Scott Baker Injury: Twins Right-Hander Hits DL

Just as they're looking, against all odds, contenders in the American League Central, the Minnesota Twins have lost their best starting pitcher. From Kelsie Smith (via TwinCities.com):

After returning from the all-star break, Scott Baker thought he would be ready to start the first game of today's doubleheader against Cleveland, but as that start drew closer, the right-hander grew less certain his strained flexor muscle was ready and expressed his concern to the team Sunday.

That was all manager Ron Gardenhire needed to hear.

After Minnesota's 4-3 victory over Kansas City, the Twins placed Baker on the disabled list, retroactive to July 7, optioned infielder Matt Tolbert to Class AAA Rochester and called up left-handed pitchers Scott Diamond and Chuck James.

Baker hasn't pitched since the 5th, so if this injury's not significant he'll be back quite soon, perhaps missing just two starts thanks to the All-Star break.

For the moment, his spot's being assumed by Diamond, slated to start against the Indians in the nightcap of their split doubleheader. Last winter, the Twins grabbed Diamond from the Braves in the Rule 5 draft, and though he didn't make Minnesota's 25-man roster, instead of sending him back to Atlanta the Twins traded a prospect to the Braves and kept Diamond. The left-hander doesn't have great stuff, but he throws strikes and keeps the ball down; that is, he's exactly the sort of pitcher the Twins like.

His stay in the majors this time doesn't figure to last long, though.

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