House, Tomlin make debut bids for rotation as Indians win

Pair among four vying for last spot on starting staff

House, Tomlin make debut bids for rotation as Indians win

GOODYEAR, Ariz. -- The Indians and Reds had their rotation competitions on display on Wednesday afternoon, when the Indians picked up a 4-2 Cactus League victory in the second game in as many days between the clubs at Goodyear Ballpark.

For Cleveland, right-hander Josh Tomlin and lefty T.J. House each logged two innings in the race for the lone vacancy in the starting staff. Tomlin, House, Zach McAllister and Danny Salazar represent the four main candidates for the only opening in the Tribe's rotation.

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Jordan Bastian is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Major League Bastian, and follow him on Twitter @MLBastian. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Kluber latest Indian to come down with stomach bug

Cleveland's ace to be monitored before Saturday's Cactus League debut

Kluber latest Indian to come down with stomach bug

GOODYEAR, Ariz. -- Corey Kluber is scheduled to make his Cactus League debut against the Dodgers on Saturday, but the Indians will monitor the pitcher closely over the next few days due to a bout with a stomach bug.

On Wednesday, Cleveland manager Terry Francona said Kluber was the latest player to come down with flu-like symptoms this spring. Earlier in camp, Lonnie Chisenhall and Zach Walters also missed a workout day because of illness.

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Jordan Bastian is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Major League Bastian, and follow him on Twitter @MLBastian. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Walters' versatility key to contributing with Indians

25-year-old aims to land utility role in Spring Training

Walters' versatility key to contributing with Indians

GOODYEAR, Ariz. -- Zach Walters has seven different gloves in his possession, but he still found himself one short when the Indians asked him to try his hand at first base this spring. Walters had to ask Lonnie Chisenhall for a rental, bringing his glove count up to eight at the moment.

"I'm a super-duper utility guy," Walters quipped.

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Jordan Bastian is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Major League Bastian, and follow him on Twitter @MLBastian. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Indians add more local flavor to concessions at Progressive Field

Great Lakes Brewing Co. and Dynomite Burgers join Right Field District at ballpark

Indians add more local flavor to concessions at Progressive Field

GOODYEAR, Ariz. -- The Indians brought even more local flavor to their new Right Field District on Wednesday, adding Great Lakes Brewing Co. and Dynomite Burgers to the growing list of Cleveland-area restaurants that will offer options at Progressive Field this season.

As part of the Indians' ongoing renovation project at their home ballpark -- in conjunction with its concessionaire, Delaware North -- the team wanted to create a concessions area filled with ties to the city and its neighborhoods. The Tribe now has five well-known eateries in the fold for the redesigned concourse area behind right field.

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Jordan Bastian is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Major League Bastian, and follow him on Twitter @MLBastian. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

McAllister uses spring opener to vie for rotation spot

Francona classifies pitcher's outing as 'pretty good'

McAllister uses spring opener to vie for rotation spot

GOODYEAR, Ariz. -- Both the Reds and Indians opened their Cactus League seasons Tuesday showcasing pitchers who are competing for rotation spots.

Veteran Jason Marquis pitched two scoreless innings for the Reds while Zach McAllister allowed a first-inning run on Devin Mesoraco's RBI single during his outing in a 10-0 victory for the Reds.

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Moss ahead of schedule in recovery from hip surgery

Tribe outfielder could be cleared for game action earlier than mid-March

Moss ahead of schedule in recovery from hip surgery

GOODYEAR, Ariz. -- Brandon Moss has cleared every hurdle he has faced through the early portion of Spring Training, putting the Indians outfielder on pace to potentially appear in a Cactus League game sooner than originally expected.

Tribe manager Terry Francona noted on Tuesday that Moss -- coming back from October hip surgery -- ran the bases with no issues during Monday's workout. Cleveland initially projected that Moss might be cleared for game action by mid-March, but Francona said that step could come earlier in the preseason schedule.

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Jordan Bastian is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Major League Bastian, and follow him on Twitter @MLBastian. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Francona in favor of expanding Wild Card action

Indians manager says best-of-three format would be 'awesome'

Francona in favor of expanding Wild Card action

GOODYEAR, Ariz. -- The Indians have seen both the benefits and the pitfalls of the current Wild Card system. Cleveland roared through the final two weeks of the schedule two years ago and earned the right to host the one-game playoff game, but then experienced a painfully quick exit from the October stage.

