Joe Mauer to undergo MRI exam on sore left knee

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Still sore after tweaking his left knee over the weekend, Joe Mauer is scheduled to undergo an MRI exam today.
Ron Gardenhire made it clear that the MRI is merely precautionary, saying team doctors “don’t expect anything” serious to be discovered, but because Mauer missed most of his rookie season in 2004 following surgery on the same knee it doesn’t take much to raise eyebrows.
For now he’s considered day-to-day, but didn’t take batting practice Monday and almost surely won’t play until Friday at the earliest even if the MRI comes back clean. Minnesota’s magic number is down to two, so the Twins can afford to give Mauer plenty of rest down the stretch.

Video: Gift Ngoepe singles in his first major league at-bat

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Pirates infielder Gift Ngoepe, just called up from Triple-A Indianapolis, singled in his first major league at-bat on Wednesday evening against Cubs starter Jon Lester. It was a well-struck ground ball up the middle in the bottom of the fourth inning. Unfortunately for him, the Pirates could not bring him around to score.

Ngoepe, who was pinch-hitting, stayed in the game to play second base.

Shelby Miller getting third opinion on elbow from Dr. James Andrews

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Diamondbacks starter Shelby Miller was placed on the 10-day disabled list on Monday due to inflammation in his right elbow. He had a second opinion from Dr. Neal ElAttrache on Tuesday and is currently awaiting a third opinion from Dr. James Andrews, Craig Grialou of Arizona Sports reports. That he’s getting a third opinion seems to imply that Miller’s elbow issue is rather serious.

Miller, 26, hasn’t been able to catch a break since joining the Diamondbacks. Last year’s nightmarish season included a finger injury stemming from mechanical woes and a brief demotion to the minor leagues. In 20 starts in the majors last year, Miller posted an ugly 6.15 ERA. This year, his ERA is a mediocre 4.09 over four starts.

The Diamondbacks called up Zack Godley to take Miller’s spot in the rotation. There was some speculation that it would be Archie Bradley instead, but he’s been working out of the bullpen.