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Nathan Pitches Scoreless Fourth In Twins Loss

The Minnesota Twins dropped their second straight Spring Training game today, as they fell to the Boston Red WHO CARES JOE NATHAN IS BACK!

It was nearly one year ago that Nathan tore the ulnar collateral ligament in his right elbow, as it happened in a game against these same Red Sox on March 6, 2010. He underwent Tommy John surgery, and was forced to miss the entire 2010 baseball season. Today, he took the mound for the first time in game action since then, and blew his way through a scoreless fourth inning in Minnesota's 5-0 loss.

From the Minneapolis Star-Tribune's recap of the game:

He received a loud ovation from the sellout crowd of 7,963 as he made his familiar jog to the mound and warmed up.

Nathan walked Jarrod Saltalamacchia around a pair of fly-ball outs, then got Drew Sutton to ground to second to end the inning.

He thew 20 pitches -- 20 of the most meaningful pitches he has thrown in some time. His adrenaline was pumping. He let all his pitches loose.

His first pitch registered 88 miles per hour on the stadium radar gun. Two of his final pitches hit 90. He did throw one pitch at 91 mph. His history is to throw a little slower than that at the start of camp.

As a Twins fan, I'm very, very happy to see Joe Nathan back in action. If the Twins can get to the eighth inning with a lead, the 1-2 punch of Nathan and Matt Capps should be able to secure a lot of victories for Minnesota.

Photographs by Micah Taylor, clairity, and Fibonacci Blue used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.