Twins closer Glen Perkins recently returned to action after missing time with a neck injury, but now he’s skipping the team’s upcoming road trip due to back spasms.
Perkins told reporters that he “couldn’t get out of bed” Wednesday and “can barely walk” today, so suffice it to say the Twins may be without their All-Star closer for a significant length of time.
Despite some rough patches in the second half surrounding his injury issues Perkins has been fantastic overall this season by converting 32 of 34 save chances with a 2.68 ERA and 46/8 K/BB ratio.
Trade deadline pickup Kevin Jepsen will fill in for Perkins as Minnesota’s closer, with Trevor May serving as the primary setup man.
After taking some time off and getting a cortisone injection for the bulging disc in his neck Twins closer Glen Perkins was expected to be available Tuesday, but instead he was out there pitching the 11th inning of a tie game Sunday afternoon.
And he got the win.
Perkins felt good enough following a bullpen session that the Twins cleared him to pitch, so the All-Star left-hander worked around a pair of hits to throw a scoreless inning against the Orioles and the Twins ended up winning 4-3 to sweep the four-game series in Baltimore.
Perkins has had neck problems in the past and pitching through them hasn’t worked out particularly well overall, so the Twins will likely be keeping a very close eye on his performance and his velocity (which seemed down a bit Sunday).
Glen Perkins was diagnosed Wednesday with a bulging disk in his neck — an injury that had been bothering him for six weeks — but the 32-year-old closer got a cortisone shot and is suddenly looking like a pretty good bet to avoid the disabled list. (He hasn’t appeared in a game since Monday night, when he got knocked around by the Yankees).
Perkins played catch Saturday and threw a bullpen session on Sunday, reporting feeling “great” after each workout. Twins manager Paul Molitor told Mike Berardino of the St. Paul Pioneer Press that Perkins could be available Tuesday night at Tampa Bay, after Monday’s scheduled team off day.
A neck injury derailed Perkins’ 2014 season, so there was some legitimate worry in Minnesota.
And maybe there still should be given the lack of high quality depth in the Twins’ bullpen.
Perkins has a 2.66 ERA and 31 saves in 33 tries this year for the 62-61 Twins, who stand 1 1/2 games back of the second American League Wild Card spot at the beginning of play Sunday.
For the second straight year a neck injury threatens to ruin Twins closer Glen Perkins’ otherwise outstanding season.
Last year he was cruising along with a 2.44 ERA through late August when he began to struggle while trying to pitch through a neck injury, allowing 10 runs in eight appearances before being shut down in mid-September.
This year Perkins converted each of his first 29 save chances while posting a 1.37 ERA through late July, but he’s allowed eight runs in nine appearances since then and is now in need of a cortisone short and further examination.
For now Perkins remains on the Twins’ active roster, but if the injury is truly similar to last season it’s hard to imagine the three-time All-Star pitching through it.
Yankees third baseman Alex Rodriguez hit three home runs in Saturday’s win against the Twins. His first put the Yankees on the board in a 5-1 deficit in the fourth inning against Tommy Milone. The next was a two-run shot off of Milone in the seventh, making it a 5-3 game. In the ninth, he clubbed number three to tie the game at 5-5 in the ninth off of closer Glen Perkins.
It’s the fifth three-homer game of Rodriguez’s career and his first since 2010, and his third as a member of the Yankees. Per ESPN Stats & Info, he joins Lou Gehrig (four) and Joe DiMaggio (three) as the only Yankees with at least three three-homer games. Also per ESPN Stats & Info, he’s the fifth-oldest to register a three-homer game at 39 years and 363 days.
Rodriguez, 39, is batting .277/.375/.539 with 23 home runs and 58 RBI this season. He’s on pace to register his first 30-homer season since 2010.
Watch Rodriguez’s game-tying home run in the ninth, his third of the game: