Cleveland pitchers are falling like flies. The Indians pitching staff was hit with two big injuries when Andrew Miller the valuable reliever was put on the disabled list and Josh Tomlin will miss six weeks.
The Indians on Wednesday put Miller on the DL with tendinitis in his right knee, an injury which could explain the recent wildness he has experienced.
Cleveland skipper Terry Francona said he spoke with Miller prior to Tuesday’s game and the reliever told him that this had been bothering him for some time. The hope is that it can be managed, and Miller was willing to try that, but it appears shelving him for a period is better.
Miller, one of the best relievers in baseball pitched during the Indians loss on Tuesday at Fenway Park in Boston, allowing a three run double by Eduardo Nunez.
Thus far on the season, Miller is 4-3 with an ERA of 1.67 and a pair of saves in his 46 appearances. He was acquired last year prior to the trade deadline from the Yankees and was instrumental in the Indians reaching last season’s World Series.
Miller of late has not been himself, walking 10 hitters over the last 21 innings. Last season, Miller walked just 9 batters in his 74 plus innings of work.
Adam Plutko a right-hander was recalled by Cleveland from Columbus their Triple-A affiliate to take the roster spot of Miller.
Tomlin’s season is in jeopardy after it was confirmed by an MRI that he has a mild to moderate strain of the left hamstring tendon. The Indians announced that Tomlin would likely miss a minimum of six weeks to recover from the strained tendon.
Francona said he believed the strain was mild, but due to it being the tendon it will take a longer time for it to heal completely.
Tomlin had been pitching in Sunday’s games versus the Chicago White Sox, but was pulled prior to the start of the fifth inning. On the season, Tomlin is 7-9 with an ERA of 5.38 in his 20 starts.
Rather that adding a starter for its frontline during the trade deadline, Cleveland’s front office addressed its depth in the bullpen Monday by trading for Joe Smith a side-armer, who will help ease the paid from losing Miller and help lessen the burden for Bryan Shaw and Cody Allen, the closer.
However, now with Tomlin sidelined, the Indians problems are bigger. One possible option would be Ryan Merritt a southpaw who earlier in the season was with the team.