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Cleveland Indians

Sipp's days with Tribe numbered?

By Sheldon Published: June 23, 2010

PHILADELPHIA: Aaron Laffey will take David Huff's place in the rotation beginning Friday night in Cincinnati, but that still leaves the Indians with one roster move to make.

The Tribe summoned Joe Smith from Columbus on Tuesday to give the club an extra pitcher in the bullpen, but just because Smith was the last one called up doesn't mean he will be demoted to Triple-A to make room for Laffey on the roster.

If that were the case, manager Manny Acta might have used him Tuesday night against the Phillies, giving Smith a quick test to determine his fitness as a big leaguer. Instead, Acta said he will use Smith when his talents can help the team.

""Just because he came up (Tuesday) doesn't mean he will automatically go back down,'' Acta said. ""We will use him in situations that are best for us. The decision (to clear a roster spot) has nothing to do with his use in the next two games.''

Sounds like Acta is in no rush to use Smith, because the right-handed sidearmer will be around for awhile. If that is the case, someone else is in jeopardy of spending time in Triple-A beginning Friday. It won't be Rafael Perez, because he no longer has options and would have to clear waivers to be sent to the minors.

But Tony Sipp has been struggling in his past nine outings, having allowed 15 earned runs in 3 2/3 innings since May 28. Since then, his ERA has gone from 1.40 to 7.04. There are no rules that would prevent the Tribe from optioning him to Columbus, and it would appear he has only two days to convince his employers he should stick around.

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