Righthander Anthony Swarzak threw to live hitters for the first time in camp Wednesday as he rounds into form after recovering from cracked ribs. But he likely will open the season on the disabled list.
Swarzak threw all his pitches during the 10-minute session and was pleased with the results.
“It felt good,’’ he said. “I was throwing everything. I still have a little tweaking to do here and there. But it felt good.’’
The Twins could use a long reliever, a role Swarzak filled well last season. But he was injured during TwinsFest while horsing around with a teammate, and has been playing catch-up ever since.
He’s expected to face live hitters again Friday but still will need a few more sessions to get his arm ready before he can appear in a game.
“We have to get his arm strength built up before he can do anything for us,’’ Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said. “That is going to take a little while.’’
Deduno delivers at WBC
Righthander Samuel Deduno is on his way back to camp after helping the Dominican Republic win the World Baseball Classic. Deduno, in three starts, posted a 0.69 ERA with five walks and 17 strikeouts in 13 innings.
He will return with a shot to win a spot in the Twins’ rotation.
“We’re just going to have to figure it out,’’ Gardenhire said. “I’m going to have to sit down with [pitching coach Rick Anderson] Andy and see what he writes out.
“There’s no doubt. I want Sammy to be in there to get a start and go from there. We just have to figure out the days now.’’
Deduno should be able to make two starts for the Twins before camp ends.
Morneau hits the big screen
First baseman Justin Morneau and his wife, Krista, were in attendance Tuesday during an advanced screening of the movie “42,’’ which traces the life and struggles of the late Jackie Robinson as he broke baseball’s color barrier. The Morneaus were enjoying the movie when they received a nice surprise near the end.
The movie showed how Major League Baseball celebrates Jackie Robinson Day each year by having players and coaches wear his number, and showed footage of some players wearing No. 42 in games. The group included Morneau as he ran out onto Target Field.
“I had no idea that was going to happen,’’ Morneau said. “I was like, ‘Hey, that’s me!’ That was cool.’’
The Twins head to Tampa to face the Yankees. Liam Hendriks will face David Phelps. First pitch is at 6:05 p.m.
LA VELLE E. NEAL III