Twins to skip struggling Liriano’s start

The Minnesota Twins have decided to skip struggling left-hander

Francisco Liriano’s next turn and give him eight days to refocus

before he starts again.

Manager Ron Gardenhire said Monday he had a long talk with

Liriano, who emerged ”really confident” in the plan.

Gardenhire says he doesn’t want to make Liriano a reliever, even

temporarily. So he’ll throw bullpen sessions Thursday and Saturday

and return to the rotation May 1 when the Twins visit the Los

Angeles Angels.

Liriano is 0-3 with an 11.02 ERA in four starts after his latest

collapse Sunday. Opponents are hitting .368 against him, and he has

walked 13 batters in 16 1/3 innings.

The Twins also scratched second baseman Alexi Casilla from the

lineup Monday night against Boston because of an illness.