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Cleveland Indians

Roster begins to come into focus

By Sheldon Ocker Published: March 30, 2012

   GOODYEAR, Ariz.: The Indians made several decisions this morning, whittling the roster to 34 and officially giving several players jobs.

  General Manager Chris Antonetti announced that Jason Donald is on the team as a utility infielder/outfielder and that Dan Wheeler will fill one of two vacant bullpen positions.

  ""We told Donald and Wheeler that they have made the team and that (catcher) Matt Pagnozzi,  (infielder) Gregoria Petit and (outfielder) Felix Pie will remain in big-league camp and probably go to Zebulon,'' Antonetti said.

   Pagnozzi, Petit and Pie will eventually be assigned to minor-league teams but might be needed in the Tribe's exhibition game against its Carolina League affiliate on Tuesday.

   Remaining on the agenda is picking a backup outfielder, utility infielder, another reliever and a starting pitcher.

The contending relievers are Frank Herrmann, Jeremy Accardo and Jaire Asencio, who is due to arrive today after being acquired from Atlanta Thursday. Kevin Slowey, Jeanmar Gomez and David Huff are still in the running to win the fifth spot in the rotation.

   But there's a catch: Huff left the game Thursday with a tight hamstring, and Tribe officials don't know the seriousness of the injury. Even before ther injury, Huff was a longshot to take the roster spot.

   Derek Lowe, who already has a job in the rotation, also left the game Thursday with back spasms.

   ""The initial read on Lowe is not too concerning,'' Antonetti said. ""We're encouraged by his (test) results.''

    Jose Lopez is expected to get the other utility infield position.  However, it's possible that Antonetti and manager Manager Manny Acta could keep the two backup outfielders still in the running: Ryan Spilborghs and Aaron Cunningham.

  But the likely scenario is that only one extra outfielder will be kept to go with Donald and Lopez as reserve infielders.

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