Sano hopes to rejoin Twins' lineup Thursday

Sano hopes to rejoin Twins' lineup Thursday

MINNEAPOLIS -- Twins third baseman Miguel Sano, who has been out since Sept. 13 with lower back soreness, reported some stiffness Wednesday after participating in baseball activities for the first time Tuesday.

Sano was held out of the lineup Wednesday for an eighth straight game as a result, but manager Paul Molitor said he's hopeful Sano could return as early as Thursday in the day-night doubleheader. Eduardo Escobar started at third in Sano's absence.

"He came in a little bit bodily aware that he went through more work [Tuesday] than he had in a while," Twins manager Paul Molitor said. "There's some stiffness today, but I don't think it's related to him trying to recover from that back thing. He tried to do a lot [Tuesday] to try to make a statement he wants to get back in there."

Sano was able to participate in a full workout Tuesday, throwing from third base and taking batting practice on the field. But with the weather conditions leading up to Wednesday's rainout, Sano was limited to swinging in the cage. He said everything felt fine during workouts and that he hopes to return Thursday.

Sano's barehanded stop

"Hopefully [Thursday]," Sano said. "I still feel a little bit of pain. But after working on it, I've been feeling better."

Worth noting

• Twins interim general manager Rob Antony met with Molitor before the game to go over every player on the 40-man roster. The two also discussed players who could be added to it this offseason. Minnesota's 40-man roster is full with Glen Perkins, Phil Hughes and Danny Santana on the 60-day disabled list.

• The Twins have yet to decide how their rotation will shake out the last week of the season, as it's only set through this weekend's series against the Mariners. Molitor said it could depend on if Kansas City is still in the postseason chase next week. But he also expected rookie Jose Berrios to make at least one more start after Wednesday.

Rhett Bollinger has covered the Twins for MLB.com since 2011. 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.