Just what the Indians didn't need -- another major injury. The Indians placed two more players on their lengthy disabled list yesterday, adding OFs Kenny Lofton and Jacob Cruz, who may be lost for the season after tearing a thumb ligament Friday night.
Lofton hasn't played since injuring his hamstring when he tried to stretch a single into a double in the eighth inning of a 14-5 win over the Tigers July 27. He was placed on the 15-day DL retroactive to July 28, and could be eligible to come off Wednesday.
Cruz injured his thumb Friday night, also trying to stretch a single into a double in Cleveland's 4-2 loss to the Devil Rays. Cruz, a rookie, flew back to Cleveland for an MRI exam late Friday night. He is scheduled to undergo surgery Monday and will be out 8-10 weeks, the team said.
Dave Roberts and Jolbert Cabrera were promoted from Class AAA Buffalo and will platoon in center field until Lofton can return.
The Indians now have seven players on the disabled list, including four regulars -- 3B Travis Fryman, C Sandy Alomar, OF-DH Wil Cordero and Lofton. RHP Dwight Gooden is also on the DL. Cleveland, which has had 13 players on the DL this season, still leads the AL Central by 14 1/2 games. "I've never seen anything like this," Cleveland GM John Hart said. "Now even our shock troops are getting hurt before they get out of the trenches."
STRAWBERRY COMEBACK: Darryl Strawberry continued his comeback from a drug suspension with two hits and three RBI in a doubleheader with the AAA Columbus Clippers. Strawberry, who went 2 for 3 in the opener and 0 for 1 in the nightcap, is batting .375 (6 for 16) in four games with Columbus.