Ramsey optioned among latest Tribe moves

Club's No. 27 prospect to work on hitting; Choice, Lucas, Recker, Stamets reassigned

March 18th, 2016

GOODYEAR, Ariz. -- The Indians continued to whittle down their Spring Training roster on Friday, optioning outfielder James Ramsey to Triple-A Columbus and reassigning four others to Minor League camp.

Ramsey, 26, came into camp with hopes of competing for an outfield job, but he struggled at the plate and looked like he needed more seasoning in the Minors. Indians manager Terry Francona said the club was impressed with the defensive improvement displayed by Ramsey, who went 2-for-21 with 10 strikeouts and one walk in his Cactus League showing.

"He said that he wished he had felt more comfortable early in camp," Francona said. "You respect the fact that they're trying to make a team, but once you get past that, and they swallow the disappointment, you try to remind them that, 'Man, this spring isn't going to define who you are as a player. Go to Triple-A and do what you do.'"

Ramsey -- ranked 27th on MLB.com's Top 30 Indians prospects list -- was a first-round selection of St. Louis in the 2012 Draft and was acquired via trade by the Indians in exchange for Justin Masterson on July 30, 2014. Ramsey hit .243 with 12 homers and 42 RBIs in 126 games at Triple-A last season.

The Indians reassigned outfielder Michael Choice, catcher Jeremy Lucas, catcher Anthony Recker and infielder Eric Stamets to Minor League camp.

Spring Training information

Other items of note from Friday:

• Francona has said on multiple occasions that he has toyed with the idea of using Carlos Santana as a leadoff hitter, given the first baseman's on-base ability. The manager started Santana as the No. 1 hitter in Friday's 10-8 win over the A's, but it was not a sign of things to come for the lineup.

"I've done it with everybody," Francona said. "I think tomorrow it's [Francisco] Lindor. It'll be a good way to get him an extra at-bat. I just thought it'd be kind of fun to do it. There's really no hidden agenda there or anything. I don't know what our batting order is going to be."

• One of the reasons Cleveland's lineup order remains uncertain is the comeback attempt by Michael Brantley (right shoulder surgery in November). If Brantley is ready for Opening Day, or shortly thereafter, Francona might slot Jason Kipnis, Lindor and Brantley in the Nos. 1-3 spots, respectively.

"[I liked that last season] a lot," Francona said. "But, saying that, you can put those three in any order and I would like it. I'm guessing that wherever you hit them, those three are pretty good."

Brantley to make Cactus debut Saturday

• Right fielder Lonnie Chisenhall was held out of the lineup on Friday for the third straight day due to tightness in his right forearm. With Seattle starting lefty Wade Miley on Sunday, Francona said Chisenhall will likely make his return to the lineup on Monday against the White Sox.

• Francona said that the line drive that hit Danny Salazar on the left forearm on Thursday "stunned him more than anything." Salazar had a bruise on his arm, but he did not sustain any structural damage and is scheduled to make his next start as planned.

• In a Minor League game against the Dodgers' Triple-A squad, Indians starter Trevor Bauer logged four innings, allowing one run. The right-hander struck out two, issued a pair of walks and gave up only one hit in the outing.