With a doubleheader today at Target Field against the Red Sox, the Twins find themselves without their starting shortstop. Andrelton Simmons has shown his defensive prowess already, but he's also been hitting so far this spring. The 31-year-old from Curacao is hitting .355/.474/.452 (.925) with three doubles through the first ten games.
Simmons tested positive for COVID earlier today and placed on the COVID-IL. Derek Falvey noted that Simmons was experiencing some minor symptoms. All Twins players were tested this morning and the rest were cleared. That said, as we know, COVID can linger for a few days before showing up on a test.
JT Riddle was brought in on a minor league contract in spring training. Like Simmons, Riddle is a defensive whiz, capable of playing all around the infield and in centerfield too.
Simmons has been public about his thoughts on COVID and vaccinations. Before the season started, he tweeted his thoughts and reason for not getting vaccinated.
Twins players and their families were offered the COVID vaccine last Thursday. Most players did, and MLB has stated that when 85% of team personnel are vaccinated, they will consider loosening some of the restrictions.
MLB Debut (Part 2)
Alex Kirilloff was called up as the team's 27th man for the double header today. He is in the lineup, playing left field and batting sixth in the first game. It will be his Major League (regular season) debut.
For those curious about his service time, Kirilloff will receive one day of service time. As the 27th man, he will need to be sent back to the alternate site. He won't receive a second day of service time until he is recalled again.
Activating the Bringer of Rain
The Twins expect to activate Josh Donaldson between games and for him to be in the lineup. He is returning from his hamstring injury. He has been working out and played in some simulated games at CHS Field.
Real Deal Akil?
On Tuesday night, Akil Baddoo hit his fourth home run of the young season off of Jake Odorizzi (who made his Astros debut last night).
Baddoo has certainly been one of the best stories in baseball so far this season. The Detroit Tigers seem to be enjoying it, and their Instagram page says it all. In his first eight MLB games, after playing just 29 games above Low-A ball (in 2019), Baddoo is hitting .391/.400/1.043 (.1.443) with a double, a triple and four homers. And that walk-off winner against the Twins last week.
The Twins also lost RHP Tyler Wells to the Orioles in the Rule 5 draft. He has pitched to a 4.76 ERA over four games and 5 2/3 innings out of the bullpen.
It's Kenta Maeda and Jose Berrios today for the Twins.