Liriano comes off DL, expected to start vs. A's

MINNEAPOLIS -- The Minnesota Twins on Monday activated rookie phenom Francisco Liriano from the 15-day disabled list.

Liriano, who has drawn comparisons to 2004 Cy Young Award winner and teammate Johan Santana, has taken the American League by storm this season, going 12-3 with a 2.19 ERA. However, he has been on the disabled list since Aug. 8 with a strained ligament in his left elbow.

The 22-year-old left-hander is expected to start Wednesday against the Oakland Athletics.

Liriano pitched three scoreless innings on a rehabilitation assignment for Triple-A Rochester on Saturday in an International League playoff contest against Scranton/Wilkes-Barre. He allowed no hits and one walk while striking out four. He threw 25 of 40 pitches for strikes.

After taking three of four this past weekend against Detroit, Minnesota (83-59) moved within two games of the AL Central leaders. The Twins are 1½ games ahead of the Chicago White Sox in the wild-card race.