Updated: August 22nd, 2010 5:38pm
Blackburn to start Monday; Liriano pushed back with 'tired arm'

Blackburn to start Monday; Liriano pushed back with 'tired arm'

by Phil Mackey
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MINNEAPOLIS -- With Kevin Slowey being placed on the 15-day disabled list due to a strained triceps, the Twins are shuffling the starting rotation a bit.

Manager Ron Gardenhire said Nick Blackburn will start on Monday night in Texas, with Francisco Liriano being pushed back to Thursday for a match-up against Cliff Lee.

Blackburn last pitched on Wednesday for Class-AAA Rochester, allowing four earned runs on eight hits and a walk in 5 1/3 innings while striking out five. In four starts for Rochester, Blackburn had a 2.49 ERA with 13 strikeouts to six walks in 21 2/3 innings.

Gardenhire said Liriano -- who has not pitched beyond 5 2/3 innings in any of his last three starts -- skipped his last bullpen session because of a "tired arm," as the manager described it, so the extra rest should be beneficial.

"This is actually good," Gardenhire said. "Now (pitching coach Rick Anderson) can take him down there and throw a light bullpen (Monday). We talked to Liriano, and he likes the idea too.

"You've got to remember, what did he throw, 50 innings in winter ball?"

Carl Pavano and Brian Duensing will make their regularly scheduled starts on Tuesday and Wednesday.

Phil Mackey is a columnist for 1500ESPN.com. He co-hosts "Mackey & Judd" from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. weekdays on 1500 ESPN Twin Cities.
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