CLEVELAND: Mitch Talbot's three-inning rehab assignment at Mahoning Valley on Monday was uneventful, which was good news for the Indians.
""Everything went very well,'' manager Manny Acta said this afternoon. ""He threw 33 pitches in three innings then threw 17 more on the side. if he doesn't have any problems by the end of today, he should be able to take back his spot in the rotation on Saturday.''
Talbot gave up one run, two hits and a walk to rookie-league Aberdeen, the numbers being virtually irrelevent as long as his back didn't hurt, and he reported no problems.
Obviously, a starter will have to be lopped off the roster to make room for Talbot. The odds are it will be David Huff, who turned in another supbar performance on Sunday. Acta was clearly annoyed by Huff's outing, which might indicate how the move will go.
The only other logical candidate for demotion to Columbus is Jeanmar Gomez, who has been effective in all three of his major-league starts.
Gomez was summoned to the big leagues for one spot start to fill a vacuum created by a doubleheader. But he returned to Cleveland after Jake Westbrook was traded and has made two respectable starts since, even though he ostensibly wasn't ready to step into a big-league job.
The Tribe today acquired minor-league catcher Luke Carlin, 29, from the Pirates for a player to be named and sent him to Columbus. Carlin was batting .239 with two home runs and 23 RBI in 205 at-bats for Indianapolis. He played in 46 major-league games with the Padres and Diamondbacks in 2008 and 2009.
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