CLEVELAND — Eddie Rosario didn’t use many words to describe the progress he’s made on his sprained left ankle, instead staying succinct in his evaluation.
“Better, good,” he said.
But still, the Twins didn’t activate their left fielder ahead of Friday, July 12’s second-half opener. Manager Rocco Baldelli said Rosario would do “live game speed-type activity” in the next couple of days, and that when Rosario was able to do that comfortably, he would return.
Baldelli said Rosario has been swinging and running and looks good doing both.
Rosario suffered the injury rounding the bases June 26 against Tampa Bay. At the time, he was hopeful he could avoid a stint on the injured list. That didn’t happen. Rosario was eligible to come off the IL the day before the all-star break, and many expected he would be back Friday. Rosario instead predicted Friday he would be ready soon, and Baldelli called that a fair assessment.
“I like the fact that he wants to be out there and he’s ready and he’s probably getting a little antsy and anytime he’s going to be off the field for an extended period of time, he’s not happy about it. I want him to want to be on the field,” Baldelli said. “That’s great. I think also we want to make sure that he’s ready for the long haul and that when we bring him back, we’re not having to check on him and make sure that he’s doing OK.”
Also on the injury front, Baldelli said the reports on first baseman C.J. Cron, who was placed on the IL with a thumb issue before the break were good and while he said he wasn’t sure if Cron would come back after 10 days — which would be early next week — if not, it would likely be soon after.
“His thumb is not in good shape at all. But I do think there gets to be a point where this happens sometimes in the game and it can linger and go on for a very long time with these irritations and sometimes bone bruises in hands,” Baldelli said. “I think he’s going to be OK and find a way to be able to play with this successfully in the second half.”
The Twins made one roster move Friday, activating reliever Blake Parker, who welcomed his second son, off the paternity list. They sent Devin Smeltzer, who pitched 4 1/3 innings of one-run ball Sunday, to Triple-A.
The Twins will also need to make a roster move Saturday to add Jake Odorizzi from the IL. Odorizzi, who developed a blister this month in Oakland, is scheduled to start Saturday night’s game.
The Twins released Chase De Jong, who was at Triple-A Rochester. De Jong briefly appeared for the Twins in April. Since then, he had been pitching for the Triple-A Red Wings, where he was 0-5 with a 9.73 earned-run average in 45 1/3 innings.
Fox Sports North’s Twins ratings for the first half of the season were up 41 percent. Average viewership was 105,000 households nightly. They drew the third-highest viewership of all major league teams in the first half.
The Rochester Red Wings, the Twins’ Triple-A affiliate, were among the top 25 minor league teams in merchandise sales in 2018.