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Ervin on track for Twins after WBC '17 run

Santana racks up six K's in four innings on six days' rest
March 24, 2017

FORT MYERS, Fla. -- Twins right-hander Ervin Santana was solid in his second-to-last start before his projected Opening Day outing against the Royals on April 3, tossing four strong innings in a 5-5 tie with the Orioles on Friday night.Santana, who last pitched on Saturday when he allowed four runs

FORT MYERS, Fla. -- Twins right-hander Ervin Santana was solid in his second-to-last start before his projected Opening Day outing against the Royals on April 3, tossing four strong innings in a 5-5 tie with the Orioles on Friday night.
Santana, who last pitched on Saturday when he allowed four runs on six hits over 3 2/3 innings for the Dominican Republic in a loss to Team USA in the World Baseball Classic, said everything went according to plan against Baltimore. He was able to work on his off-speed pitches, especially his changeup.
Santana gave up an unearned run on four hits while striking out six batters, and he still hasn't allowed an earned run in Grapefruit League play in nine innings.
"I'm just keeping my routine," Santana said. "I'm not trying to do anything different. It's been good."
Santana added that he came out of his outing in the Classic without any issues, despite the fact he missed a scheduled start in mid-March, going nine days between outings. He also enjoyed his experience in the tournament.
"It was intense," Santana said. "It was like a playoff game or even more than that."
Puerto Rico contingent rejoins Twins
Worth noting
• Twins designated hitter Kennys Vargas suffered a left foot contusion Friday when he fouled the ball off the foot in the third inning. He left the game and is day to day. If he were to miss extended time, it gives even more of an advantage to ByungHo Park for at-bats at DH.
• The Twins met with closer Glen Perkins about a plan going forward as he tries to come back from left labrum surgery. Perkins hasn't progressed past 25-pitch bullpen sessions, and he could be a candidate to open the year on the 60-day disabled list.

Rhett Bollinger has covered the Twins for MLB.com since 2011. Read his blog, **Bollinger Beat, follow him on Twitter [@RhettBollinger](https://twitter.com/RhettBollinger)** and listen to his podcast.