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Twins Fan Favorite Willians Astudillo Likely Won't Return Until September in Mostly-Lost Season

ST. PETERSBURG, FL - MAY 31: Willians Astudillo #64 of the Minnesota Twins rounds third base in the first inning of a baseball game against the Tampa Bay Rays at Tropicana Field on May 31, 2019 in St. Petersburg, Florida. (Photo by Mike Carlson/Getty Images)
Minnesota Twins v Tampa Bay Rays | Mike Carlson/Getty Images

One of the more beloved players on the Minnesota Twins, utility man Willians Astudillo, has been out since late June with an oblique strain.

Unfortunately, La Tortuga's recovery seems to be progressing slower than initially expected, and as a result, his timetable for return has been pushed back. LaVelle E. Neal III of The Star Tribune reported that Astudillo won't be back in action until some time in September.

On top of his injury-riddled 2019 campaign, Astudillo's numbers were on the way down before the injury, as he's slashing .263/.282/.383 with three home runs and 13 RBI over 39 games (133 at-bats).

Astudillo is notoriously free-swinging at the plate, represented by an OBP that's just 19 points higher than his batting average -- he's walked just twice in 142 plate appearances.

The 27-year-old is a versatile defender, splitting time between catcher, third base and right field this year. He has also shown the ability to contribute offensively, as he hit .355 with 3 home runs, 21 RBI and an .887 OPS in 29 games last year, though he failed to replicate the same success in 39 games this time around.

Minnesota's AL Central lead has disappeared, so having Astudillo back would be a huge lift. Sadly, they'll have to wait until September until La Tortuga is back in the fold.