Smith activated, Sipp demoted

It’s been an eventful year for Indians right-hander Joe Smith, for all the wrong reasons. But Smith had good news Tuesday.

The Indians activated Smith from the 15-day disabled list after a brief Minor League rehab assignment with Triple-A Columbus. Smith, recovering from a strained right rotator cuff, threw five scoreless innings for the Clippers. He gave up just four hits and a walk with six strikeouts.

To make room for Smith on the active roster and in the ‘pen, the Indians optioned left-hander Tony Sipp back down to Columbus for the second time in the past month. In two stints with the Tribe, Sipp went 0-0 with a 3.12 ERA in 10 games, walking 10 and striking out 10 in 8 2/3 innings.

When the Indians acquired Smith from the Mets as part of a three-team, 12-player trade during the Winter Meetings, they had hoped he’d become a key setup man in the back end of their ‘pen. But early in Spring Training camp, he was held back because of a viral infection. He never really got on track after that. Once the regular season began, he went 0-0 with a 7.11 ERA in eight games.

Smith went on the DL on April 29, and it was expected to be a short stay. The Indians figured to use the DL move as a way to give Smith time in the Minors to make up for the time he missed in spring camp. But a setback with the shoulder lengthened his stay.

2 Comments

Should be interesting. I’m guessing he’ll be our official 8th inning guy to get it to Wood.

I think Sipp has great potential, but those BB numbers hurt. I think he’s someone we can count on going forward, though. I thought there might be a chance it would be Lewis, though, since he’s yet to go down.

So our bullpen is this, yes:

Smith
Aquino
Herges
Lewis
Perez
Vizcaino
Wood

And Ohka as reliever/fifth starter.

It’ll be interesting to see if Sipp gets called up again, if/when they send Ohka back down (assuming we get some starters back from the DL). I’d be shocked if we stuck with just one lefty.

especially since that one lefty in the pen is, ahem, terribly inconsistent

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