Description: David Murphy is headed to Cleveland. The former Texas outfielder has agreed to a two-year deal worth $10 million. SOURCE: Dallas Morning News
Insight: It's not an ideal landing spot as Murphy seems destined for a platoon with the equally inconsistent Drew Stubbs in right field. Murphy batted just .220 across 142 games last season, his lowest average in eight seasons in MLB.
Description: The Indians released Chris Perez on Thursday. SOURCE: Jordan Bastian. MLB.com
Insight: It was only a matter of time. Perez was a disaster in the second half (5.60 ERA in 27 games) and was eventually demoted to a setup role late in the season. Perez throws upper 90s cheese but often has trouble locating. It shouldn't take the reliever too long to find a new team.
Description: Cleveland manager Terry Francona indicated that righthander Justin Masterson may be used as the team's closer during the postseason. SOURCE: Indians.com
Insight: Masterson was the team's best starter for much of the season but an oblique injury has forced him to take on a lighter workload. He certainly has the velocity to pull it off and Masterson does have experience as a reliever (62 lifetime appearances out of the bullpen). Former closer Chris Perez did make the Indians' postseason roster but it's clear that Francona doesn't trust him as a ninth inning option any longer.
Description: As expected, Michael Bourn will lead off and play center field Wednesday against the Rays.
Insight: Bourn was in and out of the lineup last week because of a calf injury. The speedy outfielder has only appeared in three career postseason games with his lone hit coming as a member of the Atlanta Braves back in 2012.
Description: Cleveland starter Ubaldo Jimenez dominated the Twins Sunday at Target Field.
Insight: The Indians righthander delivered 13 punchouts in 6 2/3 innings. Jimenez has been sensational over the last month, collecting four wins and a 1.09 ERA in 41 1/3 September innings. The Indians will face the winner of tomorrow's tiebreaker game between Texas and Tampa Bay Wednesday in Cleveland. The winner of that will play the Red Sox in the ALDS.
Description: Cleveland manager Terry Francona indicated that rookie hurler Danny Salazar would pitch Monday if the Indians have to play Texas or Tampa Bay in a Wild Card tiebreaker game. SOURCE: Paul Hoynes, Cleveland Plain Dealer
Insight: If the Indians win today, they won't need to play on Monday. Salazar has posted a 2.52 ERA in five September appearances.
Description: Indians starter Scott Kazmir struck out 11 batters in six innings Saturday against the Twins and 21 in his final two starts this year.
Insight: Kazmir's K/BB ratio in September was an impeccable 43/4, and he went 10-9 with a 4.04 ERA and 162 strikeouts in 158 innings during his comeback season. He is expected to begin discussions on a new contract with Cleveland soon.
Description: Cleveland center fielder Michael Bourn (wrist) will return to action Saturday against the Twins.
Insight: Bourn has missed three straight games with a sprained right wrist but he is back in the leadoff spot in the lineup as the Indians try to lock up a Wild Card berth with a win and a Texas loss Saturday.
Description: Indians Carlos Santana went 2-for-3 with a pair of doubles, two walks, three runs and one RBI Friday against the Twins.
Insight: Santana has shown strong plate discipline, walking 90-plus times in three straight seasons, but he hasn't emerged as a 30-homer, 100-RBI threat. He has hit 19 homers with 71 RBI and .269/.379/.451 splits this season, and fantasy owners shouldn't pay for any more than that next season, when the catcher will be 28 years old.
Description: Cleveland second baseman Jason Kipnis went 3-for-5 with a double, a triple, two RBI and two runs Friday night at Minnesota.
Insight: Kipnis finished the first half red hot and homered in his first two games after the All-Star break, but he has hit .248 with just two homers and a .670 OPS over his last 60 games. This is the second straight year he has tailed off after the All-Star break, so fantasy owners will should be prepared to sell high if he has another strong first half next season.
Description: Indians pitcher Justin Masterson (oblique) has been cleared to return as a reliever, according to MLB.com.
Insight: Masterson (14-10, 3.52 ERA) was removed from his start on Sept. 2 due to a strained left oblique and hasn't pitched since. Fantasy owners hoping he would make one more start this season can drop him.
Description: Indians starter Scott Kazmir's comeback season has had its rocky moments but he has thrown 152 innings, struck out 151 batters, won nine games and posted a 4.14 ERA.
Insight: Kazmir threw just 1 2/3 innings in 2011 and missed all of 2012 due to injury before the Indians gave him a shot this year. In his latest start Saturday against Houston, Kazmir struck out 10 batters, walked one and gave up four hits over seven shutout innings.
Description: Indians starter Danny Salazar will make his last regular season start Tuesday against the White Sox, according to the Cleveland Plain Dealer.
Insight: The Indians have been very protective of the 23-year-old, limiting him to an average of 77 pitches and 4.7 innings over his last seven starts even though he has posted a 3.00 ERA and 40 strikeouts in 33 innings during that span. His postseason role (if Cleveland makes it) is undecided.
Description: Cleveland righthander Ubaldo Jimenez defeated the Royals with a seven-inning effort Monday at Progressive Field.
Insight: Jimenez (7 IP, 7 H, 1 R, 0 ER, 10 K's, 0 BB) is quietly having one of his best seasons. His 3.62 ERA is the lowest he's posted since 2010. Jimenez (11-9) and the Indians are now just a game and a half behind Tampa Bay in the American League Wild Card.
Description: Cleveland OF/DH Jason Kubel is a career .190 hitter (4-for-21) with no extra base hits and six strikeouts versus Royals starter Ervin Santana.
Insight: It was just a season ago that Kubel posted 30 HR and 90 RBI for the D'backs, but his production has been non-existent this season (.223, 5 HR, 32 RBI). The Indians' other DH option, Jason Giambi, is even worse (.095 vs. Santana).
Description: Indians first baseman Nick Swisher has homered in two straight games.
Insight: He has gone 4-for-9 with six RBI after going 8-for-44 (.182) with zero longballs in his previous 12 games. Swisher has 17 homers this season but is hitting just .241 with 52 RBI and a .744 OPS.
Description: Indians starter Corey Kluber beat the Mets in his return to the rotation from a sprained middle finger.
Insight: Kluber was limited to 64 pitches in his first start since early August, but that's all he needed to get through five innings. The right-hander gave up two runs to New York and has a 2.15 ERA in 46 innings over his last seven starts.
Description: The Indians should know soon whether or not Justin Masterson will be returning before the end of the season. SOURCE: Ken Rosenthal, Fox Sports
Insight: Masterson (14-10, 3.52 ERA) strained his oblique Monday against the Orioles. The Indians are fighting for their playoff lives (three back in the Wild Card, six and a half behind in the division) and having Masterson back sooner rather than later would give them a huge boost.
Description: Indians righthander Corey Kluber will make his return from the DL on Saturday instead of Friday as previously reported. SOURCE: Akron Beacon Journal
Insight: Kluber (7-5, 3.54 ERA) has missed the last month with a sprained middle finger on his pitching hand. Cleveland skipper Terry Francona said Kluber will be limited to about 80 pitches in his first start back. That translates to around five innings of work.
Description: Indians starter Ubaldo Jimenez blanked the Orioles on four hits with four strikeouts and two walks to win Tuesday's game.
Insight: Jimenez is scary to own but there's no doubting his results this season. He's 10-9 with a 3.79 ERA and 147 strikeouts in 147 1/3 innings, including 10-7 with a 2.97 ERA in his last 130 1/3 innings after starting out 0-2 with a 10.06 ERA. He has gone 3-5 with a 2.22 ERA and 53 strikeouts in 48 2/3 innings since the All-Star break.
Description: Indians starter Justin Masterson will not make his next start due to a strained oblique, according to Nick Camino of WTAM 1100 Newsradio Cleveland.
Insight: The 28-year-old Masterson has had a nice bounce-back year after going 11-15 with a 4.93 ERA in 2012. In 189 1/3 innings, he has a 3.52 ERA and a career-high 188 strikeouts. Oblique strains can be slow healing, so there's no guarantee Masterson will return this season.
Description: Indians starter Justin Masterson left Monday's game against the Orioles with soreness in his left rib cage and is doubtful for his next scheduled start.
Insight: The 28-year-old Masterson has had a nice bounce-back year after going 11-15 with a 4.93 ERA in 2012. In 189 1/3 innings, he has a 3.52 ERA and a career-high 188 strikeouts. Masterson's K/9 was 7.00 or lower in each of the last three seasons.
Description: Indians starter Justin Masterson left Monday's game against the Orioles with soreness in his left rib cage, according to MLB.com's Brittany Ghiroli.
Insight: If it is an oblique injury, his season could be over. The 28-year-old Masterson has had a nice bounce-back year after going 11-15 with a 4.93 ERA in 2012. In 189 1/3 innings, he has a 3.52 ERA and a career-high 188 strikeouts. Masterson's K/9 was 7.00 or lower in each of the last three seasons.
Description: Mike Aviles' first career grand slam couldn't have come at a better time. It broke a scoreless tie in the ninth inning Sunday against Detroit.
Insight: The four-run blast was Aviles' only hit of the afternoon. The Cleveland third baseman has now homered in two of his last four outings. Despite his recent power surge, Aviles doesn't play often enough to be a legitimate fantasy option (just 306 at bats).
Description: Cleveland righthander Danny Salazar (6 IP, 6 H, 0 R, 5 K's) was terrific Sunday against Detroit.
Insight: Salazar didn't factor into the decision but the Indians scored four runs after he left to win it by a count of 4-0. The 23-year-old has looked sharp in his last four outings despite going winless over that span (0-2, 2.79 ERA).
Description: Cleveland first baseman Nick Swisher has hit .194 with 22 K in 62 at-bats against Justin Verlander, though eight of his 12 hits went for extra bases.
Insight: Swisher has seen a massive drop in production from what he averaged with New York. In 119 games, he's hitting .242 with 15 home runs, 46 RBI and a .740 OPS. With Verlander on the mound Sunday, Swisher shouldn't be in any fantasy lineups.
Description: Cleveland starter Corey Kluber (finger) could be activated as soon as Friday for a start against the Mets. SOURCE: Cleveland.com
Insight: Kluber last pitched Aug. 5 due to a sprained middle finger. The right-hander had a 1.98 ERA and 40 K in 41 innings over his last six starts before his injury. He'll need to get through a simulated game Monday before he's cleared to start, and he'd be held to four innings or 60 pitches in his return.
Description: The Diamondbacks have traded outfielder Jason Kubel to the Cleveland Indians.
