In addition to Danny Santana getting designated for assignment to make room for fellow shortstop Ehire Adrianza, the Twins announced that RHP Drew Rucinski will take the place of Kyle Gibson on the active roster.
This marks Rucinski’s third season in the majors as he also pitched in seven combined games for the Los Angeles Angels in 2014 and 2015. Rucinski has been primarily a starting pitcher throughout his career, but it’s not entirely guaranteed that he immediately steps into the rotation as five of his six appearances at Triple-A Rochester had been as a reliever, plus Nick Tepesch had already been tabbed as the starting pitcher for Saturday’s game. Rucinski had gotten off to a decent start at Triple-A as he had a 3.48 ERA over 10 1⁄3 innings, but more impressive was his 13:2 strikeout-to-walk ratio which included him striking out over 30% of his batters faced.
Rucinski isn’t going to dominate hitters for the Twins, but he might be another one of those sneaky, “Justin Haley has a good spin rate on his fastball”-type pitchers that Derek Falvey and Thad Levine sought to acquire this offseason.