Hector Santiago, whose two starts upon returning from the disabled list were a mess of weather, miscommunication and baserunners, has been returned to the disabled list with “upper thoracic back pain and discomfort,” the Twins announced Wednesday.
The lefthander, who has lost seven straight decisions since a strong 4-1, 2.76 ERA start to the season, will be replaced for now by righthanded reliever Alan Busenitz, who was optioned to Class AAA Rochester last Friday.
The move leaves the Twins with only four starting pitchers again, with a replacement needed for Santiago’s next start, scheduled for Friday. Santiago is 4-8 with a 5.63 ERA this season. He was on the disabled list in June with a shoulder strain, and his return was spoiled by a long rain delay in Boston after only two innings. He pitched again Sunday in Kansas City, but was removed after throwing just 58 pitches because his fastball velocity never reached 90 mph.
Busenitz, acquired with Santiago from the Angels last August, has a 2.08 ERA in six appearances totaling 8 2/3 innings with the Twins.