Tag:Grady Sizemore
Posted on: March 1, 2012 4:35 pm

Sizemore surgery is more bad news for Indians

The Indians know that the Tigers are the heavy favorites in the American League Central. The whole division knows that.

They also know that favorites don't always win, that things go wrong, key guys get hurt.

The problem for the Indians now is that the first key guys who got hurt were theirs.

What was first diagnosed as a lower back strain for Grady Sizemore is now something worse, with the news that Sizemore had lower back surgery Thursday morning and is facing 8-12 weeks of recovery. Already ruled out for opening day, now Sizemore could miss the first month of the season, or more.

Indians closer Chris Perez is also out, with an oblique strain.

But the Sizemore news is worse, even if it does feel predictable.

This will be the fourth straight year that Sizemore has missed considerable time (after four years in which he missed just seven games total). He has played just 104 games the last two seasons combined.

It's easy to forget that he's still just 29 years old, easy to forget that he was a three-time All-Star, easy to forget that his general manager once called him "one of the greatest players of our generation."

"I definitely can get back to playing the way I always played," Sizemore told me last spring.

Is that still true, now that he has added back surgery to knee surgery and to a sports hernia and an elbow injury?

The Indians were willing to take a chance on him this year, bringing him back on a one-year deal that guarantees him $5 million and includes another $4 million in bonuses based on plate appearances.

He won't make all of that bonus money now, but the bigger problem for the Indians is that they won't have him in their lineup.

To win, the Indians need a lot of things to go right, and they need the Tigers to have things go wrong.

They don't need this.

Category: MLB
Posted on: July 21, 2011 1:04 pm
Edited on: July 21, 2011 5:33 pm

Sizemore out 4-6 weeks, Indians call up Kipnis

The Indians won't have Grady Sizemore for at least the next month, but they will have top prospect Jason Kipnis in the lineup this weekend.

Kipnis, who homered in the All-Star Futures Game in Phoenix, hinted at the move Thursday, when he posted "It's time!!!" and then "I'm coming Cleveland!" on his Twitter account, @TheJK_Kid. The Indians announced the move a short while later, and said Kipnis will make his big-league debut Friday night against the White Sox.

Kipnis, who is hitting .279 with 12 home runs at Triple-A Columbus, could give a much-needed boost to an Indians lineup that has felt the loss of Sizemore. Sizemore has been on the disabled list three times this year, and the Indians announced Thursday morning that he had surgery to repair a sports hernia and will miss the next 4-6 weeks.

Sizemore's injury dates to a slide he made in May. He was hitting just .214 in his last 43 games before making his most recent trip to the DL this week, because of a knee problem.

"Knowing the two areas are related and also learning my knee condition is not serious gives me peace of mind going forward that I can finish the season healthy and help contribute to an exciting pennant chase," Sizemore said in a statement released by the Indians.

Sizemore has played in just 200 games over the last three seasons, because of various injuries.

Kipnis is a second baseman, but he also has some experience playing the outfield (although he hasn't played there since 2009).

Luis Valbuena was optioned to Columbus to make room for Kipnis.
Category: MLB
Posted on: July 18, 2011 11:55 am
Edited on: July 18, 2011 2:14 pm

Indians put Sizemore back on DL

Grady Sizemore is back on the disabled list.

Sizemore, who missed most of the last two seasons with various injuries, is now out with a right knee contusion. It's his third DL trip this year alone, and the second time he's been out with a right knee problem. Sizemore missed all of last year after surgery on his left knee.

The Indians have been one of baseball's biggest surprises, and they finished the weekend percentage points ahead of the Tigers, atop the American League Central.

Sizemore is hitting just .237, and he hit only .214 in 43 games since his last trip to the DL.

The Indians used Sizemore's roster spot to activate David Huff, who is starting the first game of Monday's day-night doubleheader in Minnesota.
Category: MLB
Posted on: June 13, 2011 5:56 pm
Edited on: June 14, 2011 9:17 am

Acta: Anyone could win Central

NEW YORK -- Indians manager Manny Acta warns people not to count his team out, despite the Indians' slide over the last couple of weeks.

