Santana progressing with injured hamstring

Santana progressing with injured hamstring

MINNEAPOLIS -- Twins utility man Danny Santana on Sunday said his strained right hamstring is feeling better, as he's been able to run and take batting practice without any issues. If all goes to plan, he could head out on a rehab assignment by the middle of the week.

Santana was placed on the 15-day disabled list on April 9, and is eligible to return on April 25. Barring any setbacks, the Twins believe he could be activated once eligible.

"I know yesterday, he stepped it up with his running program," manager Paul Molitor said. "The hitting came back rather quickly. He's been doing some defensive work here the last few days. We just have to worry about stop and go, cuts, and things like that. So we'll see how it goes the next few days, but I think there's some optimism he'll be ready to go out by the middle of next week."

Santana said he hadn't been told anything about a potential rehab assignment yet, but is pleased with his progress.

"It's feels a lot better," Santana said. "I've got a couple more days of just running and some agility drills."

Worth noting
• Center fielder Byron Buxton is also making good progress with his bruised left hand and could return to the starting lineup on Monday, Molitor said. Molitor considered starting Buxton on Sunday, but stuck with Oswaldo Arcia in the lineup after his homer on Saturday.

• Class A Advanced shortstop Nick Gordon was named the Twins' Minor League Player of the Week. Gordon, ranked as the No. 89 overall prospect by MLBPipeline.com, hit .444 with five doubles, a homer, four RBIs and two stolen bases in six games.

Cuddyer joins the Twins' booth

• The Twins celebrated the 25th anniversary of the Twins Community Fund before the game with Michael Cuddyer throwing out the ceremonial first pitch. Cuddyer, who played with Minnesota from 2001-11, serves on the board for Twins Community Fund.

Rhett Bollinger is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Bollinger Beat, follow him on Twitter @RhettBollinger and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.