MINNEAPOLIS -- The Twins announced on Saturday that they have optioned reliever Tyler Duffey to Triple-A Rochester and recalled outfielder Jake Cave.The move is intended to give Minnesota a bit of offensive help off its bench after it spent much of the past several weeks carrying only three reserve position
MINNEAPOLIS -- The Twins announced on Saturday that they have optioned reliever Tyler Duffey to Triple-A Rochester and recalled outfielder Jake Cave.
The move is intended to give Minnesota a bit of offensive help off its bench after it spent much of the past several weeks carrying only three reserve position players.
"Just looking at our roster here with a couple games to go before an off-day, being in fairly good shape with our bullpen, the bench has been a little bit slim in terms of options late in games," Minnesota manager Paul Molitor said. "With the Angels being so right-handed dominant in their bullpen, knowing we can probably could use a potential one or two pinch-hitters late in the game, we just try to supplement with a guy in Jake who's probably been the most consistent down there of late for Rochester."
Cave had a brief Major League stint with the Twins in mid-May. The 25-year-old outfielder hit a home run in his big league debut on May 19 and appeared in three games before returning to Triple-A.
Cave was hitting .280 with eight doubles, one triple, five home runs and 25 RBIs for the Red Wings.
The former Yankees Draft pick, who came to Minnesota when it traded pitcher Luis Gil to New York last summer, has made improvements to the defensive side of his game of late, according to Molitor. The club hopes Cave can provide some versatility in the outfield.
"Really good reports from Joel Skinner, the manager down there," Molitor said of Cave's recent performance at Triple-A. "He says [Cave's defense is] improving. Not elite speed, but runs well enough, instincts are good, routes, all those things that you look for. Definitely an option to play any of the outfield positions."
Duffey, who tossed a scoreless ninth inning on Friday for the Twins, owns a 6.35 ERA in seven Major League appearances this season. He struck out three batters during four scoreless innings in June and did not issue a walk.
"Tyler was better upon his return," Molitor said. "Not a ton of appearances, but more effective, including last night. He got a nice clean ninth inning for us."
Buxton beginning to test injury
Minnesota outfielder Byron Buxton has begun testing his injured toe, Molitor said on Saturday.
Buxton, who was placed on the 10-day disabled list on May 30 with a broken big toe on his left foot, ran on a non-weight bearing treadmill at Twins' facilities on Friday. Molitor said the next step is for him to hit off a tee and take soft-toss swings in order gauge how his front feels when he plants on it. The club was hoping Buxton would get the chance to do that before Saturday's game.
"It's just to see how he was doing in the area that was probably the most problematic for him," Molitor said. "In terms of how he can plant on that front foot when he swings, just to get a little bit of a better feel for where he's at."
Jarrid Denney is a reporter for MLB.com based in Minneapolis.