Kyle Lohse to see specialist about forearm injury

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An MRI exam on Kyle Lohse injured forearm revealed only inflammation yesterday, but he’s expected to miss at least one start and is seeking a second opinion from a specialist in Los Angeles.
Lohse talked to Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post Dispatch about his status:

They saw something in there and now we need to talk with a specialist to determine exactly what I’m dealing with here. They don’t want me to throw during this time and do something that would make it worse for whatever is going on. Odds are I’m probably going to get some time off, missing at least one start and not throwing at all until we figure out what’s going on.

Lohse convinced the Cardinals to give him a four-year, $41 million extension by going 15-6 with a 3.78 ERA during his first season in St. Louis in 2007, but he’s just 7-14 with a 5.07 ERA in 31 starts since then and spent two stints on the disabled list last season with similar forearm problems. Goold speculates that Adam Ottavino will be called up from Triple-A to take Lohse’s start Saturday against the Cubs and could stick in the rotation for as long as he’s out.

Report: Twins sign Erick Aybar to a minor-league deal

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The Twins have reportedly signed free agent shortstop Erick Aybar to a minor-league deal, LaVelle E. Neal III of the Star Tribune reported Friday. FanRag Sports’ Jon Heyman adds that the deal comes with a potential $1.25 million if Aybar reaches the majors, with additional incentives based on plate appearances. He’ll be able to opt out on March 27. The team has yet to confirm the signing.

Aybar, 34, is now four years removed from his career year in 2014. He’s been in a state of steady decline since then, slashing just .234/.300/.348 with seven home runs and 11 stolen bases over 370 plate appearances for the Padres in 2017. His poor performance wasn’t helped by a fractured left foot, either, which cost him almost six weeks on the disabled list.

Still, the Twins see something promising in the veteran infielder, and reportedly intend to use him as another utility option this spring. Per Neal, Aybar will join fellow backup infielders Eduardo Escobar and Ehire Adrianza and may even (temporarily) take over for Miguel Sano at third base if Sano isn’t able to shape up for the role by Opening Day.