Ervin Santana throws seven innings in latest tuneup start in minors

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Ervin Santana is still serving out his 80-game PED suspension, but he’s permitted to pitch in the minors in preparation for joining the Twins on July 5 against the Royals. After a strong performance in his first start with Triple-A Rochester last Saturday, the veteran right-hander had his second start tonight:

Santana has allowed four runs in 12 2/3 innings with a 6/4 K/BB ratio over his first two outings. He will make one more tuneup start in the minors before his Twins debut.

After posting a 3.95 ERA over 31 starts with the Braves last season, Santana received a franchise record four-year, $55 million free agent contract from Minnesota over the winter. It’s been a long wait, but the surprising Twins (39-33) are hoping to get some bang for their buck over the final three months of the season.

Trea Turner undergoes surgery on right index finger

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Nationals shortstop Trea Turner underwent surgery on his right index finger, MLB.com’s Manny Randhawa reports. Turner suffered a non-displaced fracture when he was hit by a pitch attempting to bunt in early April.

Turner missed six weeks of action and played through the injury for the remainder of the season. He was quite successful, batting .298/.353/.497 with 19 home runs, 57 RBI, 96 runs scored, and 35 stolen bases across 569 plate appearances. Turner’s performance, especially late in the regular season, helped the Nationals claim the first NL Wild Card. They, of course, would go on to win the World Series.

Turner, who is expected to be healed up by the start of spring training, will be entering his second of four years of arbitration eligibility. He will likely get a sizable raise on his $3.725 million 2019 salary.