The Indians have activated center fielder Michael Bourn from the 15-day DL. Bourn has been out for more than a month with a hamstring injury, a problem that has plagued him during the last calendar year, and may very well have taken away his ability to be an elite player.
Bourn is hitting.267/.316/.379 in 309 plate appearances this season, which are more like #9 hitter numbers than the production you want from a leadoff man. Bourn wasn't really brought in for his bat, but for his glove and his baserunning. Injuries seem to have sapped him of some of his speed, and neither his glove or his wheels have been much above average. After averaging 51 stolen bases a season in the five years before joining the Indians, he's stolen only 30 in nearly two years with the Tribe, and with a much lower success rate.
No one had to be sent down to make room for Bourn, because yesterday's decision to give John Axford to Pittsburgh had already opened up a roster spot.
Bourn is not in the starting lineup tonight. Instead Ryan Raburn is in left, Michael Brantley is in center, and Tyler Holt is in right. Mike Aviles, Chris Dickerson, and Zach Walters have all played some outfield in recent weeks, and remain with the team for the time being, but I suspect one of them (Dickerson seeming the most likely) will be off the 25-man roster by the end of the weekend.