Vargas recalled, back in middle of order

Vargas recalled, back in middle of order

MINNEAPOLIS -- Kennys Vargas had a good time in Rochester.

But still, he'd be happy to never go back.

The Twins recalled Vargas from Triple-A after optioning shortstop Danny Santana on Sunday.

Vargas was back in the middle of Minnesota's lineup as the designated hitter Monday against Kansas City, hitting fifth. He had a slashline of .309/.403/.519 in 16 games at Rochester before his callup.

Vargas' run-scoring single

Though he spent time at first base in Rochester, Vargas will mostly see time as the designated hitter in Minnesota. He said he's been working on creating a routine to help himself stay in the game mentally with so much time between at-bats.

Vargas initially skipped Triple-A and was called up to the Twins last summer. He hit .274 with nine home runs and 38 RBIs in 53 games with Minnesota in 2014. He should help provide some power to the middle of the order.

"Kennys came up and gave us a lift last year," Twins manager Paul Molitor said. "He's a presence. He's a threat. He's a switch-hitter, which is really nice in a DH role."

This season, Vargas was hitting .248 before he was sent down May 17. Since then, Vargas said he had been working on extending his hand to the point of contact and striking the ball with a higher bat speed.

Now that Vargas is back, Molitor said the Twins would try to avoid putting undue pressure on him.

"You don't send people down to make them appreciate being up here more, but I think that's one of the side benefits that you get," Molitor said. "He did what we asked him to in terms of trying to make some adjustments not only in his physical but mental approach to hitting."

Betsy Helfand is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.