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Choi rejoins Crew, homers in 1st at-bat

MLB.com @AdamMcCalvy

MINNEAPOLIS -- Ji-Man Choi was so sick earlier this week, one of a number of Triple-A Colorado Springs Sky Sox players and staff struck by a stomach bug similar to the one that hit some of the Brewers, that it required a visit to the doctor. He got well just in time to make his presence felt in the Major Leagues.

Promoted back to the big leagues after Ryan Braun hit the 10-day disabled list, Choi homered on the third pitch he saw for a Brewers lead in the second inning of their 8-3 win over the Twins on Friday night at Target Field.

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MINNEAPOLIS -- Ji-Man Choi was so sick earlier this week, one of a number of Triple-A Colorado Springs Sky Sox players and staff struck by a stomach bug similar to the one that hit some of the Brewers, that it required a visit to the doctor. He got well just in time to make his presence felt in the Major Leagues.

Promoted back to the big leagues after Ryan Braun hit the 10-day disabled list, Choi homered on the third pitch he saw for a Brewers lead in the second inning of their 8-3 win over the Twins on Friday night at Target Field.

View Full Game Coverage

Asked about his quick-strike contribution, Choi said, "It's really important -- especially because it was the first run of the game as well. I'm all about the victory."

Choi has made the most of limited opportunities. He cracked Milwaukee's Opening Day roster and sparked the winning rally that day against the Padres with a pinch-hit double, but was optioned to the Minors after one game.

Video: MIL@SD: Choi drills crucial pinch-hit double in 12th

Friday was his first game back.

"I feel like for anyone it would have been a hard situation," said Choi before the game through translator Daniel Cho. "But I just want to think about right now, being here right now and just overcoming that."

The homer was Choi's first in the Majors since last July 7, when he went deep against the Brewers' Junior Guerra for the Yankees at Yankee Stadium. Choi hit four home runs at Colorado Springs between his games with the Brewers.

Choi served as Milwaukee's designated hitter against Twins right-hander Kyle Gibson. Two more right-handers are scheduled to start for Minnesota over the weekend.

Video: MIL@MIN: Choi on his return to the Majors

"That's a great way to start out, for sure," Counsell said of Choi's homer. "Make yourself comfortable with a home run. He took a pitch down the middle of the plate and did something really good with it. It's a great series for him to be here. It's a great bat to put in the middle of the lineup." 

On Thursday, the Brewers placed Braun on the 10-day disabled list with back stiffness and backdated the move to Monday, meaning Braun is eligible for reinstatement beginning Thursday against the Mets at Miller Park. If Braun is not ready that day, he should return to action soon thereafter, Counsell said.

Adam McCalvy has covered the Brewers for MLB.com since 2001. Follow him on Twitter @AdamMcCalvy and like him on Facebook.

Milwaukee Brewers, Ji-Man Choi