CLEVELAND -- Roberto Perez walked through the Indians' clubhouse and stopped to read the lineup card for Saturday's game against the Angels. The catcher was slotted into the eighth spot of the batting order and was behind the plate for ace Corey Kluber."Catching Kluber. All right," Perez said, nodding as
CLEVELAND -- Roberto Perez walked through the Indians' clubhouse and stopped to read the lineup card for Saturday's game against the Angels. The catcher was slotted into the eighth spot of the batting order and was behind the plate for ace Corey Kluber.
"Catching Kluber. All right," Perez said, nodding as he strolled off.
Tribe catcher Yan Gomes -- who has caught 21 of Kluber's first 22 starts this season -- was out of the lineup after injuring his right leg during Friday's 7-4 loss to the Angels. Indians manager Terry Francona noted that an MRI exam revealed that Gomes is dealing with right hamstring tendinitis, but the team is hopeful that the catcher will not need to go on the disabled list.
Francona noted that Gomes was available off the bench, if needed, but the manager hopes to give the All-Star catcher a couple days to rest his legs. Francona added that Gomes has been dealing with the issue "for a while," but the problem was not severe enough to keep him out of the lineup until Saturday.
"If it lingered longer, then we'd have to maybe think about the DL," Francona said prior to Saturday's game. "But, I think the way it sits now, I don't think we're going to have to do that. He came in feeling pretty good today. ... I actually think it'll be good for [Perez], to know he's going to play a couple days in a row. I think it'll be really good for him."
Gomes doubled in the second inning on Friday night, winced as he rounded first and grabbed at his right knee after stopping at second base. The catcher initially remained in the game, but was lifted for Perez when his next turn to bat came up, in the fourth.
If Gomes' situation does warrant a trip to the DL, the next man up on Cleveland's depth chart would be catcher Eric Haase, who is at Triple-A Columbus and on the Tribe's 40-man roster. Haase, 25, impressed the Indians' staff during Spring Training, has earned positive reviews from the Major League pitchers and currently ranks 24th on the Indians' Top 30 prospects list, per MLB Pipeline.
Through 97 games with Columbus, Haase has hit .240 with 14 home runs, 20 doubles, 60 RBIs and 111 strikeouts with 28 walks in 338 plate appearances. The catcher has thrown out 50 percent (27-for-54) of would-be basestealers this season.
"Guys enjoy throwing to him," Francona said, "because he cares so much about running the game and getting the pitcher through the game. And those are the things we saw in Spring Training, even in a small sample. He's a very interesting guy. At points in his career, he's hit better than at other times. Strong kid, so he's got power.
"But his catching, he may not have the arm that Perez or Gomes has, but he does such a good job behind the plate with pitchers that they all seem to like throwing to him."
• According to Francona, lefty Andrew Miller was feeling good on Saturday, one day after logging his first inning of work for the Indians since May 25. The manager said the team will be careful with Miller's workload while building his stamina and endurance back up over the next couple weeks.
"He feels good. He's available tonight," Francona said. "We're certainly going to pitch him without trying to over-pitch him. The more he pitches, the better he's going to be. [On Friday] night, he threw a real good breaking ball. He didn't locate his fastball. But, he will. It's kind of like putting money in the bank. You've got to keep putting it in there to get the returns."
• Right-hander Josh Tomlin (10-day DL, right hamstring) logged two innings for Triple-A Columbus on Friday in his first Minor League rehab outing. The right-hander allowed three runs on six hits (two home runs), ending with one strikeout and no walks. Tomlin threw 25 pitches, including 21 strikes.
"OK, he gave up some hits and home runs, but he felt good," Francona said. "So, that's good. We'll kind of fall back on what we said about Andrew. A month from now, whenever he's pitching, nobody's going to care that he got roughed up in a Minor League game. I think it shows that you don't just step in and you're good."
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.