Twins’ Josh Donaldson leaves Opening Day game in first inning with hamstring injury

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Minnesota Twins third baseman Josh Donaldson left Thursday’s Opening Day matchup against the Milwaukee Brewers (GameTracker) after just one at-bat. After hitting a double off right-hander Brandon Woodruff in the first inning, Donaldson appeared to suffer an injury rounding first base.

According to The Athletic’s Dan Hayes, the Twins announced that Donaldson was taken out with a tight right hamstring. Once Donaldson made his early exit, Luis Arraez took over at third base. Here’s a look at how it happened:

Ahead of the 2020 season, Donaldson signed a four-year, $92 million deal with the Twins. The 35-year-old was limited to just 28 games in his first season with the Twins because of recurring injuries and setbacks with his right calf. 

In 2020, Donaldson batted .222/.373/.469 (131 OPS+) with six home runs. His last regular season game was on Sept. 25 and the calf injury kept him off the Twins’ 2020 American League Wild Card roster. No injury is good, but at least Donaldson’s is not a calf issue, which has been a long-term injury that’s plagued him several times in recent seasons.

His 2020 season performance was certainly not a great omen following his big contract with Minnesota, and while there’s no word (unclear if he’ll have to be placed on the injured list) regarding his apparent injury during Thursday’s game, it doesn’t bode well for the ball club. In the meantime, the Twins are likely to use Arraez at third and have Miguel Sano, who made some starts at third during spring training, as another option.

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