Indians manager Terry Francona likes the current format, having seen how things have played out in both leagues over the course of the past three years. That said, Francona would love to have Major League Baseball consider expanding the one-and-done Wild Card Game to a best-of-three series in the future.

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Jordan Bastian is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Major League Bastian, and follow him on Twitter @MLBastian. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

MLB.com Columnist

Tracy Ringolsby

After standing pat, Indians ready to contend

After standing pat, Indians ready to contend

GOODYEAR, Ariz. -- The White Sox were among the biggest players in the offseason, looking to rebuild with the idea of making an instant return to contention in the American League Central this season.

The Tigers, coming off four consecutive division titles, and the Royals, who ended a 29-year postseason drought by advancing to the World Series, were busy patching holes created by offseason departures.

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Tracy Ringolsby is a columnist for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Indians' home opener sells out quickly

GOODYEAR, Ariz. -- The sight of the snow-covered diamond at Progressive Field right now might make Opening Day feel extremely far away. The news that the Tribe's home opener sold out in swift fashion on Tuesday morning helped generate some warm thoughts.

For the 23rd consecutive season, the Indians' home opener has sold out, doing so in just 11 minutes after single-game tickets went on sale for registered fans on Tuesday morning. This year, Cleveland will host the rival Tigers at 4:10 p.m. ET on April 10 at Progressive Field to kick off the 2015 home slate.

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Jordan Bastian is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Major League Bastian, and follow him on Twitter @MLBastian. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Crockett's results on mound belie youthfulness

Young left-hander showed poise in quick rise

Crockett's results on mound belie youthfulness

GOODYEAR, Ariz. -- Scott Atchison is the recipient of an endless stream of old jokes, stemming from his graying hair and long history in professional baseball. The veteran Indians reliever has fun with the running gag, especially with youngster Kyle Crockett a few lockers down from him right now.

"What year were you born?" the 38-year-old Atchison asked Crockett on Monday morning. "1991? That was a bad year for me."

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Jordan Bastian is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Major League Bastian, and follow him on Twitter @MLBastian. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Start of Cactus League ramps up Tribe's spring intensity

McAllister opens rotation competition vs. Reds

Start of Cactus League ramps up Tribe's spring intensity

GOODYEAR, Ariz. -- The theme of workouts for the Indians this spring has been simulating plays at game speed. After two weeks of going through drills, the time has come for Cleveland to transition from the practice diamond to an actual ballpark.

On Tuesday, Indians starter Zach McAllister will take the mound against the Reds in the Tribe's first Cactus League contest of the spring. Cleveland's players are more than ready to take the next step in baseball's annual march toward Opening Day.

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Jordan Bastian is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Major League Bastian, and follow him on Twitter @MLBastian. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Lindor to be given every opportunity to develop

Tribe's top prospect to begin season at Triple-A

Lindor to be given every opportunity to develop

GOODYEAR, Ariz. -- The expectations are high for Francisco Lindor, and there is a chance that the Indians' elite shortstop prospect could hold his own in the big leagues right now. However, Cleveland is not caving into that kind of temptation when it comes to Lindor's path to the Majors.

"I don't think that's developing a player," Indians manager Terry Francona said. "If you [promote] a guy too quick and you get him beat up, that's not development. They've got to go through a progression, for the most part."

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Jordan Bastian is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Major League Bastian, and follow him on Twitter @MLBastian. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Carrasco aims for same mindset that brought success in '14

Indians starter impresses coaches, teammates in first BP session

Carrasco aims for same mindset that brought success in '14

GOODYEAR, Ariz. -- Most pitchers will throw off a mound a handful of times before reporting to Spring Training. Others prefer to wait until they are around the Major League coaching staff and at the complex before working through their first bullpen session.

Carlos Carrasco took a different approach this year.

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Jordan Bastian is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Major League Bastian, and follow him on Twitter @MLBastian. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

'He's the man': Kluber brings Cy Young stuff to first BP session

Indians won't hold back ace after reaching career high in innings

'He's the man': Kluber brings Cy Young stuff to first BP session

GOODYEAR, Ariz. -- Corey Kluber fired a breaking ball that ran hard over the inside part of the plate, forcing Michael Bourn to swiftly move out of the way. The Indians center fielder shook his head, let out a slight laugh and shifted back into his stance as the pitcher grinned on the mound.

"I wasn't ready for that one," Bourn said.

