CLEVELAND: How long did it take Sandy Alomar to fill out the lineup card before his first game as the Indians’ interim manager Friday night?
“It didn’t take long,” he said. “I sat down and looked at all my options at hand. I guess I picked the right guys [The Tribe scored eight runs]. I talked to [bench coach] Mike Sarbaugh and [hitting coach] Bruce Fields a little bit.”
As the bench coach for Manny Acta, the man he replaced, Alomar had checked lineups before, but this was HIS lineup.
“Yeah, it’s a little different when it’s your responsibility,” he said. “You have to look at all the possibilities and the matchups.”
MEMENTOS — Alomar kept the ball used to produce the last out of the game and the lineup card attached to the dugout wall as remembrances of his first game as manager.
CHISENHALL MOVES UP — For the first time this season, Lonnie Chisenhall batted in the cleanup spot.
“It’s time to see if he can grow into that position,” Alomar said. “I also didn’t want to have three left-handers in a row, so I put Carlos Santana between [Jason] Kipnis and Lonnie.”
Until Saturday night, Chisenhall had batted no higher than fifth, and he spent only one game in that spot.
INJURY REPORT — Both Michael Brantley (sore groin) and Asdrubal Cabrera (mid-back strain) are close to returning to the lineup.
“We probably will give them one more day, so they can be ready for the next series,” Alomar said. “However, there’s a possibility they could play tomorrow.”
WILL HE OR WON’T HE? — Roberto Hernandez still might take the mound in the final week of the season. If he does, it will be for his benefit rather than anything Tribe operatives could learn from watching him throw one more time.
“There’s a possibility he’ll get into a game out of the bullpen,” Alomar said. “I talked to him yesterday about how he feels. If he pitches, it will be for his peace of mind.”
Hernandez has been recovering from a sprained ankle.
“He’s moving around better,” Alomar said. “It’s just a concern if he has to cover first or come off the mound on a bunt.”
SHIFTING FEVER — Acta was a big advocate of shifting his defense — especially his infielders — against hitters with pronounced tendencies. Apparently, Alomar has no plans to change that.
“I don’t think we got burned many times,” he said. “Smitty is in charge of the infielders [and moves them around].”
Smitty is third-base coach Steve Smith.
— Sheldon Ocker