Asdrubal Cabrera

Asdrubal Cabrera sidelined with left knee contusion

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The Indians beat the Royals 5-4 last night to stay within 5 1/2 games of the first-place Tigers in the American League Central, but they lost another member of their starting lineup in the process.

Asdrubal Cabrera is out of tonight’s lineup against the Royals after leaving Friday’s game with a left knee contusion. The All-Star shortstop suffered the injury when he fouled a ball off his left knee in the top of the third inning. He stayed in the game at first, even slugging a two-run homer later in the at-bat, but was replaced by Jason Donald at shortstop to begin the bottom of the inning.

The good news is that X-rays came back negative on the knee and Cabrera is officially listed as day-to-day. He could be back in the starting lineup as soon as tomorrow, but missing him for even one night is a tough blow as the Indians attempt to keep their flickering playoff hopes alive.

Cabrera, 25, is batting .278/.337/.467 with 22 homers, 80 RBI, 16 stolen bases and an .804 OPS over 591 plate appearances this season.

Shawn Tolleson becomes a free agent

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The Rangers outrighted reliever Shawn Tolleson off the 40-man roster on Wednesday. Rather than accept the assignment to Triple-A Round Rock, Tolleson has opted to become a free agent, Rangers executive VP of communications John Blake reports.

Tolleson, 28, emerged as a closer for the Rangers in 2015, but his follow-up campaign this year was dreadful. He finished with a 7.68 ERA and a 29/10 K/BB ratio in 36 1/3 innings. He eventually went on the 60-day disabled list with a back injury.

Despite the nightmarish season, it’s easy to see a team deciding to take a flier on Tolleson for the 2017 season.

Indians strongly considering starting Carlos Santana in left field sans DH

TORONTO, ON - OCTOBER 19:  Carlos Santana #41 of the Cleveland Indians celebrates after hitting a solo home run in the third inning against Marco Estrada #25 of the Toronto Blue Jays during game five of the American League Championship Series at Rogers Centre on October 19, 2016 in Toronto, Canada.  (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
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Indians slugger Carlos Santana hasn’t played in the outfield in a major league game since 2012, but the Indians are strongly considering starting him in left field for Game 3 of the World Series at Wrigley Field on Friday,’s Jordan Bastian reports. As the game is hosted in a National League park, there is no DH rule in effect, so the Indians might otherwise have to keep Santana on the bench.

Santana is hitless in six at-bats in the World Series thus far, but he has drawn two walks. He has overall not had a great postseason, carrying an aggregate .564 OPS in 40 plate appearances since the beginning of the playoffs. Still, during the regular season, he had an .865 OPS so he can certainly be a threat on offense at any given moment.