MINNEAPOLIS -- Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said Mike Pelfrey will remain in the rotation despite his recent struggles.
The Twins have been monitoring Pelfrey's workload down the stretch, as he's coming off Tommy John surgery. The right-hander has thrown 142 1/3 innings in 27 starts with the Twins this season after throwing just 19 2/3 last year with the Mets before undergoing elbow surgery on May 1, 2012.
Pelfrey was solid in August with a 3.60 ERA in six starts, but he has posted a 12.00 ERA in two September starts, including giving up seven runs on eight hits over just three-plus innings in Wednesday's 18-3 loss to the A's.
"He's in the rotation right now," Gardenhire said. "We'll talk to him and sit down, but his plans are to stay in the rotation. So we'll see how it goes from there. We'll just gauge him performance by performance. Last night wasn't much, but he obviously didn't use up many innings."
Pelfrey said he wants to remain in the rotation, adding that he's felt fine physically despite his troubles so far in September.
Pelfrey, who is making $4 million this year, also has monetary incentives at stake, as he's due a $100,000 bonus if he throws 150 innings and another $150,000 if he reaches 160 innings. But he said his reasons for wanting to stay in the rotation have more to do with finishing the year strong than reaching his incentives.
"I would like to finish the season," Pelfrey said. "I always take pride in taking the ball every fifth day. Whatever I end up getting to is what I end up getting to."
Trio of callups make season debuts for Twins
MINNEAPOLIS -- One of the only positives of Wednesday's 18-3 loss to the A's was that it allowed for several September callups to make their season debuts for the Twins.
Catcher Eric Fryer had the most memorable debut, as he homered in his first at-bat in the sixth inning. It was also the 28-year-old's first career big league homer in 17 games, including 16 with the Pirates over the previous two seasons.
"The game was out of hand, but it felt good," Fryer said. "It's a big yard. I didn't know if it would get up or get out. It was fantastic."
Right-hander Shairon Martis also made a good impression, throwing a scoreless inning with two strikeouts. But right-hander Cole De Vries gave up three runs in his first three innings of work on the season.
Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said he wants to see more of Martis, who pitched for the Netherlands in the World Baseball Classic and had a 4.26 ERA at Triple-A Rochester, while De Vries remains a candidate to join the rotation in case the Twins decide to shut down Mike Pelfrey or Andrew Albers early.
"Martis threw very good," Gardenhire said. "We want to see him pitch. He came in highly recommended by our Triple-A staff. … It was nice to see him get into the ballgame yesterday and see how he handled it. He had a nice fastball and a good slider. So we'll get him some work."
• Twins catcher Joe Mauer, who had to cut his workout short on Wednesday due to concussion-like symptoms, worked out without any issues at Target Field on Thursday, according to Twins manager Ron Gardenhire. But Mauer didn't hit on the field, as the Twins didn't take on-field batting practice before their 8-2 loss to the A's.
• Twins general manager Terry Ryan said the club is still waiting to make a decision on whether right-hander Samuel Deduno will undergo arthroscopic surgery this offseason. Ryan said it looks more and more likely that Deduno will need to have his shoulder scoped. Deduno was placed on the 15-day disabled list with right shoulder soreness on Aug. 30, and was transferred to the 60-day disabled list on Monday.
• Entering play Friday, the Twins have 32 homers from their rookies, marking the highest total by Minnesota rookies since 1999, when they hit 42. Oswaldo Arcia leads the group with 12 homers.