|If Twins need closer vs Tigers, no one knows who it will be|
DETROIT -- It's going to be closer by committee for the Minnesota Twins in the wake of trading right-hander Fernando Rodney to the Oakland A's.
Translation: Minnesota doesn't have a closer at this time.
"I talked to the (relievers) just to let them know what I was thinking," Twins manager Paul Molitor said Friday. "If someone seems to have the hot hand, most likely I would think it would be prudent to try to ride that.
"But it might be a little different in that we're not necessarily pushing to the playoffs, at least not today. You might want to see somebody else even if somebody might be hot."
The Twins worked that way last year after right-hander Brandon Kintzler was traded and someone eventually emerged, although not stout enough to keep Minnesota from signing Rodney during the winter.
Minnesota didn't get to use a closer Friday night, losing 5-3 to Detroit, but after scoring a run in the ninth inning, Molitor had right-hander Matt Magill warming up just in case.
The Twins on Saturday will turn to right-hander Kyle Gibson (5-8, 3.47 ERA) against the Tigers.
Gibson took the loss in his only start against Detroit this year and his overall record is 6-8 with a 5.52 ERA in 17 starts.
For Detroit, southpaw Francisco Liriano (3-6, 4.37 ERA) will start against one of his former teams. He hasn't faced Minnesota yet this season and has only started against it five times in his career, going 3-1 with a 5.61 ERA.
The Twins faced a question of whom to start Sunday after they placed left-hander Adalberto Mejia on the 10-day disabled list. According to Mike Berardino of the St. Paul Pioneer Press, that person was to be former Twins first-round draft choice Kohl Stewart, a right-hander.
The selection of Stewart, 23, was not confirmed by the Twins, although he was scratched from his Friday start for Triple-A Rochester.
"We're not ready to quite name that (starter) yet," Molitor said.
Minnesota filled two vacant spots on its roster by calling up right-handed reliever Tyler Duffey and slugging first baseman/outfielder Tyler Austin.
Austin, 26, has 15 home runs in 85 career big-league games with the New York Yankees. Acquired July 30 for right-hander Lance Lynn, Austin has hit 17 homers in 258 combined at-bats this season between Triple-A and the majors.
How that will affect Joe Mauer and Logan Morrison will be determined.
Detroit added a relief pitcher Friday, signing right-hander Zach McAllister, designated for assignment by Cleveland, as a free agent. The Tigers designated right-hander Jacob Turner, who gave up seven runs in one inning (five earned) in one start, for assignment and hopes he will clear waivers and go to Triple-A Toledo to pitch.
"He's a veteran with a big arm," Detroit manager Ron Gardenhire said. "We're looking for arms and arm strength."
Gardenhire also said recently recalled right-hander Artie Lewicki will slide into the rotation.
McAllister "will pitch out of the bullpen," Gardenhire said.
"They very aggressively pursued me," McAllister said. "Where I pitch and when will work itself out."