Nine years later, Pulido gets another chance with Twins

Updated: August 23, 2003, 8:02 PM ET

MINNEAPOLIS -- The Minnesota Twins returned to the Metrodome this weekend for a key series against Kansas City, having been gone for but a week.

For Carlos Pulido, it had been nine years.

Pulido, who had his contract selected from Triple-A Rochester Wednesday when the Twins placed right-handed starter Rick Reed on the disabled list, last pitched in the majors on Aug. 7, 1994 -- right before the players' strike that ended the season.

"It's been a long time," he said.

The 32-year-old Pulido has since played for 10 teams, not including winter ball in his native country of Venezuela. He bounced around the minor leagues with three other major league organizations, pitched in Taiwan briefly also in New Jersey in the independent Atlantic League. He was a teammate of Ichiro Suzuki's for the Orix Blue Wave in Japan in 2000 and spent 2002 in the Mexican League.

The Twins brought him back over the offseason and assigned him to Rochester, where he went 12-5 with a 3.56 ERA in 25 starts for the Red Wings.

"I was having a great year in Triple-A," Pulido said. "I knew if something would happen, I'd be back."

Said general manager Terry Ryan: "I guess perseverance pays off. He had many opportunities to pack it in. One of the reasons he's been able to have such a long opportunity in baseball is he's such a good person."

Pulido went 3-7 with a 5.98 ERA in 84 1-3 innings in 1994 -- his only big-league season. Minnesota went 53-60 and had a league-worst team ERA of 5.68 that year.

When he pitches in a game, Pulido will have endured the longest span between appearances in the majors by any player since Minnie Minoso did so for the Chicago White Sox in 1964 and later in 1976 -- according to research done by the Twins' media relations department.

Joe Mays was moved back in the rotation to replace Reed, so Pulido -- a left-hander -- will probably be the Twins' long reliever for the rest of the season.

"It's not like we're throwing a young kid to a pennant stretch here," Ryan said.

Manager Ron Gardenhire, a third-base coach at the time, was asked if he remembered anything about Pulido from his previous stint.

"Well, we weren't very good then," Gardenhire said after a long pause. "I think it's great to see him back up here."

Pulido seemed at home while walking around the Metrodome this weekend.

"I never forget," he said, all smiles. "It's not changed too much."

This story is from's automated news wire. Wire index