May 8, 2022; Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA; Minnesota Twins first baseman Alex Kirilloff (19) runs home and scores against the Oakland Athletics on a single in the third inning at Target Field. Mandatory Credit: Bruce Kluckhohn-USA TODAY Sports

Devin Smeltzer was recalled Saturday to start Minnesota’s game against Cleveland but a pitcher wasn’t sent down to make room.

Instead, first baseman/outfielder Alex Kirilloff was optioned to Triple-A St. Paul.

To make move for Smeltzer on the 40-man roster, Miguel Sano was transferred to the 60-day injured list.

Kirilloff played in five games (with four starts) after returning from rehabbing a wrist injury and went 4-for-12 but with no extra-base hits and one run, one walk, a hit by pitch and five strikeouts.

In 10 games with Minnesota this season he’s 5-for-29 (.172) – all singles – with two runs, one walk and 12 strikeouts. Kirilloff went 5-for-22 (.227) with no extra-base hits and six walks and nine strikeouts in seven games at St. Paul on his rehab assignment.

The Twins’ first-round pick (No. 16 overall) in 2016 appeared in 59 games as a rookie in 2021, slashing .251/.299/.423 with eight homers.

Smeltzer has made 19 appearances with seven starts for the Twins since 2019, but pitched in just one game in 2021 -- going the final 4 2/3 innings on April 24, allowing one unearned run – before being sidelined for the season with an elbow injury.

In five starts for the Saints this season, Smeltzer has a 3.86 ERA, 1.286 WHIP and 7.7 K/9. He owns a career 4.26 ERA, 1.263 WHIP and 7.2 K/9 in his three seasons with Minnesota.

Catch Smeltzer’s start on Bally Sports North beginning with Twins Live at 5:30 p.m.

Featured Podcast

See all