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Jordan Bastian is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Major League Bastian, and follow him on Twitter @MLBastian. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Floyd encouraged after throwing first BP since elbow surgery

Indians signed veteran pitcher to one-year deal in offseason

Floyd encouraged after throwing first BP since elbow surgery

GOODYEAR, Ariz. -- When Gavin Floyd threw his first pitch to a batter on Sunday morning, things went considerably better than the last time the right-hander worked with a batter at the plate. Floyd got through his first live batting practice session of the spring pain free and encouraged.

"It's just another step," Floyd said. "It's the first time I had a significant bullpen, cooled down for a little bit and then got back out there. I felt really good. I've just got to continue to make progress and build up strength. Usually, that's just by doing it over and over again, and using spring to do that."

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Jordan Bastian is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Major League Bastian, and follow him on Twitter @MLBastian. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Former MLB star Minoso passes away

Club's first black ballplayer was 9-time All-Star, 3-time Gold Glover

Former MLB star Minoso passes away

Native Cubans could move to the big leagues without dealing much in politics, secrecy and defection six decades ago. Cuban baseball talent was highly regarded and increasingly desirable. Not coincidentally, Minnie Minoso was at the forefront of the international game then. His baseball skills caught the eye. His distinctive name caught the ear. And his warm and engaging personality made him an uncommonly popular figure anywhere he played -- no, anywhere he went -- and helped forge a legacy that, to this day, prompts baseball folks to smile.

Minoso died Sunday at age 90 -- 34 years after his final at-bat in the big leagues, the one that made him the second player in Major League history to appear in games in five decades. Had Bill Veeck, baseball's ultimate showman, lived into the summer of 1990, Minoso probably would have played in six, and perhaps ended his 14-year slump at three at-bats.

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Marty Noble is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Kipnis among candidates to be Tribe's No. 2 man

Francona has Swisher, Ramirez also in mix

Kipnis among candidates to be Tribe's No. 2 man

GOODYEAR, Ariz. -- When constructing a lineup, Indians manager Terry Francona likes to make things as difficult as possible for the opposition. If Francona can alternate left-handed and right-handed batters, it makes it that much harder for the other manager to make bullpen decisions late in games.

Right now, though, Francona is weighing whether it is worth it to use that approach for the top of his lineup. If Cleveland has Michael Bourn, Jason Kipnis and Michael Brantley in the first three spots of the order, respectively, that will stack three lefty batters in a row. Francona is in the midst of considering the risk and reward of such a move.

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Jordan Bastian is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Major League Bastian, and follow him on Twitter @MLBastian. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Bauer taking nothing for granted as he refines repertoire

Tribe righty pleased with first spring batting practice session

Bauer taking nothing for granted as he refines repertoire

GOODYEAR, Ariz. -- Over the winter, pitchers often retreat to indoor batting tunnels to run through their mound workouts. In the early stages of Spring Training, they advance to bullpen sessions at their team's training complex. Live batting practice is the next step in the annual march to the regular season.

On Saturday morning, Trevor Bauer was among the Indians pitchers who went through live BP sessions for the first time this year, giving them their first testing ground with batters standing at the plate. At this time of year, the pitchers are always ahead of the hitters, but that does not make things any less strange out on the mound.

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Jordan Bastian is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Major League Bastian, and follow him on Twitter @MLBastian. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Swisher faces pitching for first time since August

Unclear if Indians veteran will be fully healthy by Opening Day

Swisher faces pitching for first time since August

GOODYEAR, Ariz. -- Nick Swisher had not faced live pitching since last August until stepping to the plate for a live batting practice session Saturday morning. The veteran was welcomed back by hard-throwing Indians right-handers Carlos Carrasco and Danny Salazar.

"Two flamethrowers right out of the gate," Swisher said with a laugh. "The first few days, we get used to tracking and taking a swing every now and then. Just for me, to get back on the field, it's nice."

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Jordan Bastian is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Major League Bastian, and follow him on Twitter @MLBastian. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

In first big league camp, Holt drawing on experience

Outfielder spent 36 games with Tribe last year

In first big league camp, Holt drawing on experience

GOODYEAR, Ariz. -- A baseball rested in a patch of gravel beyond the right-field wall of one of the Indians' practice fields Saturday morning. It was the victim of an opposite-field blast that outfielder Tyler Holt launched off Danny Salazar during a batting practice session.

Holt laughed when asked about his shot off the hard-throwing right-hander.

