MINNEAPOLIS -- Minnesota's new front office showed yet again it's not afraid to make difficult roster moves involving longtime Twins, as a day after veteran right-hander Kyle Gibson was optioned to Triple-A Rochester, outfielder Danny Santana was designated for assignment.
To replace them on the roster, the Twins selected the contract of right-handed reliever Drew Rucinski from Triple-A Rochester and reinstated infielder Ehire Adrianza from the 10-day disabled list Friday.
But the good news is outfielder Byron Buxton wasn't placed on the seven-day concussion DL after running into the wall twice on Thursday, but he was held out of the lineup. Third baseman Miguel Sano, however, was in the lineup despite having a 90-minute appeal hearing Friday about his one-game suspension. He's not expected to find out the result until Monday or Tuesday.
"The quietness of our roster the first three weeks or so is a distant memory," Twins manager Paul Molitor said. "We're trying to put things forward as best as we can. We needed an arm for our bullpen. We were limited on our 40-man options with [Buddy] Boshers not being eligible and [J.T.] Chargois being hurt. We needed a spot, so we DFA'd Danny Santana."
Santana appeared in 13 games for the Twins this year, batting .200/.231/.360, including a homer Thursday. In 280 career games with Minnesota since 2014, he batted .266/.300/.381 with 10 homers and 41 steals.
"I'm not sure how taken aback he was, but it was obviously tough news to take," Molitor said. "He had a long tenure here, but he didn't get much of an opportunity to play. He's a guy you'd like to try to keep around, but he ran into a box where we had to create a spot."
Rucinski was 0-1 with a 3.48 ERA in six games (one start) for the Red Wings this season. He walked two and struck out 13 in 10 1/3 innings. In seven games with the Angels in 2014-15, he was 0-2 with a 6.28 ERA in 14 1/3 innings. He'll likely serve as a stopgap until the Twins decide whether Jose Berrios or Adalberto Mejia will be called up to replace Gibson's spot in the rotation. However, Minnesota can go without a fifth starter until May 13 because of Monday's off-day.
"We're not sure how that's all going to play out," Molitor said. "We'll have to see whether we want to wait until Saturday, or be flexible depending on how things go."
Adrianza, known for his defense at shortstop, has not appeared in a game yet this season, missing the first 26 contests with a right oblique strain, but he hit .259 in seven rehab games with Triple-A Rochester, including three games in left field. He appeared in 154 games with the Giants from 2013-16, batting .220/.292/.313 with three homers and 26 RBIs.
"I feel pretty good," Adrianza said. "I've been feeling good at the plate, so I have to keep using my legs to hit like I did in Spring Training. I'm looking forward to competing at this level."
Rhett Bollinger has covered the Twins for MLB.com since 2011. 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.