Indians' late-inning duo set for spring debut

Allen, Shaw have built up slowly to get ready for game action

Indians' late-inning duo set for spring debut

GOODYEAR, Ariz. -- Cody Allen wants his Spring Training to consist of incremental increases in intensity leading up to Opening Day. That is why the Indians have slow played the early portion of the closer's throwing program, along with setup man Bryan Shaw's.

On Thursday morning, before Cleveland's 4-2 loss to the Dodgers, both Allen and Shaw took the mound on Field 4 at Cleveland's complex for consecutive simulated games, which lasted around 10 minutes apiece. The Tribe's late-inning duo is scheduled to make its Cactus League debut Sunday against the Padres.

"I think what we want to do is we want to keep the amount of innings and everything about the same," Allen said, "but maybe control the intensity a little bit early in camp to where we're not trying to space out intense innings. We're trying to lead up to those intense innings, have a good bulk of intense game innings, leading right up to the start of the season."

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The Indians wanted to reduce the level of competitives of the early-spring sessions for Allen and Shaw, due to the load they shouldered last season. Between the regular season and playoffs, Allen and Shaw logged 81 2/3 innings and 77 innings, respectively.

• Ace Corey Kluber (two innings) and righty Josh Tomlin (one) are both scheduled to throw simulated games on Friday morning. Barring a change, Kluber and Tomlin are slated to make their Cactus League debuts Monday and March 9, respectively.

• Left fielder Michael Brantley (right biceps surgery in August) went through a light workout Thursday after taking on-field batting practice Wednesday. Francona said Brantley has reported no issues since resuming that step in his hitting progression.

• Indians second baseman Jason Kipnis (right shoulder) has been taking batting practice in the indoor cage and should be cleared to resume on-field BP in the next few days. Kipnis is still in a shut-down period from throwing.

• Outfielder Brandon Guyer (right hamstring) has been a full participant in morning workouts for the past couple of days. He could make his Cactus League debut this weekend, according to manager Terry Francona.

Jordan Bastian has covered the Indians for MLB.com since 2011, and previously covered the Blue Jays from 2006-10. Read his blog, Major League Bastian, follow him on Twitter @MLBastian and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.