Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Cabrera returning to Indians

Indians shortstop Asdrubal Cabrera will return to the leadoff spot in team's lineup tonight against the Twins.

Out since May 17 with a right forearm fracture, Cabrera returns to Cleveland ahead of schedule after going 7-for-20 in six Minor League rehab games with Class-A Mahoning Valley and Class-AA Akron with three doubles and a home run.

He was expected to be activated on Friday along with Shin-Soo Choo.

Reliever Jensen Lewis, who had a 4.18 ERA and a 1.56 WHIP in 22 games out of the bullpen, was designated for assignment to make room for Cabrera on the active roster. He is expected to be optioned to Triple-A Columbus tomorrow.

Cabrera's return could cause a small roster controversy for Cleveland. While he was on the DL, rookie Jason Donald admirably filled in for Cabrera at shortstop, and veteran Jayson Nix was claimed off waivers to play second. Nix, however, became a power threat and a key cog in the team's recent resurgence.

Manager Manny Acta had two options: keep both on the roster and use Nix as a utility man so Donald continues getting regular at-bats or demote Donald to Columbus and keep Nix as the everyday second baseman.

With Nix penciled in at left field and Donald at second base for tonight's game, it appears Acta decided with the latter.

Nix is batting .227 but has seven home runs and a .301 on-base percentage. Donald, meanwhile, is hitting .276 with 17 RBI and a .326 on-base percentage.

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