CLEVELAND – In-season adjustments seem necessary when a club is held to three-or-fewer hits in consecutive games for the first time since June 29, 2014.
Injuries help justify that decision as well.
The Indians promoted Erik Gonzalez and Daniel Robertson from Triple-A prior to Sunday’s game against the Twins. In a pair of corresponding moves, Brandon Guyer (left wrist injury) was placed on the 10-day disabled list and Michael Martinez was designated for assignment.
Fresh off the minor league DL due to a strained left hamstring, Robertson fits the super utility tag with defensive experience across the outfield and second base throughout his 10 years of minor and major league action.
“My role is to come in here and do everything possible to help this team win, night in and night out,” said Robertson. “Whether it’s off the bench, whether it’s starting, whether it’s off the lefty, whether it’s off a righty, get a bunt down, steal a bag, just be a baseball player. So I’m here to bring energy, I’m here to bring anything that it takes to win the game no matter what.”
The 31-year-old made an impression this spring with a .328/.397/.475 slash line before going 7-for-15 in four games at Columbus. His time in the Rangers, Angels and Mariners systems made the call even more special.
“Especially when you’re changing organizations as many times as I have, especially every time you create a relationship with a manager that you’ve never played with before, you’re part of an organization that you don’t really know what to think of and then all of the sudden, it’s special for everyone,” Robertson said.”
Robertson is penciled in the seven-hole on Sunday and figures to take on a platoon role with Guyer on the shelf.
“It’s his left wrist,” said manager Terry Francona. “For about a week he said he could feel it, said it was something that was tolerable. He took his last swing the other night and really felt it, to the point that he couldn’t hit yesterday.”
Guyer underwent an MRI on Sunday morning and was going to be out five to seven days regardless of the results. Team physician Tom Graham will examine Guyer over the next few days before a final diagnosis is announced.
To clear space for Robertson on the 25-man roster, the club DFA’d Martinez for the second time in as many years. The transaction gives Gonzalez the opportunity to provide Francisco Lindor and Jose Ramirez an off-day while also featuring his versatility at a bevy of positions.
“He’s been playing everywhere,” Francona said of Gonzalez’s time at 3B, SS, 2B, RF and LF in 2017. “He’s a shortstop and he’s a really good defensive shortstop, but because of his skills he can move around and he’s pretty reliable. And even to the point where you could put him in the outfield. He’s pretty athletic.”
After spending 21 games with Cleveland in 2016, the 25-year-old prospect registered averages of .269/.293/.455 with 12 extra-base hits – four doubles, three triples and five home runs for a .748 OPS.
Martinez batted .364/.462/.455 (4-for-11) and even recorded one shutout inning of emergency relief during his second stint with the team.