Trevor May’s back problems have been ongoing for a week now. Phil Hughes’ knee injury happened in an instant on Thursday night. Both landed on the disabled list on Friday.
May and Hughes have been placed on the disabled list, opening two holes on the Twins pitching staff that will be filled by Kyle Gibson, who returns from his own DL stint on Saturday, and rookie reliever J.T. Chargois.
Chargois, a second-round pick in the 2012 draft, has been sensational this season, striking out 34 batters in 24 innings at Class AA and AAA. He has posted a combined 1.12 ERA at Chattanooga and Rochester, and has posted 11 saves.
Chargois, who served as co-closer with Tyler Duffey at Rice University, underwent Tommy John elbow surgery and missed the 2013 and 2014 seasons, but his velocity — frequently timed at 98 mph — wasn’t lost in his recovery.
Gibson is returning from a strained pitching shoulder and lower back issues, and hasn’t pitched since April 25. He is 0-3 with a 6.15 ERA this season, and will start Saturday against the Red Sox.
May has pitched to only four batters in the past week, as the Twins have tried to help his back issues subside. But all three batters he faced on Thursday night against Miami collected hits, and the decision was made after the game to give him time to fully recover.
Hughes, demoted to the bullpen after a series of subpar starts this season, made his relief debut Thursday, but it didn’t go well. After allowing a run in his first inning, Hughes was struck on the left knee by a line drive from J.T. Realmuto. X-rays found no damage, but Hughes won’t be able to pitch for awhile.