Monday, September 3, 2018
CLEVELAND (AP) — Josh Donaldson hit a grand slam in Triple-A on Monday, soon after the Cleveland Indians put the new arrival on the disabled list to give him more time to rehab a calf injury in the minor leagues.
Donaldson connected for Columbus. He walked and lined out before homering against Toledo.
The AL Central-leading Indians acquired the 2015 AL MVP from Toronto on Friday. Donaldson has been limited to just 36 games in the majors this year — none since late May — and the Indians are hoping he can get healthy enough to help them in the postseason.
Donaldson played third base and batted second in Columbus' final game of the season. Cleveland manager Terry said Donaldson will work out with the Indians on Tuesday and then join Double-A Akron for the Eastern League playoffs.
Francona said multiple meetings took place with Donaldson and the team's baseball and medical staffs before the decision was made for him to get playing time in the minors before returning to the majors.
"When you try to not get over-excited about him being here and getting on the field, we felt like him playing a handful of games would put him in the best position to be healthy where he could come back and play maybe back to back and play multiple games," Francona said.
Donaldson can be activated on Sept. 11. Once he's been cleared and ready to play for them, the Indians intend to have him at third and slide All-Star Jose Ramirez to second. Jason Kipnis will be moving to the outfield.
Francona said both players will begin working out at their new positions this week.
"We'll make that move when they're ready even if it's before Donaldson is back with us," Francona said.
The 32-year-old Donaldson hasn't played in a major league game since May 28.
Donaldson took batting practice and did drills at Progressive Field on Sunday. Afterward, he said he was close to being 100 percent.
Donaldson won't be with the Indians when they visit Toronto for a four-game series that begins Thursday.
More AP MLB: https://apnews.com/tag/MLB and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports