MINNEAPOLIS -- Right-hander Carl Pavano will not accompany the Twins on their two-game trip to Detroit, as he'll stay back in the Twin Cities to continue working on strengthening his right shoulder.

Pavano, who is battling a strain in the front of his throwing shoulder, will instead join the team on Friday in Milwaukee and will start against the Brewers on Saturday.

"I'm just going to get some work in out here," Pavano said. "We've got a guy here we've been working with who does soft-tissue work. So I'll be able to get some extra work with him on a more consistent basis. So I think it'll be beneficial."

Pavano added there's still a chance he'll get a cortisone shot in the shoulder after his start, but he said that he hopes to avoid it as his shoulder has been feeling better. He also said he expects to hear back soon from Dr. David Altchek, who is giving a second look at the MRI exam taken on Pavano's shoulder last week.

The Twins have been careful with Pavano, as he's thrown 83, 69, 62 and 72 pitches in his last four starts. He allowed four runs on six hits over six innings against the Indians in a 5-4 loss on Monday.

"His arm is feeling better," Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said. "So taking a load off him is helping him get his arm strength back. He's in the 60s and 70s right now. He said last night was the best he felt. He threw 72 pitches, but he had life at the end."

Morneau eager to rejoin Twins on Wednesday

MINNEAPOLIS -- Justin Morneau took batting practice on the field for a second straight day on Tuesday, and he will be activated off the disabled list in time for Wednesday's game against the Tigers in Detroit.

Morneau, who is on the DL retroactive to May 1 with a sore left wrist, will be returning on the first day he's eligible. First baseman Chris Parmelee was optioned to Triple-A Rochester to make room for Morneau on the roster.

"He's ready to play," Gardenhire said of Morneau after the Twins' 5-0 loss to the Indians on Tuesday. "He doesn't feel anything right now. He's swinging good. He took early BP today without any problems."

Morneau is also slated to make his return as a first baseman, as he told Gardenhire he feels more comfortable there than he does as the designated hitter. He's played just four games at first this season while seeing action at DH in 16 games.

"He said he'd rather play first base and get right back into it," Gardenhire said. "He thinks it's going to help him stay looser and into the game."

Parmelee, meanwhile, hit just .179 with no homers and three RBIs in 27 games. The Twins are hoping he can get his swing back after he hit .355 with four homers in 21 games as a September callup last season.

"He needs to go down and get his swing going," Gardenhire said. "He was with [hitting coach Tom] Brunansky last year, so he'll be back with him and hopefully he can figure some things out. Maybe that'll help his confidence a little bit."

Parmelee, 24, took the demotion in stride, saying he's eager to work on his swing in his first stint in Triple-A, as he skipped that level on the way to the Majors last year.

"I'm looking forward to going down and playing," Parmelee said. "I'm going to work on some stuff with Bruno down there, and hopefully I'll be back up here real soon."

Sore hamstring keeps Span on Twins' bench

MINNEAPOLIS -- Center fielder Denard Span was held out of Tuesday's lineup for precautionary reasons, as he's dealing with a sore right hamstring.

But Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said it's such a minor injury that he didn't even know which hamstring was bothering Span.

"Span had a little bit of a sore hammy after the game," Gardenhire said. "It's no big deal. He's available, but we didn't want to push that. He went and got treatment and everything."

With Span out, Darin Mastroianni made his first start in center field and batted leadoff. Catcher Joe Mauer also batted second for the first time this season, while rookie shortstop Brian Dozier was moved into the fifth spot in the order.

"I thought about a lot of different lineups and a lot of different things," Gardenhire said. "We're just mixing it up a little bit -- see what happens."

Third base a collaborative effort for Twins

MINNEAPOLIS -- With third baseman Danny Valencia working to improve his offense at Triple-A Rochester, the Twins will continue to use a mix of Trevor Plouffe, Jamey Carroll and Alexi Casilla at third base.

Carroll made his first start of the season at third base on Tuesday, with Casilla getting the start at second base. After five straight starts at third base, Plouffe wasn't in the lineup against the Indians.

"We're just playing everybody," Gardenhire said. "Valencia is down in Triple-A trying to get his stuff right. Plouffe is up here trying to get his stuff right here. So we don't have a total solution. We have people we're going to try to mix and match."

Gardenhire added that Casilla still has work to do at third base, as he's made just two appearances there so far this season as a defense replacement. Casilla has played third just eight times in his career, with one start there coming in 2010.

Casilla played one inning at third on Monday, but Gardenhire said he's more comfortable using Carroll there as he's had extensive experience at the position.

"We had Alexi there last night, and with time, I think he can play there a little bit," Gardenhire said. "But Jamey knows how to play there. Alexi, he was in and we kept telling him to move back, and he kept thinking they were going to bunt. But we were like, 'There's two strikes. I don't think they're gonna bunt.' So we just have to do some work him over there."