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Updated: August 31st, 2010 7:15pm
Notebook: September call-ups likely coming in two waves

Notebook: September call-ups likely coming in two waves

by Phil Mackey
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MINNEAPOLIS -- Wednesday, September 1 is the first day major league teams are allowed to expand rosters.

Minnesota Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said the team will call up one or two players on Wednesday, and the rest will arrive after the Triple-A regular season concludes on September 6.

"Hopefully we'll have a catcher here tomorrow, and maybe another infielder to protect us a little bit," Gardenhire said. "Maybe one or two more position players at most, and maybe one or two pitchers at most."

The catcher is Jose Morales, and the infielder is likely to be Trevor Plouffe.

Update: The Twins announced Morales and Plouffe will be called up in time for Wednesday night's ballgame.

The Twins may also look at Anthony Slama, Glen Perkins, Alex Burnett, Rob Delaney and Pat Neshek as extra bullpen arms.

Only players on the 40-man roster are eligible to be called up, which means no Brendan Harris or Kyle Waldrop.

Injury updates

* Justin Morneau was sent home until Friday by team doctors. The Twins are classifying this as neither good nor bad.

* Nick Punto (hamstring) did some light moving around on the field before batting practice. He said he will attempt to push the hamstring a little more on Wednesday. Punto is eligible to come off the disabled list on September 5.

* Jim Thome, who left Saturday's ballgame early with a stiff back, could return on Wednesday. When asked if Thome's back is "touch and go" these days, Gardenhire said, "It's touch right now. (Wednesday) hopefully it'll be go. He's just a little stiff, said he needed another day."

* Kevin Slowey (triceps) continues to undergo treatment. Gardenhire would not speculate when asked about the possibility of a six-man rotation if Slowey returns when eligible on September 6.

* Jose Mijares will begin throwing soon, according to Gardenhire, but he will not return for at least 10-14 days.


* The White Sox officially picked up Manny Ramirez on a waiver claim from the Dodgers Tuesday.

"Great hitter," Gardenhire said. "He's a guy that's produced and been on the big stage quite a bit. The guy is a force, so we'll just have to see how everything works out with him and how he does for them. If he comes in and he's swinging good and he's healthy, he makes them a better baseball team -- a run producer."

If Ramirez performs like he did down the stretch in 2008 -- .396/.489/.743 with 17 home runs and 53 RBI in 53 games for the Dodgers -- the Twins might be in trouble.

But that's unlikely.

* Speaking of waiver moves, Gardenhire had high praise for general manager Bill Smith and assistant general manager Rob Antony for acquiring Brian Fuentes from the Angels.

"Billy and Rob and them have done just a super job of scouting around and finding pieces," Gardenhire said. "I thought Fuentes -- that's unbelievable, really, to pick up a player of his caliber this time of year, with all the pitching people need."

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