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A foul ball to Max Kepler's right knee on Opening Day sidelined him for the next two games, and now he will sit for at least 10 games, which includes the entire upcoming seven-game road trip.

Kepler was put on the 10-day injured list Tuesday because of a right knee contusion, which is retroactive to Sunday. The Twins filled his spot on the active roster by acquiring righthanded reliever Michael Tonkin from the New York Mets for cash. Tonkin, who pitched for the Twins from 2013 to 2017, was designated for assignment Friday.

"Max just didn't feel like the bruise or contusion was really getting better fast enough," Twins manager Rocco Baldelli said. "I think it was just uncomfortable and something he couldn't get rid of. He wants to get rid of it before he's able to play."

Kepler was 1-for-20 (.050 batting average) with six strikeouts and one walk in his first five games. Matt Wallner started in right field in Kepler's absence, and the Twins plan to use Manuel Margot, Austin Martin and Alex Kirilloff in left field.

There was no additional testing for Kepler's knee, so the Twins are hopeful it will be a short stint on the IL.

"The only change was basically coming from Max and him telling us how he feels and that he didn't feel good," Baldelli said.

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Tonkin, a 6-foot-7 reliever, allowed six hits and eight runs (two earned) in four innings for the Mets before he was designated for assignment. He is out of minor league options, and the Twins completed their trade for him before he was put on waivers. Tonkin made 45 relief appearances for Atlanta last year with a 4.28 ERA.

"He's definitely a guy that has made good adjustments over his career, and we think there is still plenty in there to be a really successful pitcher," Baldelli said.

To clear a spot on the 40-man roster for Tonkin, the Twins transferred pitcher Zack Weiss (right shoulder strain) to the 60-day IL.

Thielbar, Staumont begin rehab assignments

Twins relievers Caleb Thielbar and Josh Staumont started Class AAA rehab assignments Tuesday, both pitching one inning.

Thielbar, who was bothered by a left hamstring strain during spring training, allowed one hit and one walk while striking out a batter in a scoreless inning. Opposing hitters whiffed on six of their nine swings as his fastball topped out at 93 mph. He's expected to pitch in at least one more minor league game before potentially joining the Twins bullpen.

"I can't speak to what is going to happen after his second outing because I really don't know at this point," Baldelli said. "It's going to be about how he's feeling and what he's going to be capable of when he returns."

Staumont, an offseason free-agent signing, can be optioned to the minor leagues, so he could remain with the St. Paul Saints once he fully recovers from his right calf strain. He pitched a scoreless inning with a walk, hitting 98 mph with his fastball.


* Injured Twins closer Jhoan Duran says he expects to throw a bullpen session Friday in Detroit, which will be his first time off a mound since he strained his right oblique in spring training.

* Michael Helman, Jair Camargo and Yunior Severino homered in a four-batter stretch in the fourth inning Tuesday, but the St. Paul Saints' ninth-inning rally fell short in a 9-7 loss to the Iowa Cubs at CHS Field.