The Cleveland Indians have announced a series of roster moves as we approach the September 1 deadline for setting playoff-eligible rosters.
Relief pitcher Perci Garner has been promoted to the major-leagues, Shawn Armstrong has been optioned to the Single-A Lake County Captains, and Yan Gomes has been placed on the 60-day disabled list to make room for Garner on the 40-man roster.
Armstrong, who was just recalled earlier this week, can rejoin the Indians when the Captains’ season ends on September 5. Gomes, who has been on the disabled list since July 18, can be activated as soon as September 16.
The bigger implication of Gomes’ placement on the 60-day DL is that, if for some reason he cannot return for the playoffs, the Indians will have another player they can use to move someone who is not currently on the 40-man roster onto the 25-man roster on the fly. This is possible thanks to a rule that states any player who was in the organization by September can replace a player who is on the 60-day disabled list — and has been there for 60 days — regardless if they were on the 40-man roster or not.
That would make it possible for someone like Yandy Diaz to join the Indians in the middle of the playoffs, even though it does not look like he will be added to the 40-man roster by the deadline.
The other player the Indians have providing this roster flexibility is Michael Brantley.
As for Garner, the 27-year-old reliever has had great velocity in the past, but it has not always translated to a great strikeout rate, or even great results until recently. The Indians signed him to a minor-league deal last season, and he made it as far as Triple-A this season with the Columbus Clippers.
Garner has been great at every level for the Tribe, and he carries a 1.63 ERA for Clippers this season, although his strikeout rate has struggled to stay above 20 percent. We will get a chance to see what he can do down the stretch.