LIVE › 4-10 p.m. SportsCenter Sunday
NEXT › 10:05 p.m. ESPN All Night
Updated: September 30th, 2010 4:52pm
Joe Mauer (knee) and J.J. Hardy (knee) return to lineup; Thome not ready

Joe Mauer (knee) and J.J. Hardy (knee) return to lineup; Thome not ready

by Phil Mackey
Email | Twitter
SportsWire Daily

Get the 1500 ESPN SportsWire delivered to your inbox daily, and keep up with all the news in Twin Cities Sports


MINNEAPOLIS -- Justin Morneau dominated pre-game headlines with his first full workout in weeks, but the Minnesota Twins received more positive injury news on Thursday as well.

Joe Mauer (knee) and J.J. Hardy (knee) both returned to the starting lineup to face the Toronto Blue Jays -- Hardy back at shortstop and Mauer as the designated hitter.

Hardy, who dealt with a swollen knee during the Twins' last road trip, has played in only one game since September 20.

Mauer, who experienced some tissue inflammation, has been out since September 19.

Jim Thome has been out for more than a week with back soreness, and will need a couple more days, according to manager Ron Gardenhire.

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