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Arm in shape, Tomlin set to return Wednesday

Righty happy to say mechanics stayed the same while rehabbing hamstring
MLB.com @MLBastian

CLEVELAND -- Josh Tomlin is counting his blessings that the injury he sustained roughly a month ago did not involve his arm. So while the Indians starter was resting and rehabbing his left hamstring, he was still able to throw daily to keep his arm and mechanics in shape.

Now, following just one Minor League rehab outing, Tomlin is on target to come off the 10-day disabled list on Wednesday to start against the Yankees in New York. The right-hander will slot into the rotation spot vacated by Danny Salazar, who is also on the DL right now, but with a right elbow issue.

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CLEVELAND -- Josh Tomlin is counting his blessings that the injury he sustained roughly a month ago did not involve his arm. So while the Indians starter was resting and rehabbing his left hamstring, he was still able to throw daily to keep his arm and mechanics in shape.

Now, following just one Minor League rehab outing, Tomlin is on target to come off the 10-day disabled list on Wednesday to start against the Yankees in New York. The right-hander will slot into the rotation spot vacated by Danny Salazar, who is also on the DL right now, but with a right elbow issue.

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"I never stopped playing catch. I never stopped throwing," Tomlin said on Saturday. "I feel like the arm is still in the condition of being built up. It's not like I took five to seven days off, or 10 days off, or 15 days off of throwing. I took a little rest that one day, getting the MRI, and that was it."

On Friday night, Tomlin suited up for Class A (short-season) Mahoning Valley and allowed five runs (one earned) on eight hits in 3 2/3 innings. More important than the pitching line was the fact that Tomlin logged 64 pitches, felt good and bounced back well on Saturday morning.

Evaluating a Minor League pitching line can often be misleading, especially when facing low-level hitters who are excited to try to show off against a big leaguer.

"The biggest thing is the aggressiveness that they take against you," Tomlin said. "When they see a guy that's played in the big leagues, they think they know where the ball's going to go. So they take bigger hacks, or they're taking more hacks. ... You try to stick with what you're trying to work on and how you would attack other hitters and stuff like that. I just tried to stay within my approach."

Indians manager Terry Francona said the timing of Wednesday's game is good for Tomlin, too. With a team off-day on Thursday after the road set against the Yankees, Cleveland can be more aggressive in using its bullpen after Tomlin's innings. After that off-day, Major League rosters also expand to a maximum of 40 players, giving the Tribe the chance to add reinforcements.

"Hopefully we can get the best out of what he does," Francona said. "And if he starts to tire, we can go to our bullpen, because we have the day off."

Other injury updates

• Outfielder Lonnie Chisenhall (10-day DL, right calf) ran the bases and went through a workout on Saturday. He is scheduled to play Minor League rehab games on Sunday, Tuesday and Wednesday before potentially being activated by the Indians.

• The Indians' medical and training staff is still working through the details of a schedule for Salazar, but Francona said the starter is nearing a bullpen session or a simulated game.

• Outfielder Abraham Almonte (10-day DL, left hamstring) ran the bases on Saturday and is on pace for a Minor League rehab game (site to be determined) on Monday, per Francona.

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, Josh Tomlin