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Cleveland Indians

Who's no. 46?

By Sheldon Published: August 1, 2009

It wasn't quite a busload, but three players were added to the Indians' roster and two were given pink slips on Saturday.

As promised, newly acquired right-hander Justin Masterson was added to the team and reliever Jensen Lewis was called up from Triple-A Columbus, where he was sent June 26 to make adjustments to his delivery. In addition, Wyatt Toregas was summoned from Triple-A to add depth to the catching position.

To make room for these players, lefty reliever Mike Gosling and right-handed reliever Winston Abreu were designated for assignment. Masterson will take the roster spot of Victor Martinez, for whom he was traded from the Boston Red Sox on Friday.

Manager Eric Wedge confirmed that Masterson will soon be in the rotation but not until he builds his arm strength.

"I think we'll use him two or three times in the bullpen to get his arm stretched out,'' Wedge said. "If he doesn't throw enough pitches in a game, we can do what we do in spring training and have him throw in the bullpen to finish outings off.''

For the season, Masterson has worked in 31 games, including six starts. He hasn't pitched more than 21/3 innings since a three-inning relief outing May 22 against the Mets. Before that appearance, he made all of his starts in succession, none lasting more than 61/3 innings.

One of his starts came in a 9-2 loss to the Tribe on May 6, when he gave up six runs and eight hits in 61/3 innings.

Asked about the opportunity to start, Masterson said, "Sounds great. I've done both the last couple of years.''

Does he prefer stgarting or relieving? "They're both different,'' Masterson said. "There are a lot of great opportunities either way. I just want to pitch well.''

Masterson and Toregas are the 45th and 46th players to hold Tribe roster spots Tribe this season.

CATCHING ON -- Now that Martinez has been traded to the Red Sox, who is the Indians' No. 1 catcher?

"All three guys will split time,'' Wedge said, referring to Kelly Shoppach, utility player Chris Gimenez and Toregas. "I don't think of us having a true No. 1 right now.

"They won't catch in a rotation. We'll take it day by day. We'll work off performance and the pitchers.''

Toregas made his major-league debut Saturday night.

"Gimenez did a great job last night,'' Wedge said. ""But he was out there for five hours (13 innings), so I didn't want to bring him back today. And I thought this would be a good time to see Toregas.''

Toregas batted .284 with seven homers and 29 RBI in 60 games at Columbus.

"He used to be more of a catch and throw guy,'' Wedge said. "But in the last couple of years, he's become a better hitter. In the spring, I liked his maturity, how he changed from the beginning of camp to the end.''

FAUSTO FEELS IT -- Fausto Carmona didn't exactly dazzle anyone Friday night, but he gave up just two runs in five innings, and allowed only one hit after giving up but runs in the first.

"I thought it was a good step forwsard for him last night,'' Wedsge said. ""But he's not there yet. There were a lot of significant things: his tempo and rhythm, his arm action, lots of things.''

Wedge enjoyed watching Carmona get out of the first-inning jam without having the sky fall on him.

"He passed that test with flying colors,'' the manager said. "And that balk call -- which wasn't a balk -- was the kind of thing that might have bothered him earlier (in the season). Last night it didn't faze him.''

REACTION -- Asked about his response to the spate of recent Tribe trades, Wedge said, "There are certain ways that different teams in certain markets have to get better. This is the way we have to do it.''

OTHER STUFF -- Jake Westbrook (Tommy John surgery) is scheduled to make a three-inning rehab start on Tuesday at Akron. . . . Tribe players who participate in the Arizona Fall League will play for the  Peoria Saguaros, managed by former Indian David Bell. Kinston's head trainer, Chad Wolfe, will be part of the staff. Players have yet to be chosen.

FARM FACTS -- In his first start for Columbus since being traded by the Phillies, Carlos Carrasco (7-9, 5.25 ERA) gave up  four runs and eight hits in 51/3 innings, as the Clippers lost to Carrasco's old team, Lehigh Valley, 9-6. . . . Russell Young delivered seven scoreless innings, giving up five higts and one walk, but Kinston lost to Myrtle Beach 3-0. . . . Vidal Nuno (2-0, 1.14 ERA) pitched six scoreless innings, allowing one hit and one walk, as Mahoning Valley beat Batavia 2-1.

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