PITTSBURGH: Whatever the Indians' future turns out to be, it got a little closer to the present with David Huff's poor outing Saturday night.
Huff gave up five runs in five innings to push his earned-run average for his past 11 starts to 7.16 with a 1-8 record. Manager Manny Acta isn't tipping his hand, but it would not be a surprise to see someone else pitching the when Huff's turn in the rotation comes around again on Friday.
""We have to revisit the situation; we don't do things by making knee-jerk reactions,'' is the way Acta put it, indicating that at least one and maybe more than one meeting will take place to determine whether Huff is optioned to Triple-A.
""David didn't give himself or us a chance from the get-go,'' Acta said, referrring to the first inning, when the Pirates scored one run after Huff walked two with two outs. ""He got them into the game by walking people.''
Aaron Laffey has been building his arm strength at Triple-A to transform himself into a starter again, after being used in Cleveland as a reliever early in the season. He is the frontrunner to be called up if Huff is sent down, but Carlos Carrasco and even Yohan Pino and Josh Tomlin are options.
Saturday night at Pawtucket, Laffey worked 5 2/3 innings, giving up one run, five hits and seven walks. Laffey is 0-1 with a 3.98 ERA in four starts; Carrasco is 5-3 with a 4.22 ERA in 12 starts; Pino is 6-3 with as 4.36 ERA in 13 starts but is not on the 40-man roster, and Tomlin is 6-2 with a 2.81 ERA in 14 outings, including 11 starts.
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