8/31/2013 7:26 P.M. ET
Pinto called up to take Morneau's roster spot
By Rhett Bollinger / MLB.com
ARLINGTON -- Catcher Josmil Pinto was originally scheduled to be a September callup when rosters expand on Sunday, but he was instead called up from Triple-A Rochester on Saturday to take the place of Justin Morneau, who was traded to the Pirates.
Outfielder Alex Presley, who was acquired in the Morneau trade, will officially join the Twins on Sunday, when teams can carry up to 40 players on their active roster.
Pinto, 24, had an impressive year between Double-A New Britain and Triple-A Rochester, hitting a combined .309/.400/.482 with 15 homers and 74 RBIs in 126 games.
He has yet to appear in a big league game, but it could come as soon as Sunday with right-hander Kevin Correia scheduled to take the mound at Rangers Ballpark.
"We liked him in Spring Training," Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said. "I watched him catch [Kyle] Gibson last night on video before our game started. He's doing fine, but he definitely has work to do. All I can do is put him behind there. He's going to have to catch and could be catching Correia tomorrow."
Twins get chance to say goodbye to Morneau
ARLINGTON -- Glen Perkins stepped into the elevator at the Twins' team hotel on Saturday, and looked up and saw manager Ron Gardenhire and casually asked him how he was doing.
Gardenhire simply said, "Not good," and broke the news to Perkins the Twins had just traded their long-time first baseman Justin Morneau to the Pirates.
It was the start of a somber day for the Twins as a result, as Morneau played 11 seasons in Minnesota before being traded for outfielder Alex Presley and a player to be named or cash on Saturday afternoon.
Perkins played with Morneau for eight of those years, and couldn't help but be surprised even though trade rumors had circled around Morneau over the last few months.
"I was kind of in shock that it actually happened," Perkins said. "You have an idea something might happen, and then it doesn't, so when it happens it doesn't really sink in right away. But that's how it goes, I guess."
But Morneau was able to say his goodbyes to his teammates and Gardenhire, as he rode the team bus to Rangers Ballpark to get his belongings before departing for Pittsburgh on a 4 p.m. CT flight.
Reliever Brian Duensing, who was Morneau's teammate for five years, was happy to get a chance to say goodbye but said it was tough hearing the news that Morneau was traded. He also said that he thought the chances of bringing back Morneau this offseason on a new contract aren't good.
"It's disappointing," Duensing said. "Morneau is one of those guys who taught me how to carry myself at this level and go about my business. He taught me how to be a good teammate and what it takes to win. So it's disappointing to see him go, but I'm excited for him to get a chance to make the playoffs."
But catcher Ryan Doumit, who played in Pittsburgh from 2005-11, said he feels like Morneau will be in a good situation with the Pirates, who are on bidding to make the playoffs for the first time since 1992.
"I'm excited for him," Doumit said. "Pittsburgh is a great sports town. They've waited a long time to be in the position they're in. It's a great team over there and a great group of guys. He's stepping into a pretty fun situation."
• Outfielder Oswaldo Arcia, who has been nursing a sore left wrist, took swings before Saturday's game against the Rangers and could return to action soon. He last played on Aug. 24, as he initially injured his wrist while diving for a ball against the White Sox in mid-August, but it worsened from there.
• With Morneau traded to the Pirates, first baseman Chris Colabello is expected to get more playing time in September, according to Gardenhire. He added that third baseman Trevor Plouffe and catcher Chris Herrmann could also see time at first base down the stretch.
• The Twins struck out 13 times on Friday night, marking the 50th time this year they have struck out 10 or more times in a game. It's a new club record, as the previous mark was 26 such games in 2011.