MILWAUKEE – The Twins haven't announced whether they will move to a six-man rotation, but they are planning to activate Joe Ryan from the injured list as soon as Saturday.

Ryan, who was sidelined because of a left groin strain, permitted one hit and one run across four innings in his only Class AAA rehabilitation start. He struck out seven and walked two in 71 pitches.

The Twins have Pablo López scheduled to start Thursday's series opener against the Texas Rangers and Sonny Gray is slated to pitch Friday. The starters for Saturday and Sunday have yet to be announced, but manager Rocco Baldelli said Ryan will likely be one of them.

"I don't know the implications with the bullpen and all that stuff, but yeah, if we can afford to do that, I think that's great," Ryan said of the possibility of a six-man rotation. "Give everyone a little extra rest, especially trying to go deep here into the year. I think that totally makes sense."

Another option, aside from a six-man rotation, is piggybacking starters. The lefthanded Dallas Keuchel, who pitched 6⅓ perfect innings against the Pittsburgh Pirates on Sunday, could pair with another starter, and one of them pitches in relief.

In Ryan's last seven starts, he posted an 8.63 ERA and allowed 17 home runs in 32⅓ innings. His groin injury contributed to some of his struggles, but he worked with pitching development specialist Matt Daniels in St. Paul.

With Daniels watching bullpens, Ryan said he ironed things out in his delivery.

"That was a piece that I hadn't really thought of much is when you're compensating, you're moving a lot different," said Ryan, who traveled with the Twins to Milwaukee and threw a bullpen session Tuesday. "Just getting some of that rhythm back was important and we got that."If the Twins implement a six-man rotation, or a piggyback system, they can monitor innings for Bailey Ober and/or Kenta Maeda."

Bailey has just had fewer innings total compared to anyone else on our staff," Baldelli said. "We'll keep an eye on him. I don't see us making any dramatic moves with him. As long as he's going out there healthy, throwing the ball well, we'll keep him going. If there are more subtle ways that we can lighten the load on him, giving him a day or a shorter outing when it makes sense, we could do that."

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Ex-Twin Alex Cole dies

Alex Cole, who spent two seasons with the Twins, died earlier this month at age 58. His death was announced by the Guardians on Saturday. No other details were announced.

Cole made his major league debut with Cleveland in 1990 and signed with the Twins as a free agent in 1994.

In two seasons with the Twins, Cole batted .304 with 30 stolen bases in 133 games. Cole, playing left field, caught the final out in Scott Erickson's no-hitter against the Brewers on April 27, 1994, at the Metrodome. The Twins won 6-0.

Cole played with five teams over his seven major league seasons: Twins, Guardians, Rockies, Pirates and Red Sox.


* Carlos Correa played his 1,000th career game Tuesday, becoming the 71st active player to reach that milestone.

* The Twins promoted outfielder Walker Jenkins, their pick at No. 5 overall in last month's MLB draft, to Class A Fort Myers. Jenkins, 18, hit .333 with two homers and 12 RBI in 14 games at the rookie-level Florida Complex League, which had its regular season end Tuesday.

* Brewers rookie outfielder Sal Frelick played at Boston College with Baldelli's younger brother, Dante. "I followed his career pretty closely," Baldelli said. "He's done really well for himself. He was a really good college player and good-looking athlete." Frelick was scratched from Tuesday's lineup because of hamstring soreness.

* The Omaha Storm Chasers scored five runs in the second inning on Tuesday against the St. Paul Saints en route to a 14-4 rout in the opening game of a six-game series in Omaha, Neb. The Storm Chasers' big inning included two walks off starter Louie Varland, an error and a two-run homer from Bubba Thompson. Andrew Stevenson went 2-for-5 for the Saints, including his career-tying 16th home run.