The Twins have 13 spring training games remaining, meaning they have 13 games to decide what Justin Morneau's role will be with the club.
The Twins had hoped the 2006 American League MVP would be their regular first baseman as he attempts to come back from a 2011 season marred by concussion problems and other assorted injuries.
But questions about Morneau intensified Friday when he made his sixth start in a row at designated hitter. He drove a double over center fielder Curtis Granderson's head in the fifth inning of a 6-4 loss to a Yankees split squad, breaking an 0-for-20 skid and raising his batting average to a still-paltry .108.
His spring slump has led to recent attempts to get him more at-bats, but it also has prompted the Twins to examine how to get the most out of Morneau this year.
Team officials wouldn't commit to anything -- and they don't have to with two weeks of camp left -- but they might be tipping their hand.
Clue No. 1: The six consecutive starts at DH, seven if you count the minor league game he played in Wednesday, during which he got six at-bats. Has he stopped being a first baseman?
"What does it matter?" manager Ron Gardenhire said. "He's in the lineup; it doesn't matter where we're playing him. We're just getting him at-bats right now. I know he can play first base, I don't need to know about that. I need to know about other people. Right now, he's just playing.
Justin Morneau at designated hitter seeming more likely for Twins
Minneapolis Star Tribune | Mar 24