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Marte to be activated Friday

It looks like the Indians have decided to activate Andy Marte from the Disabled List when his rehab assignment ends:

It's expected that Andy Marte will be activated tomorrow off the disabled, where he's been since April 23 with a strained hamstring.

Casey Blake has done a nice job of filling in for Marte at third, hitting .288 since Marte's injury and playing steady defense. So much so, that Wedge said when Marte returns Blake will still get some playing time at third base, presumably against tough right-handed pitchers.

There's a pretty good reason for this beyond on-the-field issues. The Indians have an option remaining on Marte, and if they decided to keep him in Buffalo after activating him from the DL, they would have burned it. The option won't expire until the season the Indians use it, meaning they could save it for next season. With Casey Blake playing well of late, there's not a concern with having to keep him in the lineup if he continues to struggle.

Franklin Gutierrez will most likely be optioned to Buffalo to make room for Marte, moving Blake back into a utility role. My guess is that Casey will be shifting between third and the outfield from now on; the three-way platoon of Martinez, Garko, and Shoppach seems to be working well.

Depth is a nice problem to have.