Headlines, Indians

Should we worry about Andrew Miller and Josh Tomlin going on DL?

With the Cleveland Indians looking to avoid a sweep Wednesday night in Boston (assuming they play), some interesting and surprising news was revealed this very afternoon as reliever Andrew Miller1 has landed on the 10-day disabled list and starting pitcher Josh Tomlin2 will be sidelined for six weeks.

The news was first reported by MLB.com Indians’ reporter Jordan Bastian and later confirmed by the team.

With the 10-day DL making its debut for the first time this season, many expected Terry Francona to use it to his advantage. While Miller could really be hurt, it’s also an easy way to give him rest to start August, rather than later in the season when the Indians may need him the most.

In his first 27 appearances of the season, the left-handed reliever didn’t look human, boasting just a 0.29 ERA and striking out 47 hitters while surrendering just 14 hits in 31.1 innings. Then, beginning on June 13, he has a 3.57 ERA with 31 strikeouts and allowing 12 hits in 22.2 innings and 19 appearances since then. The most telling stat though, is the fact Miller’s 10 walks in that span are more than he allowed all last season (allowed just nine in 2016).

While many may just blame it on the 32-year-old just looking human, his struggles are somewhat worrisome. If he is in fact injured, then it’s better for him to go on the disabled list now rather than later down the stretch. If it’s just for rest, then that it just fine as well. Either way, Miller needs the rest, especially after what he did for the Indians in the postseason last October (and November).

If he will truly be OK following this short stint on the disabled list, then this could possibly be something that the Indians look back on and are grateful for, much like Corey Kluber’s short stint on the disabled list earlier this season.

Tomlin’s injury, on the other hand, is a bit worrisome. While the Indians can be grateful that they had a six-man rotation over the past week and this will just take it down to the usually five starting pitchers, Tomlin was pitching well as of late. In his first 16 starts of the season, the right-hander had a 6.17 ERA with 64 strikeouts and allowing 17 home runs. In his four starts since just before the All-Star Break, the 32-year-old has a 2.59 ERA while striking out 22 hitters and allowing just two home runs.

If Tomlin is out for at least six weeks, that means that he won’t even begin his rehab stint until around September 13, which will be game No. 146 for the Indians and be just 2.5 weeks before the regular season concludes. Although he’s a veteran, that quick turnaround could be tough. With how Tomlin has been pitching lately, it’s unfortunate that something like this had to happen.

For what it’s worth, Jason Kipnis continued his rehab stint at Double-A Akron Tuesday night, where he started and played seven innings at second base. He is slated to play an entire game at second with the RubberDucks Wednesday night.

  1. Patella tendinitis in right knee. []
  2. Left hamstring tendon strain. []