Fred Lewis agrees to minor-league deal with Indians

6 Comments

Fred Lewis, who spent last season with the Reds, has inked a minor-league deal with the Indians that includes an invitation to spring training.

Lewis struggled last season, hitting just .230 with a .638 OPS in 81 games while spending time on the disabled list with an oblique injury, but he’s generally been a pretty solid fourth outfielder or platoon starter.

From 2007-2010 he hit .271 with a .347 on-base percentage and .417 slugging percentage in 423 games for the Giants and Blue Jays, so while aging and injuries mean he’s no longer a capable defensive center fielder he could be a useful left-handed bench bat in Cleveland.

Marcus Stroman dealing with blister again

Marcus Stroman
Getty Images
3 Comments

Blue Jays right-hander Marcus Stroman might be headed to the disabled list soon, manager John Gibbons told reporters following Friday’s rain-shortened loss to the Yankees. The righty lasted just four innings on the mound before calling it a night, and gave up five runs, six hits and two walks in a performance that Gibbons claimed was at least partially affected by recurring blister issues on his right middle finger. Now, it looks like he might be removed from the rotation for some much-needed rest and rehabilitation; if so, it’ll be his second such stint this year.

Stroman, 27, has struggled to return the kind of winning record and sub-4.00 ERA that characterized his previous seasons with the club, mostly due to the combined seven weeks he missed with blisters on his throwing hand and chronic fatigue in his right shoulder. In a recent start against the Rays, things got even more gruesome when his blister appeared to start bleeding in the middle of his outing and MLB.com’s Gregor Chisholm notes that the wound has constantly interfered with the right-hander’s pitch selection and delivery. When healthy, Stroman has managed a 4-8 record through 18 starts in 2018 with a career-worst 5.27 ERA, 3.2 BB/9 and 6.8 SO/9 in 100 2/3 innings. This will be the first year since 2015 in which he has not logged at least 200 innings in a single season.

While Stroman may not need an extended stay on the DL before he returns to the mound, it’s not clear what kind of timetable the Blue Jays expect for his recovery. He’s been the second-most valuable starter (behind the now-traded J.A. Happ) in a rotation that currently ranks 17th in the majors with a combined 4.90 ERA and 6.8 fWAR.