HOUSTON: On Sunday morning, the Indians still didn’t know exactly what was wrong with Brett Myers, but he was already on his way to the 15-day disabled list with what was described as inflammation of the right elbow.
Myers was scheduled to be examined by doctors at the Cleveland Clinic Sunday afternoon after revealing Friday night that he had been pitching with what he said was tendinitis of the flexor tendon since spring training.
The injury to Myers triggered another roster move. Corey Kluber, who pitched four innings of two-hit relief Saturday night, goes into the rotation in place of Myers, and Fernando Nieve has been summoned from Columbus to fill the bullpen spot vacated by Kluber.
In three games (one a start) at Triple-A, Nieve posted a 1.38 ERA in 13 innings, walking four and striking out 17.
“Brett wasn’t going to make his next start, anyway,’’ manager Terry Francona said. “So this gives us a chance to get Nieve up here to give us extra protection in the bullpen. He’s been throwing the ball really well.
“Kluber can fall into Myers’ start on Wednesday. We talked to Brett about all of this last night.”
Francona and head trainer Lonnie Soloff suspected something might be wrong with Myers Friday night, when the speed of his fastball at times slipped to 86 mph. Myers has been sabotaged by throwing 10 home run pitches in 21⅓ innings.
Kluber has pitched twice out of the bullpen this year, giving up one run and no walks, while striking out five in five innings. Last season, he made 12 starts, compiling a 2-5 record and 5.14 ERA.
Another roster move will have to be made, probably today. Nieve was not on the 40-man roster, but because Matt Albers is on the restricted list because of a family emergency, he does not count against either the 25- or the 40-man roster.
Albers is expected to be activated today in Chicago, which will necessitate the Tribe clearing a spot for him on the 40-man roster.
Sunday’s activities added to the Tribe’s American League lead in roster moves, which stands at 25 (involving the big-league club). No other AL team is even close.
Since the season began, the Athletics and Astros are tied for second in roster moves with 18, the Angels are third with 15, and the Twins are next with 14. The Tigers have yet to consummate a transaction involving the major-league club, the Royals have made one and the Rays three.
Sheldon Ocker can be reached at email@example.com. Read the Indians blog at http://www.ohio.com/indians. Follow him on Twitter at http://www.twitter.com/SheldonOckerABJ and on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/sports.abj.