Indians add Bauer, Giambi, Sellers and send out three
The Cleveland Indians today announced they have activated designated hitter Jason Giambi from the 15-day Disabled List and recalled both right-handed pitcher Trevor Bauer and infielder Justin Sellers from Triple-A Columbus. To make room for them on the roster they have optioned first baseman Jesus Aguilar, left-handed pitcher T.J. House and infielder Jose Ramirez to Columbus.
Giambi has been on the 15-day Disabled List since May 4th after suffering a right calf strain vs. the Chicago White Sox one day earlier. He has been on the DL twice this season and is 0-for-10 in four games with the Indians thus far in 2014. He is also 0-for-4 in limited time in spring training and 0-for-8 in his rehab assignment at Double-A Akron in April.
Bauer, 23, has spent most of the 2014 season at Columbus, going 4-1 with a 2.15 ERA in 7 starts (46.0 IP, 36 H, 11R/ER, 14 BB, 44 K, .216 AVG). He is currently 6th in the International League in ERA, tied for 11th in strikeouts and 9th in WHIP (1.09). During his stay with the Clippers he has limited batters to a .147 (5-for-34) mark with runners in scoring position as lefties are hitting .195 (17-for-87) off him for the year. Trevor made one spot start on April 9th for Cleveland in a 2-1 loss vs. San Diego (6.0 IP, 4 H, 2 R/1ER, 2 BB) fanning a career-high eight Padres in the effort. He is starting tonight vs. Detroit.
Sellers has spent virtually the entire 2014 season with Columbus, hitting .227 (32-for-141) with 7 doubles, 1 triple and 15 RBI in 37 games. The versatile infielder has appeared in 29 games at shortstop, 2 games apiece at second and third base and 4 games in left field. Sellers was acquired on March 2nd from the LA Dodgers and optioned to Columbus at the conclusion of spring training. He was with the Indians from April 10-12th but did not appear in a game while Lonnie Chisenhall was on the Paternity List.
The activation of Sellers and optioning out Ramirez is more about the way the playing time is being distributed in Cleveland at second base. With Mike Aviles getting a very large amount of playing time there the Indians have been unable to get Ramirez much time, so they prefer he go to Columbus where he can play everyday and use the more limited prospect Sellers in low use role as a 25th player on the roster.
Bauer is sliding into the rotation for Danny Salazar who was optioned out a few days ago while House was only a short term extra arm for the pen. The Giambi move is the only real questionable move as the fact the team called up a DH-only left-handed hitter for a team starving for defense and help against left-handed pitching makes little sense, but they are hoping he can help be an influence on the field rather than just in the clubhouse.
Personally, I wish Ramirez would have gotten more time at 2B, and it could have happened if Francona had been willing to sit Swisher, especially during the horrendous slump he was (is?) in. That would be one option - sit Swisher, play Giambi at 1B, have Aviles/Chisenhall/Sellers play 1B (I think all three have played there, though on a limited basis). I wish Francona would have considered that and done that while Ramirez was here- getting the at-bats and playing defense up here would have been beneficial for him and for the Indians.
In the end the Giambi move is about Francona's loyalty, which can be both his best and worst trait