Danny Salazar is the future of the Indians rotation, but he was sent down earlier in the season for fine-tuning. He was called up Tuesday to face the Twins and held them to one run over five innings in a game the Indians eventually won 8-2.
It wasn't all good, as he walked three batters in the second inning, but he settled down after that. "But if you look at a 16-batter stretch, with those three walks included, he threw 10 balls to the other 13 batters. So that's not too bad," Cleveland pitching coach Mickey Callaway said.
Salazar's fastball averaged 94.9 miles an hour.
• • •
Austin Jackson appeared to be miscast as a middle-of-the-order hitter for the Tigers as he began the season batting fifth or sixth. Only recently has he been moved up in the order — and he's put 30 points on his average.
He went 2-for-5 Wednesday in the Tigers' victory over Arizona. Since July 2, he's batting .387 (29-of-75), giving the Tigers a much-needed boost in the leadoff spot.
• • •
Uh-oh! The dreaded vote of confidence has been thrown out in Kansas City.
Kansas City General Manager Dayton Moore said that manager Ned Yost's job was safe as the Royals have stumbled out of the gate since the break. Expectations were for them to be legitimate contenders.
"I don't blame the players," he said. "I don't blame coaches. I don't blame managers. I don't blame ownership. I look at myself, and what I can do, and what we can do as a baseball operations department to improve our team."
The Royals are looking for upgrades before the deadline.
• • •
White Sox second baseman Gordon Beckham entered the series against the Twins in a 4-for-59 tailspin, and manager Robin Ventura has suspected that trade rumors are affecting his play.
Veteran Paul Konerko has been trying to talk Beckham through it.
"He's a big boy; he'll be all right," Konerko said. "It's part of the gig. You have to block out a lot of things and do your job. It shows that other teams see value in him."