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Cleveland Indians Sunday News and Notes: One week to go

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Just one week (technically eight days, but let's not get pedantic) until Opening Day

Zach McAllister may have sewn up a rotation spot with yesterday's outing.
Zach McAllister may have sewn up a rotation spot with yesterday's outing.
Rick Scuteri-USA TODAY Sports

Yesterday's Game

McAllister mows down 9, Kipnis goes deep in win over Crew | indians.com

Jason Kipnis home run leads Indians to 3-2 win over Brewers - Let's Go Tribe

When the Indians optioned Danny Salazar to Columbus this past week, that gave Zach McAllister the opportunity to pitch himself into the rotation. This outing may have clinched his spot in the rotation, especially given that the Indians are looking to add Anthony Swarzak to the bullpen. McAllister  is out of options, so had he loses out to Josh Tomlin would start the season in the bullpen. Josh Tomlin has an option remaining, so if loses to McAllister he'll go to Columbus. When there's no clear winner in a Spring Training, the loser is almost always the player that has the option. I think that will be the case here, with McAllister beating out Tomlin.

Indians News

Cleveland Indians Scribbles: Encouraging day for Michael Bourn, Jason Kipnis and Zach McAllister -- Terry Pluto (photos) | cleveland.com

Pluto repeats what we're all thinking: although TJ House has still not been named to the rotation, he's all but assured to be on the Opening Day roster. He also talks about Bourn's off-season training regimen paying dividends; it would be very nice to have the Atlanta/Houston Bourn in the lineup this season.

Carrasco leaves Indians camp for birth of fourth child | indians.com

Congratulations to the Carrascos. His absence will delay the rotation order annoucement a couple days, though I'm guessing Francona has made the decision.

'A good first step': Swisher tests legs in Minor League game | indians.com

So far, no setbacks. It's too late for Swisher to be on the Opening Day roster, but it's good that he's playing in minor-league games now.

Latest 25-man/40-man roster

(click here for embiggened version)

March 29 2015

I think the pitching situation will be this:

  • TJ House and Zach McAllister will fill the last two spots in the Opening Day rotation (though with all the early off days, one of them may pitch out of the bullpen the first week).
  • Anthony Swarzak will be added to the roster and take McAllister's place in the bullpen. Gavin Floyd would be placed on the 60-day DL to make room for Swarzak on the 40-man roster.
  • Josh Tomlin will be optioned to Columbus
With Nick Swisher starting the season on the DL, the Indians could go with an extra pitcher, leaving a three-man bench, but with all the off days in April, a four-man bench makes way more sense than an eight-man bullpen, which probably means Tyler Holt makes the Opening Day roster. That would give Terry Francona a good defender in right field if he pinch-hits Ryan Raburn for David Murphy late in a game.