Friday, 19 April, 2019

Francisco Lindor out with calf strain

Francisco Lindor Source Jason Miller Getty Images North America via
Cary Erickson | 10 February, 2019, 21:25

The Indians open their season in Minnesota against the Twins on March 28th.

The team announced Friday that shortstop Francisco Lindor strained his right calf while preparing for the year and will miss 7-to-9 weeks, which could wipe out his entire spring training and perhaps even the beginning of the regular season. Rookie Yu Chang is listed as Lindor's backup, but infielder Jose Ramirez has plenty of experience at shortstop. Infielder Mike Freeman, who will be in camp on a minor league deal, played 58 games at shortstop in the minors for the Cubs a year ago. Max Moroff, acquired from the Pirates this winter, is another option, as is minor league journeyman Eric Stamlets. The 31-year-old California native has made 600 appearances at second base and 220 at shortstop over eight major campaigns. He had 82 extra-base hits and tied for the major league lead with 129 runs. Jose Iglesias and Adeiny Hechavarria are two sort of name-brand options who can be signed to fill in, and Michael Martinez spent parts of three seasons (2015-2017) as a utility player for the Indians before apparently being out of baseball past year. In addition, it tops off what has already been a very disappointing off season for the reigning American League Central Division champions.

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Prior to joining Oakland, Joyce spent six seasons in Tampa Bay where he slugged.435 with 76 home runs and 280 RBI, earning an All-Star bid in 2011. He signed a one-year, $10.5 million deal with Cleveland in January, and will be arbitration eligible in both 2020 and 2021.

Fangraphs.com projects Joyce to hit a handful of home runs and drive in about 14 with a batting average of.232 in a little more than 30 games in 2019.