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Joe Nathan nearly ready to rejoin Twins’ bullpen

Jun 22, 2011, 2:52 PM EDT

Joe Nathan

Joe Nathan wanted to return from the disabled list along with Joe Mauer last week, but the Twins asked him to make a few rehab appearances at Triple-A first.

He threw a scoreless inning Saturday and another scoreless inning last night, with a third outing scheduled for tonight.

Barring a setback it sounds like Nathan will be activated from the DL at some point this weekend, perhaps as soon as Friday in Milwaukee.

Nathan struggled with both his velocity and command after missing all of last season following Tommy John elbow surgery, being stripped of closing duties and giving up 15 runs in 15 innings before the Twins finally shut him down in mid-May. He’ll rejoin the bullpen in a setup role, with Matt Capps remaining the closer.

  1. AK47 - Jun 22, 2011 at 2:56 PM

    I’d be willing to bet that Joe Nathan is the Twins closer by the end of July.

    • schrutebeetfarms - Jun 23, 2011 at 12:37 PM

      Based on the last time he was the closer?

  2. trevorb06 - Jun 22, 2011 at 3:19 PM

    I’m just glad to see the Twin’s bullpen finally coming back together just in time for the Twin’s to make their comeback.

    Gleeman, you should see how many games the pen lost for the twins in the 8th or 9th this year just to S’s and G’s.

    • nick5253 - Jun 22, 2011 at 4:27 PM

      By just a quick look at the box scores, I count 10 games where the bullpen blew a led in the 8th or later. If they win just half of those games, they are 3 games over 0.500 and 1.5 games back….

      • trevorb06 - Jun 22, 2011 at 5:23 PM

        Wow! Thanks for the info on that. That’s just disappointing, just shows that relievers truly can be worth their money if they’re good.

  3. royalsfaninfargo - Jun 22, 2011 at 3:33 PM

    Being a realist i know the Royals are out of this race so I tend to root for the Twinkies to win the AL Central. Besides this would be a great story if they could pull it off. Unfortunately Nathan didnt show anything earlier in the season and I dont see how pitching 3 innings in the minors will correct that.

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