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07/06/11 7:30 PM ET

Night after ankle sprain, Asdrubal starts

Indians' All-Star shortstop talks his way into lineup

CLEVELAND -- It's safe to say that Asdrubal Cabrera's sprained right ankle is feeling better.

"He was feeling so good that before I left the ballpark [Tuesday night], he was bombarding me with text messages about being able to play today," Indians manager Manny Acta said.

When fielding a grounder in the hole at shortstop in the third inning of Tuesday's 9-2 loss to the Yankees, Cabrera turned his right ankle while planting to throw. After a brief jog, he remained in the game. But when Cabrera's spot in the order came up an inning later, Lonnie Chisenhall took his place.

"He didn't want to come out of the game," Acta said. "He kept telling me he could play."

Cabrera's insistence made it easier for Acta to pencil his All-Star shortstop in the lineup for Wednesday's contest.

"He said he's fine," Acta said. "Why should we give him a day [off]? Cal Ripken Jr. played over 2,000 games in a row. He's only played 80-something games."

Cabrera played in each of the Indians' first 84 games entering Wednesday. A broken left forearm limited him to 97 games in 2010. Acta said he even returned early from that injury.

The Indians' iron man won't have the benefit of extra rest during next week's All-Star break, since he'll represent the club for the first time in Phoenix. Because of that, Acta said he's going to try to rest Cabrera once during the team's upcoming series against Toronto.

"He never wants out of the lineup -- never," Acta said. "I really have to negotiate hard with him just to give him days off.

"He's been telling me for three months now: 'I'll let you know. I'll let you know. I'll let you know.'"

Acta hopes Jeter hits milestone in Bronx

CLEVELAND -- Yankees shortstop Derek Jeter entered Wednesday's game needing four base knocks to acquire a ticket to the 3,000-hit club. Indians manager Manny Acta would prefer that the 12-time All-Star accomplish the feat in New York.

"If he gets seven hits today, if we win, I'm fine with it," Acta said. "But I think it would be great if he can do it in New York. I think he should take an 0-fer today."

The Yankees will open a four-game series with the Rays in New York beginning Thursday. Jeter notched a pair of hits in Tuesday's game, and Yankees manager Joe Girardi hinted on Tuesday that he would rest Jeter in Wednesday's rubber match, but Jeter found himself atop Girardi's lineup card against Justin Masterson.

Jeter has two four-hit games this season.

"It'll be a nice -- perfect script if he gets to do it in Yankee Stadium in front of his fans in New York," Acta said.

Tribe helps dream come true for young fan

CLEVELAND -- Dr. Tom Haveron didn't have much growing up.

Both of his parents passed away when he was young. His aunt, who had taken in him and his sister, also died from cancer. Haveron's saving grace was a transistor radio that allowed him to soak up the wavelengths of baseball play-by-play.

Over the years, Haveron has maintained a passion for baseball, and he has gathered enough collectibles and memorabilia to rival the Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, N.Y. But more important to him is the ability to provide for children who grow up with major disadvantages in life, just as he did.

Haveron started the Medicine Via Philanthropy (M.V.P.) Foundation after his friend, Milton, was struck by a car and needed 14 surgeries. As a result, Milton didn't have the financial backing to put his daughter, Mabel, through college.

While strategizing plans for an M.V.P. Foundation event at a Yankees game, Haveron met 14-year-old Tristin Greer, who in March 2010 was diagnosed with neuroblastoma, a form of extracranial cancer.

"I said, 'Would you like me to get you a ball?'" Haveron said. "And he looked at me and he goes, 'When you look like me, you get balls all the time. Would you like me to get you a ball?'"

A week later, with the help of Haveron and the M.V.P. Foundation, Tristin got to go on the field and meet members of the Yankees and Red Sox, who signed autographs and took pictures with him. On Wednesday, Tristin threw out the first pitch at Progressive Field before the Indians hosted the Yankees.

Tristin has undergone treatments of chemotherapy while battling one of the world's most serious illnesses. Yet here was the lanky teen a few hours before the game, worrying about something so simple as whether he would have enough time to stretch and warm up before taking the mound.

"I'm just scared I'm going to mess up the pitch," Greer said with a smile. "It's either going to go right to [the catcher's] hand, or way over there."

"Into the stands," his father, Jason, chimed in, laughing.

Smoke signals

• Acta said that outfielder Travis Buck was available to come off the bench for Wednesday's game and should be ready to start on Thursday. Buck has been sidelined since Friday with a strained left hamstring.

• With a scoreless inning in Tuesday's contest, reliever Joe Smith extended his streak to 22 appearances without allowing a run. Smith leads the American League with a 0.92 ERA.

• Cleveland hasn't entered the All-Star break in first place in the AL Central since 1999, when it held a 13-game lead over the White Sox.

Zack Meisel is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.