Byron Buxton was removed from Class AAA Rochester's game on Saturday against Syracuse because of back spasms. Brad Steil, the Twins director of minor league operations, said Buxton is day-to-day and the club is not worried. ``He'll be fine,'' Steil said.
When he gets healthy, don't expect him to be called up soon.
There's clamoring on twitter and my e-mail for Buxton's promotion now that he's heated up. Over his last 13 games, Buxton is batting .353 with three doubles, three homers, five walks and 10 strikeouts for the Red Wings.
But let's not forget that the man was horrible in his debut season last year and he batted .156 with the Twins while striking out in 49 percent of his plate appearances this year. I don't blame the Twins for wanting him to sustain success before he's brought up. They want him to stop hitting the ball in the air so much, to drop more bunts, use his speed and put up numbers. Word is that he's hitting more line drives, which is encouraging.
``I think he’s off to a good start in terms of making some adjustments, but it’s hard to say how long this process will be,'' Steil said, the Twins director of minor league operations. ``He’s gone back to using a leg kick, so it will probably take some time to get that timing back. He’s also working on staying through the ball more (with his swing), with the goal being more consistent hard contact.
``As that improves, he will get on base more and his speed will be in play more. He has the ability to drive the ball to the gaps, so we’re not looking for him to just put the ball on the ground and run. With his speed, he can occasionally bunt for hits, so that will be one piece of his game.''
Twins manager Paul Molitor, who has been monitoring Buxton's play, said he told him to work on his bunting while he was in the minors. He's not sure if Buxton is doing that or not, but he is encouraged that Buxton is playing with confidence.
``I don't know how long (he will be there), or what the right time is yet,'' Molitor said. ``We really haven't had that discussion. I think it is good for him to be down there playing every day. I don't know how long it is going to take before we give him another shot up here, but he needs to keep doing what he's doing.''
I think people who are upset that Buxton is not here have to remember how hard it is to play this game, and a 13-game surge doesn't mean Buxton has everything figured out. Give him time to get his game back. If someone gets injured on the major league team and they need him, then all bets are off. But I'm not expecting Buxton to be promoted in the near future.