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Kluber gets extra time to deal with neck issue

Ace pushed back to Sunday, at the earliest
MLB.com @MLBastian

SAN FRANCISCO -- The Indians are hopeful that a couple extra days of rest are all Corey Kluber will need to get over the neck issue that's bothering him. With a team off-day on Thursday, Cleveland has shuffled its rotation to buy its ace some more recovery time.

Prior to Wednesday's game against the Giants, Indians manager Terry Francona noted that right-hander Trevor Bauer will start on Friday against the Blue Jays, with Danny Salazar slated to be activated from the disabled list to start on Saturday. Depending on Kluber's status, either he or righty Josh Tomlin will take the ball on Sunday in Cleveland.

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SAN FRANCISCO -- The Indians are hopeful that a couple extra days of rest are all Corey Kluber will need to get over the neck issue that's bothering him. With a team off-day on Thursday, Cleveland has shuffled its rotation to buy its ace some more recovery time.

Prior to Wednesday's game against the Giants, Indians manager Terry Francona noted that right-hander Trevor Bauer will start on Friday against the Blue Jays, with Danny Salazar slated to be activated from the disabled list to start on Saturday. Depending on Kluber's status, either he or righty Josh Tomlin will take the ball on Sunday in Cleveland.

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"We're still trying to figure it out," Francona said. "We're still a little bit up in the air on that."

Francona noted that Kluber (7-3, 2.86 ERA in 15 starts this season) developed the neck issue during his outing on Saturday in Oakland. During that start, the right-hander went 7 1/3 innings, allowing three runs on five hits with 12 strikeouts and no walks.

In nine starts since coming off the DL -- following a back injury that forced Kluber to miss most of May -- the ace has turned in a 1.56 ERA with 94 strikeouts, 11 walks and a .160 opponents' average in 63 1/3 innings. By being pushed back to Sunday at the earliest, Kluber will have a minimum of seven rest days to hopefully alleviate the neck problem.

Francona, Bochy meet

Francona was looking forward to catching up with Giants manager Bruce Bochy during this series at AT&T Park. Not only would it be a chance to talk shop, but both Francona and Bochy underwent cardiac ablation procedures this year.

"We talked for a little bit," said Francona, who had his operation on July 6. "I can't imagine either one of us have anything going on. We're two specimens. The picture of health."

Kidding aside, Francona, 58, was happy to have the chance to meet with Bochy. The 62-year-old Giants manager, who had the same heart procedure in April, is in his 23rd season managing in the Majors.

"It was mostly just [to say hello]. He's such a nice person," Francona said. "Anybody who's spent five minutes with Boch, there's a reason he's lasted this long and done as well as he has. If I was a player, man, that's the kind of guy you enjoy playing for."

Indians made push for Martinez

The D-backs pulled off a blockbuster trade on Tuesday, reeling in slugger J.D. Martinez from the Tigers in exchange for prospects Dawel Lugo, Sergio Alcantara and Jose King. On Wednesday, MLB.com's Jon Morosi reported that the Indians were the other club "seriously involved" in the pursuit of Martinez. While Cleveland is in the market for rotation help, the club's scuffling offense might also benefit from an addition prior to the July 31 non-waiver Trade Deadline.

Jordan Bastian has covered the Indians for MLB.com since 2011, and previously covered the Blue Jays from 2006-10. Read his blog, Major League Bastian, follow him on Twitter @MLBastian and Facebook.

Cleveland Indians, Corey Kluber