered Wednesday's 6-5 victory as a pinch runner for Jim Thome. When Tolbert came up to bat with the bases loaded in the ninth, he dropped down a bunt.

Denard Span hasn't played since Saturday because lingering effects of the concussion he suffered in June. He also thinks some of the problems are related to medication he recently started taking. He went through a full pregame workout Wednesday.

And outfielder Jason Kubel left the team to deal with a family matter. Because of Kubel's absence and the injuries, the Twins recalled Luke Hughes from Class AAA Rochester after the game. The Twins will announce a corresponding move Thursday.

Milestones

• Before Thursday's game against the Yankees, the Twins will honor Jim Thome for becoming the eighth player to hit 600 home runs in his career.

• Before Friday's game, the Twins will honor Joe Nathan for becoming the Twins' all-time saves leader.

Etc.

• Infielder Alexi Casilla (right hamstring) is working out at Target Field, but the Twins will take their time with him.

• Righthander Scott Baker (elbow) has been working out at Target Field and is not scheduled to pick up a baseball until after the Twins returned.

• Infielder Tsuyoshi Nishioka sprained an ankle while turning a double play Tuesday but was in the starting lineup Wednesday.

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