DETROIT -- Their two Cy Young Award winners are long gone, but two of the Indians' major acquisitions in the trades that sent CC Sabathia to the Brewers and Cliff Lee to the Phillies were among the club's September callups on Tuesday. Right-hander Carlos Carrasco officially was added to the active roster from Triple-A Columbus to make his Major League debut against the Tigers on Tuesday night. He was joined by outfielder Michael Brantley and righty Jose Veras, both of whom had their contracts purchased from Columbus to bring the total on the 40-man roster to 38. Brantley, 22, also made his Major League debut, as Cleveland manager Eric Wedge gave him the start in left field. Brantley could see significant time in center if the Indians decide to shut down Grady Sizemore and his ailing left elbow.
"We have a good feel for him from Spring Training," Wedge said of Brantley. "He's a very mature kid. It's great that we can get him right in there tonight. ... It's always exciting when it's somebody's first day in the big leagues. If you can't get excited about that, you need to get out of the game." Brantley was the player to be named in the Sabathia swap. In his first exposure to Triple-A this season, he was batting .267 (including a .298 average in August) with six home runs, 21 doubles, two triples, 37 RBIs and a .711 OPS. Most impressive of all, Brantley had swiped 46 bases in 51 tries. The Indians could use Brantley's help, in part, because of the condition of Sizemore's left elbow, which will need arthroscopic surgery in the offseason, if not sooner. And with Trevor Crowe still on the mend from an oblique strain, the Indians' only backup in center had been Shin-Soo Choo, the regular in right field. Wedge said the Indians are in the process of deciding whether to shut down Sizemore before season's end. Brantley also adds outfield depth, as the Indians intend to spell Choo a bit more down the stretch. Choo is two years removed from Tommy John elbow ligament replacement surgery. While Brantley is getting his first real look, the Indians are seeing the 28-year-old Veras for the second time this season. The Indians claimed Veras off waivers after he had been designated for assignment by the Yankees in June. Veras made 12 appearances for the Tribe, posting a 1-1 record and 7.62 ERA in 13 innings before getting designated yet again on Aug. 5, when the Indians promoted the newly acquired Jess Todd. Veras accepted an assignment to Columbus, where he went 0-1 with a 1.29 ERA in seven appearances. "We wanted to see him again," Wedge said of Veras. "When we sent him out before, we had other things going on and he was the odd man out. But we liked [Veras'] stuff and experience. We signed him back with the intent of bringing him back up here." Carrasco, one of four acquisitions in the trade that sent Lee and Ben Francisco to the Phillies on July 29, was 5-1 with a 3.19 ERA in six starts since the trade. For the season, he was 11-10 with a 4.64 ERA in 26 starts, all at the Triple-A level. In addition to the three players added, the Indians also had Minor League pitching coordinator Dave Miller join their Major League coaching staff. He'll be with the club for about two weeks before leaving to report to the fall Instructional League in Goodyear, Ariz. More callups are expected after Columbus' season ends on Monday. The Indians most likely will promote catcher Lou Marson, another Lee trade acquisition, at that time. Left fielder Jordan Brown also is a strong candidate for a callup at that time.
Anthony Castrovince is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.