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Jordan Bastian is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Major League Bastian, and follow him on Twitter @MLBastian. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Clark: Influx of Cuban players adds to MLB's global presence

Players Association executive director touches on several topics during visit to Indians camp

Clark: Influx of Cuban players adds to MLB's global presence

GOODYEAR, Ariz. -- Major League Baseball held discussions about possibly having Cuba host a Spring Training game this year, but there was not enough time for the talks to develop into reality. Tony Clark, the executive director of the MLB Players' Association, said Saturday that such a game could take place in the future.

The United States government made it known in December that it was working towards potentially normalizing its relationship with Cuba. Major League Baseball has been monitoring the situation with an eye toward expanding its own ties to the baseball-rich country.

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Jordan Bastian is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Major League Bastian, and follow him on Twitter @MLBastian. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

All eyes on Urshela in first big league camp after breakout '14

Francona impressed with prospect's glovework at third base

All eyes on Urshela in first big league camp after breakout '14

GOODYEAR, Ariz. -- For the first few days of full-squad workouts, Indians manager Terry Francona has spent a lot of time on a practice field with a group of players who might be headed to Triple-A Columbus. Among them has been highly touted third-base prospect Giovanny Urshela.

Urshela is one of Cleveland's rising stars within its farm system and the young third baseman is experiencing his first Major League Spring Training. Urshela was only recently cleared for a full range of activities after suffering a left knee injury in winter ball, so Francona has kept a close eye on the prospect.

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Jordan Bastian is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Major League Bastian, and follow him on Twitter @MLBastian. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Chisenhall seeks to improve consistency at plate

2014 was tale of two seasons for Indians' young third baseman

Chisenhall seeks to improve consistency at plate

GOODYEAR, Ariz. -- Lonnie Chisenhall had a photo created from the time his swing was the sweetest it has ever been. When the Indians third baseman hits a lull at the plate, he plans on using the still image of his swing to help him recall how he felt on his historic night in Texas last season.

Three home runs. Five hits. Nine RBIs.

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Jordan Bastian is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Major League Bastian, and follow him on Twitter @MLBastian. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Ex-Indians Hafner, McDonald report to camp as instructors

Francona says former players are encouraged to help on field, in cage

Ex-Indians Hafner, McDonald report to camp as instructors

GOODYEAR, Ariz. -- The Indians have almost all facets covered with this spring's class of guest instructors. John McDonald is working with the infielders, Travis Hafner has focused on the hitters, Charles Nagy helps with the pitching staff and Mike Hargrove contributes around the complex as well.

"The benefit is you're getting some really good baseball people that, for whatever reason, may not be able to commit to a full season," Indians manager Terry Francona said. "Especially if they were in your organization, I think it's really good."

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Jordan Bastian is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Major League Bastian, and follow him on Twitter @MLBastian. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Overcoming elbow injuries, Floyd gets new start with Indians

Righty could land No. 2 spot in Tribe rotation after fracture followed Tommy John surgery

Overcoming elbow injuries, Floyd gets new start with Indians

GOODYEAR, Ariz. -- As the pain intensified within Gavin Floyd's right arm in his final start last season, the pitcher looked to the heavens for help. Floyd was in the midst of a shutout against the Nationals, but felt he was potentially approaching a point of no return.

"I prayed to God," Floyd said.

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Jordan Bastian is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Major League Bastian, and follow him on Twitter @MLBastian. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Francona disputes Brantley's below-average 'D' rating

Manager believes left fielder is one of best in league despite what stats say

Francona disputes Brantley's below-average 'D' rating

GOODYEAR, Ariz. -- Michael Brantley has seemingly mastered the unorthodox left-field corner at Progressive Field, and the Indians' All-Star left fielder was one of baseball's top threats with his arm last year. Still, advanced defensive metrics rate Brantley as a below-average defender.

Indians manager Terry Francona does not understand why the numbers do not favor Brantley's defense.

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Jordan Bastian is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Major League Bastian, and follow him on Twitter @MLBastian. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Progressive Field renovations continue despite weather

Majority of project on schedule to be completed by home opener

Progressive Field renovations continue despite weather

GOODYEAR, Ariz. -- Construction crews back in Cleveland continue to battle the elements in an effort to complete the ongoing Progressive Field renovation project in time for this season's home opener.

On Thursday, Indians team president Mark Shapiro arrived at the club's Spring Training complex and indicated that most of the massive undertaking at the ballpark remains on schedule for the April 10 opener against the Tigers. The freezing temperatures that the workers have dealt with over the past few weeks have only slowed progress in two areas.

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Jordan Bastian is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Major League Bastian, and follow him on Twitter @MLBastian. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.