Nick Blackburn’s shoulder MRI shows no structural damage

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Finally, a dose of good news for the Twins.

Joe Christensen of the Minneapolis Star-Tribune reports that an MRI exam taken Saturday on the sore right shoulder of Twins starter Nick Blackburn revealed only inflammation. No structural damage.

Blackburn made a premature exit from his start Saturday afternoon vs. the Rangers due to shoulder discomfort. But he’s going to avoid the disabled list and might not even miss a turn in the rotation.

Blackburn, 30, has surrendered 12 hits and seven earned runs in 11 1/3 innings so far this season. He registered a 4.49 ERA, 1.60 WHIP and 76/54 K/BB ratio across 148 1/3 frames last year.

Daniel Murphy had microfracture surgery on his right knee

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The Nationals announced today that second baseman Daniel Murphy had surgery on his right knee. The surgery: a debridement and microfracture procedure, which is pretty major.

The team’s comment about Murphy’s prognosis makes it sound major too: “rehab will begin immediately and will progress throughout the offseason.” No timetable. Just that it “will progress.” Well, I’d hope so. Let’s see if he’s ready for spring training.

Murphy hit .322/.384/.543, hit 23 homers and knocked in 93 RBI. Assuming he’s ready for the 2018 season, he’ll ply his trade for a new manager.