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Indians’ Mike Clevinger on injured list with ankle sprain

UPDATED: Fri., June 21, 2019

A member of the Cleveland Indians staff checks on starting pitcher Mike Clevinger, right, who fell off the mound while delivering a pitch to the Texas Rangers in the second inning of baseball game in Arlington, Texas, Monday, June 17, 2019. Clevinger continued playing in the game. (Tony Gutierrez / Associated Press)
A member of the Cleveland Indians staff checks on starting pitcher Mike Clevinger, right, who fell off the mound while delivering a pitch to the Texas Rangers in the second inning of baseball game in Arlington, Texas, Monday, June 17, 2019. Clevinger continued playing in the game. (Tony Gutierrez / Associated Press)
Associated Press

CLEVELAND – Mike Clevinger is confident his latest stint on the injured list will be a short one.

The Cleveland Indians placed Clevinger on the 10-day IL prior to Friday night’s game against Detroit because of a sprained left ankle. The right-hander was scheduled to start Saturday.

Clevinger twisted his ankle while coming off the mound to cover first base in the second inning against Texas on Tuesday. He was making his first start since April 7 when he strained a back muscle.

Clevinger expects his next start will come when the Indians visit Baltimore for a three-game series that begins June 28.

“It’s nothing bad,” he said. “If this was October, I’d probably be out there but coming back from the long layoff, right now everything lines up perfectly for me to only miss one start. It’s more logical to do that.”

Clevinger remained in Tuesday’s game but struggled, allowing five runs in 4 2/3 innings. The move is retroactive to June 18.

The Indians have been dealing with a depleted rotation for most of the season. Corey Kluber (broken right arm) and Carlos Carrasco (blood condition) are also out.

Manager Terry Francona doesn’t want to take any chances with Clevinger, who has been limited to three starts and is 1-1 with a 2.70 ERA. His first DL trip lasted from April 9-June 17.

“We just got a guy off an injury, and we’re going to put him in a potentially precarious spot,” Francona said. “That didn’t make much sense.”

Aaron Civale will be called up from Triple-A Columbus to start Saturday in his major league debut. The 24-year-old right-hander is 5-0 with a 2.85 ERA in seven starts between Columbus and Double-A Akron.

Reliever Josh Smith was recalled from Columbus for Friday night’s game.

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