Travis Hafner’s strong start is on hold after the designated hitter was scratched from last night’s lineup with right ankle soreness and Jordan Bastian of MLB.com reports that he’ll undergo an MRI exam today.
Hafner has missed an average of 72 games per season during the past three years, but most of his health problems have been shoulder-related and he’s looked healthy while hitting .342 with four homers, five doubles, and a .959 OPS through 21 games.
Shelley Duncan started in Hafner’s place yesterday and homered in four at-bats as the Indians swept the Royals to improve to an AL-best 16-8.
Miguel Sano has been activated off the disabled list and will return to the Twins’ starting lineup for Friday night’s series opener in Seattle after missing the last four weeks with a left hamstring strain.
Jake Cave, who homered in his major league debut on Saturday, has been optioned to Triple-A Rochester in a corresponding 25-man roster move. He ultimately went 1-for-9 in his short stay at the MLB level.
Sano had six hits — including two home runs — in five minor league rehab games.
He was batting .213/.289/.450 with five homers and 14 RBI through 20 games this season for the Twins, who are currently 6 1/2 games back of the Indians in the American League Central standings with a disappointing 21-24 record.