MINNEAPOLIS -- The Minnesota Twins are scratching pitcher Francisco Liriano from Wednesday's start against the Rangers because of discomfort in his left forearm. The decision was made after Liriano threw in the bullpen on Monday and couldn't get loose.
He will be replaced by Boof Bonser, the right-hander who was called up from Triple-A Oklahoma after the Twins' 9-0 loss to the Rangers on Tuesday. Liriano is 12-2 with a Major League-leading 1.96 ERA in 26 games, including 14 starts.
"It's not the elbow, it's just in the forearm," pitching coach Rick Anderson said. "It's muscular. You know, if we were later on in September, we would just [start him]. It's more of a precaution.
"The kid, you don't want to mess with him. If we run him out there and it's not 100 percent and something happens, you'll never forgive yourself."
Liriano told Anderson that he would like to start.
"He said, 'I can go tomorrow,' but we're not going to do it," Anderson said. "I just don't want to risk it with him."
The Twins had Liriano undergo an MRI on Monday and the results showed there was nothing serious to worry about.
Bonser was 2-2 with a 5.30 ERA in seven starts for the Twins earlier this year. The Twins are hoping Liriano will be able to make his next start on Monday against the Detroit Tigers.
The Twins also announced after the game that pitchers Scott Baker and infielder Terry Tiffee were being optioned to Triple-A Rochester and reliever Matt Guerrier is being activated off the disabled list.
With Baker gone, this is a chance for Bonser to work his way back into the rotation. He was 6-4 with a 2.84 ERA in 13 starts at Rochester.
"He deserves another chance," Anderson said. "We'll see. Heck yeah, whoever they bring up, if they pitch well they deserve a chance. This one, he's coming off four days of rest, so we'll watch him tomorrow."
T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.