Morneau takes problem-free batting practice

Morneau takes problem-free batting practice

ANAHEIM -- Twins first baseman Justin Morneau, who underwent surgery to remove a herniated disk fragment in his neck on June 29, took batting practice at Target Field on Wednesday and reported no problems.

"He had a really good day on the field with BP and ground balls and the whole package," Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said. "Everything went good."

Morneau is expected to do the same on Thursday, before taking early batting practice with his teammates upon their return to Minneapolis on Friday for their game against the White Sox.

Gardenhire said Morneau will then be re-evaluated over the weekend to see if he'll head to Fort Myers, Fla., for simulated games or to Triple-A Rochester.

"We have to get home first," Gardenhire said. "I don't think he's going to take off before we get home. We'll get home Friday and see where he's at. ... I definitely want to talk to him before we decide what we're going to do here."

Gardenhire added that second baseman Alexi Casilla, out with a strained right hamstring suffered on July 27 in Texas, has been making progress with his workouts back in Minneapolis.

"He's doing really good," Gardenhire said. "He's moving around good. But he's going to be on there for however many more days, so it's still going to be a few days here."