KANSAS CITY, MO – Mitch Garver exercised on an elliptical machine for about 10 minutes on Saturday afternoon, but there wasn’t much more planned for him the rest of the day. In fact, the Twins sent Garver back to the team hotel.
That’s what happens to a player who has a concussion — a diagnosis Garver has now received.
The Twins made the move after symptoms surfaced Friday and Saturday. Instead of being at the ballpark, where there are lights and noise that could trigger the symptoms, the Twins sent him back to the team hotel to rest.
“Redoing testing, I think we are labeling it in the concussion category,” Twins manager Paul Molitor said. “And with all concussions being unique of themselves, we’re going to have to see how he progresses.
Friday, “as he did some swings and some things, there was some lightheadedness and some headaches have persisted a little bit more than we thought originally. So we’re going to have to be cautious there.”
Garver said on Saturday that he’s been experiencing a slight headache recently. He did not sit on the bench during Friday’s game, either.
“We’re not really sure what’s going on,” he said. “At this point of the season, your body doesn’t recover as well as it did earlier. I think that is true for everybody. So we’re taking it slow.”
Each player reacts differently to blows to the head, and Twins fans have watched what Joe Mauer and Justin Morneau have gone through in recent years as they recovered from concussions.
Garver’s history also comes into play here. He was hit in the head with a bat in April as Baltimore’s Manny Machado followed through with his swing. Garver also acknowledged that he had concussions in 2014 and 2016 while in the minors.
With that in mind, the Twins will be careful with Garver’s recovery. The Twins have not officially placed Garver on the seven-day concussion disabled list, but they have sent the results of the SCAT5 test (Sport Concussion Assessment Tool) to the league office. Since it’s September, they aren’t sure if they have to place him on the concussion DL but will do so if the league requires it.
Moving the right way
In their ongoing quest to build a better baseball player, the Twins have hired a biomechanics expert.
Martijn Verhoeven, who was born outside Amsterdam, and who has a Ph.D. in motor behavior from the University of Georgia, is in his first week on the job and is on the current road trip. His official title is motion performance coach.
Verhoeven will study the mechanics of Twins hitters and pitchers and look for ways to make them more efficient. While seeking optimal performance from their players, the Twins also hope to detect warning signs in their movements that could help them avoid injuries down the road.
Verhoeven recently was a consultant with the Dutch soccer team AZ Alkmaar.
• Joe Mauer’s leadoff double on Saturday gave him 124 hits in his career at Kauffman Stadium. That ties him for fourth-most by a visiting player. Who’s he tied with? His boss, Paul Molitor. And Torii Hunter is third with 126 hits. Victor Martinez leads with 139 hits.
• Third baseman Miguel Sano took batting and fielding practice before the game as he continues to work his way back from lower left leg soreness suffered when he slid into second base on Sept. 4 during a game in Houston. There is still no timetable for his return.
• The Twins will use an opener Monday and Wednesday in Detroit, with righthander Jake Odorizzi starting on Tuesday. Righthander Kohl Stewart will follow the opener on Monday.