Starting catcher Jason Castro was on the bench for a second straight game on Saturday as Chris Gimenez got the start. But there is no changing of the guard in the works.
Castro caught all 15 innings in the loss to Tampa Bay last Sunday and maintained a busy workload during the week. So Molitor decided it was time for Castro to get a break. He spoke to both catchers before the series about his plans.
"He'd be able to play (Saturday)," Molitor said, "but I think backing him off a couple days and trying to recharge him is a good thing."
With a scheduled off day on Monday, Castro should be good to go on Tuesday when the Twins open a three-game series in Seattle.
Castro also is batting .216 with four homers and 16 RBI, so he might need a break from facing pitchers as much as catching them.
After getting 1.1 innings from Alex Wimmers and two innings from Randy Rosario on Friday, Molitor heads into tonight's game with a rested bullpen for the first time since...well, we all know when.
"It's a lot better than it was the last handful of days," Molitor said. "More options, more rest. We have been able to recharge a few guys here extensively the last few days."
With an off day on Monday, the Twins are in pretty good shape with their bullpen, from a stamina standpoint.
Molitor on Friday asked for, and received, an autographed bat from Albert Pujols. Pujols even penned a message on the bat. Molitor said the bat is going on a wall in his home, joining a collection that includes bats signed by George, Robin, Ted and Harmon. You should be able to figure out the last names. Maybe not George. He was a contemporary, so don't go all the way back to Ruth.
And, players signing for other players has gone on for years. Phil Miller wrote about Hector Santiago's ridiculous collection earlier this year.
Brian Dozier, 2B
Robbie Grossman, DH
Joe Mauer, 1B
Miguel Sano, 3B
Max Kepler, RF
Jorge Polanco, SS
Chris Gimenez, C
Eddie Rosario, LF
Byron Buxton, CF
Ervin Santana, RHP
Andrelton Simmons, SS
Kole Calhoun, RF
Yunel Escobar, 3B
Luis Valbuena, 1B
Martin Maldonado, C
Cliff Pennington, 2B
Ben Revere, LF
Eric Young, Jr. CF
Matt Shoemaker, RHP