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Updated: May 14th, 2012 4:47pm
Morneau can deal with some wrist soreness 'as long as it's manageable'

Morneau can deal with some wrist soreness 'as long as it's manageable'

by Phil Mackey
1500ESPN.com
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MINNEAPOLIS -- Minnesota Twins first baseman Justin Morneau made positive strides on Monday in his attempt to return from left wrist soreness, taking 35 or 40 swings during early batting practice. Several of those swings resulted in long home runs.

Morneau had a cortisone shot to help alleviate discomfort stemming from inflammation in the surgically repaired wrist, and Monday was the first time he had taken batting practice swings in nearly two weeks.

"It's getting better," Morneau said. "Whether (the soreness) will be gone completely, I don't know. I'm hopeful. But as long as I'm able to swing the way I want to swing, as long as it's manageable that's something we can deal with. ...

"It felt like I was able to do that today... Structurally everything looks good. They don't feel like I'm in danger of doing anymore damage or anything like that."

Morneau is eligible to come off the disabled list on Wednesday when the Twins begin a two-game series in Detroit, but at this point no decision has been made.

"Who knows? It could react well and everything continue to get better," Morneau said. "That medicine's still in there, still working. ...

"We haven't really discussed it yet. Today was just the first step in getting out there swinging and taking batting practice on the field. Hopefully it feels good the rest of the day and go out tomorrow and do the same thing... I don't really have a timeline yet, but I'm hopeful it's sooner than later, that's for sure."

The Twins do have the luxury of two off days near the end of the month -- May 21 after a three-game series in Milwaukee, and May 31 after a three-game home series with the Oakland A's. The downtime would give Morneau a better chance to rest his wrist between games.

The Twins also have some roster decisions to make in the near future -- namely cutting from 13 to 12 pitchers and deciding what to do with a struggling Chris Parmelee, who has been rotating with Joe Mauer at first base in Morneau's absence.

Morneau has started 16 games as designated hitter and four at first base, but he believes playing in the field could help his wrist stay loose.

"Most of the time I'd rather play first (base)," Morneau said. "But whatever works best."

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.
Email Phil | @PhilMackey | Mackey & Judd
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