ST. PETERSBURG -- Sam Fuld on Wednesday night against the Rays made his first start in center field for the Twins since he was claimed on waivers from the A's on Sunday. He ended up going 2-for-5 with an RBI single in a 6-4 win for the Twins in 12 innings.
It gave Fuld his first start since April 11, as he was in limbo for 10 days after being designated for assignment by Oakland on April 12. Fuld said he worked out on his own, including at his alma mater, Stanford, to stay in baseball shape after he was designated.
Wednesday night's start was also Fuld's first as an opponent at Tropicana Field after playing for the Rays from 2011-13.
"It's a little bit different because of the nerves that come with not playing for the last couple weeks," Fuld said before the game. "It's also that and you want to impress everybody. But it's just one game. I'm just more excited than anything to get back on the field."
Shortstop Eduardo Escobar also got the start at shortstop over Pedro Florimon while Chris Herrmann started in right field, with Chris Colabello getting the nod at designated hitter.
Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said it was important to mix up the lineup on Wednesday, including giving Fuld his first start with his new team.
"He's familiar with this ballpark, obviously," Gardenhire said. "He's sat out enough. So we wanted to get him in there and run around. Same with Escobar and Herrmann. Everybody has to play."
Arcia outpaces Willingham as duo progresses
ST. PETERSBURG -- Outfielders Oswaldo Arcia and Josh Willingham are continuing to make progress with their wrist injuries, as the Twins remain hopeful that each will be able to take batting practice on the field this weekend.
Arcia, on the 15-day disabled list retroactive to April 5 with a right wrist strain, is ahead of Willingham, as Arcia has already started to take batting practice in the cages. Willingham, who is on the 15-day DL with a small fracture in his left wrist dating back to April 7, has yet to take batting practice, as he still feels some tenderness in his wrist.
"Hammer is getting ready to start taking some swings, and Arcia already has started taking some swings," Twins assistant general manager Rob Antony said. "I think the target is that when we get back they'll be hitting on the field."
Arcia took Wednesday off from swinging the bat but was expected to resume swinging in the cages on Thursday. He could begin a rehab assignment early next week if he does not experience any setbacks this weekend.
Guerrier takes another step in comeback bid
ST. PETERSBURG -- Reliever Matt Guerrier, who is attempting to make a comeback after having surgery to fix the flexor mass in his right elbow in August, was promoted to Triple-A Rochester on Wednesday after he threw four scoreless innings at Double-A New Britain.
The right-hander, who pitched with the Twins from 2004-10 before rejoining the club on a Minor League deal this offseason, has an opt-out date in his contract of May 8. Guerrier was given his release in Spring Training on March 24 but re-signed with the Twins on a Minor League deal the next day.
He did not give up an earned run in three appearances at Double-A, striking out five and walking two in four innings of work. Twins assistant general manager Rob Antony said the Twins were pleased with his progress.
"His delivery hasn't changed, and his arm action hasn't changed," Antony said. "Sometimes when guys have injuries, you see the arm action look different, and that will throw up a red flag. He looked the same in Spring Training, and he continues to."
Guerrier replaced right-hander Deolis Guerra on Triple-A Rochester's roster, as Guerra was placed on the seven-day disabled list with a strained hamstring.
• Top prospect Byron Buxton, who sprained his left wrist in a Minor League Spring Training game on March 16, is scheduled to play three innings on Monday in his first extended spring training game. The Twins were hopeful he would be able to play in his first game on Thursday, but they are being cautious with him. Buxton, rated the No. 1 overall prospect by MLB.com, originally injured his wrist diving for a ball in the outfield.
• Triple-A Rochester infielder Eduardo Nunez remains sidelined with a sore left oblique but is expected to return to action this weekend. Nunez has been out since Saturday with the injury. He remains likely to be recalled as infield depth once he gets consistent at-bats at Rochester.