Injury Updates for Byron Buxton and Josh Donaldson Look Optimistic

Photo: Jesse Johnson / USA TODAY Sports

The Minnesota Twins enter the Major League Playoffs on Tuesday afternoon, against the Houston Astros. A couple of big question marks emerged during the last days of the regular season, when Josh Donaldson and Byron Buxton both left game-2 of the Cincinnati Reds series early, with injuries.

Donaldson left after his first at-bat, when his nagging calf injury flared up again. Buxton was hit in the head by a mid-90’s fastball, that sent him into concussion protocol. Baldelli was still hopeful he’d get both back by the American League Wild Card opener tomorrow, and while he tried to play coy today, optimism remains high after both guys participated in batting practice activities this afternoon.

Byron Buxton Matters

This is great news for the Twins. Their lineup is completely transformed when Buxton and Donaldson are inserted into it. They both provide a spark at the top of the lineup, that’s impossible to duplicate.

We haven’t even spoken about what both players bring to the team, defensively. Donaldson isn’t the 3rd baseman he once was, especially on anything he has to run for, but he’s still an above-average defensive player. Byron Buxton is… well… he’s Byron Buxton, the best outfielder in baseball.

The Minnesota Twins ABSOLUTELY need both Buxton and Donaldson in the lineup, if they are to do any damage during this playoff run. Josh obviously has the name-recognition but the numbers speak to how much the Twins lineup needs a healthy Byron Buxton.

Kenta Maeda will throw the first pitch of this series on Tuesday afternoon, at 1PM CT. Zack Greinke will go for the Astros. Read up more on that matchup, here!

Eric Strack | Minnesota Sports Fan