Mike Scioscia has said that Kendrys Morales needs to see game action by Sunday if he’s to have any chance of being on the Opening Day roster, but there’s almost zero chance of that happening with Mike DiGiovanna of the Los Angeles Times reporting that Morales “still isn’t running full speed.”
Morales is 10 months removed from a broken ankle, but continues to have soreness and inflammation even without being cleared to fully run the bases yet.
Scioscia admitted that Morales’ window to get healthy by Opening Day “is narrowing” and Giovanna writes that he “is expected to open on the disabled list” and “when he’s activated, he probably will spend a considerable amount of time at designated hitter.”
The good news is that Morales has lost 14 pounds since arriving at camp last month, shedding much of the weight he gained while being inactive during the offseason. Or as Morales put it: “I couldn’t move over the winter, but I wasn’t going to starve. I figured I would address it later on.”
I’ve been taking that same approach for 28 years now. In a related note, I’m also not cleared to run full speed.
Indians second baseman Jason Kipnis tweeted on Sunday, “Got a little too close to [Francisco Lindor] during the celebration!! Freak accident but should be good to go by Tuesday! #cantkeepmeoutofthisgame!”
Per MLB.com’s Jordan Bastian, manager Terry Francona said Kipnis is dealing with a low ankle sprain, but he’s expected to be ready to go when the World Series begins on Tuesday. Kipnis went through fielding drills on Sunday.
Kipnis is hitting .167/.219/.367 with a pair of homers and four RBI in eight games this postseason.
Bob Nightengale of USA TODAY Sports reports that Indians manager Terry Francona has set his starting rotation for the first three games of the World Series against the Cubs. Corey Kluber will start Game One, followed by Trevor Bauer and Josh Tomlin for Games Two and Three, respectively.
Kluber, the ace of the staff, has had a terrific postseason. He’s made three starts with a 0.98 ERA and a 20/7 K/BB ratio in 18 1/3 innings. The Indians won two of his starts — Game Two of the ALDS and Game 1 of the ALCS.
Bauer was unable to make it out of the first inning of his ALCS Game 3 start against the Blue Jays after the stitches on his pinky opened up and caused blood to pour out. He suffered the injury repairing one of his drones, which he builds as a hobby. Bauer insists he’ll be good to go in Game Two, though he also insisted that the injury wouldn’t be an impediment against the Jays.
Tomlin has made two solid starts for the Indians, allowing a total of three runs over 10 2/3 innings. The Indians won both games he started, Game 3 of the ALDS and Game 2 of the ALCS. MLB.com’s Jordan Bastian notes that if Bauer can’t go in Game Two, Tomlin will be moved up to start in his place.