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Spring Training Notes 3/20: Carlos Carrasco looks strong in minor league start

One minor league start was all it took for Carlos Carrasco to feel substantially better about his swelling right elbow from six days ago that underwent Tommy John surgery in 2011.

Throwing a baseball in fear of injury is usually not a good sign for a premier starting pitcher.

Although Carlos Carrasco began his minor league outing with concern for his right elbow that swelled up last Monday, he successfully tossed 33 pitches at full strength on Monday afternoon at the Indians' facility in Goodyear, AZ. 

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- Unlike his previous appearance a week ago, an eight-run debacle featuring a heavy dosage of fastballs, Carrasco freely used his off-speed pitches vs. the Louisville Bats, the Triple-A affiliate of the Cincinnati Reds.

"I was a little bit scared," said Carrasco to reporters about how he felt prior to the contest. "It was only inflammation. So we took a week off and took medication, and everything feels fine now."

If all goes as planned, Carrasco will return to the Cactus League on Friday and start against the Chicago Cubs at 4:05 PM ET. 

"I feel really good," Carrasco said. "My arm, my elbow, everything's good."

- The Tribe downsized their spring training roster by 12 players on Monday to bring their reduced total to 43.

Ryan Merritt, Shawn Morimando and Adam Plutko were optioned to Triple-A Columbus while Travis Banwart, Steve Delabar, Josh Martin, Chris Narveson, James Russell, Guillermo Quiroz, Ronny Rodriguez, Eric Stamets and Greg Allen were reassigned to minor league camp.

- After spending the past two weeks at the World Baseball Classic representing the Dominican Republic, Carlos Santana returned to Arizona to resume his spring duties with Cleveland. 

Santana figures to be the everyday first baseman with his fellow countryman Edwin Encarnacion primarily working as the club's designated hitter.

The switch-hitting slugger is slated to return to action on Wednesday.

John Alfes has covered the Indians for IBI since August of 2016. Follow him on Twitter @JohnAlfes for breaking news and in-depth coverage all season long.


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