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Cleveland Indians notebook: How Ryan Raburn feels will dictate playing time

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CHICAGO: Ryan Raburn has hit 16 home runs and amassed 51 RBI in only 203 at-bats. Would it make sense to give him more playing time to increase his production?

Manager Terry Francona addressed that issue.

“It might depend on how his body holds up,” he said. “We have at times played him more, but you have to be careful about reaching for too much.”

Raburn plays mostly against left-handed pitchers. If he played every day, he would face lots of righties, and that might not be to his advantage.

Moreover, he has a track record. By this time, managers and coaches probably know his strengths and weaknesses, and the way he has been used by Francona might be his best role.

But Francona doesn’t rule out more playing time for Raburn.

“I could see in the future, depending on the makeup of the club, him getting more at-bats,” Francona said.

DAY-GAME HURDLE — Francona thought the early and late afternoon sun made it difficult for all of his players.

“It was hard to see at the plate and in field,” he said. “There was glare everywhere.”

Michael Bourn didn’t have a problem in center field, but it was a different story when he went to the plate.

“If you didn’t have a hit by the seventh inning,” he said, “you weren’t going to get one.”

MASTERSON, CONTINUED — Justin Masterson played catch for the second day in a row and reported no ill effects to his strained oblique.

“He’ll be down [today] and then throw again the next day,” Francona said. “He’ll just continue the progression.”

— Sheldon Ocker


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