Insight: It was just a season ago that Kubel posted 30 HR and 90 RBI for the D'backs, but his production has been non-existent this season (.220, 5 HR, 32 RBI). He'll be a part-time guy in Cleveland, so his fantasy value is limited.
Description: A left Achilles strain has landed Indians utility man Ryan Raburn on the 15-day DL.
Insight: The move was backdated to August 19th, which means that Raburn can return as early as next Tuesday. Raburn has posted solid numbers in limited playing time this season (.272, 15 HR, 41 RBI in 71 games).
Description: Cleveland starter Corey Kluber (finger) threw fastballs and changeups with no issues during a bullpen session and sliders and cutters off flat ground Monday, according to Jordan Bastian of MLB.com.
Insight: Kluber last pitched Aug. 5 due to a sprained middle finger. The right-hander had a 1.98 ERA and 40 K in 41 innings over his last six starts before his injury. He's hoping to rejoin the rotation in the second week of September.
Description: Indians starter Zach McAllister is 3-0 with a 1.83 ERA over his last three starts.
Insight: McAllister made two of those starts against the Twins and one against the Angels, so it's not like he dominated the best offensive clubs in the league. He's a serviceable fantasy arm, one that is 7-7 with a 3.51 ERA, a 1.30 WHIP and 79 K in 105 innings this season.
Description: Indians Carlos Santana is hitless in eight at-bats against Minnesota right-hander Liam Hendricks.
Insight: Santana should post his third .800 plus OPS season in four years with the Indians. Santana was hitless against Friday's starter Sam Deduno and rapped out a pair of singles and a walk so maybe he can overcome this matchup too.
Description: Indians shortstop Asdrubal Cabrera is not in Wednesday afternoon's starting lineup.
Insight: Cabrera is struggling at the plate, batting .236 this season with a .681 OPS after posting a .270 BA last season with a .762 OPS. Hitless in his last four games, he can probably use the time off.
Description: The Indians have officially released infielder Mark Reynolds.
Insight: You know you're having a bad year when you lose your starting job to 42-year-old Jason Giambi. Reynolds (.215, 15 HR, 48 RBI) could have stayed with the team but he wasn't willing to accept a demotion to Triple-A. He shouldn't be on the market for very long.
Description: Indians starter Scott Kazmir is dealing with a dead arm, according to Paul Hoynes of the Cleveland Plain Dealer.
Insight: Carlos Carrasco will start Wednesday in place of Kazmir, and the lefty will get an extra 2-3 days off before making his next start. Kazmir has been a nice surprise for the Indians this year, going 7-5 with a 4.18 ERA and a 1.28 WHIP in 114 innings, but he threw exactly 1 2/3 innings in the big leagues in 2011-12 due to arm issues.
Description: Indians center fielder Michael Bourn is 6-for-10 with a 1.636 OPS versus Angels left-hander C.J. Wilson.
Insight: Bourn is a .276 hitter who steals bases, but also leads the league in caught stealing as he has for the past two years. He has limited fantasy value in net steal leagues, but at least for Saturday has a favorable matchup.
Description: A Mark Reynolds reunion with the Orioles could be in the works. SOURCE: Jim Bowden, ESPN
Insight: Reynolds was designated for assignment earlier in the day and will probably be released. The Orioles don't have a legitimate DH (they've been using Henry Urrutia at that position) so Reynolds might be a decent fit. Twenty-eight of Reynolds' 196 career homers have come at Camden Yards.
Description: Cleveland has designated corner infielder/DH Mark Reynolds for assignment.
Insight: Reynolds hasn't hit a home run since June 28th, which doesn't work when your batting average is hovering around the Mendoza line. The 30-year-old power hitter could accept a minor league assignment or he could ask to be released.
Description: Odds are, you probably released Mark Reynolds to the waiver wire months ago. But if you decided to hold onto him, make sure he's not in your lineup Thursday against Detroit.
Insight: He's 1-for-14 with seven strikeouts versus Max Scherzer. Reynolds is no longer an everyday player for Cleveland, sharing reps with Nick Swisher at first base. He's only logged 27 at bats since the break, hitting .185 over that stretch. The bottom line is, if he isn't good enough to play for the Indians everyday, Reynolds definitely isn't good enough to still be on any fantasy teams.
Description: Indians center fielder Michael Bourn provided some heroics with an RBI double in the 14th inning Wednesday against Detroit. We wouldn't expect a repeat performance with Max Scherzer pitching on Thursday.
Insight: Bourn hasn't had much luck at all against the Tigers' Cy Young hopeful, collecting just three hits in 18 prior at bats. The speedy outfielder has struggled in the second half by hitting only .235 in 68 post All-Star at bats.
Description: The Indians find themselves in a difficult position Thursday against Detroit. Yan Gomes caught all 14 innings in Wednesday night's loss but their other catcher Carlos Santana has been brutal against Tigers starter Max Scherzer.
Insight: Santana has just three hits against Scherzer in 25 at bats, though two of those hits went for home runs. Santanta, who played first base on Wednesday, is 2-for-13 in the series.
Description: After striking out Miguel Cabrera three times Wednesday, Indians pitching prospect Danny Salazar allowed a go-ahead two-run homer to Cabrera on the last pitch he threw to spoil a big night. Salazar struck out 10 batters over 7 2/3 innings in his second big league start, but Cabrera's blast made it 4-3 in the top of the eighth and prevented the 23-year-old from starting out 2-0.
Insight: Armed with 99-mph heat and some strong off-speed stuff, Salazar has fanned 17 batters with two walks in 13 2/3 innings over his first two major league starts. The righty posted a 2.71 ERA and a 129/24 K/BB in 93 innings in the minors this season and should be added in all leagues as he's likely to remain in the rotation in place of Corey Kluber, who is out 4-6 weeks with a sprained right middle finger.
Description: Cleveland starter Corey Kluber will miss 4-6 weeks with a sprained right middle finger, according to Jordan Bastian of MLB.com.
Insight: Kluber has posted a 1.98 ERA and 40 strikeouts over 41 innings in his last six starts, but he's in danger of missing the rest of the season. Teammate Zach McAllister missed six weeks earlier this season with the same injury. Kluber going on the DL means that rookie Danny Salazar, who dominated the Blue Jays last month in his big league debut, will get an extended look in the rotation.
Description: Indians pitching prospect Danny Salazar, who will be recalled Wednesday to start against the Detroit Tigers, is likely to remain in the rotation due to Corey Kluber's sprained middle finger.
Insight: Salazar dominated the Blue Jays in his big league debut on July 11 and has posted a 2.71 ERA and a 129/24 K/BB over 93 innings in the minors this season (33 2/3 IP with Double-A Akron and 59 1/3 with Triple-A Columbus). He should be added in all leagues, even with the Tigers on the schedule Wednesday. Kluber is expected to miss an extended period of time due to his injury.
Description: Cleveland starter Corey Kluber, who has posted a 1.98 ERA and 40 strikeouts over 41 innings in his last six starts, has been placed on the 15-day disabled list with a sprained right middle finger. SOURCE: Paul Hoynes, Cleveland Plain Dealer
Insight: Kluber just threw 7 1/3 scoreless frames Monday against the Tigers, but he's in danger of missing the rest of the season due to the sprained middle finger. It's the same injury that kept teammate Zach McAllister out for six weeks this season. Kluber going on the DL means that rookie Danny Salazar, who dominated the Blue Jays last month in his big league debut, will get an extended look in the rotation.
Description: Chris Perez's outing against Detroit on Monday night was a disaster.
Insight: He let up four runs without recording an out. It was Perez's first blown save since May 18th against Seattle. Perez is a talented guy but he's prone to blowups and Monday night would certainly qualify as one of those.
Description: Cleveland righthander Corey Kluber held Detroit scoreless for 7 1/3 innings on Monday night.
Insight: Unfortunately, Chirs Perez had a meltdown in the ninth so Kluber was unable to pick up the victory. He's now gone four starts in a row without a decision. He'll be on the mound again Sunday versus the Angels.
Description: Cleveland lefthander Scott Kazmir didn't allow a run in his six innings of work Sunday versus Miami.
Insight: Kazmir struggled in his previous outing (5 IP, 9 H, 4 ER against the White Sox) so fantasy owners have to be pretty pleased with this performance. Kazmir (7-4, 3.89 ERA) has allowed two hits or fewer in three of his last four starts.
Description: Cleveland catcher Carlos Santana picked up three hits Thursday against the White Sox.
Insight: Santana is hitting .278 with 12 homers, 48 RBI, 48 runs and an .842 OPS. Those are strong fantasy numbers for a catcher, but the 27-year-old is capable of more if he puts it all together for a full season.
Description: Indians ace Justin Masterson ran his winning streak to three games in a row Thursday against the White Sox.
Insight: Masterson (6 2/3 IP, 5 H, 1 R, 7 Ks) is scorching hot right now. Since the All-Star break, he's undefeated with a 0.84 ERA in three starts. If Masterson keeps this up, he could become the Tribe's first 20-game winner since Cliff Lee in 2008.
Description: Cleveland right fielder Ryan Raburn smacked two homers Thursday in a win over the White Sox.
Insight: For a platoon player, Raburn has held his own in fantasy leagues this season. He's now at 13 jacks for the season with an OPS of .961. For comparison, Mike Trout's OPS is .974. Sky would be the limit for this guy if he played everyday.
Description: Cleveland left fielder Michael Brantley hasn't had much success against White Sox lefty Chris Sale.
Insight: Not many players have but Brantley's struggles against Sale have been especially noteworthy. In 13 at bats, he's managed just two hits with five strikeouts. Brantley (.285, 7 HR, 52 RBI) is having a good season but we don't like this particular matchup. Sit him if you can afford to.
Description: Cleveland second baseman Jason Kipnis will get the afternoon off Thursday against Chicago.
Insight: He's played every day since July 11th and manager Terry Francona thought it was time to give him a rest. Kipnis has been one of the better second basemen in baseball this season, hitting .292 with 21 steals and an .872 OPS.
Description: Indians first baseman Nick Swisher has gone just 1-for-12 (.083) with eight strikeouts against Chicago starter Jake Peavy.
Insight: Swisher owners have seen a significant drop off from last season's production level. He's batting .244 with 11 HR and 33 RBI after batting .272 with 24 HR and 93 RBI last season. This matchup isn't going to help those mediocre totals.
Description: Cleveland 1B/3B Mark Reynolds is a .150 hitter with 11 strikeouts in 20 career at-bats against White Sox starter Jake Peavy.
