03/13/11 12:59 PM ET
Nathan endures first rocky outing of spring
By Kelly Thesier and Anthony Castrovince / MLB.com
2010 Spring Training - Minnesota Twins
News & Features
- Worth noting
- Working on slider, Pelfrey happy to enter year healthy
- De Vries' arm fine, slated to start next Saturday
- Morneau swings on practice field, ready for opener
- Ryan reflects on spring, eager for season to begin
Sights & Sounds
Spring Training Info
"Obviously it's not going to be 1-2-3, perfect innings every time you get out there, so this was kind of nice to get one of these out of the way," Nathan said. "Obviously, you don't go out there planning for this to happen, but I left some pitches up and they hit them. I threw some good pitches. It seemed like one of those innings where no matter what I threw up there, they were going to find a hole or find the sun, or place balls where we just can't get them."Nathan, who is a little over 11 months removed from Tommy John surgery, said that despite the results, he felt better than he had in any of his other outings this spring. And that's just what the Twins want to hear from the four-time All-Star. "He was up a bit and got some pitches over the middle," Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said. "But the bottom line is that the ball was coming out of his hand good and that's all we care about right now with him. "Runs are runs. You miss a couple plays and you end up giving runs up. That's just the way it is. But I'm just happy because he's healthy and he said he felt great."
Mauer catches second bullpen session
FORT MYERS, Fla. -- Joe Mauer caught another bullpen session on Sunday morning, one day after catching his first bullpen session of the spring.The catcher said that he was just a little sore after catching Nick Blackburn's bullpen session on Saturday, adding that it was "not just the knee" that was sore. Still, Mauer was pleased with how his legs and surgically-repaired left knee felt the day after he caught for the first time all spring. "I feel pretty good, about what I expected," Mauer said. Mauer could possibly catch another bullpen session on Monday. He hopes to see his first game action soon after Tuesday's off day, but he added that it will all be determined by how he is feeling. "The first thing I need to worry about is just getting my legs in game shape," Mauer said. "Obviously, I'd like to get a lot of at-bats but it's about getting my strength back and getting healthy for the season."
Cuddyer begins light jogging
FORT MYERS, Fla. -- Michael Cuddyer planned to do some light jogging on Sunday for the first time since having the wart on his left foot removed on March 1.It came a day after Cuddyer took batting practice on the field with his team for the first time. He also was on the field taking batting practice before Sunday's game against the Phillies. On Tuesday, it will be two weeks since Cuddyer had the wart removed. And while the hope was that his foot would be healed by then, it's likely he won't be back on the field by that point. Still, Cuddyer is hoping that it won't be much longer before he's playing in games. "It's significantly closer," Cuddyer said in regards to the hole healing up in his foot. Twins manager Ron Gardenhire told reporters on Saturday that he expects Cuddyer, as well as some of the other Twins players coming back from injury, to be ready for Opening Day. It was a sentiment that Cuddyer echoed on Sunday. "I don't have any doubts," Cuddyer said.
Span's mother returns to Steinbrenner Field
TAMPA, Fla. -- Denard Span's mother, Wanda Wilson, had no qualms about returning to George M. Steinbrenner Field on Sunday, despite getting struck in the chest by a foul ball off the bat of her son here one year ago.But Wilson had one understandable demand for her son when he submitted his request for friends and family tickets. "She said, 'Put me behind the net,'" Span said. She got her request and was in attendance to see her son lead off and play center field against the Yankees. Span, of course, also led off last March 31, and he fouled a 3-2 pitch into the stands to the left of the visitor's dugout in his first at-bat just as his mom was settling into her seat. The ball hit Wilson in the chest, and Span and paramedics rushed to the scene. But Wilson, who said she was simply "sore," declined to go to the hospital and remained at the game. Thankful that his mom wasn't seriously injured by the foul ball, Span, a Tampa native, said the incident further hammered home his belief that the nets behind the plate at ballparks should be extended down the lines. "That might be something we can at least talk about in the next collective bargaining agreement talks," Span said. "I'd like to bring that up." In the meantime, Span had a game to play. And his mom had a game to watch, from a much safer spot. Span said his mom had no worries about coming back here. "She's tougher than me," he said with a smile.
The Twins plan to make 14 cuts on Monday, which will mark the team's first cuts of the spring. Among the expected cuts is right-hander Kyle Gibson, the Twins top pitching prospect. Gibson, who retired all five batter he faced on Sunday, made a strong impression on the coaching staff in camp, but he's expected to start the season at Triple-A Rochester. The team likely wants him to pitch more innings down in Minor League camp...Justin Morneau went 0-for-2 with a strikeout while playing five innings at first base in his second official spring game. Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said that Morneau, who continues to feel great, will next play on Wednesday vs. the Mets.