6/28/2013 7:00 P.M. ET
Francona looks to rest starters over tough stretch
By Ethan Asofsky / MLB.com
CHICAGO -- Cleveland manager Terry Francona is doing his best to keep his players healthy yet productive during a difficult stretch of his team's schedule. After a long game on Thursday that included a 78-minute rain delay in the seventh inning, the Indians play four games in three days in Chicago. As a result, Francona said he hopes to find his regulars rest over the weekend and only play them in three of the four games.
"I'm not nervous. I think I have a responsibility to take care of our guys," Francona said. "We need to win as many as we can, and try to keep it in perspective where you don't get greedy and get a guy hurt. We'll just try to mix and match as best we can."
The Indians have an off-day on Monday, so Francona plans to sit hot-hitting second baseman Jason Kipnis and center fielder Michael Bourn on Sunday to allow for two days of rest for two of his major producers. Bourn was not in the lineup for the first game of a doubleheader on Friday, because the White Sox started left-hander Hector Santiago. Francona said Drew Stubbs' right-handed bat might match up better against Chicago's starter, and he noticed Bourn appeared tired on Thursday in Baltimore.
"I think Bourn gets tired because he plays center field and he's not the biggest guy in the world," Francona said. "I was going to play him both games today. I told him after the rain delay, 'Bourn, that doesn't make sense to me. You look like you could use a little blow.'
"It's because he's always ready. He can come in and help us win a game that way, and he was OK with that."
Shortstop Asdrubal Cabrera was activated from the 15-day disabled list on Wednesday, and he was in the lineup for the early game of Friday's doubleheader. Francona said it's unlikely he'll play both games.
Indians outfielder/first baseman Nick Swisher did not play in Thursday's game with a sore shoulder, but he was back in the lineup hitting fourth for Game 1 against Chicago. Francona said he'd monitor how Swisher is feeling before deciding whether he'll play both games on Friday.
Kipnis returns to hometown city of Chicago
CHICAGO -- After Thursday's 78-minute rain delay in Baltimore caused the Indians to arrive into Chicago late at night, Jason Kipnis just wanted to rest. Even with his hometown Blackhawks' championship parade invading the streets of Chicago on Friday, he said his preparedness for the Indians' doubleheader was more important.
"Unfortunately, I didn't get to catch any of the action this morning, but I told the guys if the Stanley Cups winds up in the ballpark over the weekend, I'm running to go see it," Kipnis said. "I saw videos of the scene on Clark after they won. It was crazy."
Kipnis grew up in Northbrook, Ill., but like many Chicagoans, he only recently entered die-hard status during the hockey team's run of success over the last five years. The 'Hawks weren't on TV when Kipnis was younger, but he did his best to follow the team during its run in the early '90s, when Chris Chelios and Jeremy Roenick skated for Chicago.
The Indians need Kipnis' bat to be fresh for both of Friday's games -- he has reached base safely in 29 consecutive contests. A Cleveland player hasn't had a streak of 30 consecutive games with a walk, hit or hit by pitch since Ryan Garko did it for 32 games in a row from Aug. 14-Sept. 24, 2008.
"He started out the first four or five weeks just scuffling," Indians manager Terry Francona said. "You'd tell him, 'Relax, it'll be fine.' Good players have a way of getting to their level. It's amazing how it works. He's rising to that level until he got really hot."
Entering play on Friday, Kipnis was batting .388 with three home runs and 12 RBIs in 13 career games in Chicago.
Tribe shuffles roster for twin bill against White Sox
CHICAGO -- The Indians made a series of moves on Friday due to the extra roster spot afforded to the team during its doubleheader in Chicago. Indians No. 2 prospect Trevor Bauer was called up for a spot start in Game 1 on Friday, and reliever Nick Hagadone was optioned to Triple-A Columbus.
"I actually think this is kind of good for [Bauer]," Indians manager Terry Francona said. "It kind of breaks his progression and he comes up here and knows he's here for one. He can go ahead and compete. I think he's comfortable with us. We all know him from Spring Training and everything."
The Indians will send down Bauer in the 20-30 minutes between the first and second games and activate reliever Matt Langwell, who was in the clubhouse with the team Friday morning.
Indians right-hander Carlos Carrasco will serve as the team's 26th man on Friday's roster and will start the second game of the doubleheader before he's sent down following his outing. Francona said the plan is for Carrasco to rejoin the team five days later for his usual spot in the rotation.
"We're just trying to maximize everything," Francona said. "This is more a logistics thing. We're able to get an extra player. That's the reason."
Hagadone was 0-1 with a 5.40 ERA in 25 innings with the Indians this season. He'd thrown two straight scoreless outings before he was sent down, and he posted a 2.70 ERA in 10 innings since June 4.
"We tried to explain that to him last night, amidst the disappointment when he sat down, to please take away all the positives, because there's no ceiling for him," Francona said. "This guy can be as good as he wants. He's got everything. I told him, 'There's going to be a day when you're not the guy with options, or you're pitching so well you're not going to be in this position.' We want that to happen."
• Indians reliever Brett Myers threw a scoreless inning for Double-A Akron on Thursday as he continues to recover from the right elbow inflammation that landed him on the disabled list retroactive to April 21. He'll take two days off before his next outing, but he will likely throw two innings in that appearance.
• Cleveland starter Zach McAllister is close to throwing a bullpen session. He's currently playing catch from 120 feet with tape on, then moving in and taking off the protective covering on his right middle finger.
Ethan Asofsky is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.