Following Thursday afternoon’s 3-1 loss to the Tigers, the Twins optioned third baseman Miguel Sanó to High-A Fort Myers and outfielder Jake Cave to Triple-A Rochester, Dan Hayes of The Athletic reports. The club will activate Joe Mauer from the disabled list and add another player to the roster on Friday before opening a three-game road series with the Indians.
Sanó, 25, has struggled this season, batting .203/.270/.405 with seven home runs and 27 RBI in 163 plate appearances. Since returning in late May after dealing with a hamstring injury, Sanó hit .191 over 73 trips to the plate.
Usually, when a player is in the midst of a slump, a team might send him to Triple-A for a spell to figure things out. It’s rare for the club to demote an established major leaguer — an All-Star, even — to Single-A. Perhaps the Twins want Sanó to face lesser competition as a way to help rebuild his confidence.
Mauer, 35, suffered a neck injury diving for a ball a month ago and developed concussion symptoms. He will return to play batting .283/.404/.355 in 167 PA.
Cave, 25, hit a pair of home runs across six games in the majors this season. He’ll continue to serve as outfield depth in the minors.