KANSAS CITY -- Mitch Talbot hasn't picked up a baseball since leaving Sunday's start with right shoulder inflammation. But Talbot does have a game of catch planned at Kauffman Stadium on Saturday. "It's feeling better," Talbot said of the shoulder, which limited him to just three batters faced against the Twins. Should it continue to feel better after the game of catch, Talbot will throw a bullpen session in Minnesota on Monday. This would put him on track to make his next scheduled start on Thursday against the Royals at Progressive Field.
In the meantime, Justin Masterson is filling in for Talbot, taking the spot start against the Royals on Saturday -- and then likely being shut down for the season. The Indians want to cap Masterson's innings somewhere around 180, and he's currently at 173. As for Talbot, he said the shoulder soreness was in no way related to the back strain that landed him on the DL in late July/early August, thereby debunking any theories that a lingering issue with the back might have contributed to his 6.84 ERA in six starts since Aug. 14. "The back thing's been gone a while," Talbot said.