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Rehabbing Fien set to begin throwing program

Twins reliever has been doing strengthening exercises for right triceps
MLB.com @RhettBollinger

MINNEAPOLIS -- Right-hander Casey Fien, who is on the 15-day disabled list with a right shoulder strain, was cleared by team doctors to start a throwing program on Friday.

Fien has been on the DL since April 30, and he had been resting his shoulder and rehabbing. He said he was doing strengthening exercises for the triceps area in the back of his arm, and that he was finally cleared to throw on Wednesday. Fien said the tentative plan is to keep progressing with long-toss and flat-ground sessions before moving onto a mound once the Twins return from their week-long road trip.

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MINNEAPOLIS -- Right-hander Casey Fien, who is on the 15-day disabled list with a right shoulder strain, was cleared by team doctors to start a throwing program on Friday.

Fien has been on the DL since April 30, and he had been resting his shoulder and rehabbing. He said he was doing strengthening exercises for the triceps area in the back of his arm, and that he was finally cleared to throw on Wednesday. Fien said the tentative plan is to keep progressing with long-toss and flat-ground sessions before moving onto a mound once the Twins return from their week-long road trip.

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"It feels stronger, and I passed all the tests by the doctor to be able to throw," Fien said. "I'll throw a bullpen when they get back into town."

Fien said he's excited to be able to start throwing again, but was even more pleased by the results of the MRI exam he received upon suffering the injury. It showed no structural damage, which was a relief for Fien, who previously had a SLAP tear in his right labrum in 2009.

"I'm excited about the MRI, because it came out awesome," Fien said. "The doctor told me, 'If we were looking to trade someone and we saw this MRI, we'd want this guy because it looks like there are a lot of years left.' I hadn't an MRI since 2009, when I had the SLAP tear, and they could barely even see the SLAP tear this time. You never know what's in there."

• Fellow reliever Tim Stauffer, who is on the 15-day DL with a right intercostal strain, started his throwing program earlier this week. Stauffer was placed on the DL on Friday.

Video: DET@MIN: Stauffer induces double play from Miggy

"He's on his throwing program and working his way to a bullpen," Twins assistant general manager Rob Antony said.

• Twins first baseman Joe Mauer was held out of the lineup for the first time this season on Thursday. Manager Paul Molitor said he was looking for an opportunity to give him a break.

"Joe's been on my radar for a while to give him a day," Molitor said. "He's played or DH'd for us every day so far."

• Molitor said he thinks the running game can be improved, as the club has been caught stealing nine times and stolen only eight bases, entering Thursday. He said he's already met with the club's primary basestealers and first-base coach Butch Davis to tell them he expects more in that area.

"It's not what I thought it would be at this point," Molitor said. "I called our guys who are involved in that part of the game collectively to re-emphasize I want accountability and to be prepared. I have green lights often for these guys, but there are some times I try to pick a pitch for them.

"But eight steals and nine caught isn't very impressive. Some of them are 3-2 and the guy strikes out, but I feel like we've left some opportunities."

Rhett Bollinger is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Bollinger Beat, and follow him on Twitter @RhettBollinger.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Minnesota Twins, Casey Fien, Joe Mauer, Tim Stauffer