TORONTO -- With Justin Morneau, Josh Willingham and Ryan Doumit all battling injuries, the Twins don't have many options on their bench for the final two games of the season.
Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said the only healthy players on his bench for Tuesday's game are catcher Drew Butera, and infielders Jamey Carroll and Pedro Florimon. Darin Mastroianni is available to pinch-run, but can't swing a bat due to an injury to his middle finger on his left hand.
"It's just the way it is this time of year," Gardenhire said. "Morneau could probably go out there and Doumit could do the same thing, but we're going to try to stay away from those guys at all costs."
But on a positive note, shortstop Eduardo Escobar made his first start since being hit on the left elbow by a pitch on Friday.
Thumb injury could cut Doumit's season short
TORONTO -- Ryan Doumit was held out of the lineup on Tuesday with an injured thumb and is also expected to be held out of the season finale on Wednesday.
Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said there's a chance Doumit could pinch-hit in case of emergency, but that his thumb has been bothering him for about a week after jamming it swinging.
"He thinks he could probably hit right-handed in a pinch, but he can't catch," Gardenhire said. "His thumb is better than it was yesterday. It was really ugly."
If Doumit doesn't see any action against the Blue Jays, he'll finish the year with a .275 batting average with a career-high 18 homers and 75 RBIs in 134 games.
Diamond excited to start in native Ontario
TORONTO -- Left-hander Scott Diamond has already reached the 200-innings plateau this season, including his stint at Triple-A Rochester, but insisted on starting the club's season finale on Wednesday in his native country.
Diamond had a 2.60 ERA in 34 2/3 innings in Triple-A before posting a 3.54 ERA in 168 innings with the Twins to give him 202 2/3 innings on the season entering Wednesday's start.
But Diamond wanted to make his final start of the year, as the Guelph, Ontario, native has never pitched in Toronto as a big leaguer.
"We've talked about how this might be enough, but he really wants to pitch," Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said. "It's a big start for him. I think, mentally, he really wants this desperately. He thinks it's really important to make this start in Canada, where he's from."
Diamond said he expects to have plenty of family members to watch his start, and didn't want to skip it, despite his jump in innings pitched, as the lefty threw 162 innings last year.
"It's going to be pretty exciting," Diamond said. "I've never been able to pitch there. I'm definitely going to have some friends and family there, so it's going to be kind of a homecoming. I'm pretty excited about it."