The season is not even a week old but the Minnesota Twins have already had to turn to the disabled list. Right-hander Cole De Vries will be placed on the 15-day DL on Sunday, with left-hander Pedro Hernandez taking his spot in the rotation.
Hernandez, who will be called up from Triple-A Rochester, won’t technically be added to Minnesota’s roster until Sunday, but he joined the Twins in Baltimore prior to Saturday’s game against the Orioles.
“I was in shock when (Red Wings manager Gene Glynn) told me that I was going to the big leagues and going to start on Sunday,” Hernandez told MLB.com. “I said, ‘What, are you kidding?’ And he said, ‘No,’ and, ‘Congratulations.’ So I thanked him. It’s exciting. I’m here and I’m ready.”
The 23-year-old Hernandez will be making just his second career major league start Sunday and his first with the Twins. He appeared in one game last season with the Chicago White Sox and allowed eight earned runs on 12 hits — including three home runs — in just four innings against Boston on July 18.
The Twins acquired Hernandez and infielder Eduardo Escobar in a trade for left-hander Francisco Liriano prior to last year’s trade deadline. Hernandez made four starts with Rochester before the season was over and was 0-2 with a 5.19 ERA. In six games this spring, Hernandez did not allow a run in 11 innings of relief.
“He had a good spring,” Twins manager Ron Gardenhire told reporters. “We used him out of the pen. I think he made only one start, but he mostly came out of the bullpen. But he’s a starter and has a good changeup and has a good fastball he can cut and a nice looping curveball.”
Butera breaks hand: Red Wings catcher Drew Butera broke his hand Friday when he was hit by a pitch from Ramon Ortiz in his first at-bat. He is expected to miss three to four weeks, according to reports.
“It’s sad,” Gardenhire told reporters Saturday. “Drew is a very good catcher. He doesn’t belong in Triple-A. He’s a major leaguer. He’s one of the best defensive catchers we have hitting and throwing.”
The 29-year-old Butera spent parts of the last three seasons with the Twins and played a career-high 93 games in 2011 when starting catcher Joe Mauer was sidelined with injuries. Though Butera is among one of Minnesota’s better defensive catchers, he’s hit just .183 in 184 career games in the majors. He batted .375 this spring and was also a member of Team Italy in the World Baseball Classic.
After breaking his hand, Butera was replaced by catcher Chris Herrmann, who made his major league debut last season with the Twins.