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Smoke signals

• Indians third baseman and backup catcher Carlos Santana (seven-day concussion list) fielded ground balls on the field before Monday's game against the Red Sox. Francona indicated that Santana might be cleared to be activated by Friday.

"He went out and did some progressive running [Sunday]," Francona said Monday. "Today, he went out and took some ground balls. He's actually doing pretty well. His [eligibility] date is Wednesday. I don't think that's realistic with the medical staff. They think Friday is realistic. To me, that's a pretty good sign."

Francona was asked if he might be hesitant to use Santana behind the plate in light of the concussion situation. The Indians are carrying George Kottaras as a backup to starting catcher Yan Gomes.

"That's something I'd like to talk to Carlos about," Francona said.

• Indians first baseman Nick Swisher, who is on the 15-day disabled list with a left knee injury, was scheduled to resume "land-based" baseball activities Monday. Over the past few days, Swisher had been limited to workouts in a pool in order to reduce the stress on his legs.

• Francona said Monday that he is looking forward to seeing Browns rookie quarterback Johnny Manziel throw out a ceremonial first pitch before Wednesday's game against the Red Sox. Asked if he had Johnny Football fever, Francona laughed.

"Yeah, a little bit," Francona said.

• The fourth-place Indians headed into Monday's series out of the American League Central's cellar for the first time since May 15. Cleveland had been in fifth place for the previous 16 days. The Indians have not been higher than fourth place since April 25, when they were third in the division.

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