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Perez expected to be out of game action for 3-4 weeks

Perez expected to be out of game action for 3-4 weeks
March 1, 2013
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Indians closer Chris Perez has been shelved with a subscapularis strain in his right shoulder and will not throw for the next seven to ten days. He will begin a return to throwing program as soon as he is asymptomatic, and is expected to be out of game action for at least three to four weeks.

The injury occurred in Perez’s last outing on February 26th and for the past few days the Indians training staff had been evaluating him before coming up with his prognosis today. Due to the injury he will no longer be able to fulfill his commitment to pitch for the United States in the World Baseball Classic which gets under way tonight when Australia squares off with Chinese Taipei at 11:30 PM EST.

Perez shared the following in a tweet on Twitter today in response to the injury: “"This to shall pass". . .Small hurdle at an in-opportune time. I feel better now than I did last year with the oblique. Still plenty of time."

This is the second year in a row that Perez has come down with an injury in spring training as last season he injured his oblique early in camp, but was able to make it back so he could open the season in time. Oblique injuries can linger and be more of a nuisance than they are serious, but anytime you are dealing with a shoulder injury there is certainly more concern.

Closing duties are not important in spring training, but if the injury lingers and Perez has to open the season on the disabled list, then Vinnie Pestano would take over closing duties.  An open spot in the bullpen could also open the door for the likes of Matt Capps, Rich Hill, David Huff, Cody Allen, Scott Barnes, and Nick Hagadone to make the opening day roster.

In other injury news, the Indians announced that right-hander Frank Herrmann has a right elbow ligament sprain that he suffered in his last outing of Feb 25th.  The Indians and Herrmann are still in the process of gathering information for the most appropriate course of action, and in the meantime he has been shut down from all activities.  Total speculation here, but having seen this so many times in the past, he is probably getting (or has had) an MRI on the elbow and getting a second opinion on it to determine if any surgery is needed or if rehab could fix the problem.

Also, outfielder Michael Brantley has resumed lower body strength and conditioning and cardiovascular training. He will commence gripping activities this weekend in preparation for returning to limited baseball activities early next week.  Right-handed pitcher Joe Smith threw a sim-game yesterday and is scheduled to pitch live BP tomorrow.

Follow Tony and the Indians Baseball Insider on Twitter @TonyIBI. Also, his new book the 2014 Cleveland Indians Baseball Insider which profiles the Indians' Top 100 Prospects and more is available for sale.

User Comments

March 2, 2013 - 7:55 PM EST
I've had a fair amount of pitching shoulder stuff unfortunately. Shoulder pain that involves the labrum, the bicep and or tricep ligaments as well as the capsularis are often indications of structural degeneration, and unlike the rotator cuff are unresponsive to surgical intervention and often become chronic. The cure if you catch it early enough is rest and neuromuscular reprogramming and that is not possible for a pitcher, especially a closer. I worry Perez may have ongoing problems, I wish him the best. The Indians ERA is already the highest of any team in Arizona. Paredes, Hill, Gil, are u kidding me? And Ubaldo is already stinkin up the joint, you can't keep running him out there it will destroy the morale of the offense. It's not a good feeling to score 6 runs in the first 2 innings and know it's not good enough.
March 1, 2013 - 10:43 PM EST
Is anybody else concerned that Albers is guaranteed a bullpen spot out of spring training? He gives up a lot of HRs to be a late inning guy. Maybe he gets the long relief job since he's a former starter and still features three pitches, but I hope that's all he's expected to be.
March 1, 2013 - 7:19 PM EST
I for one am glad Perez will not be in the WBC. Pitching too many innings in the spring can pay a toll in the fall...if we are still there.
March 1, 2013 - 6:40 PM EST
Kazmir is a possibility for the bullpen, but it appears he is only being considered right now as either the fifth starter or will open the season as a starter in Columbus as a depth starting option.
March 1, 2013 - 5:50 PM EST
What about Scott Kazmir in the bullpen? With his velocity back a move to the pen could really revive his career. He could be a good fit since we will have a rotation full of right handers. So, haveing a guy like Kazmir to pitch long relief and and set up could be a good move.
March 1, 2013 - 5:04 PM EST
No, Langwell in all honesty is not in consideration for a spot out of spring training. Any non-roster additions will come from the likes of Capps, Hill, etc and Langwell will go to Columbus to start the season. However, he could be an option at any point during the year. Also, the Indians are not moving Salazar to the pen to fill a short term need. Salazar will be limited to about 130-140 or so innings this season, so really will not be a Major League option all year. He needs a full season in AA/AAA as he has just a month above the Single-A level and is still coming back from serious arm surgery.

Assuming Pestano, Smith, and Albers have three spots and Perez is on the DL to start the really leaves things wide open for the final four spots. I would think two of Hagadone, Barnes, Huff and Hill make it. And then two of Capps, Allen, Shaw, make it.
March 1, 2013 - 4:57 PM EST
How do you see these two relief spots getting filled if they last into the May or so? Is this the injury break that Langwell needed? Or would this push the Indians to move Salazar to the bullpen?

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