Twins’ Mauer strains oblique muscle

Joe Mauer extended his hitting streak to 12 games on Tuesday with a fourth-inning double, but was noticeably limping as he ran to second base. The Twins said he has a strained muscle on his right side.

Jim Mone

MINNEAPOLIS — Just when Twins first baseman Joe Mauer started heating up at the plate, he may miss some time with an injury.

Mauer left Tuesday’s game with a right oblique strain and will be evaluated further on Wednesday. The injury occurred in the fourth inning when Mauer lined a two-run double down the left field line. He grabbed his side after reaching second base but remained in the game for the remainder of the inning. However, he was replaced at first base by Chris Parmelee in the top of the fifth inning.

After the game, Mauer said he’s been dealing with an oblique issue for about a week but had felt it getting better until Tuesday.

"I’ve been kind of battling this area for about a week or so, maybe a little more," Mauer said. "I’ve been stiff and getting it loose. Everything’s been fine, but today, just on that one swing, the ball down the line, it felt like somebody hit me pretty hard right there."

After struggling for most of the season, Mauer had started to regain form offensively. The double extended his hitting streak to a season-high 12 games, during which he’s batting .362 with six doubles and 12 RBI. Now it remains to be seen how many games Mauer might miss due to the oblique injury.

He missed several games earlier in the year with a back injury but avoided the disabled list. Oblique strains can be tricky, though, and typically take some time before a full recovery is made. Mauer wasn’t sure Tuesday what the timetable will be, citing that this is the first time he’s had an oblique strain.

"I hope it’s a lot sooner than what guys in the past have had," Mauer said.

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