CLEVELAND: For the first time in quite a while, Trevor Bauer felt like a little kid again, anxious and excited with nerves.
That was Thursday night, on the eve of Bauer’s return from the disabled list. He started Friday’s game against the Boston Red Sox, throwing 34 pitches and getting four outs before walking off to a standing ovation. Bauer was on a strict pitch limit in his first outing back from a stress fracture in his right fibula.
"I couldn't really sleep [Thursday] night. I had a good bit of adrenaline,” Bauer said. “Generally, I sleep pretty well the night before a start, so it was kind of cool to be like a little kid again and looking forward to the tournament on the weekend, or the big game coming up on Saturday, or whatever the case is.”
The reviews were all positive. Bauer allowed two hits, walked one and struck out one.
“I mean, all things considered, I thought that was at the higher end of expectations,” manager Terry Francona said. “He had pretty good velocity. He didn’t command like he will, but I thought he looked pretty damn good. Probably more importantly, he felt good.”
Bauer’s command actually topped what he was expecting as a pitcher who sometimes needs time to regain his feel.
"Generally, after a long layoff, I spray balls everywhere,” Bauer said. “I was at least somewhat around the plate [Friday night]. So, I definitely was happy with that. Stuff was better than it was in live [batting practice] and I would expect that to be better again next time.”
That next time will be Tuesday’s start, in which he’s scheduled to throw 60-65 pitches.
Brandon Guyer has played sparingly recently due to a right shoulder issue, according to Francona. Guyer sat out three games prior to Thursday, then he appeared in two consecutive games but only played seven combined innings. He was pulled midway through Friday night’s game.
Francona said on Saturday that head athletic trainer James Quinlan only wanted Guyer to play half a game.
“Just because his shoulder had been barking a little bit,” Francona said. “He hadn’t played in about five days, they just thought it would be — instead of going nine, I don’t want to say ease him, but just seemed to make sense.”
Up and down
Following a mechanical adjustment in which he focused on getting the ball out of his glove a split-second earlier in his delivery, Cody Allen seems to be on the right path. He, too, has been used sparingly recently.
Allen hasn’t allowed an earned run in September but also has just one appearance since Sept. 12. The Indians have been monitoring his workload now that he has his delivery issues worked out.
“He’s gonna throw a bullpen [session] and he’ll be ready to pitch for us,” Francona said. “I’ll be really glad when we can just go out and try and win a game and not, you know, do half the game and this guy is available, this guy’s not.”
Ryan Lewis can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Read the Indians blog at www.ohio.com/indians. Follow him on Twitter at @ByRyanLewis.