The Twins introduced Tuesday that they’ve reinstated first baseman Miguel Sano from the 60-day injured listing. Left-hander Danny Coulombe was moved from the 10-day IL to the 60-day IL to be able to open a spot on the 40-man roster, whereas outfielder Gilberto Celestino was optioned to Triple-A St. Paul to open a spot on the lively roster.
Sano, 29, obtained out to the worst begin of his profession with the Twins earlier this yr when he started the season with a calamitous .093/.231/.148 batting line by means of 17 video games and 65 plate appearances. That dismal begin got here despite a modest enchancment in his nonetheless sky-high strikeout fee (32.3%, down from 34.4% in 2021) and an enormous 52.9% hard-hit fee. Sano hit only one house run and didn’t have a multi-hit sport on the season previous to injuring his knee throughout a walk-off celebration. He finally underwent surgical procedure to restore a torn meniscus and missed all of Might and June along with most of July.
As a result of he’s within the ultimate season of a three-year, $30MM contract and since the Twins have acquired sturdy manufacturing from prospects Alex Kirilloff and Jose Miranda in his absence, it appeared for a while like Sano won’t have a roster spot ready for him when he returned. Nonetheless, Sano decimated minor league opponents throughout his rehab project, hitting .333/.422/.795 with 5 house runs and three doubles by means of simply 45 plate appearances. He drew six walks, punched out a dozen instances and even swiped a base alongside the best way.
That exhibiting was sufficient to get Sano one other alternative regardless of the gradual begin, and it might probably’t harm his trigger that the now-optioned Celestino has pale after a blistering begin to the season. The 23-year-old Celestino has been working primarily as a fourth outfielder anyhow, and his final multi-hit effort got here again on June 14. In 57 plate appearances since that point, he’s hitting simply .148/.193/.222. Celestino nonetheless gives velocity off the bench and elite protection throughout the outfield, so he can nonetheless present worth even when he’s not hitting. For now, nonetheless, it’ll be utilityman Nick Gordon serving as the first backup to Byron Buxton in middle subject.
Sano is again within the Twins’ lineup right now, however the former cleanup hitter has been dropped all the best way to ninth. With Miranda hitting .313/.358/.531 in 137 plate appearances since his final recall from the minors and Kirilloff slashing .301/.339/.456 in 112 plate appearances since his personal newest recall, Sano’s grasp on the Twins’ first base gig seems tenuous at current.
Each Kirilloff and Miranda are succesful choices at first base, and with Buxton, Max Kepler and Kyle Garlick within the outfield, plus Gio Urshela as an possibility at third base, each Kirilloff and Miranda may very well be used as common choices in a rotation between their respective positions and the DH spot. Sano’s case is aided by the truth that catcher Ryan Jeffers is out six to eight weeks after fracturing his thumb, pushing Gary Sanchez from frequent DH to beginning catcher, however the truth stays that the Twins have choices within the occasion that Sano’s struggles proceed. With the assured portion of his contract drawing to a detailed, it turns into extra possible that they may merely transfer on if he can’t proper the ship.
All that stated, the Twins could be hard-pressed to discover a larger lineup improve than what a wholesome and efficient Sano can carry to the desk. Sano’s .223/.316/.466 batting line from the 2021 season isn’t precisely dominant, however that features a equally disastrous begin to the one by means of which he labored earlier this yr. From June 4 onward — coincidentally or not, proper across the time MLB despatched its notorious memo concerning pitcher utilization of Spider Tack and different overseas substances — Sano batted .251/.330/.503 with 21 homers and 21 doubles in a span of 373 plate appearances.
The Twins maintain a $14MM membership possibility on Sano for the 2023 season — which comes with a $2.75MM buyout. It’s exhausting to see that possibility being picked up as issues presently stand, however an enormous few months from the slugger may change the equation.
Coulombe’s transfer to the 60-day injured listing is essentially a formality. He first hit the injured listing with a hip impingement on Might 11, returned for a day in late Might, and went again on the 15-day IL with a recurrence of that very same hip difficulty the very subsequent day. He’s already been on the 15-day IL for for 60 days anyhow, so this swap doesn’t in any respect impression his means to return if he will get again to a degree the place he’s medically cleared to take action. Coulombe, nonetheless, has but to even start a minor league rehab project. In 49 1/3 innings with the Twins relationship again to 2020, Coulombe has a 2.92 ERA and a 45-to-19 Okay/BB ratio.