The Indians found someone to boost their sagging offense. They now have to hope it’s not too late.
After scoring just three runs in three games while being swept in Atlanta, the Indians acquired outfielder Jason Kubel on Friday from Arizona to help their playoff push. Kubel, who hit 30 homers last season but has struggled in 2013, was designated for assignment this week by the Diamondbacks.
It’s not immediately known what the Indians gave up for Kubel, who has averaged 20 homers and 81 RBIs the past five seasons.
A left-handed hitter, the 31-year-old joins Cleveland just as it opens a three-game series in Detroit. The Indians trail the AL Central-leading Tigers by 6 games and are four back in the wild-card chase.
Kubel was struggling in his second season with the Diamondbacks. He batted just .220 with five homers and 32 RBIs in 89 games, and had been reduced to mainly pinch-hitting duties. The Diamondbacks had 10 days to trade, release or put Kubel on waivers.
The Indians went 0-for-18 with runners in scoring position against the Braves, and everyone in Cleveland’s batting order is slumping.
Kubel spent seven seasons in Minnesota before signing as a free agent with Arizona in 2011. He’s making $7.5 million this year with a club option worth $7.5 million for next season.