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 MINNEAPOLIS (AP) -The Minnesota Twins activated All-Star catcher Joe Mauer from the disabled list Friday after he missed more than a month because of a strained left quadriceps.
Mauer, who became the first AL catcher to win a batting title when he hit .347 last season, batted second for the Twins in the opener of a three-game interleague series against the Washington Nationals.
To make room on the roster for Mauer, the Twins optioned left-handed reliever Jason Miller to Triple-A Rochester. Miller allowed eight runs in four innings for the Twins.
Mauer played one game for Class-A Fort Myers, going 0-for-3 Wednesday, during a minor league rehab stint. He is batting .353 with one homer and 14 RBIs in 28 games for Minnesota this year.
The Twins were 14-15 in Mauer's absence. The catcher's last game before Friday was May 4.
``Normally, you'd say he's going to need a little time to get used to the speed of the game again,'' Minnesota manager Ron Gardenhire said. ``I don't think we're dealing with normal, though.''
With Mauer's return, Gardenhire changed his batting lineup. Mauer, usually the No. 3 hitter, was moved to No. 2 because the manager is looking for help at that spot. Third baseman Nick Punto has batted second much of the season, but he was hitting just .226 entering Friday.
Punto was moved to eighth in the order Friday, and right fielder Michael Cuddyer hit third.
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