Right-hander Nick Blackburn left Saturday's game against the Texas Rangers with stiffness in the back of his right shoulder.
Blackburn grimaced after throwing a fastball up and away to left-handed batter David Murphy in the top of the sixth inning -- his 79th pitch of the ballgame. Twins trainer Dave Pruemer and manager Ron Gardenhire rushed out to the mound, and after a brief discussion Blackburn was removed from the game.
Blackburn was throwing fairly well through five-plus innings, having allowed two earned runs on seven hits and striking out three opposite just one walk.
The Twins have already lost one starter, Scott Baker, for season due to elbow surgery.