8/29/2013 10:49 A.M. ET
Willingham claimed on waivers by Orioles
By Rhett Bollinger and Kelly Erickson / MLB.com
MINNEAPOLIS -- Twins left fielder Josh Willingham was claimed on waivers by the Orioles late Wednesday night, and the two clubs are trying to work out a deal, a source confirmed.
Twins general manager Terry Ryan would not comment on Willingham, given the confidentiality of the waiver process.
Willingham was placed on waivers Monday, and Minnesota has until noon ET on Friday to work out a deal with Baltimore or pull him back off waivers. If the Twins pull Willingham off waivers, they can't trade him this season.
The Twins could also let the O's take Willingham and the rest of his contract, but that scenario is not likely, as Minnesota would want something in return. The 34-year-old is due roughly $1.25 million the rest of this year and $7 million next year.
A trade could make sense for both teams, as the Orioles are on the lookout for a right-handed power bat and remain in the thick of the American League Wild Card race. The Twins are on the lookout for pitching, but they would most likely have to eat some of Willingham's salary to get a good return.
After winning an AL Silver Slugger Award last year, when he hit .260/.366/.524 with 35 homers and 110 RBIs in a career-high 145 games, Willingham has battled through a knee injury and has mostly struggled this season. He has hit .212/.343/.386 with 12 homers and 45 RBIs in 89 games, and he missed 33 games after having arthroscopic knee surgery in early July.
The Minneapolis Star Tribune was the first to report Willingham was claimed on waivers by an unknown team Wednesday, with the Baltimore Sun naming the O's as the club.
Mauer improving each day after concussion
MINNEAPOLIS -- Joe Mauer continues to feel better after sustaining a concussion last week.
Mauer went on the disabled list Aug. 20 after he was a late scratch before the Twins played Detroit. The catcher is feeling better each day and is expected to feel well enough to meet with the media Thursday, Twins general manager Terry Ryan said.
Ryan also said Mauer would not travel to Arlington when the Twins take on the Rangers this weekend.
"He felt better today, so that helps the cause," Ryan said. "He was better today than he was yesterday. And he was better yesterday than he was the day before."
Mauer was at Target Field on Wednesday and was doing some light activity in the weight room.
"He was doing some exercises," Ryan said. "He's moving around in there. He's doing some stretches and stuff -- at least he's active and so forth, feeling a little better."
Teammate and good friend Justin Morneau shared some advice with Mauer after recovering from a concussion of his own in 2010.
"The only thing I told him is rest is the most important thing," Morneau said. "If you're not feeling good and you think you need to go lie down, then go do that. That's going to help you get better quicker. The more you try and fight through it like you would a sore hamstring or a sore elbow or something -- some things you can play with -- this isn't one of those things you play with, because the longer you put it off or the longer you try and wish it's not there, the longer its going to take to heal."
Morneau sustained his concussion July 7, 2010, when sliding into second base, and he missed the remainder of the season and the playoffs as he recovered. The first baseman noted that, based on his experience, everyone experiences concussion symptoms differently and that there was no way to put a timetable on the recovery process.
"The things that make it worse or make it better are different for everybody," Morneau said. "It's one of those things it's so hard to figure out. It's a tough thing to go through. And, I've said this before, I wouldn't wish it on my worst enemy. It's one of those things, the unknown is what makes it so frustrating. Hopefully it's a short process for him."
• The Twins released Minor League relievers Tim Wood and Luis Perdomo on Wednesday, according to general manager Terry Ryan.
Wood, 30, had season-ending shoulder surgery Aug. 22 and never pitched with the Twins, as he was bothered by shoulder injuries throughout the season. But Wood, who was on the 60-day disabled list, rehabbed at both Class A Advanced Fort Myers and Triple-A Rochester and combined to post an 8.68 ERA in nine games.
Perdomo, 29, posted a 5.95 ERA with 59 strikeouts and 43 walks in 65 innings at Triple-A Rochester. He saw action with the Twins last year, appearing in 15 games and posting a 3.18 ERA. The Twins released Perdomo to make room for right-hander Cole De Vries on Rochester's roster.
• First baseman Chris Colabello was named the International League's Most Valuable Player and Rookie of the Year. Colabello, 29, hit .352/.427/.639 with 24 homers, 25 doubles and 76 RBIs in 89 games with Triple-A Rochester this year.
• Ryan said the Twins would receive cash instead of a player from the Royals in the trade that sent Jamey Carroll to Kansas City on Aug. 11. He said he expected the trade to be officially completed soon.
Rhett Bollinger is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Bollinger Beat, and follow him on Twitter @RhettBollinger. Kelly Erickson is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.