The Minnesota Twins placed catcher/first baseman Joe Mauer on the 15-day disabled list Wednesday after he suffered a strained right oblique in the team’s 10-2 win over the Kansas City Royals on Tuesday night, reports Tyler Mason of FOX Sports North.
Mauer appeared to suffer the injury while hitting a two-run double during the fourth inning. After reaching second base on the play, he signaled for help from the team’s trainer, who came out to evaluate the 31-year-old before ultimately letting him stay in the game.
Mauer didn’t return after running the bases, however, getting replaced by Josh Willingham the following inning. Afterwards, the Twins announced the injury, but didn’t confirm a trip to the disabled list until Wednesday morning after the team had a chance for further evaluation.
Following the game on Tuesday, Mauer said that he suffered the injury while swinging on the double, then initially tried to play through the pain. He added that he’s been dealing with stiffness in that area, so it’s possible he might’ve tweaked something while playing.
The injury continues a rough season for Mauer, who’s on pace to record the worst offensive numbers of his 11-year career. Over 76 games, he’s batted .271/.342/.353 with two homers in 339 plate appearances — other than playing time, those would be career-worst numbers across the board.
Those struggles have contributed to the Twins’ mediocrity this season. Minnesota is just 38-44 entering Wednesday’s action and could badly some more production from its starting lineup. Most likely, the Twins will continue using the set-up they deployed last night, with Willingham in left field, Chris Parmelee at first base and Kurt Suzuki behind the plate.
To replace Mauer on the active roster, the Twins promoted utility man Chris Colabello. He’s spent significant time in Minnesota already this year, hitting .232/.280/.377 over 161 plate appearances.