Insight: Reynolds had 11 home runs and hit .291 in his first 31 games this season, but he's had a total of four homers in 64 games since. He's probably hoping Peavy gets traded this morning. Reynolds can be cut in all formats.
Description: Michael Bourn had a big game Wednesday against the Mariners.
Insight: The Cleveland center fielder bashed his first career grand slam in the fifth inning. He also contributed a bunt single and a stolen base. Bourn is hitting .292 this season, the second-highest average of his career. He's been especially dominant against lefthanders (.317 AVG in 82 at bats), which is unusual because he bats lefthanded.
Description: Indians second baseman Jason Kipnis has homered in two straight games and is 9-for-16 with eight RBI, four walks and zero K over his last five games.
Insight: With a homer Sunday, Kipnis joined Mike Trout and Carlos Gomez as the only players with at least 15 homers and 20 steals this season. He has added 56 runs, 62 RBI, a .303 average and a .913 OPS.
Description: Indians starter Justin Masterson one-hit the Twins over seven innings Sunday.
Insight: Masterson (11-7, 3.60 ERA) didn't walk a batter and struck out eight while allowing one earned run. The right-hander walked nine batters over his last two starts of the first half and came into Sunday's start with a 3.59 BB/9.
Description: Indians starter Corey Kluber (hip, hamstring) will throw a bullpen session Tuesday to determine whether or not he'll be able to make his next start Friday, according to Paul Hoynes of the Cleveland Plain Dealer.
Insight: Kluber left Saturday's start with left hip and hamstring tightness, but he was feeling better Sunday and thinks he'll make his next start.
Description: Cleveland center fielder Michael Bourn is out for Sunday's game against the Twins.
Insight: No reason was given for his absence so it looks like it's just a day of rest. Usually a prodigious base stealer, Bourn is only on pace for 22 thefts in 2013. That would be a mild disappointment after two straight seasons of 40-plus steals.
Description: According to Jordan Bastian of MLB.com, Indians manager Terry Francona said the team is optimistic righty Zach McAllister (finger) will be ready to return to the rotation Tuesday at Seattle.
Insight: McAllister (4-5, 3.43 ERA, 1.37 WHIP) will need to get through a bullpen session before he's cleared to start. He hasn't pitched in the big leagues since June 2 due to a sprained right middle finger.
Description: Indians first baseman Nick Swisher has gone just 8-for-45 (.178) with 15 strikeouts against Kansas City starter James Shields.
Insight: Swisher has experienced a dropoff in HR/FB from 15.4 percent to 11.5 percent since last season, but with a 27 percent line-drive rate and a 5.1 percent infield popup rate, both career bests, Swisher should have a much higher BABIP than .296. His luck should turn around in the second half, but not Sunday against Shields.
Description: Cleveland righthander Corey Kluber turned in another great outing Friday against the Royals.
Insight: Just five days after notching ten strikeouts against the Tigers, Kluber dominated Kansas City for 7 2/3 innings, striking out eight without giving up a run. He heads into the break with a 3.88 ERA in 95 innings this season.
Description: Indians pitching prospect Danny Salazar allowed one run on two hits and struck out seven over six innings to win his major league debut Thursday against the Blue Jays.
Insight: MLB.com ranked Salazar as Cleveland's No. 8 prospect this past spring. The 23-year-old had a 3.08 ERA and a 100/23 K/BB in 76 innings this season with Double-A Akron and Triple-A Columbus prior to his callup. He's likely to be in the rotation after the All-Star break, so he should be added in most leagues.
Description: Indians right fielder Drew Stubbs won't get a chance against Toronto starter R.A. Dickey on Thursday. That's probably for the best.
Insight: Stubbs has managed just two hits in 12 at bats versus the righthanded knuckleballer. Once a perennial threat for 20 homers and 20 stolen bases, Stubbs is only on pace for 12 jacks and 18 steals in 2013.
Description: According to the Akron Beacon Journal, Indians righty Zach McAllister (finger) is expected to start his minor league rehab assignment with Triple-A Columbus Friday.
Insight: McAllister (4-5, 3.43 ERA, 1.37 WHIP) hasn't pitched since June 2 due to a sprained right middle finger. He'll make a second rehab start next week with Double-A Akron before returning from the DL.
Description: Indians starter Ubaldo Jimenez didn't allow a run Tuesday for the first time since June 1.
Insight: Jimenez gave up five hits (three doubles) and walked two over six scoreless innings. The right-hander actually is 7-2 with a 3.13 ERA over his last 14 starts after starting out 0-2 with a 10.06 ERA. However, Tuesday's outing was also his longest since June 1.
Description: Indians pitching prospect Danny Salazar will make his big league debut Thursday against the Toronto Blue Jays.
Insight: MLB.com ranked Salazar as Cleveland's No. 8 prospect this past spring. The 23-year-old has a 3.08 ERA and a 100/23 K/BB in 76 innings this season with Double-A Akron and Triple-A Columbus. Owners in 12-team mixed leagues can give him a shot.
Description: A second consecutive bad matchup for Cleveland 1B/3B Mark Reynolds. He is 1-for-9 with eight strikeouts versus Blue Jays starter Josh Johnson.
Insight: Reynolds overcame a hitless hitstory on Monday with a couple of singles and now faces a matchup where he has trouble just putting the ball in play. Despite yesterday's success it's still probably better if you avoid this matchup.
Description: Indians first baseman Nick Swisher is 5-for-10 with a couple of extra base hits and a 1.415 OPS versus Detroit ace Max Scherzer.
Insight: Scherzer is having a special season in 2013, so it's possible that this favorable matchup could be negated by a "career year." Swisher is 3-for-8 with a home run over the first three games of the series.
Description: Cleveland catcher Carlos Santana went 1-for-4 with a two-run homer Sunday against the Tigers.
Insight: Santana came in with poor career numbers against Detroit starter Doug Fister, but he greeted the right-hander with a homer in the first inning Sunday. The backstop is hitting just .190 with one home run over his last 17 games.
Description: Indians left fielder Michael Brantley went 3-for-4 with a double, two homers, five RBI and three runs Sunday against the Tigers.
Insight: With the two longballs Sunday, Brantley has seven on the year, tying a career high. He also has driven in 45 runs in 307 at-bats this season after putting up a career-high 60 RBI in 552 at-bats last year.
Description: Cleveland righthander Carlos Carrasco was shipped back to Triple-A Columbus after Saturday's start against Detroit.
Insight: He's winless in six starts this season. Injuries to Brett Myers and Zach McAllister have forced the Indians to get creative with their starting rotation. Carrasco and Trevor Bauer have been bouncing around between Triple-A and the majors all year and they probably will be all season.
Description: Cleveland righthander Justin Masterson was beat up on Friday night, giving up seven hits and six earned runs over 4 2/3 innings.
Insight: Masterson's drive for a spot on the All-Star roster spot, he has 10 wins this season, took a hit. He still leads the AL in starts and innings pitched and is striking out more than a batter an inning.
Description: Cubs third baseman Luis Valbuena is not is Friday's lineup versus the Pittsburgh Pirates.
Insight: Valbuena got off to an early quick start, with five homers and an .800-plus OPS thru May, but June saw his numbers falter as he batted .190 with zero homers and a .563 OPS. His replacement, Cody Ransom has hit eight home runs in just 96 at-bats.
Description: Indians catcher Carlos Santana is a solid 9-for-28 (.321) with three homers and a 1.066 OPS versus Detroit starter Rick Porcello.
Insight: After a strong April, Santana's numbers have slipped considerably and he nicked up. Perhaps this matchup will perk up his bat which has only produced a .223 batting average with a .699 OPS since May 1.
Description: Indians outfielder Drew Stubbs went 2-for-4 with a homer and four RBI Thursday at Kansas City.
Insight: Stubbs has driven in 34 runs mostly out of the nine-hole over 80 games in his first year in Cleveland after averaging 42 RBI and 147 games with the Reds over the last two years, but he's only hitting .242 and has just eight steals.
Description: Indians first baseman Nick Swisher has gone just 8-for-45 with 15 strikeouts against Kansas City starter James Shields.
Insight: Swisher is 7-for-19 with five walks over his last five games and he does have three homers and 10 RBI against Shields, but he his extended sample size against the right-hander suggests he won't do much Thursday.
Description: Indians first baseman Nick Swisher is 13-for-31 (.419) with a pair of home runs and a 1.325 OPS in his matchups against Jeremy Guthrie.
Insight: Swisher has seven hits in his last 15 at-bats to raise his average to .243. He's hit eight home runs, but fantasy owners are expecting more than that after averaging 25.8 HR per season over the past eight years. This matchup should continue his hot streak.
Description: Indians righthander Carlos Carrasco will make the start Saturday against the Tigers. SOURCE: Paul Hoynes, Cleveland Plain Dealer
Insight: He's been bouncing between the majors and Triple-A all season. Until Carrasco (0-3, 8.17 ERA) can carve out a permanent role for himself in the Indians' rotation, he won't be a fantasy option.
Description: Cleveland righthander Justin Masterson reached double-digit victories with his win over the White Sox on Sunday.
Insight: Masterson blanked the Chi Sox for his third shutout of the season, picking up eight strikeouts in the process. So far this year, he's 10-6 with a 3.48 ERA and 125 K's in 18 starts. If that isn't enough for Masterson to earn his first All-Star invite we don't know what is.
Description: Indians center fielder Michael Bourn has been placed on the paternity leave list.
Insight: Bourn went 1-for-15 in the first three games of Cleveland's series at Baltimore during the week, but he is 5-for-13 (.385) over his last three games and 18-for-54 (.333) in his last 13. He should be back in the lineup in a few days; for now Drew Stubbs will serve as the center fielder.
Description: Indians starter Ubaldo Jimenez gave up nine hits and three runs and walked four over five innings Saturday at Chicago.
Insight: Jimenez looked to be turning a corner when he went 4-1 with a 2.74 ERA and a 3.37 BB/9 from April 29 to June 1, but he has averaged just 4.8 innings per start and walked 6.4 batters per nine innings over his last five outings.
Description: Nobody can cool off Jason Kipnis right now. He went 2-for-3 with a homer, two RBI and a steal Saturday against the White Sox.
Insight: Kipnis is batting .500 with eight doubles, a triple, three homers, 17 RBI, a 7/12 K/BB and four steals during his 12-game hitting streak. He's now batting .299 with 12 homers and 19 steals this season.
Description: Tribe second baseman Jason Kipnis was an on base machine Friday against the White Sox.
