There was a report earlier this week that Justin Morneau might be available to play if the Twins make it past the first round. On July 7, Morneau was sliding into second base when Toronto’s second baseman John McDonald kneed him in the head. Morneau walked off the field under his own power, but was diagnosed with a concussion.
Ever since the incident, Morneau has been struggling with headaches and dizziness. He had to take several weeks off because baseball activities bothered him. Morneau couldn’t even sit on the bench. His doctors told him to stay away from the ballpark for a while.
Starting in September, he has made spot appearances. He joined his team in the dugout for the Twins legends game, which was on September 5 at Target Field. Morneau joined his team when they celebrated their Division title in the early hours of September 22. Also, he has watched a couple of games from the bench.
Also in September, Morneau has started baseball-related activities to get a feel for baseball again. He has done some running, fielding, and batting at Target Field. The test was to do these activities without getting headaches. He had to stop some days but as time went on, he was doing activities with fewer and fewer headaches. While he was/is practicing batting, he has crushed the ball out of Target Field. It looks as if he hasn’t loss his batting stroke.
Morneau hopes to return for the American League Championship Series. But I don’t see where Morneau could fit in this line-up now. Jim Thome and Jason Kubel have to be in the same line-up as they are power hitters. Michael Cuddyer has been playing a decent first base with back-up Jose Morales making two great plays on September 22 in his debut at first base. Morales made his second start at first base on October 2 leaving Cuddyer with pinch hitting duties. Could Morneau come off the bench, and if so, what happens to these other players?
Written by: Michael L. Sack