Battered Indians vie for series win over Royals

National Sports

Left-hander Logan Allen will bid for his first win since April 11 when the Cleveland Indians visit the Kansas City Royals on Wednesday night in the second contest of a three-game series.

Right-hander Jackson Kowar (0-2, 18.00 ERA) will oppose Allen (1-5, 7.53). Kowar will make his return to Kansas City after being sent to Triple-A Omaha following his third start in mid-June.

Meanwhile, the Indians might be posting an opening for a catcher on one of those job-search websites if something happens to starter Austin Hedges in the next couple of days.

Cleveland reached out to Advanced-A Lake County to select the contract of Gianpaul Gonzalez before Tuesday’s game against the Royals — a 7-2 Indians win — because of injuries to catchers in its system.

It is not known if Gonzalez will play on Wednesday.

Maybe the Indians should consider seeing if shortstop Amed Rosario can play behind the plate. He did just about everything else in Cleveland’s victory in the series opener.

Rosario recorded the first five-RBI game of his career and matched a personal best with five hits. He’s the first player since at least 1920 — when RBIs became an official stat — to go 5-for-5 with five RBIs and an inside-the-park and over-the-fence homer in the same game, according to STATS.

“He’s playing good,” Indians acting manager DeMarlo Hale said. “He’s spraying the ball around. It’s really hard to defend him. He’s got speed to beat out a ball to the left side for infield hits. He can hit the ball the other way. He’s just been a pro.”

Rosario likely will stay at shortstop, which leaves the Indians scrambling for catching help.

Roberto Perez, who has been on the 10-day injured list since Aug. 4 with right-shoulder inflammation, began a rehab assignment Tuesday. Backup catcher Wilson Ramos probably is done for the season after tearing the ACL on his left knee in Sunday’s 7-5 win over the Boston Red Sox.

The Indians are confident in the ability of Gonzalez, even though few on the major-league staff have seen much of him.

“I’ve heard some things about him,” Hale said. “He handles himself well. That’s why he’s here.”

Allen recorded his best start of the season in his last outing. He allowed one run on one hit over a season-high six innings in the Indians’ 4-3 loss to the Red Sox on Friday.

Allen suffered a hard-luck loss to the Royals in his first start of the season, on April 5, giving up two runs on five hits in five innings. That was his first career appearance against Kansas City.

Kowar has yet to face the Indians.

He got off to a rocky start in his debut on June 7, giving up four earned runs on three hits and two walks in two-thirds of an inning against the Los Angeles Angels. He also struggled in his next two outings before being sent down.

Kowar posted a 9-4 record with a 3.46 ERA in 17 appearances (16 starts) with Omaha, giving Royals manager Mike Matheny the option of keeping a six-man rotation — even without Brad Keller, who is on the injured list.

“Couple things up in the air; trying to kind of sift our way through,” Matheny said. “I would think in a perfect world, if we could continue to do the six, we will.”

–Field Level Media

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