Insight: Kipnis reached base six out of seven times in the first game of the double header (three doubles, three walks and four runs scored). He's on an 11-game hitting streak (.514 AVG over that span).
Description: The Indians have called up starting pitcher Carlos Carrasco from Triple-A Columbus.
Insight: Carrasco will pitch in Game 2 of Friday night's doubleheader versus the White Sox. Trevor Bauer got lit up in the first game of the double dip (6 H, 5 ER in just 2/3 of an inning) so Terry Francona will be counting on Carrasco to pitch deep into the game.
Description: Indians outfielder Drew Stubbs will start in center field and leadoff on Friday versus the Chicago White Sox in the first game of a doubleheader.
Insight: Stubbs has batted mostly in the nine hole, but will get a chance to show his speed in the opener with Michael Bourn sitting this one out. Stubbs is batting .242 with six homers, 26 RBI and eight steals this season and has never fulfilled the promise of his 2010 season.
Description: Indians center fielder Michael Bourn is not in Friday night's starting lineup. Drew Stubbs will start in center field and lead off.
Insight: Bourn was 3-for-20 in the just completed four-game series with Baltimore. His batting average is still near the .300 mark, but we exect more than what he's giving up this season (30 runs, 11 steals in 54 games).
Description: Indians catcher Carlos Santana is not in the lineup Friday
Insight: Santana's absence is likely related to the hard foul ball he took off his left knee Tuesday which forced him out of Wednesday's lineup as well. He playing well this season, batting .269 with 10 HR, 32 RBI and an .842 OPS.
Description: Indians closer Chris Perez (shoulder) has been activated from the disabled list.
Insight: Perez hasn't pitched since May 26 due to right shoulder soreness. He would have returned sooner but after he allowed three homers in his second rehab appearance the team decided to keep him on the DL for a few more appearances. He should regain the closer role from Vinnie Pestano immediately.
Description: Cleveland second baseman Jason Kipnis homered for the second straight game Wednesday versus Baltimore.
Insight: Kipnis was hitting .189 on May 1, but he has slowly built up his average to .288. He has hit safely in 18 of the last 19 games and is batting .550 with four doubles, a triple, two homers, 10 RBI and five walks over his last six games.
Description: Cleveland starter Scott Kazmir took a no-hit bid into the seventh inning and had just 78 pitches going into the eighth Wednesday against the Orioles, but he had to exit the game before the start of the frame due to a physical ailment.
Insight: Kazmir appeared to have a back or oblique issue. The left-hander has allowed just six hits and one earned run with an 11/1 K/BB in 14 innings over his last two starts.
Description: The Indians will call up Trevor Bauer to start Game 1 of Friday's doubleheader against the White Sox.
Insight: Bauer has made just three spot starts this season and has a 2.76 ERA but walked 15 batters with 11 strikeouts in 16 1/3 innings. The right-hander has a 4.13 ERA and a 67/36 K/BB in 65 1/3 innings with Triple-A Columbus this season.
Description: Indians closer Chris Perez (shoulder) will be activated Thursday, manager Terry Francona said, according to Paul Hoynes of the Cleveland Plain Dealer.
Insight: Perez hasn't pitched since May 26 due to right shoulder soreness. He would have returned sooner but after he allowed three homers in his second rehab appearance the team decided to keep him on the DL for a few more appearances.
Description: Indians shortstop Asdrubal Cabrera is expected to come off the disabled list Wednesday. He's been sidelined by a strained right quadriceps.
Insight: Cabrera (.254, 5 HR, 25 RBI) strained his quad on June 3. The shortstop didn't need a rehab stint after getting through his baseball activities without issue. He'll face Baltimore's Jason Hammel and he's 2-for-6 with a home run against the Orioles' right-hander.
Description: Cleveland second baseman Jason Kipnis went 2-for-2 with two walks and a two-run homer Tuesday at Baltimore.
Insight: Kipnis was hitting .189 on May 1, but he has slowly built up his average to .288. He has hit safely in 17 of the last 18 games and batted .438 with eight doubles, one triple, two homers, 17 RBI, six steals and a 15/12 K/BB in that span.
Description: Indians left fielder Michael Brantley swatted his fifth homer Monday in a 5-2 win over Baltimore.
Insight: It's Brantley's third home run in his last five games. Before this power surge began, Brantley only had two long balls in his first 246 at bats. He's on pace for 80 RBI, which is 20 more than he had last season.
Description: Cleveland right-hander Brett Myers (elbow) will pitch out of the bullpen when he returns from the disabled list.
Insight: Myers was placed on the DL on April 21 with a mild tear of his UCL and opted for rehab instead of Tommy John surgery. Myers hasn't been effective as a starter since 2010 anyway, so fantasy owners won't be hurt by this decision. He can be dropped in all leagues.
Description: Indians closer Chris Perez (shoulder) is expected to be activated this week, according to Jordan Bastian of MLB.com.
Insight: Perez will throw a rehab game Tuesday or Wednesday before being activated from the DL. The closer hasn't pitched since May 26 due to right shoulder soreness. Perez is healthy now, but after he allowed three homers in his second rehab appearance the team decided to keep him on the DL for a few more appearances.
Description: Cleveland second baseman Jason Kipnis just missed the cycle Saturday against Minnesota.
Insight: All he needed was a home run. The last player in MLB to hit for the cycle was Mike Trout a little over a month ago. Kipnis (.275, 9 HR, 40 RBI) has driven in six runs over his last four games.
Description: Cleveland starter Scott Kazmir allowed a solo homer but nothing else over seven innings Friday to beat the Twins.
Insight: Kazmir didn't walk a batter and struck out seven, but let's not get too excited. He still has a 5.37 ERA and a 1.55 WHIP, and dominating the light-hitting Twins isn't exactly a major accomplishment.
Description: Indians second baseman Jason Kipnis had a two-run single and a sacrifice fly Friday against the Twins.
Insight: Kipnis was batting .189 after a game on May 1, but he is 51-for-169 (.302) with 12 doubles, two triples, eight homers, 27 runs and 11 steals in his last 44 games. Kudos to you if you bought low following his struggles in April.
Description: Houston outfielder Trevor Crowe was placed on the disabled list due to an injured shoulder.
Insight: Crowe is only a part-time outfielder with little fantasy value as he's batting .200 with a .568 OPS. The recently activated Justin Maxwell should get some of the at-bats as will Marc Krauss, who was called up on Thursday from Oklahoma City.
Description: Chris Perez got rocked in a rehab outing for Double-A Akron on Tuesday.
Insight: He surrendered five runs in one inning. Three of the five hits he allowed were home runs. The Indians were planning to activate Perez from the disabled list on Friday but now they might be having second thoughts.
Description: Cleveland righthander Corey Kluber announced his presence with a stunning performance Sunday against Washington.
Insight: Kluber scattered seven hits over eight shutout frames. He finished with eight strikeouts and didn't walk any of the 30 batters he faced. If Kluber (0.56 ERA in his last two starts) wasn't on your radar before, he should be now.
Description: Indians first baseman Nick Swisher sat out Sunday's game due to a nagging left shoulder injury and could land on the DL, according to Paul Hoynes of Cleveland.com (Cleveland Plain Dealer).
Insight: Swisher is ice cold right now, having gone 6-for-55 (.109) with 18 strikeouts and zero extra-base hits in his last 15 games. He aggravated his shoulder injury in the fifth inning Saturday night.
Description: Indians center fielder Michael Bourn is 2-for-13 with six strikeouts against Nationals starter Stephen Strasburg.
Insight: Strasburg will return from the DL Sunday to start against Cleveland. Bourn is hitting .192 (5-for-26) with eight K over his last six games, and facing Strasburg won't help him break out of that slump.
Description: Cleveland starter Scott Kazmir gave up three homers and five earned runs while walking four batters in 2 2/3 innings Saturday against Washington.
Insight: After throwing just 1 2/3 innings in the big leagues in 2011-12, Kazmir has proven he is the same pitcher he was back in 2010. He has a 5.89 ERA and a 1.65 WHIP after 11 starts and can be dropped in all leagues.
Description: Indians outfielder Drew Stubbs is hitless in nine at-bats versus Nationals ace Gio Gonzalez.
Insight: Stubbs has done little this season, hitting .235 with 68 strikeouts in 204 at-bats, and this matchup isn't likely to help. He's got 20-30 potential, but hasn't produced at that level in a couple of seasons.
Description: Indians starter Ubaldo Jimenez won his fifth game of the season Wednesday with five innings of one-run ball against the Texas Rangers.
Insight: Jimenez was wild as usual, walking four batters, but he didn't fold when he got into a jam. The right-hander is 5-2 with a 3.02 ERA over his last nine starts. While his next start will come against Kansas City, it will still be a tough test for Jimenez with the game taking place at Progressive Field; he is 2-3 with a 7.53 ERA in six starts there.
Description: Indians starter Corey Kluber threw the best game of his career Tuesday against Texas.
Insight: Kluber took a shutout into the eighth inning and ended up allowing one run on six hits with three walks and three strikeouts in eight frames. The right-hander lowered his ERA from 4.56 to 4.08.
Description: Indians third baseman Lonnie Chisenhall has been pounding the ball since being demoted to Triple-A Columbus in mid-May.
Insight: Chisenhall, a former first-round draft pick, is batting .393 with six homers, 22 RBI and a 1.190 OPS in 84 at-bats. The 24-year-old is likely to get a call up at some point, but with Mark Reynolds at third base and Nick Swisher at first, there isn't a spot for him to get enough bats to be fantasy worthy.
Description: Righthander Carlos Carrasco has been called up from Triple-A.
Insight: He'll start for the Indians Saturday in Detroit. Carrasco is starting in place of Zach McAllister, who was recently placed on the disabled list with a sprained finger. Carrasco is just 10-16 with a 5.16 ERA in 34 major league starts.
Description: Cleveland catcher Carlos Santana is 9-for-27 (.333) with three long balls and a 1.083 OPS against Tigers starter Rick Porcello.
Insight: Santana has put together a solid season (.278, 8 HR, 24 RBI, 32 runs), but most of the damage was done in April and not May. He's just 1-for-10 over his last three games which could negate this favorable matchup.
Description: Indians starter Ubaldo Jimenez went eight innings in his last start, but he allowed five runs (three earned) on seven hits with three walks in three innings Friday night.
Insight: Jimenez was 4-1 with a 2.74 ERA in his previous seven starts, with the one loss coming against the Tigers on May 22 when he allowed six runs in four innings. He has faced Detroit in three of his last six turns, and he'll have another tough matchup his next time out at Texas.
Description: Indians closer Chris Perez has been charged with misdemeanor drug possession and is expected to plead not guilty, according to the Associated Press.
Insight: Police were tipped off to suspicious packages by postal inspectors and arranged a delivery Tuesday under surveillance to Perez's house. The packages reportedly contained just over one-third of a pound of marijuana. Perez is currently on the DL with a shoulder injury, and is not expected to face a suspension.
Description: Indians left fielder Michael Brantley is the rare hitter who has success against Detroit ace Justin Verlander batting .448 for his career (13-for-29).
Insight: Brantley continues to provid what is expected from him - a solid batting average (.297) with some runs (27) and RBIs (26), but little power or speed (2 HR, 4 SB). This matchup is a good one for Brantley.
Description: Indians shortstop Asdrubal Cabrera strained his quad Monday against the New York Yankees and was put on the 15-day disabled list, but manager Terry Francona thought he would likely be out longer - 3-4 weeks, according to a Cleveland Plain Dealer report.
Insight: Cabrera was hitting .254, with 5 HR and 25 RBI. Mike Aviles figures to get most of the playing time at shortstop. Aviles would be a short-term answer only.
Description: Indians first baseman Nick Swisher is 8-for-23 (.348) in his matchups with Yankees left-hander C.C. Sabathia.
Insight: After a strong start, Swisher has fallen back and has just seven hits in his last 30 at-bats and an ugly .650 OPS since returning from paternity leave. Those late-night feedings could be effecting his swing.
Description: After hitting just .208 with 34 strikeouts in May and sitting out Saturday, Cleveland slugger Mark Reynolds will face Jeremy Hellickson of the Rays Sunday, who he has had trouble against in the past.
Insight: Reynolds has 13 homers and 41 RBI, but his average is down to .250. He is just 3-for-18 (.167) against Hellickson, so Sunday could be a tough day.
Description: Indians starter Ubaldo Jimenez continued his turnaround with eight scoreless innings against the Rays Saturday afternoon.
Insight: Jimenez struck out seven, walked just one and allowed four hits. The right-hander still has a 4.83 ERA, but he is 4-1 with a 2.74 ERA and a 3.37 BB/9 over his last seven starts. That includes a four-inning, six-run effort against Detroit on May 22. Unfortunately, he'll face the Tigers again in his next start for the third time in his last five turns.
Description: Indians right-hander Carlos Carrasco has a 1.85 ERA and a 46/11 K/BB in 43 2/3 innings with Triple-A Columbus.
Insight: Carrasco is a former "Baseball America" top-100 prospect who possesses a mid-90s fastball, but he had Tommy John surgery in September 2011 and missed all of 2012. The right-hander has to serve an eight-game suspension in the majors for hitting Kevin Youkilis on April 9, so the team has been reluctant to call him up and play with 24 players for eight games.
Description: Indians closer Chris Perez has been diagnosed with mild tendinitis in his right rotator cuff. He'll be shut down from throwing for 5-7 days.
Insight: Perez has allowed seven earned runs over his last 2 2/3 innings and his ERA has jumped from 0.64 to 4.32 in the process. Vinnie Pestano will serve as the closer, though he allowed four runs in his last appearance and has a 5.25 ERA in 12 innings this season.
Description: Indians closer Chris Perez, who was pulled in the ninth inning after throwing a pitch to Jacoby Ellsbury and holding his right arm, has been placed on the 15-day disabled list.
Insight: Perez is 2-1 with a 4.32 ERA, 1.50 WHIP and six saves. The Indians have three possible replacements in Joe Smith, Vinnie Pestano and Cody Allen. We await word of who will get the closer's job in Perez's absence.
Description: Indians second baseman Jason Kipnis is hitless in six at-bats against Reds starter Mike Leake.
Insight: Kipnis broke up a six-game streak without an extra base hit with a double and home run on Sunday. He's still not batting for a high average, but has eight home runs and 25 RBI. This matchup, however, isn't likely to help either category.
Description: Indians closer Chris Perez was pulled in the ninth inning after throwing a pitch to Jacoby Ellsbury and holding his right arm. He gave up three walks, a double and a single before exiting.
Insight: Perez was 2-0 with a 2.25 ERA, 1.25 WHIP and six saves heading into the game, but fantasy owners will have to stay on top of this injury to see the severity.
Description: Cleveland slugger Mark Reynolds is 5-for-15 (.333) with a home run against Boston lefty Jon Lester.
Insight: That's almost 100 points above his career batting average. More importantly, he's struck out just two times in 18 plate appearances, meaning he actually gets his bat on the ball. Start him despite his recent struggles.
Description: Indians first baseman Nick Swisher is scheduled to return from paternity leave on Friday, but that doesn't mean you should install him in your lineup as he's a career .164 hitter versus Boston starter John Lackey with 23 strikeouts in 61 at-bats.
Insight: Swisher is hitting .286 with four homers and a .978 OPS in May, but this is an unfavorable matchup.
Description: Indians first baseman Nick Swisher, who has a good history against Detroit right-hander Max Scherzer will not get a chance to hit against him. He's out of the lineup due to family reasons
Insight: Swisher's .875 OPS is the highest of his career. He's helped lead the resurgent Cleveland offense, now ranked No. 2 in all of baseball at 5.07 runs-per-game, batting .313 over the past 13 games. They face the highest scoring team, Detroit, in a huge AL Central division series beginning on Tuesday, but without Swisher.
Description: Indians righthander Daisuke Matsuzaka has dealt with an oblique injury and wildness (18 walks in 20 2/3 innings pitched at Triple-A Columbus).
Insight: Cleveland starting rotation is strong at the top with Justin Masterson and a rejuvenated Ubaldo Jimenez, but their 4.21 runs-per-game allowed is only average. If Matsuzaka could ever regain his control, there might be a spot for him at the end of the rotation.
Description: Cleveland slugger Mark Reynolds has struggled against Detroit right-hander Max Scherzer, going 0-for-8 with five strikeouts in their matchups.
Insight: Reynolds' average has started to fall as his strikeouts (45 in 42 games) have piled up, but the first baseman still has 12 homers and 37 RBI in 146 at-bats. Facing Scherzer is likely to continue his drive toward another "strikeout title."
Description: Indians first baseman Nick Swisher is 5-for-10 versus Detroit right-hander Max Scherzer with a 1.415 OPS.
Insight: Swisher's .875 OPS is the highest of his career. He's helped lead the resurgent Cleveland offense, now ranked No. 2 in all of baseball at 5.07 runs-per-game, batting .313 over the past 13 games. They face the highest scoring team, Detroit, in a huge AL Central division series beginning on Tuesday.
Description: Indians first baseman Nick Swisher is hitting .273 with four homers and a .965 OPS in May, but he'll face Felix Hernandez Sunday. He's just 10-for-48 (.208) with 11 strikeouts against the Mariners right-hander, though he does have four homers against him.
Insight: Swisher is batting .250 with an .809 OPS against righties this year, compared to .300 with a .955 OPS against lefties. Plus, he is just 10-for-56 (.179) in day games. All signs point to this being a tough day for the Indians first baseman.
Description: Indians second baseman Jason Kipnis is batting .288 with five doubles, two triples, six homers, 17 RBI, 15 runs and three steals over his last 16 games.
Insight: Kipnis has displayed 15-20 homer power in his career (including minors), and he stole 31 bags a season ago, so he obviously has fantasy value. But he strikes out a lot and doesn't hit for a high average.
Description: Cubs third baseman Luis Valbuena is questionable for Monday's game against Colorado with a bruised right pinky finger.
Insight: Valbuena is hitting well over his career average, batting .272 with five homers, 13 RBI and an .874 OPS. Considering he's a career .228 hitter/.656 OPS, fantasy owners should not be fooled by his early quick start.
Description: Indians shortstop Asdrubal Cabrera is a career .159 hitter (7-for-44) against Tigers starter Justin Verlander with 19 strikeouts and a .411 OPS.
Insight: Cabrera struggled through April and he continues to carry a low batting average, though he's begun to hit with more power (six extra base hits in nine May games). This matchup isn't likely to help his statistics.
Description: With a doubleheader coming up Monday against the Yankees, the Indians will recall Trevor Bauer to start the second game, according to Nick Camino of Newsradio WTAM 1100.
Insight: Bauer has made two spot starts this season and has allowed two hits and three earned runs in 10 innings but also has walked 13 batters. He has a 31/10 K/BB and a 2.55 ERA in 24 2/3 innings with Triple-A Columbus this season.
Description: Cleveland catcher Carlos Santana is just a .100 hitter (2-for-20) versus Detroit starter Max Scherzer.
Insight: The Indians gave Santana Thursday off, but it probably would have been a better idea to give him Friday off. Santana (.358, 7 HR, 15 RBI) is one of the league's top-hitting catchers, but this is an unfavorable matchup.
Description: Cleveland starter Scott Kazmir struck out 10 batters and walked none over six innings of one-run ball Thursday against the Athletics.
Insight: That's an eye-opener for fantasy owners. Kazmir has never had great control, but he could barely throw the ball over the plate in 2010, when he walked 79 batters and had a 5.94 ERA in 150 innings. That was his last full season in the big leagues. He should be picked up in deeper mixed leagues after his latest start.
Description: Indians 1B/RF Nick Swisher is a .500 career hitter against A's starter Bartolo Colon.
Insight: Luckily for Swisher, that's who is going to be pitching today for Oakland. Swisher (.255) is beginning to heat up with two homers in his last five games. He had just two in 24 games prior to his recent power surge.
Description: Cleveland starter Justin Masterson fired seven innings and allowed four hits and three runs, walked two and struck out seven Wednesday against the Athletics to improve his record to 5-2.
Insight: Masterson allowed 17 hits and 12 earned runs and walked six batters over his last 13 innings, but otherwise has been pretty effective this year. He has a 3.67 ERA, a 3.28 FIP and a 73.8 LOB%, and has increased his K/9 from 6.94 to 8.50 since last year.
Description: Indians starter Zach McAllister held the Athletics scoreless on five hits over 7 2/3 innings Tuesday.
Insight: McAllister is 3-3 with a 2.63 ERA and a 1.12 WHIP. He's walked 10 batters in 37 2/3 innings, but five of those came in one start. The right-hander hasn't allowed more than three runs in any of his six starts this year.
