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Indians option Salazar to continue development

Young righty sent to Triple-A; Bauer to start Tuesday against Tigers

CLEVELAND -- The Indians have decided that starter Danny Salazar could benefit from some more development with Triple-A Columbus.

That means that right-hander Trevor Bauer, currently in Triple-A, will have a date with the Tigers on Tuesday, according to Terry Francona.

Prior to Friday's game against the A's, Cleveland optioned Salazar to Triple-A after the young right-hander's inconsistent showing in the rotation through the season's first seven weeks. The Tribe promoted lefty reliever Kyle Crockett from Double-A Akron to take Salazar's spot on the active roster.

"We tried to make the decision based on Danny," Francona said. "And we thought sending him to Triple-A, allowing him to work on what he needs to work on, will benefit him there, because right now, when he's making mistakes, he's paying for it and not getting real deep in games. It's kind of hurting the bullpen also.

"He's kind of gotten away from locating his fastball down. His breaking ball has been inconsistent. There's been some really good ones and some that aren't, and he's kind of gotten away from his changeup. That was one of his best pitches. So, now he goes down to Triple-A.

"We told him, we said, 'Hey, we don't care about your numbers. We want you to execute pitches, use your changeup, get confidence back in that pitch and be armed to get Major League hitters out when you come back.' And he will come back, and he will be good."

After Salazar's rapid rise to the starting staff last season, culminating with his start in the 2013 American League Wild Card Game against the Rays, Cleveland slotted the righty into the fifth spot of the Opening Day rotation. Salazar struggled to live up to the heightened expectations that followed his stellar '13 showing.

In eight outings for the Indians this year, the 24-year-old was 1-4 with a 5.53 ERA, 47 strikeouts and 17 walks in 40 2/3 innings. Salazar opened the season 0-3 with a 7.85 ERA in his first four outings, before showing some improvement in a three-start stretch, during which he went 1-0 with a 3.44 ERA.

Then on Thursday in Toronto, Salazar labored through 98 pitches in only four innings and allowed a pair of home runs that sent Cleveland on its way to a 4-2 loss to the Blue Jays. The right-hander upped his total to eight home runs allowed on the season.

Bauer has gone 4-1 with a 2.15 ERA in seven starts for Columbus this season, piling up 44 strikeouts against 14 walks in 46 innings. The right-hander made a spot start for Cleveland on April 9, limiting the Padres to two runs (one earned) on four hits with eight strikeouts and two walks in six innings.

Jordan Bastian is a reporter for Read his blog, Major League Bastian, and follow him on Twitter @MLBastian.
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