Nearing return, Hannahan available off bench

Nearing return, Hannahan available off bench

CLEVELAND -- Jack Hannahan wasn't back in the Indians lineup Wednesday, but manager Manny Acta was confident the third baseman was close to a return.

Hannahan, who missed his ninth straight start Wednesday with back tightness, said he's feeling as good as he has since the injury. Acta said Hannahan was available off the bench Wednesday night against the Tigers, and he expects him to return to the lineup "in a couple days."

"Today is the best it's felt," Hannahan said. "It's gradually gotten better to the point where, mentally and physically, I feel like I could play."

Hannahan said his back bothers him more when he's running and playing defense than when he's at the plate. He took ground balls at third, threw across to first base, took batting practice and did running drills Wednesday afternoon.

"A lot of the discomfort is gone," Hannahan said. "It took longer than I wanted it to, but once you get out there, you have to make sure you can stay out there."