Description: Cleveland starter Brett Myers (elbow) has been playing long toss and is hoping to be back on the mound in a week. SOURCE: Cleveland Plain Dealer
Insight: Myers was placed on the DL on April 21 with a mild tear of his UCL. He's trying to pitch through it, but as we saw with Chad Billingsley, rehab usually doesn't work in the long run with that type of injury.
Description: Indians center fielder Michael Bourn (finger) is expected to begin a minor league rehab assignment with Triple-A Columbus Monday, according to Jordan Bastian of MLB.com.
Insight: Bourn suffered a lacerated right index finger on April 14 when he slid headfirst into first base and was stepped on by White Sox pitcher Matt Thornton. He was eligible to come off the DL last Tuesday, but was still feeling pain when gripping a bat and throwing the ball.
Description: Indians lefty Scott Kazmir struck out seven batters and allowed five hits and two runs in six innings Saturday versus the Twins to pick up his first win since 2010.
Insight: Kazmir hasn't been relevant in fantasy leagues since 2008, and he didn't pitch in the big leagues last year. He's worth an add in AL-only leagues for his strikeout potential, but he isn't a good option in mixed leagues.
Description: Indians second baseman Jason Kipnis went 3-for-4 with a triple, a homer and two RBI Saturday against the Twins.
Insight: Kipnis batted .125 in his first eight games and missed more than a week due to an elbow injury, but he's batting .294 with two triples, two homers, eight runs and six steals since returning to action 12 games ago.
Description: Cleveland first baseman Nick Swisher hasn't played since April 29, but is probable for Saturday's game against Minnesota. He's been dealing with a sore shoulder.
Insight: We're still waiting for the power display that we know he has in him. He's batting .265 this season with a pair of homers and nine RBI, but he's averaged almost 26 home runs a season over the past eight years.
Description: Cleveland sent Trevor Bauer down to Triple-A after his start Wednesday against the Twins.
Insight: Aside from the six walks he allowed, Bauer actually pitched pretty well on Wednesday (5 IP, 1 H, 0 ER, 5 K's). The young righthander will probably spend most of the season bouncing between Cleveland and Triple-A Columbus.
Description: Cleveland utility player Ryan Raburn went off for four hits Wednesday in a 6-0 win over Philadelphia.
Insight: Raburn has 11 hits in his last three games. His batting average has gone up by 150 points over that span. Injuries to Nick Swisher and Michael Bourn have allowed Raburn to see regular at bats, though both players are expected to return soon.
Description: Indians starter Zach McAllister went seven innings, walked one and allowed five hits and two runs in a win over Philadelphia Tuesday night.
Insight: McAllister is 2-3 with a 3.30 ERA and a 1.20 WHIP, but home runs could prove to be a problem for the right-hander. He allowed 19 in 125 1/3 innings last year and has given up four over his last three starts.
Description: Indians second baseman Ryan Raburn is 7-for-8 with four homers and seven RBI over the last two games.
Insight: Raburn has been getting more playing time with center fielder Michael Bourn on the DL, but he had not done anything of worth for fantasy owners until going 4-for-4 with two homers and four RBI last night. He had two more homers, three hits and three RBI Tuesday against the Phillies. Bourn will return sometime this week, but we could see Raburn split some at-bats with Drew Stubbs in right field or Jason Kipnis at second base while he is hot.
Description: Indians center fielder Michael Bourn (finger) will play in a couple minor league rehab games before returning to action. SOURCE: Associated Press
Insight: Bourn is eligible to return from the DL today, but he has been experiencing pain when he grips a bat or throws a ball. Bourn suffered a lacerated right index finger on April 14 when he slid headfirst into first base and was stepped on by White Sox pitcher Matt Thornton.
Description: Indians second baseman Ryan Raburn went 4-for-4 with two homers and four RBIs Monday against the Royals.
Insight: Raburn has been getting more playing time with center fielder Michael Bourn on the DL, but these were his first two homers of the season. He has managed to pick up 15 strikeouts in 46 at-bats, however.
Description: Cleveland catcher Carlos Santana is just 2-for-11 (.182) against Royals starter Ervin Santana.
Insight: Santana (.352, 4 HR, 9 RBI) was dealing with flu-like symptoms earlier in the week and missed Wednesday's game and this poor matchup could be a nice reason to get Lou Marson a start behind the plate.
Description: Indians shortstop Asdrubal Cabrera (quad) has not played since Monday due to a right quad injury and is questionable for Friday's game against Kansas City.
Insight: Cabrera is batting just .156 and all the injuries (he also is dealing with a sore wrist) aren't going to make it easy for him to bounce back. If you have a viable backup shortstop, it would be wise to use him.
Description: Indians shortstop Asdrubal Cabrera (wrist) is not in Sunday's lineup due to a bruised left wrist.
Insight: Cabrera slipped down the dugout steps about 10 minutes before Saturday's game and suffered the injury, according to Paul Hoynes of the Cleveland Plain Dealer. Cabrera left the game after two at-bats. He's considered day-to-day after X-rays came back negative.
Description: Indians lefty Scott Kazmir (abdominal strain) allowed seven hits, three walks, two homers and six runs in 3 1/3 innings Saturday against Houston. It was his first appearance since 2011.
Insight: Kazmir had a strong spring to win the fifth spot in the rotation but suffered an abdominal strain at the beginning of April. The left-hander's start Saturday is doubly disappointing since he was given 18 runs of offense in the first four innings. Kazmir hasn't been a useful starter since 2010, so he has to prove he can still pitch before fantasy owners jump on board.
Description: Cleveland 1B Mark Reynolds has six homers and 17 RBIs in 54 at-bats.
Insight: He's also batting .296 and has walked seven times. Of course, he also has struck out 14 times. We know he can hit the longball, but he'll have to keep his average at a respectable level to be a reliable fantasy option.
Description: Indians DH Jason Giambi went 2-for-4 with a double, a homer, five RBIs and three runs Saturday against the Astros.
Insight: Giambi has only played four games this year and really serves as a pinch-hitter and another coach on the bench for manager Terry Francona. Best case scenario is that he duplicates his 2011 numbers -- .260, 13 HR, 32 RBI, .958 OPS (with Colorado).
Description: Cleveland starter Brett Myers will have an MRI on his right forearm Sunday, according to Paul Hoynes of the Cleveland Plain Dealer. Myers left Friday's start after five innings due to forearm soreness.
Insight: Forearm soreness can sometimes be indicative of an elbow issue. The MRI should give us more information.
Description: Cleveland center fielder Michael Bourn has officially been moved to the disabled list. He won't be able to play until he has stitches removed from his right finger.
Insight: We already knew this was coming so it's just a formality. The move is backdated to April 15th, meaning that Bourn will be eligible to return on April 30th. He should be fully recovered well before that date.
Description: Indians second baseman Jason Kipnis is expected to return from an elbow injury Friday night in Houston. SOURCE: Jordan Bastian, MLB.com
Insight: Kipnis has been a disaster this season, collecting just four hits over his first 32 at bats. Even his elite speed (31 steals in 2012) hasn't been evident up to this point. Fantasy owners shouldn't be in any rush to put him back in the lineup.
Description: Cleveland starter Ubaldo Jimenez was tagged for seven runs on just two hits in 1 2/3 innings Tuesday against Boston.
Insight: Jimenez walked five batters and gave up all seven runs in the second inning. The right-hander has allowed 12 hits, 10 walks and 15 earned runs in 12 innings this season and should not be owned in any leagues.
Description: Indians center fielder Michael Bourn (hand) will be placed on the 15-day disabled list, according to Jordan Bastian of MLB.com.
Insight: White Sox reliever Matt Thornton stepped on Bourn's hand when Bourn slid into first base Sunday. He needed five stitches in his right hand and cannot play until he has them removed. We expect him to be ready to return when he's first eligible.
Description: Cleveland catcher Carlos Santana (thumb) will return to the lineup Tuesday against Boston.
Insight: Santana hasn't started since April 8 due to a left thumb contusion, but he drew a walk in a pinch-hit appearance Sunday. He's catching and batting third, so it looks like his thumb is close to 100 percent.
Description: Cleveland starter Brett Myers dropped Sunday's game to the White Sox but he was in six innings of work. Myers gave up six hits, one walk, a homer and two earned while striking out four.
Insight: He was starting for the first time since giving up four homers and seven runs in five innings at Toronto on April 4. Myers relieved Carlos Carrasco after the latter had been ejected Tuesday against the Yankees and allowed 11 hits, three homers and seven earned in 5 1/3 innings.
Description: Indians center fielder Michael Bourn needed five stitched in his right index finger Sunday after getting stepped on by White Sox reliever Matt Thornton, according to Jordan Bastian of MLB.com.
Insight: The injury occurred when Bourn slid head-first into first base. He won't be able to play again until he has the stitches removed, which could be in 5-7 days.
Description: Indians second baseman Ryan Raburn only has two hits in nine lifetime at bats against Jake Peavy. Fortunately for Raburn, both of them were home runs.
Insight: One was a three-run shot while the other was a grand slam. Jason Kipnis has been out with an elbow injury so Raburn will get the start at second base on Sunday. If there was ever a day to start Raburn in fantasy, this would be it.
Description: Cleveland catcher Carlos Santana suffered a setback at batting practice on Saturday and won't be in the lineup Sunday against the White Sox.
Insight: Santana has been bothered by a thumb injury for most of the last week and will now miss his fourth game in a row. Yan Gomes' fantasy appeal is minimal but he should be the starting catcher for Cleveland until Santana is ready to return.
Description: Indians DH/1B Mark Reynolds belted a grand slam Saturday in a win over Chicago.
Insight: Reynolds finished the afternoon with two hits, five RBI and a stolen base. The grand slam was his fifth home run of the season. That's good for third-best in the American League behind Seattle outfielder Mike Morse and Baltimore first baseman Chris Davis (six each).
Description: Carlos Santana won't suit up for the Indians on Saturday. He's still battling a sore thumb. SOURCE: Cleveland Indians on Twitter
Insight: Santana was listed in the lineup earlier in the day but the Indians have since released a revised lineup card with Yan Gomes starting at catcher and Santana getting the afternoon off. Apparently he tweaked something during batting practice. It could be a few more days before we see Santana back behind the plate.
Description: Indians second baseman Jason Kipnis is not in the lineup for Saturday's game with the White Sox due to a sore left elbow.
Insight: Kipnis is off to a horrible start, batting .125 with just one run scored, zero homers and two RBI. Expectations are high for the Cleveland second baseman after he posted 14 HR, 76 RBI and 31 stolen bases last year.
