MINNEAPOLIS -- Joe Mauer can now add right field to his list of positions he's played in his big league career.
Mauer, who also made his debut at first base earlier this year, made his first-ever start in right field on Thursday against the Yankees.
Mauer recorded his first putout on Brett Gardner's sacrifice fly in the second, and his second putout came one batter later, as Derek Jeter flew out to right to end the frame.
Mauer recorded one more putout on Gardner in the fourth for his final action in the field in the series opener.
Mauer was forced to play in the outfield for the first time in his professional career, as the club has been hit by a recent rash of injuries, including Michael Cuddyer (neck herniation), Matt Tolbert (sprained left wrist) and Denard Span (migraines). Outfielder Jason Kubel is also out of action, as he's attending to a family matter in San Diego, and isn't expected to return until Friday.
Mauer said before the game that he never even played outfield in high school, but remembers playing outfield in amateur town ball games in Minnesota.
"I can probably count on one hand how many times I've played in the outfield, ever," Mauer said. "It's been an interesting year. Hopefully, it's just today and we can get some guys in here, and it's just a one-time deal."
Mauer, who used Kubel's glove while taking fly balls during batting practice, said he didn't find out he'd be playing right field until 3 p.m. CT and that Justin Morneau was the other alternative.
"He smiled, and asked me if I was serious, and I said, 'Absolutely, I'm serious,'" Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said prior to the series opener. "So he told me, 'Fine,' and he took some balls out there in early BP. He said he'd do whatever we needed him to do."
Gardenhire said he wasn't worried about Mauer in the outfield because of his athleticism and strong arm. But Mauer said he expected a learning curve playing a new position on such short notice.
"I'm just working on catching the ball," Mauer said. "Once I get the ball I don't think I'll have a problem. I don't think I'll have a problem throwing. It's just getting the angles, the wind, and the way the ball comes off the bat."
Span placed on DL, Hughes recalled
MINNEAPOLIS -- The Twins placed center fielder Denard Span on the 15-day disabled list, retroactive to Aug. 14, with migraine symptoms before Thursday's game against the Yankees. Infielder Luke Hughes was recalled from Triple-A Rochester to take his place on the active roster.
But Hughes missed his flight to the Twin Cities, as he went to the wrong gate, and didn't arrive at Minneapolis St. Paul International Airport until shortly before game time, further depleting the Twins' bench.
"He was at Gate A2, when he was supposed to be at Gate B2," said Twins manager Ron Gardenhire, who couldn't help but be frustrated. "The mistakes people make. He really was at the wrong gate, and missed his flight."
Span, meanwhile, returned to action on Aug. 2 after missing 48 games with a concussion suffered in a home-plate collision with Royals catcher Brayan Pena on June 3.
But he struggled upon his return, hitting just .057 in nine games, as he's still been dealing with migraines related to his concussion and his bout with Vestibular Neuritis -- an inner-ear condition that causes dizziness and vertigo -- that forced him to miss two weeks in 2009.
"This is something very similar to episodes he's been having the last few years dating back to '09," Twins trainer Rick McWane said. "These are not concussion symptoms. The concussion stirred up a previous existing condition, which spurs migraines that don't cause headaches, but dizziness and vertigo."
Span, who went off his new medication earlier this week because of negative side effects, said he wants to return this season, but has to be smart about getting over his symptoms.
"I get foggy and dizzy at times, and feel fatigued," Span said. "It's not easy for me to get going, even when I wake up in the morning. It's just a combination of things. I don't feel as bad as I did a few months ago, so I don't think it's all from the concussion, because it's migraines that have lingered."
MRI reveals herniation in Cuddyer's neck
MINNEAPOLIS -- Michael Cuddyer, who has been out with a strained neck suffered in batting practice on Friday, underwent an MRI on Thursday and had an epidural injection in his neck after a herniation was found, according to Twins trainer Rick McWane.
"It showed a small herniation, which is similar to what he had five years ago, so it's nothing new," McWane said. "He had an epidural injection, so we'll see how he feels in a day or two."
Cuddyer, who last played on Aug. 10 against the Red Sox, could still be placed on the disabled list if his neck doesn't improve.
His injury gives the Twins a depleted bench, as only Matt Tolbert is available, and he's been dealing with a sprained left wrist suffered on Tuesday in Detroit.
Tolbert took some swings on Thursday, but is not expected to hit unless it's an emergency situation, according to Twins manager Ron Gardenhire.
Season tickets in 2012 will remain same price
MINNEAPOLIS -- The Twins announced Thursday that season ticket prices for the 2012 season at Target Field will remain unchanged from the 2011 season. The Twins are capping season ticket sales at 25,000 season ticket holders, a record number for the franchise.
"We are tremendously thankful for the loyalty and support of our season-ticket holders and are committed to ensuring Twins season tickets remain a great value for our fan base," said Twins president Dave St. Peter. "Even in these challenging economic times, Twins baseball and the Target Field experience will continue to be a part of Minnesota's summertime traditions for the 2012 season and far beyond."
The club said single-game and group ticket prices will be announced at a later date.