MINNEAPOLIS - The Minnesota Twins have to win Game 2 of the American League Wild Card Playoffs on Wednesday at Target Field to keep their season alive, and they won’t have Byron Buxton in the lineup.
Buxton went 1-for-4 Tuesday and got his first career playoff hit against Houston Astros’ starter Zack Greinke. Twins manager Rocco Baldelli said Buxton came to Target Field Wednesday morning not at 100 percent, but wouldn’t elaborate any further.
“Buck’s not at 100 percent today. He’s not feeling at his best. I know everyone is going to want to know every possible detail about what that means, and as of right now, I’m not going to be able to go into those details. He’s not going to be starting in today’s game,” Baldelli said.
Buxton was hit in the head by a pitch last weekend in the final regular season series against the Cincinnati Reds, and had mild concussion symptoms. Buxton worked out Monday at Target Field before playing Tuesday.
Baldelli didn’t rule out Buxton coming off the bench in Game 3, saying they’ll monitor him throughout the game.
“If he can help us in the game and he’s able, he will,” Baldelli said. “He’s not at 100 percent, and we’re not going to put him out there to start the game because of it.
In Buxton’s place, Max Kepler will bat second and start in center field. Alex Kirilloff will make his major league debut, batting sixth and playing in right field.