Alex Kirilloff Called Up for Astros Series

Photo: Brace Hemmelgarn - Getty Images

UPDATE: 10:25 AM – Buxton in — Donaldson Out — Kirilloff on the bench.

In mind-blowing news late last night/early this morning, the Star Tribune’s Phil Miller reported that the Minnesota Twins are calling up stud prospect, Alex Kirilloff, for the American League Wild Card series against the Houston Astros. The report has recently been confirmed by others.

The first pitch of the series will be thrown out today, at 1PM CT and this could mean a major shake-up when the lineups are announced over the next few hours.

Kirilloff’s call up means one of either Josh Donaldson or Byron Buxton is not going to be healthy enough to play in this today’s game. That’s a bit surprising, given both guys participated in batting practice yesterday. If you read Miller’s article, it sounds like Donaldson is the guy the Twins are most nervous about losing for this afternoon. More evidence of that has sprouted up this morning.

Kirilloff for…… who?

Donaldson did some sidestepping drills and stop-and-starts on the turf during the Twins’ workout with head athletic trainer Michael Salazar watching, and manager Rocco Baldelli said the former MVP’s status for Game 1 on Tuesday remains uncertain.

Same goes for Byron Buxton, though the center fielder caught fly balls Monday, a positive sign for someone who showed mild concussion symptoms two days earlier. Buxton also took some swings in the batting cage.

The Twins could activate outfielder Alex Kirilloff, their first-round pick (15th overall) in 2016. The 22-year-old has battled injuries during his brief career, and played at Class AA last season. If Donaldson can’t play, Marwin Gonzalez would replace him at third; if Buxton can’t go, the Twins would need a spare outfielder.

Phil Miller – Star Tribune

Alex Kirilloff plays the outfield so, naturally, he’d be coming up to replace Byron Buxton, right? Not so fast.

We don’t know if this is how everything will play out, but I will keep everyone updated as the morning moves along and we learn more information. As much as I want to see Alex Kirilloff hit his first dinger… I want to see a Minnesota Twins victory even more.

The best avenue to that outcome, features Josh Donaldson and Byron Buxton at the top of the Twins batting order. Stay tuned.

Eric Strack | Minnesota Sports Fan