CLEVELAND -- So far so good for Indians starting pitcher Corey Kluber.
For the first time since fracturing his right forearm on May 1 in Miami, Kluber got back on the mound Wednesday, throwing his first bullpen session.
“They’re really happy with it,” manager Terry Francona said. “Everybody came out smiling, so that’s good.”
Kluber threw 20 pitches, all fastballs, and will take a few days off before he throws another bullpen session. He’ll play catch on Thursday, and he’ll long toss on Friday with the plan to throw some breaking balls on flat ground when he’s finished. He’ll take another day to play catch on Saturday and then will get back in the bullpen on Sunday.
“I don’t know what the plan is for that yet Sunday,” Francona said. “My guess is that [the pitch count will be] a little bit elevated, but I’ll tell you. … The next time through it will be a day less in between sides. We’re still at the point where we’re starting to build him up or let him go through the side days, but also build up his arm strength.”
The Indians have yet to set any type of timetable for the right-hander, however they remain optimistic about how quickly he’s progressed since he got his cast off on May 23. He was cleared to begin playing catch on June 27.
Otero to make two more rehab appearances
Francona said that right-handed reliever Dan Otero will pitch again for Double-A Akron on Thursday and Saturday. After Thursday’s outing, he’ll come back to Cleveland and meet with Francona, head athletic trainer James Quinlan, general manager Mike Chernoff and president of baseball operations Chris Antonetti to establish a plan for his return.
“You know what, I told OT that we would sit down and visit with him more than likely tomorrow,” Francona said. “Just because when he pitches Saturday, Sunday then we leave and that’d be rushed. I don’t want to rush through it. I want to be able to sit down with him and James and Chris and Cherny, and also listen to him on how he feels and what he thinks he needs and what we think and just to make sure we’re on the same page.”
This was Otero’s first trip to the injured list in his career, officially getting sidelined on June 2 -- which was retroactive to May 31 -- with right shoulder inflammation.
This date in Indians history
1995: Albert Belle smashed a walk-off grand slam in a 7-5 victory over the Angels. Belle finished the season with 50 homers, most in MLB, and 126 RBIs.