Josh Tomlin was placed on the DL a couple of weeks ago because of a sore right wrist. It was implied the injury stemmed from the night the Indians played against the White Sox in the pouring rain, because Tomlin was gripping the wet ball too hard. He was actually listed as day-to-day, before the Indians announced on May 12 that he would be placed on the 15-day DL (retroactive to May 8). This means that the earliest Josh Tomlin could come off the DL was May 23.
The Indians announced today that Tomlin’s 50-pitch simulated game went well yesterday, and they’ll be removing him from the DL in the very near future. This means that Zach McAllister, who did a nice job filling in for the injured Tomlin, will be sent back to Triple-A. ESPN Cleveland reported that Tomlin will start on Monday against the Royals at Progressive Field.
The other roster move the Indians made was to promote 23-year-old Class-AA infielder Juan Diaz for the weekend. With Hannahan on the mend, yet not officially on the DL, the Tribe is technically down an infielder for this weekend’s series against Chicago. So the Indians will exchange McAllister for Diaz for the weekend series, then exchange Diaz for Tomlin in time for Monday’s start. Diaz is already on the 40-man roster, so no additional moves will be made.
Diaz came to the Indians organization with Ezequiel Carrera in the Russell Branyan deal in 2010. With Akron so far this season, Diaz is hitting .232/.280/.348 with three home runs; in 2010 with the Aeros, he hit .255/.310/.368 with nine home runs. I don’t expect to see Diaz get much (if any) playing time this weekend, except for the possibility of a late-game appearance. I actually don’t really want to see Diaz, because it would likely mean that someone is injured and Diaz has to fill in for them.
McAllister went 1-1 with a 3.96 ERA, 1.24 WHIP, and 22 strikeouts in 25 innings pitched so far in 2012. This was a great improvement over his 2011 stats at the major league level, where he went 0-1 with a 6.11 ERA, 1.86 WHIP, and 14 strikeouts in 17.2 innings pitched. While the ESPN Cleveland story suggested that McAllister could be used for trade bait at the deadline, I like the fact that the Indians have solid pitching depth in the case of injuries. At the same time, I guess it would be rather pointless to keep him blocked at Triple-A if a good trade for a bat presents itself. Just remember that the Indians acquired McAllister from the New York Yankees for Austin Kearns in 2010. While it’s not exactly Casey Blake for Carlos Santana, it’s way more value than I’d expect to get for Kearns, who was basically a fourth outfielder in the Bronx after the deal.
EDIT: It sounds like Diaz may get some playing time this weekend, since Manny Acta has said he hopes to give some off-days to a few of the regulars. Michael Brantley isn’t in the lineup tonight, and they may try to give Jason Kipnis a break this weekend.