The Twins reinstated All-Star third baseman Miguel Sano from the disabled list Friday. He has been out for the team's past 38 games because of a left shin stress reaction.
The Twins are four days away from an American League Wild Card playoff game.
Sano took batting practice before the game against Detroit and put on an impressive power display. He also did some less-than-full-speed baserunning, and said most of the pain in his leg is gone. He was not in the starting lineup.
"We've been working really hard. We got an opportunity now," said Sano, who added he would likely be the DH, not the third baseman.
"I'm ready. I've been working really hard ... I've got an opportunity to help my team. I got to try to come back now, help the team in the playoffs."
Sano, who has 28 home runs and 77 RBI in 111 games, has not faced live pitching since Aug. 19.
Said manager Paul Molitor: "I talked to Derek [Falvey] this morning about the possibility of activating him to the roster today. We kind of decided there really is no downside.He’s finally at a point where some of the apprehension about risk of playing has subsided.
"He hit quite a bit today, he ran a little bit today. The reality is, it’s encouraging to some degree, but we have to keep perspective. Aug. 19, it’s a long time not to face major league pitching. [There's a] possibility i’ll try to get him an at-bat tonight, somewhere in the game, see how he responds to all the work he did today.
"His BP looked really good today, considering he hasn’t hit a ton, the past few weeks in particular. We’ll just have to measure it day by day. Unfortunately we’ve been compressed into a small time window here here where we have to make a decision about moving forward after this weekend."
Sano recently visited specialists in New York and North Carolina to make sure the Twins were on the right path to recovery, but club officials indicated that the visits also were to ease any trepidation Sano had about aggravating the injury.
Photo: Aaron Lavinsky, Star Tribune