The latest plan for the rotation, Francona said, look like this: Bauer on Saturday, Justin Masterson on Sunday, Ubaldo Jimenez on Monday, Carrasco on Tuesday, Brett Myers on Wednesday and Zach McAllister on Thursday. That means Bauer will be sent back to Triple-A Columbus at some point after Saturday's start, most likely Tuesday, when Jason Giambi comes off the disabled list.
"Without the day off the first two weeks of the season, that way we can now have Brett and guys fall in line and get an extra day, which I think we all think [is] really good," Francona said.
Bauer was intially scheduled to be Columbus' Opening Day starter on Thursday, but he was told to throw a side session in the bullpen instead. He couldn't remember if he found out before or after that session that his first start of the season would be in the Majors, nor was he particularly worked up about making his 2013 debut for the Tribe.
Then again, Bauer said, he wasn't too amped up about his Major League debut last season, either.
"That one, to me, was just another baseball game that happened to be in the big leagues. It wasn't like a meteoric event that you may think it would be," Bauer said. "I don't really get too nervous or pumped up or anything like that for anything, really. I'm just kind of more even-keeled. Kind of the same.
"I think that's just the way I am. I wish I could get more excited about stuff. I pitched in the College World Series. I grew up as a kid watching the College World Series, then [I] get there and it's supposed to be this awesome, 'Oh, it's Rosenblatt [Stadium].' And I'm like, 'Oh, that's cool.' So sometimes I wish I did get a little more excited and realize how cool events are, but I guess I kind of look back and say, 'Oh, that was pretty cool.'"
Toward the end of camp, Bauer said he was "trying to overwrite 10 years of neuromuscular programming in four or five weeks," which wasn't an easy process for him. But he said Friday he accomplished everything he wanted to in Spring Training, and he feels "pretty good" heading into the start against the Rays.
Bauer will have more time to make adjustments in the Minors, while Carrasco will slot into the rotation after serving out the rest of his six-game suspension. Francona said Carrasco has been working in the bullpen and recently pitched a simulated game. Carrasco should be able to join the Tribe in the dugout as soon as Sunday, Francona said, then he'll throw another side session before starting Tuesday.
"He's ready to go," Francona said.