Injury-prone Harden gets shot with Twins

hide

Rich Harden.

Photo: Jeffery Washington, Ap

CameraStar Tribune photo galleries

Cameraview larger

The Twins' search for starting pitching has led them to a power pitcher on the comeback trail.

Righthander Rich Harden, a strikeout machine when he has been healthy, signed a minor league contract with the Twins with an invitation to spring training. Harden, 31, missed all of last season while recovering from January surgery to tighten his shoulder capsule.

To say that Harden has been hampered by injuries is like saying the Twins lost a few games the past two seasons. Harden has been on the disabled list 10 times in his career, five times with shoulder problems. After going 11-7 with a 3.99 ERA for Oakland in 2004 and showing plenty of promise, the British Columbia native has failed to pitch more than 148 innings in a season since.

Despite the trips to the DL, Harden is 59-38 with a 3.76 ERA in his career and has struck out 9.2 batters per nine innings.

The Twins were interested in signing Harden last offseason, but Harden paid a visit to noted surgeon Dr. James Andrews and decided to have shoulder surgery.

Since he signed a minor league deal, Harden can stay back in spring training when the team heads north or join a Twins affiliate until he is ready to contribute. That makes the acquisition a low-risk move with the potential for a nice payoff.

"The [Twins] doctors were very impressed with him," Twins assistant GM Rob Antony said. "He said his shoulder has been tightened and it's just a matter of how it responds when he gets to high gear."

Harden remained in Minnesota after visiting the Twins this week. Why? His wife is from Bemidji and they recently bought property there.

Diamond has surgery

Pitchers are starting to loosen up their arms and throw a ball around, with spring training two months away. When Scott Diamond began to throw, his elbow hurt.

A bone chip was discovered and was removed Tuesday, the Twins announced. Since Diamond lives in New York, the surgery was performed by Mets team physician Dr. David Altchek.

Diamond should be ready to go by spring training, but he has been ruled out of the upcoming World Baseball Classic for Canada.

Nonroster invitees

In addition to Harden, the Twins will invite the following nonroster players to spring training: Righthanders Bryan Augenstein, Nick Blackburn, Deolis Guerra, Alex Meyer, Lester Oliveros and Anthony Slama; outfielders Brandon Boggs and Clete Thomas; infielders Jeff Clement, Chris Colabello, Ray Olmedo and Mark Sobolewski; and catchers Kyle Knudson, Danny Lehmann and Dan Rohlfing.

Farewell, Jim

Twins director of minor leagues Jim Rantz, who has been with the organization for 52 years, worked his final day Friday, but the new retiree will help his replacement, Brad Steil, with the transition. Rantz pitched for the Gophers, earning a victory in the deciding game of the 1960 College World Series. He also roomed with the late Herb Brooks.

  • get related content delivered to your inbox

  • manage my email subscriptions

ADVERTISEMENT

New England 2/1/15 5:30 PM
Seattle
Portland 0 Postponed
Brooklyn 0
Sacramento 0 Postponed
New York 0
Philadelphia 74 FINAL
New Orleans 99
Minnesota 84 FINAL
Oklahoma City 92
Orlando 94 FINAL
Memphis 103
Boston 99 FINAL
Utah 90
Denver 98 FINAL
LA Clippers 102
Army 68 FINAL
American Univ 66
Wright State 64 FINAL
Detroit 53
Syracuse 83 FINAL
North Carolina 93
Cleveland State 56 FINAL
Oakland 59
Delaware State 54 FINAL
NC Central 55
High Point 63 FINAL
Presbyterian 54
Howard 45 FINAL
Bethune-Cookman 42
Coppin State 84 FINAL
NC A&T 71
Nicholls 51 FINAL
Northwestern St 80
Hampton 56 FINAL
SC State 65
Gardner-Webb 59 FINAL
Campbell 78
MD-Eastern Shore 72 FINAL
Florida A&M 65
Stephen F Austin 82 FINAL
Lamar 65
Central Arkansas 67 FINAL
New Orleans 87
Norfolk State 70 FINAL
Savannah State 54
TX A&M-CC 70 FINAL
SE Louisiana 61
Sam Houston St 80 FINAL
Abilene Christian 63
McNeese State 84 FINAL
Incarnate Word 86
Milwaukee 48 FINAL
Valparaiso 73
Alcorn State 66 FINAL
Alabama A&M 78
Southern U 59 FINAL
Alabama State 63
Prairie View 68 FINAL
Ark-Pine Bluff 105
Texas 86 FINAL
Iowa State 89
Texas Southern 85 FINAL
Miss Valley St 84
Long Island 85 FINAL
Bryant 88
Central Conn St 51 FINAL
St Francis-NY 49
Fairleigh Dickinson 0 Postponed
Sacred Heart 0
St Francis-PA 87 FINAL
Wagner 74
Delaware State 59 FINAL
NC Central 66
Howard 53 FINAL
Bethune-Cookman 61
Coppin State 49 FINAL
NC A&T 67
Hampton 88 FINAL
SC State 53
Norfolk State 54 FINAL
Savannah State 56
MD-Eastern Shore 54 FINAL
Florida A&M 64
Angelo State 55 FINAL
Abilene Christian 70
Samford 32 FINAL
(25) Chattanooga 49
Prairie View 83 FINAL
Ark-Pine Bluff 66
Alcorn State 58 FINAL
Alabama A&M 55
Southern U 53 FINAL
Alabama State 49
Texas Southern 63 FINAL
Miss Valley St 52
(12) Texas A&M 61 FINAL
(1) South Carolina 79
Robert Morris 68 FINAL
Mount St Marys 44
East Tenn St 72 FINAL
Mercer 70
Wofford 56 FINAL
Furman 58
Morehead St 64 FINAL
Tenn Tech 54
Illinois 57 FINAL
Michigan 70
Quinnipiac 0 Postponed
Manhattan 0
Saint Peters 0 Postponed
Rider 0
(18) Miss State 59 FINAL
Auburn 48
(15) Nebraska 72 FINAL
(20) Iowa 78
Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

question of the day

Poll: How optimistic are you about the 2015 Twins?

Weekly Question

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

 
Close