Hit by pickoff throw, Ramirez exits with back contusion

Hit by pickoff throw, Ramirez exits with back contusion

MINNEAPOLIS -- Left fielder Wilkin Ramirez, who was officially reinstated from the paternity list before Tuesday's 8-6 win over the Angels, left the game early with a back contusion. He's considered day to day.

Ramirez singled with two outs in the fifth inning against Angels reliever Jerome Williams but was hit on the back on a pickoff throw from Williams while diving back into first base.

"Ramirez is OK," Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said. "He had a stinger. It got him right in the spine, and it tingled right through his brain, so we got him off the field. But he's OK."

Ramirez left the game for Eduardo Escobar, who replaced him as a pinch-runner and eventually scored on a two-run single from Brian Dozier, which had given the Twins a 7-4 lead. Ramirez also had a sacrifice fly in the third.

Escobar took over in left field to mark just the second time in his career the utility infielder played in the outfield. Darin Mastroianni (sore left ankle) and Josh Willingham (flu-like symptoms) were both unavailable to replace Ramirez.

Rhett Bollinger is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Bollinger Beat, and follow him on Twitter @RhettBollinger. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.