ARLINGTON, Texas — The bad news first: Twins third baseman Josh Donaldson was missing from the lineup all weekend. The good news: The Twins still don’t believe his calf issue to be serious.
Donaldson has been dealing with both a head cold, one which has affected about 10 people in the clubhouse, manager Rocco Baldelli said, as well as a calf issue that forced him to leave Wednesday night’s game at Seattle early.
“His lower leg is still a little sore, so we’re going to give him as much time as we can to make sure that when he does come back, he’s fine,” Baldelli said. “It’s one of those things, even though we believe it’s reasonably minor, a reasonably minor issue, something that we don’t want to take any chances with whatsoever.”
Baldelli said if they thought Donaldson would need a stint on the injured list, they might have already made that move at this point.
Donaldson, who has not done much on the field in the past couple days, has dealt with calf issues in the past, including last year when a right calf strain — the same calf that has been bothering him recently — forced him off the field for a month.
“I’m pretty hopefully that’s not going to be the case,” Baldelli said of Donaldson going on the injured list. “He’s been pretty adamant that he’s going to be fine, but I think we’re going to give it one more day, use today to probably be able to evaluate him a little bit more than we have before.”
The Twins will pay tribute to late bench coach Mike Bell, who passed away from kidney cancer at age 46 in March, ahead of Monday night’s game against the Reds. Cincinnati is managed by David Bell, Mike’s older brother.
A large contingent of family members, including Mike’s wife, Kelly, and their three children will be in attendance as the Twins honor his memory. The game will also serve as the Twins’ annual Cancer Awareness Night.
The pregame ceremony will include an introduction of the Bell family, a tribute video and a presentation of a gift from the 2021 team, as well as the presentation of a donation to Gigi’s Playhouse Twin Cities, a cause that was close to Mike’s heart, and the Twins Community Fund. It will be capped off by a ceremonial first pitch thrown by Luke Bell, Mike’s son, to his uncle David.
Beginning Monday, pitchers will be subject to random checks by umpires to make sure they are not using foreign substances to doctor baseballs. Any substance found to be applied besides rosin will result in an ejection and suspension. … Jhoan Duran, one of the Twins’ top pitching prospects, landed on the injured list at Triple-A with a right forearm strain. … J.A. Happ and Bailey Ober will start for the Twins in their two-game series against the Reds. … Michael Pineda (forearm) played catch on Sunday before the game. He is scheduled to throw a bullpen on Friday.