Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Span cleared to start rehab assignment

The Twins got some good news on Wednesday afternoon when doctors cleared Denard Span to begin his minor-league rehab assignment. Span has been absent from the Twins line-up for six weeks with a concussion that he suffered in a collision at home plate with Royals catcher Brayan Pena.

Major League Baseball has started to take concussions very seriously in the past year. They instituted a new 7-day DL spot for players that are suffering from concussion symptoms. The new rules also meant that Span had to pass a concussion test and submit the results to MLB before he could return.

Right before the All-Star break, Ron Gardenhire stated that he hoped for Span to get seven to 10 games played during his rehab before he returned to the Twins. The AAA All-Star Game is tonight and that means that the Red Wings are off until Thursday. If Span heads straight to Rochester, he could get his games in there and return to the Twins in time for a big series against Detroit at the end of the month (July 21-24).

Span's imminent return could be a shot in the arm that the Twins need to make a push in the second half. Before his injury, Span was the best player on the Twins in the first half. A defensive outfield that includes both Span and Ben Revere would be fun for fans to watch. The pitching staff of the Twins would be very appreciative of the amount of fly balls that could be tracked down by these two players.

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