Carrasco joins Indians early to miss hurricane

September 1st, 2019

ST. PETERSBURG -- Because of concerns surrounding the projected path of Hurricane Dorian, the Indians on Friday decided to fly in ahead of his official reinstatement before Sunday's game against the Rays. The right-hander, who has been on the injured list since June 5 while battling leukemia, completed his final rehab assignment on Thursday with Triple-A Columbus, working 1 1/3 hitless innings with a walk and two strikeouts.

“He came in with a smile,” Indians manager Terry Francona said. “I was just happy to see him today. He came in, kind of had a bounce in his step. I think given the right amount of innings and things like that, he can really help us win.

“It’s a feel-good story already, before he even pitches, just because he looks healthy and he’s smiling. The fact that he might help us win some baseball games, to me, is second. A distant second.”

The Indians plan to ease Carrasco back into action with low-leverage situations for his first couple of outings, but Francona also acknowledged that the game situations will more than likely dictate his reliever’s immediate path.

Walking wounded
(right shoulder rehab) was activated off the injured list and optioned to Triple-A. In a corresponding move, right-hander Jordan Stephens was designated for assignment.

(right ulna fracture) will be able to resume what Francona termed “activity” next week, a step forward from being forced to rest a strained oblique.

(right shoulder strain) is slated to throw a 50-pitch/three-inning outing and then be re-evaluated. Best-case scenario has him available around Tuesday or Wednesday.

Mercado returns ‘home’
visited Tropicana Field a handful of times in his youth, but this weekend marks his first game action there as a professional athlete.

The 24-year-old attended Gaither High, about 30 miles northeast of Tropicana Field. Mercado stood out at an early age, making the varsity squad as a freshman just in time for a sizable winning streak that is one of his best prep memories.

“We had a good team, an older team, and coach gave me the chance to start a couple of games into the season,” Mercado remembered, “and we won like 15 or something games in a row. We were part of a great team, and traveling, and it was all new to me.

“I was a freshman with older guys. It’s kind of like now, almost.”

Mercado entered play Friday with a .271 average in 87 games. His MLB arrival also boosted an Indians team that entering Friday had a 50-25 record since June 4.

“Kind of the timing was when [Mercado] got called up, we started playing better,” Francona said. “He was part of the reason. He’s handled himself really well. … He’s given us a spark.”

Sherman purchases Royals; Dolan tips his cap
Indians vice chairman John Sherman, who was rumored to be in talks to purchase majority ownership of the Royals, moved a step closer to doing so Friday when current Royals chairman David Glass and his family announced they’d reached an agreement with Sherman.

Indians owner and chairman Paul Dolan released the following statement regarding the announcement:

“We’re very supportive of John and his group reaching an agreement to acquire ownership of his hometown Kansas City Royals. His acquisition of the Royals is good for the game of baseball and I wish him the best. John has been a great partner of ours since 2016 and we are grateful for his contributions to our organization in his time with us. Moving forward, this transition will not alter our organization’s operational approach. We remain committed to our pursuit of winning the World Series while creating a compelling fan experience.”

On this date …
1954: The Indians top the Red Sox, 5-4, to finish 11-0 at Boston for the season. It marks the first road sweep of its kind since 1927, when the Yankees finished 11-0 at St. Louis.