He also warns people not to count out the Twins.

"They won last year," Acta said Monday. "The division still has to go through Minnesota. Anyone in our division could still win it by 10 or get buried by 30."

The Indians opened play Monday tied with the Tigers atop the AL Central, with the White Sox 3 1/2 games behind. The Indians, who have lost four in a row and nine of their last 10, open a three-game series in Detroit on Tuesday.

"You're not a fluke for 2 1/2 months if you're in first place," Acta said. "We built up that lead. We'll be back again playing better. I guess that's an understatement."

The Indians should get help when Travis Hafner returns from the disabled list, probably late this week. Hafner, out since May 18 with an oblique injury, is set to begin a rehabilitation assignment at Double-A Akron on Tuesday.
Acta wouldn't say how soon Hafner will be back, but Hafner said the team told him they wanted him to spend three or four days in the minors before returning.

The Indians have struggled to score runs in Hafner's absence, so Acta shook up his lineup Monday, putting Grady Sizemore back in the leadoff spot and batting Michael Brantley and Asdrubal Cabrera third and fourth.

"Those two guys have been the most consistent," Acta explained. "I wanted to have our best hitters hit in the middle of the lineup."

Posted on: May 27, 2011 10:05 am
Edited on: May 27, 2011 11:09 am

3 to Watch: The King defends his crown edition

It's been a quiet start to the season for Felix Hernandez. Even the talk that he'll be traded seems to have died down, either because of the Mariners' continued strong denials, his own declarations of how happy he is in Seattle or the team's decent start to the season.

Meanwhile, as of now Hernandez isn't even in the top 10 in the American League ERA race. He leads the league in strikeouts and he's third in innings pitched, but if the Cy Young vote were held today, he'd barely receive a vote.

And none of that means he won't repeat his title.

Through 11 starts, Hernandez actually has better numbers than he did at this point last year. He's 5-4 with a 3.01 ERA, as compared to 2-4 with a 3.50 ERA through his first 11 starts of 2010.

Last year, the Mariners were held to one run or none in three of his first four losses. This year, they've been held to no runs, one run and two runs in three of his first four losses.

And that means this Saturday's start against the Yankees is King Felix's biggest of the year so far.

The strongest voices against Hernandez in last year's Cy debate weren't the ones complaining about his so-so 13-12 record. Rather, they were the ones complaining that he didn't pitch in important games, and pitched in the weak-hitting American League West.

The strongest counter-argument was Hernandez's record against the Yankees. He won all three of his starts against New York, allowing just one run on 16 hits in 26 innings.

As Felix defenders have said all along, the bigger the stage, the better he pitched.

The stage isn't huge this weekend, but the Yankees are the highest-scoring team in the American League. The Mariners are playing so well (and the division is so weak) that they're just 1 1/2 games out of first place.

It's a late-night Saturday start, but it's still the Yankees, and it still would be a great place for Hernandez to launch his reelection campaign.

On to 3 to Watch:

1. Every day, it seems, I talk to another baseball person who mentions how unimpressive the Indians were in spring training, and how shocking it is that they still have the best record in baseball. But they do, and they even survived Grady Sizemore's latest trip to the disabled list, with Sizemore expected to return this weekend. Still, the doubters are going to doubt, and wonder if this is the week the Indians' collapse begins. Coming off two straight home losses to the Red Sox, they now get Tampa Bay's two best starters, beginning with David Price in Indians at Rays, Friday night (7:10 ET) at Tropicana Field. Josh Tomlin, who is 6-1 and has held opponents to a .182 batting average, starts for the Indians.

2. Even with Buster Posey, the Giants have scored the fewest runs in the National League. Even with Buster Posey, the Giants' margin of error has been slim, their first-place record built largely on a 14-5 record in one-run games. Now the Giants don't have Posey, and they go on the road to face a Brewers team that is finally healthy and has won six straight and 13 of 16. The good news for the Giants: They open the series with Tim Lincecum on the mound, in Giants at Brewers, Friday night (8:10 ET) at Miller Park. The bad news: The Brewers starter is Shawn Marcum, who has won his last six decisions.

