Phil Hughes leaves start with strained hip flexor

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Phil Hughes exited today’s start against the Tigers after just five innings and 71 pitches with what the Twins are calling a mild left hip flexor strain.

At the time the Twins were up 7-3, but relievers Tim Stauffer and Aaron Thompson combined to allow three homers in the next inning to turn it into a 7-7 tie. That means Hughes remains winless on the season despite a 4.55 ERA and fantastic 26/2 K/BB ratio in 32 innings.

Minnesota already has Ricky Nolasco on the disabled list and Ervin Santana suspended until July, so if Hughes is sidelined the rotation will be relying an awful lot on Tommy Milone, Mike Pelfrey, Trevor May, and Kyle Gibson. In other words, things could get ugly (or uglier).