Lucky 13? Salazar returns as Tribe tries to keep rolling
CHICAGO — Danny Salazar is returning to the Cleveland Indians just in time to potentially guide them to their 13th straight victory.
After missing his past two scheduled starts, the right-hander is expected to come off the disabled list Tuesday to start against the Chicago White Sox in the second game of a four-game series.
The Indians (81-56) have outscored opponents 84-21 during their season-high 12-game win streak. They are 8-0 on their road trip and 34-16 after the All-Star break.
“We’ll show up and try to win again,” manager Terry Francona said after Cleveland’s 5-3 victory over Chicago on Monday. “What happened 10, 12 days ago doesn’t matter. We’ll show up and see if we can beat the White Sox. That’s the best way to go about it.”
Salazar (5-6, 4.30 ERA) landed on the DL on Aug. 22 due to right elbow inflammation. He threw a 23-pitch simulated game Saturday at Double-A Akron.
“The simulated game went well,” Francona told the Cleveland Plain Dealer. “We’ll start him on Tuesday, but we won’t go too long with him.”
It was Salazar’s second DL stint of the season. The right-hander was sidelined starting June 6 for right shoulder soreness. After coming off the DL July 22, Salazar went 2-0 with a 1.39 ERA in five starts before allowing six runs and a career-high 12 hits in just 4 2/3 innings Aug. 20 at Kansas City. He then landed on the DL for the elbow issue.
Salazar is 6-4 with a 3.88 ERA in 12 career starts against the White Sox. He has faced them three times this season, going 1-2 with a 4.24 ERA.
David Holmberg (2-3, 3.55 ERA) is scheduled to start Tuesday for last-place Chicago (54-82). The left-hander is 1-2 with a 3.86 ERA in six starts and 1-1 with a 3.24 ERA in 27 relief appearances, with 21 of those scoreless. He also has a 1.50 ERA in his past eight outings.
“Holmy is just a kid who pumps strikes,” White Sox manager Rick Renteria said. “He works both sides of the plate. He can change speeds well. He’s done that for us throughout the course of the year, whether we’ve started him or relieved him. How far he goes or how deep he goes in ballgames is all determined by how he’s throwing and things of that nature. He’s done a nice job of picking us up in any situation we’ve put him in.”
In his most recent start, Holmberg allowed six runs (two earned) in 5 1/3 innings on June 26 against the New York Yankees. He gave up two runs in five innings in his lone career appearance against Cleveland, a start on June 10.
Holmberg takes the turn in the White Sox rotation of left-hander Derek Holland (7-14, 6.20 ERA), who was moved to the bullpen.
The Indians have won eight of 13 games against the White Sox this season, outscoring them 53-42.
“It’s been great, man,” starting pitcher Trevor Bauer said about Cleveland’s winning streak. “Everyone’s playing so well, staff as a whole, the bullpen, offense has been coming out. Everyone’s been hitting. Everyone’s having fun. Winning’s fun. It’s contagious.”