3. Hernandez hasn't even been the most-talked-about starter in his own rotation, which he shares with 22-year-old Michael Pineda. Pineda looks great, and his start against the Yankees on Friday is worth watching, too. But Felix is still the King, and that puts Yankees at Mariners, Saturday night (10:10 ET) at Safeco Field on this list.

Posted on: May 26, 2011 1:32 pm
Edited on: May 26, 2011 1:39 pm

Sizemore 'more than likely' rejoining Indians

Grady Sizemore isn't back with the Indians yet. But he's almost back.

The Indians cleared a spot on their roster Thursday by optioning Ezequiel Carrera to Triple-A Columbus. They didn't immediately activate Sizemore from the disabled list, but did announce that he will "more than likely" be activated sometime during this weekend's series at Tampa Bay.

Sizemore last played on May 10, and he's on the disabled list with a bruised right knee. According to reports in Cleveland, Sizemore ran the bases before Wednesday's game.

The surprising Indians have gone 7-6 in Sizemore's absence, but they still own baseball's best record, at 30-17.

Category: MLB
Posted on: May 20, 2011 3:20 pm
Edited on: May 20, 2011 3:32 pm

Indians put Hafner on DL

Travis Hafner has joined Grady Sizemore on the Indians' disabled list.

Hafner has already missed two games with a strained right oblique. The surprising Indians lost both those games in Chicago, although they still have the best record in the major leagues, at 26-15.

Hafner, coming off three subpar seasons, has been a big part of Cleveland's revival. In 32 games, he has hit .345 with five home runs and 22 RBI.

The Indians called up outfielder Ezequiel Carrera from Triple-A Columbus. They also called up pitcher Frank Herrmann, and sent infielder Luis Valbuena to Columbus.

Sizemore has been out since May 10 with a knee injury. The Indians have gone 3-4 in the first seven games he has missed.

The Indians are entering a particularly tough part of their schedule. They host the first-place Reds this weekend, and follow that with series against the Red Sox, Rays, Blue Jays and Rangers.
Posted on: May 16, 2011 12:35 pm
Edited on: May 16, 2011 12:41 pm

Big loss for Indians as Sizemore heads to DL

The Indians were unimpressive this spring, and one big reason is that Grady Sizemore barely played.

The Indians are the surprise team of the early season -- they still own baseball's best record, at 24-13 -- and one big reason is that Sizemore has played like the star he was in 2007-08.

And now Sizemore is on the disabled list once again, with a right knee contusion that just wouldn't heal quickly enough. If there's good news for the Indians, it's that this is the other knee, not the one that Sizemore had microfracture surgery on last year.

It's also worth noting that the Indians are 13-7 in games Sizemore hasn't started this year, basically the same winning percentage as they have in the games he has started (11-6).

Still, if you believe in the Indians as season-long contenders, it's in significant part because of Sizemore's return to star status. He was a three-time All-Star from 2006-08, and the Indians were a threat with him. He was on the DL for much of the last two years, and the Indians lost 97 and 93 games without him.

Yes, they traded away CC Sabathia, Cliff Lee and Victor Martinez in that time. Yes, Travis Hafner was hurt or seriously underperforming, too.

And yes, other players like Michael Brantley may be emerging as stars.

But if you want to believe in the Indians, you need to believe that Grady Sizemore will keep playing -- and playing at a high level. Instead, now he's hurt -- again.

The Indians called up Travis Buck from Triple-A Columbus to take Sizemore's roster spot. Buck, formerly with the A's, was hitting .333 with 21 RBI in 18 games at Columbus. But he's no Sizemore.

Perhaps Sizemore won't be out long. Last week, the Indians said that an MRI on Sizemore's right knee showed no structural damage. But for a player who has missed so much time, any trip to the DL is troubling, and there's always a worry that he'll miss more time that originally estimated.

Another concern: The Indians are about to enter a particularly challenging part of their schedule. They go to Chicago this week for two games with the improving White Sox, then begin a stretch where they'll play the first-place Reds, the hot Red Sox and then the first-place Rays.
Category: MLB
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