By Joe Christensen
KANSAS CITY, MO. — Delmon Young is not in the starting lineup for the Twins tonight.
His streak of 217 consecutive games played, the longest active streak in the majors, could come to an end, unless he is used off the bench.
Meanwhile, the Royals have optioned Billy Butler back to Class AAA Omaha.
Updates to come…
Update (6:20 p.m.): Manager Ron Gardenhire indicated Young’s break might last longer than one day.
“The other guy [Craig Monroe] did pretty good, so we’ll see,” Gardenhire said. “We’ll see what Monroe can do and go from there. We’ll give [Jason] Kubel a chance to go out in the outfield, once or twice, and we’ll see whatever happens here, I don’t know. Today? Tomorrow? I don’t know. We’ll see how he reacts today and go from there. See how his reaction is.”
Young, who has yet to hit a home run for the Twins, is in a 1-for-23 skid at the plate that has dropped his average from .286 to .258. Defensively, he had misplays in each of the past two games.
“There comes a time when you have to say he might need a little bit of a mental break. He’s fighting it pretty hard defensively. So, give the other guy a chance to see if he can get a swing out there. Watch a game sometimes. It helps every once in a while.”
Young was unavailable for pregame interviews, declining two requests.
1. Carlos Gomez, CF
2. Alexi Casilla, 2B
3. Joe Mauer, C
4. Justin Morneau, 1B
5. Michael Cuddyer, RF
6. Jason Kubel, LF
7. Craig Monroe, DH
8. Mike Lamb, 3B
9. Brendan Harris, SS
Starting pitcher: RH Kevin Slowey
1. David DeJesus, LF
2. Joey Gathright, CF
3. Alex Gordon, 3B
4. Jose Guillen, DH
5. Miguel Olivo, C
6. Mark Teahen, RF
7. Alberto Callaspo, 2B
8. Ross Gload, 1B
9. Mike Aviles, SS
Starting pitcher: RH Luke Hochevar.
Kauffman Stadium. First pitch: 7:05 p.m.