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Mauer out again today, could end up on DL

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The back spasms that forced Joe Mauer to leave Sunday's game early will keep him out for a fourth consecutive game today against Cleveland.

According to LaVelle Neal of the Star Tribune, Twins manager Ron Gardenhire brought up the possibility of placing Mauer on the 15-day disabled list. Mauer went through some baseball-related activities before Wednesday's game in Cleveland, but the workout didn't provide much optimism for a quick return.

"He did fine. Little sore at the end of the day," Gardenhire said, per Mike Berardino. "He went through a lot."

Back spasms may not be the best definition for what Mauer is dealing with, according to Neal.

Having spent a night in the hospital because of back spasms - and after talking to Mauer - I'm not sure what he has (or has) is actually a spasm. To hear Mauer explain it, his back started bothering him during pre-game on Sunday. He tried to play through it and it got worse. Whatever is grabbing him down there is slowly going away. I asked him directly, ``When did the spasms end?'' His reply: ``Well. it's still there. Spasm? I don't know. It was hurting pretty good during the game and we tried to calm it down as best as possible.''

After a slow start to the season Mauer has lifted his batting average to .296 with two homers and 11 RBIs in 29 games. Mauer is hitting .393 since April 25.

Meanwhile, injuries are causing some problems with depth. Eduardo Escobar, who is primarily an infielder, was forced to play left field on Wednesday. The Twins were hoping to recall outfielder Oswaldo Arcia from Triple-A Rochester in the near future, but he had a setback with his wrist injury. Outfielder Aaron Hicks is working his way back from a concussion as well.

The lack of depth could prove to be a bigger issue this weekend when the Twins match up against dominant Tigers starters Justin Verlander and Max Scherzer.

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