CLEVELAND – A murky injury situation gained some clarity heading into Friday’s series opener against the White Sox at Progressive Field.
Manager Terry Francona detailed the statuses of Abraham Almonte (strained right biceps), Brandon Guyer (left wrist injury) and Danny Salazar (right shoulder soreness) in his latest meeting with the media.
Coming off an 0-for-3 performance in a rehab game with Triple-A Columbus on Thursday, it appears Abraham Almonte is on the fast track back to big league action.
"He DHed and felt fine," said Francona. "Depending on how he does, he could play the outfield tomorrow or the next day (in a workout)."
Almonte took too big of a swing on May 10 in Toronto, shutting him down for an extended period before he recently played light catch on May 29 under the supervision of medical staff. His improvements in plate discipline outweighed a rather pedestrian .221/.323/.337 slash line through 86 at-bats with Cleveland (33 games).
"Today, he's supposed to throw the bases," Francona said. "So far, everything he's done, he's felt good. So that's good."
A slow start at the plate unraveled even further once Guyer underwent treatment and suffered a left wrist sprain, one day after he uncharacteristically executed a sacrifice bunt (one sac bunt in 2016) at home against the Twins on May 12.
"Guyer's still doing baseball activities," said Francona. "But not to the point where Abe is yet."
The other half of the valuable right field platoon alongside Lonnie Chisenhall batted .182/.237/.291 with three doubles, one home run and five RBIs in 55 at-bats (21 games) before his placement on the 10-day disabled list.
The Tribe will continue to take a cautious approach with Salazar after he experienced right shoulder soreness during a throwing session with the Akron RubberDucks. The 27-year-old right-hander underwent an MRI that found inflammation and swelling in his arm, but nothing believed to be serious.
"Danny's [in Cleveland]," Francona said. "We sent him back with Akron and Tony Arnold. In his throwing session the other day, he complained of shoulder stiffness. Rather than push through that, we brought him here (and) got him MRIed. MRI came back which we were glad that (there were) so minimal changes in four years. Which I think for a guy that's thrown four years, is miraculous."
Salazar went 3-5 with a 5.40 ERA, 1.58 WHIP and .274 opposing batting average in 55 innings (12 appearances, 10 starts) of work. He moved to the bullpen in favor of Corey Kluber and eventually found himself on the DL, as well.
"He's got some inflammation in there, which we knew," said Francona. "We'll spend the next couple days with our medical staff figuring out what the next step is. Then we'll get him going."
Although no permanent plan or timetable for return has been established, all signs are positive for Salazar at this point in time.