KANSAS CITY -- Twins catcher Joe Mauer was held out of the starting lineup in a planned move on Wednesday night against the Royals, giving Ryan Doumit the start behind the plate in the series finale at Kauffman Stadium.
But Mauer came in as a pinch-hitter in the ninth inning and singled to left field against Royals closer Greg Holland in a 5-2 loss, and Doumit left the game in the fourth inning due to concussion-like symptoms. Chris Herrmann finished the game behind the plate for Doumit, who is expected to be placed on the seven-day concussion list.
Mauer had played every day since coming off the restricted list on July 30 after missing six games to attend the births of his twin daughters. Mauer ranks second on the team in games played this year with 100, trailing only first baseman Justin Morneau, who played in his 105th game on Wednesday.
"We had talked about this way back once we got on the road," manager Ron Gardenhire said. "I didn't want to give him a day off at home. People get excited. We need to give him a break here and this will give him back-to-back [with Thursday's off-day]."
So while Mauer was out of the lineup, shortstop Pedro Florimon made his return after missing four games with inflammation in his left wrist. He took batting practice from both sides of the plate with no issues before Tuesday's game and was cleared by team doctors to make his return.
"Everything went good," Twins assistant general manager Rob Antony said. "He's in the lineup. He could've played last night. He felt good but we just didn't use him."
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.