MINNEAPOLIS -- Michael Cuddyer arrived at Spring Training in February feeling the best physically he has in a long time. He was eager to start a new season and put 2008 behind him.
A series of fluke injuries, including one he suffered just four games into the year, sidelined Cuddyer for over half of last season. So Cuddyer was ready to start the 2009 campaign without any injury concerns. But so far this season, Cuddyer hasn't seen his good health translate into results at the plate.
Cuddyer entered Tuesday's contest against the Rays batting .208 with one home run and six RBIs, in addition to a team-high 15 strikeouts, in 72 at-bats.
But Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said the numbers don't necessarily indicate exactly how Cuddyer has been swinging the bat.
"He's hit into some hard luck, too," Gardenhire said. "If you add the four or five line drives at people, you could probably look at him and say he's hitting .260 or .270 early in the year. It's early and not a lot of at-bats."
"Like I said, you start counting some of the balls he's hit right on the button at people and the long fly balls that have just missed, and he's actually been on the ball pretty decent," Gardenhire added. "He's not getting a lot of hits right now, but hopefully that will come around for him."
Kelly Thesier is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.