Brooks Lee Injury Worse Than Originally Diagnosed by Minnesota Twins Doctors

Brooks Lee, Minnesota Twins
Nathan Ray Seebeck-USA TODAY Sports

The Minnesota Twins have not had an ideal start to their 2024 season, which 20 games in, is still without a series victory. They’ll get their best shot at ending that series losing streak this week, when they play a four-game set against the Chicago White Sox, at home.

If nothing else, you’d sure think they can get two of four games against the 3-18 Southsiders… right? If not, then let’s be real, the outlook of the Twins’ 2024 season isn’t going to be on the rosy side of the color spectrum.

Minnesota Twins injury updates positive for Max Kepler, Jhoan Duran

Luckily, we found out on Monday, via Aaron Gleeman (The Athletic) that Max Kepler is set to return to the Twins’ lineup as soon as today and that Jhoan Duran confirmed previous reports that Jhoan Duran is starting up a rehab assignment in St. Paul.

Right fielder Max Kepler is on the verge of returning to the Twins’ lineup after spending the past two weeks on the IL with a right knee contusion. He played Triple-A rehab games on Thursday, Friday and Saturday, collecting four hits and three walks. Kepler could be activated from the IL as soon as Monday.

Aaron Gleeman – The Athletic

Gleeman’s update on superstar shortstop Carlos Correa’s intercostal strain wasn’t as positive, which is a problem given he was one of the only plus hitters in the Twins’ lineup, before he exited with an injury. Correa hasn’t even resumed baseball activities yet, though he is getting close to that point.

Correa won’t be ready to return from a right intercostal strain when eligible to come off the IL on Tuesday, but he’s close to resuming baseball activities and, according to Paparesta, “his symptoms are improving dramatically.” Given the setback-prone nature of the injury, Correa and the Twins are being somewhat cautious to avoid a months-long absence.

Aaron Gleeman – The Athletic

Updates on Carlos Correa and Brooks Lee are not so positive…

Brooks Lee, Minnesota Twins
Credit: Nathan Ray Seebeck-USA TODAY Sports

But Gleeman’s bad news turned worse, when he wrote about what he’s been told by the Twins, regarding top prospect Brooks Lee, whose season was put on hold before it got started with what was originally diagnosed as back spasms.

Related: Charley Walters Pleads for Twins to Save Former Gopher Max Meyer from Marlins

On Monday, we found out that back injury is actually a herniated disc and that Lee isn’t expected to resume baseball activities for over a month. Apparently, they were able to hide Lee’s more serious diagnoses for nearly two weeks, before Gleeman finally got the scoop.

After undergoing further testing, he began the Triple-A season on the IL with lower back pain and was said to be out three to four weeks. That timeline has come and gone, and a Twins source told The Athletic that Lee’s back injury is now viewed as more significant. Lee has been diagnosed with a herniated disc and is being treated by California spine and back specialist Dr. Robert G. Watkins

According to a team source briefed on the situation, Lee is about three weeks into a two-month rehab plan. There’s optimism within the organization that he’ll be able to resume playing this season, and Lee impressed the coaching staff and front office by hitting .333 with a .962 OPS this spring, but a timeline has not been established yet for his potential return to game action.

Aaron Gleeman – The Athletic

The article notes that Lee is being “treated” by renowned back specialist Dr. Robert G. Watkins, who as worked with numerous athletes from other sports, including New England Patriots tight end, Rob Gronkowski over 10 years ago.

It’s good to know that Brooks Lee is in good hands, out in California, where he is from. Nonetheless, the team is obviously concerned about the situation, being they didn’t announce it and just given the mention of Gronkowski, who retired early from an HOF NFL career because of injury issues, including his back.

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