MINNEAPOLIS -- Travis Hafner's right shoulder issues and trouble with left-handers have made him a part-time player, as evidenced once again when he was rested in Sunday's day game after a night game in Kansas City and Monday against lefty Brian Duensing.
Both Hafner and manager Manny Acta said Pronk's shoulder is "fine," and Hafner is expected to be in the lineup each of the next five games, until the Indians face Royals lefty Bruce Chen on Sunday. But, obviously, the shoulder has been closely monitored this season, and especially since Hafner came back from the disabled list after a bout with shoulder inflammation in August.
Hafner is essentially limited to playing four or five days a week. Are the Indians expecting similar restrictions on their designated hitter next season?
"Hopefully not," Acta said. "We just want to make sure he gets through this whole season as healthy as possible."
Acta said he doesn't feel it will be necessary for the Indians to have a platoon situation at the DH spot next season.
"Our thought process is that Travis is our DH if he's healthy," Acta said.