Righthander Kohl Stewart, the No. 4 overall pick in the 2013 draft by the Twins and one of their top prospects, was placed on the seven-day disabled list at Class A Fort Myers because of right elbow inflammation.
Stewart is 0-2 with a 3.10 ERA in three starts this season. In his last outing on Tuesday, he gave up four earned runs on six hits and two walks while striking out two over 6⅓ innings to Palm Beach. Brad Steil, the Twins director of minor league operations, would not say if Stewart would be seen by a specialist or have a magnetic resonance imaging exam. But it’s safe to assume that the Twins wouldn’t cut any corners with one of their top starting prospects.
“We know he will miss his next start,” Steil said. “We don’t know how he will feel in six days when he is due to come off the DL.”
Stewart, 20, was 3-5 with a 2.59 ERA last season for Class A Cedar Rapids in his first full minor league season. But he had some shoulder problems in July that required several tests, then was removed from a Kernels game in August as a precaution when the shoulder bothered him again.
He reported to spring training this year with no apparent problems. Yet for the second year in a row, the 6-3 pitcher from Houston is injured.
Molitor returns to Safeco Field
This is Paul Molitor’s 15th season as a coach or a manager. He has spent 14 seasons in the Twins organization. The one year he wasn’t with the Twins was 2004, when he was hitting coach for the Mariners under manager Bob Melvin.
Molitor returns to Seattle as manager of the Twins, but he has memories of his one year in the Pacific Northwest.
“Lost 99 games,” Molitor said. “The one job I was ever fired from. My only attempt to teach hitting on a full-time basis.
“Didn’t do too well, obviously. Loved the facility and the city. There are positives, externally, but the actual job itself didn’t work out too well.”
The one positive: That was the year Ichiro Suzuki batted .372 with a record 262 hits.
“Just the routine and his work habits and the things he did,” Molitor said. “He was very motivated and it was a historic season. It was fun to watch that.”
Molitor and Suzuki struck up a nice friendship that year. But the Mariners were starting to age, led by 41-year-old Edgar Martinez and 35-year-old Bret Boone.
• Twins bullpen coach Eddie Guardado was a reliever for the Mariners from 2004 to ’06 after leaving the Twins as a free agent.
• Twins righthander Trevor May is from Longview, Wash., and will have many friends and family on hand for his start on Saturday.
• Seattle reliever Charlie Furbush and Twins reliever Tim Stauffer are the only two active major leaguers from Maine.