Cleveland Indians pitcher Danny Salazar will be sidelined at the start of the regular season because of a shoulder injury, opening a rotation spot for Mike Clevinger.
Indians manager Terry Francona confirmed Monday that Salazar is “not going to be ready” for the start of the season as he deals with inflammation in his pitching shoulder.
Salazar is a few weeks behind his originally scheduled throwing program but threw from 90 feet Monday, prompting Francona to say that the hard-throwing right-hander is “going in the right direction.”
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“If I can be more versatile, it’s something that should help our team in a lot of different ways,” Braun said early in spring training.
Counsell has said in camp that he wanted Braun to get game experience at first base and allow Braun to learn from mistakes that can’t be taught from drills and workouts alone.
“Some of it you can coach, and you can tell him, but you have to experience it,” Counsell said. “We’re really at the start of this process.”
But it’s that referenced second half of Bauer’s last season that makes his strongest case. Beginning with his July 21 start, which was the first one during which he exhibited a clear increase in use of his slider while shelving his cutter, he had 10 quality starts, a 2.60 ERA and 26.7 percent strikeout rate in his final 14 appearances. It was the first time in his career that Bauer seemed to exhibit good control — his walk rate was an uncharacteristic-for-him 6.7 percent — which is something he has carried through his first two Cactus League starts (zero walks).
I can formulate a case for any of the other five and think McCullers has a definitively higher ceiling — McCullers’ raw stuff is tops from this group — so the decision could come down to roster context, but Bauer is the most well-rounded choice for me.