Description: Cleveland catcher Carlos Santana (thumb) could return to the field on Saturday and is listed as questionable after catching a bullpen session and taking batting practice.
Insight: He suffered a left thumb injury Monday but X-rays came back negative. Santana told manager Terry Francona that he could play Friday, but the team kept him out another game. He is batting .500 (13-for-26) with two homers, five RBIs and four walks this season.
Description: Cleveland starter Justin Masterson threw a complete-game shutout Friday against the White Sox. He allowed five hits and one walk and struck out seven.
Insight: Cleveland also was shut out for eight innings, but it scored a run in the bottom of the ninth to get Masterson his third win in as many starts. He has a 20/8 K/BB and has allowed just 10 hits and one earned run in 22 innings this season.
Description: Indians lefty Scott Kazmir (abdominal strain) could be activated April 20 if he continues to progress well, according to Jordan Bastian of MLB.com.
Insight: That's the next date Cleveland will need a fifth starter. Kazmir had a strong spring to win the job but suffered an abdominal strain at the beginning of this month and had to be placed on the DL.
Description: Indians right-hander Carlos Carrasco has been handed an eight-game suspension for hitting Kevin Youkilis during Tuesday's game, according to Bill Shaikin of the LA Times.
Insight: Carrasco was making his first start following a six-game suspension for the same thing. The first suspension was actually assessed back in 2011, but Carrasco suffered an elbow injury and never served it. He has been demoted to the minors, so his suspension won't start until he returns to the big league club.
Description: Cleveland catcher Carlos Santana (thumb) could return to games as early as Saturday. SOURCE: Jordan Bastian, MLB.com
Insight: He suffered a left thumb injury Monday but X-rays came back negative. Santana caught a bullpen session and hit in the cage Thursday afternoon and told manager Terry Francona that he could play Friday, but the team will keep him out another game. He is batting .500 (13-for-26) with two homers, five RBIs and four walks this season.
Description: Cleveland starter Ubaldo Jimenez will have his next start pushed back to Tuesday after the Indians had two straight rainouts.
Insight: Jimenez was hit hard and allowed seven runs in 4 1/3 innings Monday against the Yankees, and he'll have more than a week of rest in between starts. The right-hander hasn't been able to adjust to declining velocity over the past two years.
Description: Cleveland catcher Carlos Santana (thumb) told manager Terry Francona that he could play Friday, but he is likely to get a couple more days off. SOURCE: Jordan Bastian, MLB.com
Insight: Santana caught a bullpen session and hit in the cage Thursday afternoon. He suffered a left thumb injury Monday but X-rays came back negative. He is batting .500 (13-for-26) with two homers, five RBIs and four walks this season.
Description: Indians right-hander Carlos Carrasco has been demoted to the minors after allowing seven earned over 3 2/3 innings Tuesday against the Yankees. Carrasco was ejected for throwing at Kevin Youkilis.
Insight: Carrasco just finished serving a six-game suspension that was handed out in 2011, prior to his elbow injury, for the same reason. Another suspension could be headed his way. The right-hander was throwing 95-97 mph during the game but the team had no choice but to punish him. If Scott Kazmir isn't ready to pitch, we could see Trevor Bauer get recalled.
Description: Indians right-hander Carlos Carrasco was ejected from Tuesday's game for hitting Kevin Youkilis following a home run by Robinson Cano.
Insight: Carrasco just finished serving a six-game suspension that was handed out in 2011, prior to his elbow injury, for the same reason. Another suspension could be headed his way. The right-hander was throwing 95-97 mph during the game but he allowed seven runs on seven hits in 3 2/3 innings.
Description: The Indians turned to Wednesday's scheduled starter Brett Myers to pitch after Carlos Carrasco was ejected Tuesday night for hitting Kevin Youkilis.
Insight: Myers allowed four homers, seven hits and seven runs over five innings in his first start of the season. The team will have to look for another starter for Wednesday's game against the Yankees.
Description: Indians' shortstop Asdrubal Cabrera is hitless in seven career at-bats against Yankees right-hander Hiroki Kuroda.
Insight: Cabrera slipped from 25/17/87 (HR/SB/R) to 16/9/70 last season despite playing just eight fewer games than 2011 and the early numbers for 2013 aren't looking any better. He's batting just .083 with a .435 OPS through the first six games. Avoid him on Monday.
Description: Cleveland righthander Justin Masterson fired seven shutout innings Sunday in a win against Tampa Bay.
Insight: Masterson is off to a great start. In 13 innings this season, he's allowed just five hits and one earned run, striking out 13 with seven walks. Last season Masterson carried a 5.40 ERA in April so this represents a major improvement.
Description: Cleveland DH Mark Reynolds went deep twice Sunday in a win over the Rays.
Insight: Reynolds has swatted a homer in three out of his last four games and he's actually done it while carrying a very respectable .300 batting average. Despite his early season success, Reynolds continues to be a liability in fantasy leagues that deduct points for strikeouts (six punchouts in 20 at bats this season).
Description: Indians catcher Carlos Santana delivered five hits Sunday in a 13-0 demolition of Tampa Bay.
Insight: Consider it an early birthday present from the Rays' pitching staff (Santana turns 27 on Monday). Santana is now hitting .500 for the season with just one strikeout in 26 plate appearances. He's played all six games for Clevleand this season so we'd expect him to get a day of rest sometime in the next couple of days.
Description: Indians DH Mark Reynolds is 3-for-22 with eight strikeouts against Rays starter David Price, though he does have two home runs against him.
Insight: Reynolds is 3-for-16 with five strikeouts and two home runs in four games this season. If you own him, you know not to expect a high average, and if you play him Sunday, you're gambling that he'll connect for a home run because he likely won't make much contact against Price.
Description: The 2012 AL Cy Young Award winner David Price stymies plenty of hitters, but Indians outfielder Nick Swisher is not one of them.
Insight: Swisher, who is 4-for-17 with five walks this season, has tagged Price for 12 hits in 34 at-bats (.353) and also has walked 10 times. He clearly sees the ball well against the Tampa Bay lefty.
Description: Cleveland catcher Carlos Santana went 3-for-5 with a homer and two RBIs Thursday against Toronto.
Insight: Santana has six hits in 13 at-bats so far, picking up where he left off last season, when he hit .281 with 13 homers and an .887 OPS following the All-Star break (.221, 5 HR, .675 OPS before).
Description: The Indians have named Trevor Bauer as the starter for Saturday's game against the Rays.
Insight: Bauer will take the spot of Scott Kazmir, who was placed on the DL Thursday with an abdominal injury. Bauer didn't show much during spring training (6.06 ERA) after disappointing as a rookie and he is not guaranteed another start after this Saturday. However, he has plenty of upside and should be monitored in all leagues.
Description: MLB.com's Jordan Bastian reports that Trevor Bauer could take Scott Kazmir's spot in the rotation while he's out with a strained abdomen.
Insight: Bauer might start Saturday against Tampa Bay. Bauer didn't show much during spring training (6.06 ERA) so we're not optimistic about his chances of becoming a legitimate fanasy contributor this season.
Description: Indians left fielder Michael Brantley collected four hits in his five at bats Wednesday against Toronto.
Insight: All four of the hits were singles, which isn't surprising considering Brantley has never hit more than seven home runs in a single season. And herein lies the problem with Brantley: he's a good hitter for average but he won't drive in runs. Some players can offset a lack power by delivering tons of stolen bases but that isn't the case with Brantley (just 12 steals a season ago). If this trend continues, Brantley will never be anything more than an average fantasy player.
Description: Indians newly acquired OF/1B Nick Swisher is just a .160 hitter (4-for-25) against Blue Jays starter Brandon Morrow with eight strikeouts.
Insight: Swisher (.272, 24 HR, 93 RBI in 2012 with the Yankees) was brought to Cleveland to provide power in the middle of the lineup. He went 0-for-4 in the opener and this matchup doesn't bode well for him getting off to a fast start.
Description: Indians closer Chris Perez, who dealt with a shoulder strain this spring, notched his first save of the season Tuesday against Toronto.
Insight: Perez was shut down for most of the spring but he has put the discomfort behind him. The closer came into the exact situation in the 2012 season opener -- a 4-1 lead against Toronto -- but he gave up three runs in a game that the Indians ended up losing in 16 innings. This is a markedly better beginning to his season.
Description: Indians shortstop Asdrubal Cabrera blasted a two-run homer and drew a walk Tuesday in Cleveland's Opening Day win over Toronto.
Insight: Cabrera slipped from 25/17/87 (HR/SB/R) to 16/9/70 last season despite playing just eight fewer games than 2011. However, he improved his BB, K and line drive percentages last season and remains a top-10 option at a shallow position.
Description: Indians starter Justin Masterson flirted with danger but he ended up working out of several jams to hold Toronto to one run in six innings in the season opener Tuesday. He walked four and allowed three hits.
Insight: Masterson posted a 4.93 ERA last season as his BB/9 went from 2.71 to 3.85 and his strand rate went from 72.9 percent to 66.4 percent from 2011 to 2012. Right now, his 2011 season -- 3.21 ERA, 3.28 FIP -- is the aberration for his career.
Description: Indians lefty Scott Kazmir (abdominal strain) will try to throw a bullpen session Wednesday, at which point the team will determine if he needs to go on the DL. SOURCE: Paul Hoynes, Cleveland Plain Dealer
Insight: Kazmir suffered a strained abdominal muscle during a workout Monday, putting his availability for Saturday's start in question.
Description: Indians' outfielder Drew Stubbs rarely gets the bat on the ball against Toronto knuckleballer R.A. Dickey. He's 1-for-9 in his career, a single, with seven strikeouts.
Insight: Stubbs hit a career-low .213 with a .610 OPS last season with Cincinnati, before being included in a three-team trade. Stubbs has 20-40 potential if he can ever develop any consistency at the plate, but it isn't likely to start on Tuesday. Sit him.
Description: Indians shortstop Asdrubal Cabrera (back) said he will be fine for Opening Day after missing the last few days with tightness in his back. SOURCE: Nick Camino, Newsradio WTAM 1100
Insight: Cabrera slipped from 25/17/87 (HR/SB/R) to 16/9/70 last season despite playing just eight fewer games than 2011. However, he improved his BB, K and line drive percentages last season and remains a top-10 option at a shallow position.
Description: Carlos Carrasco did not win a rotation spot but he will be on Cleveland's Opening Day roster so that he can finally serve his six-game suspension.
