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Sizemore key to Brantley's playing time?

By Sheldon Published: September 1, 2009

DETROIT: Will there be opportunities for the Indians' September call-ups to make an impression, or are they destined to be mere window dressing?

Emphatically, manager Eric Wedge said that right-hander Carlos Carrasco and outfielder Michael Brantley will play. Right-handed reliever Jose Veras, who was with the Tribe earlier in the year, also was summoned from Triple-A, but his prospects for seeing much action probably will be limited.

Carrasco and Brantley, both 22, made their major-league debuts Tuesday night against the Tigers, Carrasco as the starting pitcher, Brantley as the left fielder. ¶
""It's always exciting to see somebody's first game in the big leagues,'' Wedge said. ""If you don't get excited about that, you should leave he game.'' ¶
Carrasco was part of the deal that sent Cliff Lee to the Phillies. Apparently, Wedge will get him regular starts by periodically resting other starters. ¶
Brantley came to Cleveland from the Brewers as part of the trade that sent C.C. Sabathia to Milwaukee. This year, he batted .267 with 80 runs 21 doubles and 46 steals (in 51 tries) for Columbus and is tied for the International League lead in steals. ¶
""We're going to try adnd give him as much regular work as possible,'' Wedge said. ""It will depnd on some other guys as ewell as on him.'' ¶
That was Wedge's cryptic way of saying that Grady Sizemore has played in pain long enough. Sizemore has been fighting the effects of inflammation in the lining of his left elbow for months, possibly since the beginning of the season. ¶
It was decided weeks, if not months, ago that he would undergo arthroscopic surgery to correct the ailment after the season. It is an operation that includes a four to six week recovery period, so it should not delay the start of spring training for him. ¶
""Grady isn't exactly 100 percent,'' Wedge said. ""We might shut him down early. That would give Matt LaPorta a chance to play right field with Shn-Soo Choo getting some time at DH. Brantley then would be able to play center and right.'' ¶
Asked if the date of Sizemore's surgery would be moved up, Wedge said, ""We're working through that right now.'' ¶
Veras struggled in his first stint with the Tribe, compiling a 1-1 record and 7.62 ERA in 12 appearances (13 IP) before being designated for assignment Aug. 5. He went unclaimed on waivers and accepted an assignment to Triple-A. ¶
Why did the Indians want another look at Veras? ¶
""We like his arm and we like his stuff,'' Wedge said. ¶
ALL CLEAR -- Travis Hafner underwent an MRI scan of his left shoulder in Cleveland Monday and received permission to return to the lineup. ¶
""They said it was a strained muscle but I can play tomorrow,'' he said. ""It's been sore for awhile, but it got worse in Baltimore.'' ¶
Hafner sat out the last two games against the Orioles, rested the shoulder on Monday's off day and Tuesday night against the Tigers. ¶
ON THE ROAD AGAIN -- Trevor Crowe remains on the disabled list with a strained oblique, but he rejoined the team in Detroit. ¶
""He's ready to get more involved in baseball activity,'' Wedge explained. ¶
To Crowe, it's as if he's been released from prison. ¶
""It feels like Christmas to me,'' he said. ""I've been doing my work at nine in the morning (at Progressive Field) and getting done at noon. Then I go home, watch some TV and go to bed early. It's been extremely boring.'' ¶
The highlight of Crowe's day usually is watching the Indians on TV. ¶
""When (Andy) Marte hit that home run (to beat the Orioles Thursday night), I got all pumped up for him,'' Crowe said. ""Everybody in the room is going, "Why are you getting so excited?' '' ¶
Crowe is guessing that he will be activated by some time next week. ¶
""I want to see him work today and tomorrow before we decide when he can come back,'' Wedge said. ¶
HONOREE -- Jhonny Peralta has been selected as the Tribe's nominee for the Roberto Clemente Award. ¶
He is one of 30 nominees for the national award that is given to the player who excels on the field and contributes to the community. ¶
Peralta and his wife Molly volunteer time and resources to many local organizations, including the Special Olympics, Lakeshore Day Camp and Cleveland Indians Charities. ¶
MINOR DEAL -- The Indians have traded left-hander Bobby Livingston to the Pirates for cash. Livingston, who was dealt to the Tribe from Baltimore, was 1-0 with a 3.13 ERA in four appearances (three starts) at Columbus. ¶
FARM FACTS -- Bo Greenwell had three hits, and T.J. House (5-11, 3.30 ERA) gave up four runs in five innings, as Lake County fell to Delmarva 6-5. *elip Jason Kipnis and Greg Folgia each had two hits and two RBI in Mahoning Valley's 8-4 win over Williamsport. Brett Brach gave up two earned runs (three total) in six innings. ¶

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