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Sowers back in Tribe rotation

By Sheldon Published: July 22, 2009

TORONTO: Jeremy Sowers is back in the Indians' rotation, beginning Saturday in Seattle. ¶
   It didn't take much. One start in Columbus and the realization that the Tribe doesn't have a lot of options. ¶
   ""There is such a shortage of starters in the game and a shortage in our organization, if a guy has he capability to be a starter, we want to give him the opportunity,'' manager Eric Wedge said Wednesday. ¶
   Sowers was optioned to Triple-A on July 9 to make room for Rafael Betancourt, who was returning from the disabled list. ¶
   In Sowers' last start for the Tribe, July 7 against the White Sox, he gave up four runs in 51/3 innings, demonstrating again why he has had such a fitful season. For five innings, he yielded just one run and three hits, but things fell apart in the sixth, when he faced four batters and retired only one. ¶
  Through much of the season, Sowers has pitched four or five clean innings, giving up few hits or runs. But he seems to hit a wall in the fifth or sixth, and with the suddeness of a summer storm, he ends up back in the clubhouse. ¶
   ""A lot of times with Jeremy, things become bigger than they should be,'' Wedge said of Sowers' vulnerability in the fifth and sixth innings. ""His stuff is not an issue. He just has to stay on line with what he did for four or five innings. ¶
   ""Jeremy has shown signs in the past of being consistent up here. We want to give him an opportunity again.'' ¶
   There was a time when Sowers had trouble getting out of the first inning without giving up a run or two. ¶
   ""He's had stretches where he's overcome this kind of thing before,'' Wedge said. ¶
   After being sent back to Columbus two weeks ago, Sowers started only one game, giving up five runs, seven hits and two walks in 61/3 innings. ¶
   Obviously that outing didn't demontrate that his troubles are over, but it didn't indicate that they were worse than suspected, either. ¶
   Installing Sowers in the rotation is only the beginning of a series of upcoming moves. ¶
   ""Toms Ohka will go into the bullpen when Sowers starts, and we'll have to make a roster move after the game Friday night,'' Wedge said. ""At some point, we'll have to make a decision on (bringing up) Fausto Carmona, and then we'll have to make another decision about (activating) Jake Westbrook.'' ¶
   All of these moves could take place in early August or before. ¶
   CARMONA IMPRESSES -- Fausto Carmona seems to have taken a definite step closer to returning to the Indians' rotation after his start for Columbus Tuesday night. ¶
   ""Fausto was better,'' manager Eric Wedge said after reveiwing the reports. ""We still haven't made any decisions, but it's nice to see him put a couple of good outings together.'' ¶
   Carmona worked seven innings, allowing two runs, seven hits and one walk while striking out eight. In four starts for the Clippers, he has compiled a 3.46 earned-run average, walking four and striking out 22 in 26 innings. ¶
   ""We'll probably know more in a couple of days,'' Wedge said. ¶
  LONG TIME COMING -- Shin-Soo Choo got the night off for the first time since May 29. ¶
   In addition to starting 44 games in a row, Choo actually played May 29 against the Yankees, but entered the game in the seventh inning. ¶
   ""Choo has played in so many games this year, and  we're facing a series of left-handers,'' Wedge said, explaining the outfielder's absence from the lineup. ¶
   ""I figured this would be a good time to give him a day. Travis Hafner probably will get the day off tomorrow, and I don't want them both to be off the same day. Choo needs a day mentally as well as physically.'' ¶
   WILL THEY OR WON'T THEY? -- Wedge had little to offer in terms of information about possible trades by the Tribe. ¶
   ""It's always a possibility,'' he said. ""In this day and age, it's a possibility until the end (July 31). The landscape can change overnight, but I don't think anything is immiment.'' ¶
    FARM FACTS -- Alexander Perez (1-1, 1.42 ERA) gave up two runs and seven hits in six innings, but Kinston lost 2-1 to Winston-Salem. *elip Joseph Colon pitched four scoreless innngs, allowing four hits and one walk, as he Arizona League Indians blanked the Padres 1-0. Argenis Martinez tripled and singled. ¶


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