Insight: The suspension was actually handed out late in the 2011 season but Carrasco hurt his elbow shortly after that and never got a chance to serve it. Once the suspension is over, Carrasco will report to the Indians' Triple-A affiliate in Columbus.
Description: The Indians cut righthander Daisuke Matsuzaka on Sunday.
Insight: Cleveland would have had to pay Matsuzaka an extra $100,000 if he had still been on the roster past Sunday. Scott Miller of CBS Sports expects Matsuzaka to sign another deal with the Indians later this week. When he does, he'll be expected to report to Triple-A Columbus.
Description: According to Nick Camino of Newsradio WTAM 1100, Indians manager Terry Francona said Thursday that he'll either go with Scott Kazmir or Carlos Carrasco for the final spot in Cleveland's rotation.
Insight: Kazmir has posted a 5.54 ERA and 210/141 K/BB ratio over 299 innings since 2009, and he missed most of 2011 and all of 2012. However, he hasn't allowed a run this spring in eight innings (8 K, 1 BB, 5 H) and appears to be fully healthy.
Description: Cleveland righthander Trevor Bauer has been demoted to the minor leagues.
Insight: He'll open the season with Triple-A Columbus. Bauer (1-2, 6.06 ERA for Arizona in 2012) has been so-so this spring, producing a 4.50 ERA over five appearances. He'll probably return to the majors at some point later this season but that doesn't necessarily mean that he'll have fantasy relevance.
Description: Indians closer Chris Perez (shoulder) could progress to throwing off a mound as early as Saturday, according to Jordan Bastian of MLB.com.
Insight: Perez has a strained muscle in his right shoulder and has been shut down since the beginning of the month. He can still be ready for Opening Day, but he'll have to avoid setbacks and progress quickly. Vinnie Pestano is the next man up in Cleveland's 'pen.
Description: Indians closer Chris Perez (shoulder) has started doing some light tossing, according to Jordan Bastian of MLB.com.
Insight: Perez has a strained muscle in his right shoulder and has been shut down for the last nine days. He can still be ready for Opening Day, but he'll have to avoid setbacks and progress quickly. Vinnie Pestano is the next man up in Cleveland's 'pen.
Description: Cleveland outfielder Michael Brantley will have the stitches removed from his left forearm in the next two days, according to Indians.com.
Insight: Brantley was spiked on Feb. 25 and had to get his forearm patched up. He should be fine for Opening Day. The outfielder has some power and some speed but not enough to be a season-long option outside of AL-only formats.
Description: Cleveland back up second baseman Ryan Raburn has been the hottest hitter in the majors so far this spring, hitting four homers with a .600 batting average and a 2.067 OPS in 15 at-bats.
Insight: Raburn is simply fighting for a roster spot, he's not likely to see enough action on the field to be of value to fantasy owners unless Jason Kipnis goes down with a long-term injury. Keep in mind that Raburn also pounded the ball last spring (6 HR, 19 RBI in 21 games) and then fell apart as the Tigers starting second baseman.
Description: Scott Kazmir has four strikeouts and no walks over four scoreless innings this spring. He's attempting to make a comeback with the Indians.
Insight: Kazmir last played in 2011, but he only threw 1 2/3 innings that season and gave up five runs. In his last full season, he started 28 games and had a 5.94 ERA and 1.58 WHIP in 150 innings. He was last relevant in fantasy leagues in 2008 and it will probably stay that way this year despite his early success.
Description: Indians closer Chris Perez is expected to miss 3-4 weeks with a right shoulder injury.
Insight: Perez was 0-4 last season with 39 saves, a 3.59 ERA and 1.13 WHIP. He'll be shut down for a week to 10 days and miss the WBC. Vinnie Pestano should get a shot at the closer's role while Perez is sidelined.
Description: Cleveland starter Justin Masterson (11-15, 4.93 ERA, 1.45 WHIP) will be the Opening Day starter for the Indians, according to the team's website.
Insight: This is not particularly good news for Masterson's fantasy owners as he'll be matched up with the opponent's "ace" more often. His ERA and WHIP need to drop significantly this season for him to be a viable fantasy asset.
Description: Cleveland outfielder Michael Brantley needed stiches in his left arm Monday after getting spiked in an exhibition game against Oakland.
Insight: Brantley probably won't play Tuesday against the Royals but it shouldn't be long before he's back in the lineup. At age 25, Brantley (.288, 6 HR, 60 RBI, 12 SB last season) could be poised for a breakout season in 2013.
Description: Indians newly acquired OF/1B Nick Swisher will miss some practice time while attending his mother's funeral.
Insight: Swisher, who recently signed a four-year, $56 million pact with Cleveland expecting to be the team's right fielder, could move to first base with the late addition of center fielder Michael Bourn. Swisher (.272, 24 HR, 93 RBI) was also eligible at two positions last season with the Yankees.
Description: Indians outfielder Drew Stubbs spent the winter working on his approach at the plate. He ditched his leg kick in favor of a toe tap in hopes that he can cut down on his strikeouts. SOURCE: ESPN
Insight: Detroit outfielder Austin Jackson made a similar change last season and raised his average for .249 to .300 while cutting down on strikeouts. Stubbs hit a career-low .213 with a .610 OPS last season with Cincinnati before being included in a three-team trade that saw Shin-Soo Choo go to the Reds. Stubbs has 20-40 potential if he can ever develop any consistency at the plate.
Description: The wait for Michael Bourn is finally over. After four months of unemployment, Bourn has agreed to a four-year, $48 million pact with the Indians.
Insight: Many teams were hesitant to sign Bourn because it would mean giving up a draft pick. Bourn joins a Cleveland outfield that already includes Michael Brantley, Drew Stubbs and Nick Swisher. Bourn (.274, 9 HR, 57 RBI, 42 SB) will likely start in center field with Swisher (.272, 24 HR, 93 RBI) moving to a full-time DH role.
Description: Indians shortstop Asdrubal Cabrera reported to camp Wednesday and according to manager Terry Francona "looks great." SOURCE: Cleveland Plain Dealer
Insight: Cabrera has had weight issues the last two springs. The shortstop has experienced a sharp decline in numbers in the second half of 2011 and 2012, which could have something to do with poor conditioning catching up to him. Shortstop, as usual, projects as a weak fantasy position and owners would benefit greatly from a bounce-back season from Cabrera.
Description: The Indians have reached an agreement with infielder Mike Aviles on a new two-year, $6 million contract.
Insight: Aviles had been eligible for arbitration but it never came to that. He had his moments last year with the Red Sox, producing 13 homers and a .250 average in 136 games. Aviles should find his way onto many fantasy rosters next season thanks to his positional flexibility (eligible at shortstop, second base and third).
Description: Former Nationals and Twins reliever Matt Capps inked a minor league contract with the Indians on Thursday.
Insight: Injuries limited Capps to just 29 1/3 innings in 2012. If he stays healthy, Capps (3.52 ERA in 444 career games) has a good chance to crack the Tribe's Opening Day roster. As a middle reliever, he won't have much fantasy value.
Description: WEEI's Rob Bradford hears that the Yankees could be closing in on a deal for veteran DH Travis Hafner.
Insight: The plan was for Kevin Youkilis to move into the DH role once Alex Rodriguez returns from hip surgery. Now that A-Rod might miss the whole season, Youk could be forced to play third base all year, meaning that the Bombers need a DH. Hafner's swing is tailor-made for the short right field porch at Yankee Stadium. The only question is whether or not he can stay healthy (missed 96 games due to injury in 2012).
Description: Indians GM Chris Antonetti said Friday that Justin Masterson, Ubaldo Jimenez and Brett Myers have the top three spots in the rotation locked up entering spring training and that Zach McAllister has a "leg up" on the fourth spot. SOURCE: Paul Hoynes, Cleveland Plain Dealer
Insight: McAllister went 6-8 with a 4.24 ERA and 1.36 WHIP in 22 starts last season. Former Arizona Diamondbacks pitching prospect Trevor Bauer will battle Carlos Carrasco (fresh off Tommy John surgery) and David Huff for the No. 5 spot. Corey Kluber is a long shot after going 2-5 with a 5.14 ERA in 12 starts last year.
Description: The Indians have reportedly signed right-hander Brett Myers to a one-year deal with a club option for 2014. SOURCE: Jon Heyman, CBS Sports
Insight: Myers saved 19 games with a 3.52 ERA for the Astros last season before being traded to the White Sox prior to the trade deadline. He threw 34 2/3 innings for Chicago, registering a 3.12 ERA. Myers will likely slide into the starting rotation for Cleveland, but he'll have to pitch closer to 2010 -- 14-8, 3.14 ERA -- than 2011 -- 7-14, 4.46 ERA -- if he's going to be a fantasy option. With Justin Masterson, Ubaldo Jimenez and Trevor Bauer locked into the top three spots in the Indians' rotation and Myers presumably taking the fourth, Carlos Carrasco, Zach McAllister and David Huff will likely compete for the fifth spot.
Description: New Indians outfielder Nick Swisher has declined the opportunity to play for Team Italy in the 2013 World Baseball Classic. SOURCE: Jerry Crasnick, ESPN
Insight: Swisher recently signed a four-year, $56 million pact with Cleveland after spending four seasons with the New York Yankees. Even though he'll play half his games at pitcher friendly Progressive Field instead of taking aim at the short right-field porch in Yankee Stadium, there's no reason to believe Swisher won't reach 20 homers for the ninth straight season.
Description: Lefthander Scott Kazmir has signed a minor league deal with the Indians.
Insight: Kazmir will have a hard enough time making the majors leagues, let alone playing well enough to warrant any fantasy consideration. Kazmir hasn't been productive since 2008 when he won 12 games with a 3.49 ERA in 27 starts for the Rays.
Description: Kevin Burkhardt of SNY reports that the Mets are looking at free agent outfielder Grady Sizemore.
Insight: Sizemore could have had a great career if he had just stayed healthy. Unfortunately he didn't and at age 30, it'd be silly for the Mets to offer the underachieving Sizemore anything more than a minor league contract. Sizemore missed the entire 2012 campaign while recovering from knee surgery.
Description: Righthander Roberto Hernandez is close to signing with the Rays according to Mark Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times.
Insight: Hernandez didn't show us much last season (0-3, 7.53 ERA), but then again it was a turbulent season for the righthander. Now that he's not being detained by authorities in the Dominican Republic for using a fraudulent name (Fausto Carmona), things should be much more normal for Hernandez in 2013. We're not expecting him to return to the level that made him a Cy Young candidate in 2007 (19-8, 3.06 ERA) but there's still some potential here.