Nathan headed to Twin Cities for MRI on elbow

By: Kelly Thesier/MLB.com

FORT MYERS, Fla. -Twins closer Joe Nathan is headed to the Twin Cities for an MRI on his surgically repaired right elbow.

Nathan, 35, left Saturday’s game against the Red Sox for precautionary reasons after feeling tightness and soreness in that right elbow.

When he arrived in the Twins clubhouse on Sunday morning, Nathan said his elbow was feeling stiff and sore. After getting his elbow re-evaluated by team doctors, Nathan said the decision was made to have further pictures taken of the elbow.

The team and Nathan want to make sure the tightness in his elbow was not due to anything more than pain from breaking up scar tissue following the surgery he had on Oct. 20 to remove bone spurs and loose bodies from the elbow.

“Everything is looking good as it not being super serious,” Nathan said. “As far as tears or anything, it doesn’t look like it’s anything like that. That’s a positive and I’m going up there with positive thoughts. But we definitely want to be precautionary and make sure that we have all the information we could gather to at least give us peace of mind and know that hopefully nothing is going on.”

Nathan said he’ll take a couple days off from throwing. But he wouldn’t know the exact plan of treatment until they get more information from the MRI, which they’ll compare to a previous one he had prior to surgery.

“I think we always expect speed bumps when you are coming back from surgery,” Nathan said. “It’s nice that if there is a time to have it happen, it happened on my first game and not my last game down here. Now we’re staring at the season starting and me missing time during the season.  Just going to hope it’s as minor as it can be and it hopefully it doesn’t go into the regular season.”

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