Corey Kluber suffers oblique strain, will be reexamined in 2 weeks
Although the Cleveland Indians were hoping to have starting pitcher Corey Kluber return for a final playoff push in September, Kluber suffered a setback in his latest rehab start.
Mandy Bell of MLB.com reported on Tuesday that Kluber sustained an oblique strain and has been shut down. Kluber will be reexamined in two weeks:
Corey Kluber suffered an internal oblique strain in his last rehab start. He's been shut down from throwing and will begin a rehab program. His time frame for return to game activity is TBD. He'll be re-examined in two weeks.
— Mandy Bell (@MandyBell02) August 20, 2019
Kluber has made just seven starts in 2019, suffering a non-displaced fracture of his right ulna bone that has sidelined him since the beginning of May.
While Kluber shined on Opening Day against the Minnesota Twins, it quickly became apparent that he was not quite right. He failed to make it past the fourth inning in two of his seven starts, posting a 5.80 ERA and 3.8 BB/9 in 35 2/3 innings of work.
Although this setback is certainly a disappointment for Indians fans that had hoped to see Kluber rejoin the rotation for September, he has not suffered any additional damage to his throwing arm. If he progresses on schedule, he could still be back with the big-league roster before the end of the regular season.
The Indians have been one of the best teams in baseball since June, but they have not been able to grab hold of the American League Central division after miraculously getting back into the race.
Mike Clevinger is back and looking healthy, but closer Brad Hand has had an atrocious month of August. Still, Yasiel Puig has been a massive acquisition, and the Indians could be bolstered in the stretch run by the potential returns of Corey Kluber and fellow starter Carlos Carrasco.