La Velle E. Neal III has covered baseball for the Star Tribune since 1998 (the post-Knoblauch era). Born and raised in Chicago, he grew up following the White Sox and hating the Cubs. He attended both the University of Illinois and Illinois-Chicago and began his baseball writing career at the Kansas City Star. He can be heard occasionally on KFAN radio, lending his great baseball mind to Paul Allen and other hosts. Mark Rosen borrows him occasionally for WCCO-TV.

Twins postgame notes: Sano, Correia, Worley, Deibinson

Posted by: La Velle E. Neal III Updated: March 12, 2014 - 5:36 PM


Third base prospect Miguel Sano is resting after undergoing Tommy John elbow surgery this afternoon in New York - but there's one interesting detail.

According to a source, Sano completely tore the ulnar collateral ligament in his right elbow when he attempted to throw out Kurt Suzuki during an intrasquad game on Feb. 27. It doesn't change his rehabilitation schedule - he has 13 months to rehab before the 2015 season, and Tommy John recoveries for position players are different than pitchers.

But it's unfortunate after the Twins recommended that he try rehab back in October of 2013 - which was also the recommendation of noted specialist Dr. James Andrews when a second opinion was sought. At the time, the ligament was only partially torn. Sano rehabbed throughout the offseason and passed all the checkups before being cleared open camp with the other players.

Sano will return to Fort Myers late Friday afternoon, and he's expected to begin rehab shortly thereafter.

As for the game...

Righthander Kevin Correia gave up four runs over three innings, including a two-run home run to Pedro Alvarez, but wasn't upset with his outing. That's life for a guy who doesn't have to worry about winning a job in camp.

Correia was chatting up Pedro Alvarez before Wednesday's Twins-Pirates game, the two being former teammates from Correia's time there.

``I talked to him before the game,'' Correia said. ``The wind was blowing out to right pretty good. I'm like, `hmmm, you gonna try to hit one today?' He was like, `No way.'  Sure enough, he got one.''

Alvarez's two run blast came in third inning and was one of seven hits off of the Twins' righthander. Correia gave up four earned runs over three innings with no walks and one strikeout. The runs were the first off Correia this spring. He pitched two innings scoreless in an intrasquad game on Feb. 27, three scoreless on Feb. 3 against Toronto and three scoreless in a B game last Friday against Pittsburgh.

Righthander Vance Worley gave up a two-run home run to Travis Ishikawa that hit off the batter's eye in center, but the Twins weren't too concerned either.

Worley picked up Jason Bartlett by pitching out of a little mess in the fifth when Michael Martinez bunted for a hit and Jason Bartlett made an error on a sure double play ball to put two on with no outs. Worley got Alvarez to ground into a double play on the next batter. The homer to Ishikawa was off a poor pitch, but Twins manager Ron Gardenhire spoke highly of Worley after the game.

``There's competition here. He's got to get people out,'' Gardy said. ``But this is the best we've seen the ball come out of his hand. It actually came out with an angle, some nice breaking balls. His velocity jumped up there to 92-93 a couple times. That's the best we've seen it come out of his hand.''

Gardy called it a step in the right direction.

Worley entered the game in the fifth and pitched 32/3. Out of options, Worley might make the team as a reliever.

``If it comes to that, I'll have to do that,'' he said. ``Whatever keeps me in the big leagues, I will make the adjustment.''

Third baseman Deibinson Romero doubled in his only at-bat and is batting .429 in camp. ``He always seems to come up and get the barrel to the ball,'' Gardenhire said. Romero is expected to open the season at Rochester but looms as the replacement third baseman if there's an injury on the major league level.

Gardy said the scouting report on Romero is that he has limited range but catches the balls that he gets to. ``So far that is what we have seen. He's caught the ball well and he's moved around pretty good.''

Oswaldo Arcia returned to the lineup for the first time since March 4 and struck out all three times, But he did battle in a couple of those plate appearances, fouling a few pitches off.

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