Devin Mesoraco cleared to begin rehab assignment — as a left fielder — Monday at AAA Louisville


Devin Mesoraco is still unable to maintain a squatting position because of a lingering left hip impingement, but he and the Reds have a devised a plan that will allow him to return to action this season. And perhaps as early as next week.

Mesoraco, who hasn’t made a start at catcher since April 11 and has been on the disabled list since May 25, is scheduled to begin a minor league rehab assignment Monday as the starting left fielder at Triple-A Louisville. He has not played any outfield in the minors or majors, but the Reds are willing to experiment because they want his bat back in the lineup. Hip surgeon Bryan Kelly has signed off on the idea.’s Mark Sheldon says Mesoraco will need at least 3-4 games at Louisville to learn left field and get his timing right. He’s been doing outfield drills for over a week now, so that should help.

The 26-year-old had an .893 OPS, 25 homers, and 80 RBI in 114 games last season.

Indians release Mike Napoli

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The Cleveland Indians have released Mike Napoli.

This is not terribly surprising as he was seen as a depth move to begin with. Injury insurance for Yonder Alonso at first base and Edwin Encarnacion at DH, neither of whom are injured at the moment. Napoli was on a minor league contract and the Indians made it clear that, if he can’t find a major league job elsewhere, he’s welcome to come back and cool his heels in Columbus in the event he’s needed later.

Which may be what happens if he wants to keep playing because, after a season in which he hit .193/.285/.428, and a spring in which he hit .218/.310/.431, there aren’t likely to be a ton of takers.