May 6, 2010, 12:44 PM EST
Ron Gardenhire was described as “steaming” over the weekend when the Twins intended to demote Pat Neshek to Triple-A only to be told that the reliever preferred to be placed on the disabled list because his finger injury was still a problem.
Neshek received some subtle jabs from Gardenhire and some not-so-subtle jabs from the local media … and now it turns out the Twins’ medical staff misdiagnosed his injury the whole time.
Phil Mackey of 1500ESPN.com reports that an MRI exam revealed the injury is to Neshek’s palm rather than his middle finger, which makes sense given that a cortisone shot to his finger last month didn’t seem to help much. It also explain why Neshek had trouble gripping the baseball and why his fastball velocity dipped several miles per hour, causing him to struggle leading up to the planned demotion.
Neshek wrote via Facebook that he’s “not happy with anything that has gone on, especially when it could have been taken care of three weeks ago and I was told the wrong info.” However, he added that “Gardy and I are on the same page” and once healthy he’s willing to pitch wherever the Twins assign him, calling the whole thing “a miscommunication.”
As for why it took the medical staff a month to order an MRI exam or why the Twins felt the need to publicly criticize Neshek, that’s another issue.
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