Apr 5, 2014; Cleveland, OH, USA; Cleveland Indians starting pitcher Carlos Carrasco (59) throws the ball during the first inning against the Minnesota Twins at Progressive Field. Mandatory Credit: Ken Blaze-USA TODAY Sports

Carlos Carrasco Headed to the Bullpen... Temporarily

Tired Carlos Carrasco Will Make Temporary Move

After a mysterious loss of speed during Friday night’s start against the White Sox, Carlos Carrasco is headed to the bullpen. However, Terry Francona made it very clear in speaking with reporters that the move is only temporary and that Carrasco will return to the starting rotation after the next cycle.

On the mysterious loss of speed on his fastball during the latter portion of his start, Carrasco had no real explanation. Nor did pitching coach Mickey Callaway. Instead of forcing the issue, they have decided that giving Carrasco some additional rest could help the situation.

Per Paul Hoynes’ report on Cleveland.com, Callaway had the following to say:

“I don’t know why he’s tired after two innings,” said pitching coach Mickey Callaway. “You’ll have to ask him.

“He did have trouble maintaining the mechanical adjustment we made with him in the offseason during the game. But that’s something he’s battled throughout. I don’t know why he said he was tired.”

Apr 5, 2014; Cleveland, OH, USA; Cleveland Indians starting pitcher Carlos Carrasco (59) watches Minnesota Twins second baseman Brian Dozier (2) rounds the bases after hitting a solo home run during the first inning at Progressive Field. Mandatory Credit: Ken Blaze-USA TODAY Sports

Because the scheduling gods decided to give the Indians a much needed break, Monday’s off day will pay off dividends. Thanks to that off day, they can place Carrasco in the bullpen and skip his next scheduled start without altering the rest of the rotation. Therefore, the Indians won’t send Carrasco to the mound in a starting situation until next Saturday against the Blue Jays.

In addition the extra rest, this will also allow Mickey Callaway to work with Carrasco on tightening up his mechanics, mechanics they altered during spring training. In order to creat greater deception, the Indians encouraged Carrasco to raise his lead arm higher during his deliver. It was that lead arm that began to drop during Friday’s start, which the Indians feel could be the culprit.

One thing is for sure. If Carrasco cannot figure things out sometime soon, the move to the bullpen could become permanent. The Indians cannot afford to let Carrasco languish in a starter’s role. If they have to, they can move him to the bullpen full-time, a position he excelled in during the 2013 season and promote Josh Tomlin, who pitched better this spring, or Trevor Bauer, who looked like the ace of the future on Wednesday afternoon.

Manager Terry Francona seemed optimistic that Carrasco would be able to figure it out, especially with the help of Mickey Callaway:

“Mickey spent some time with him this morning,” said manager Terry Francona before Saturday’s game. “That’s a little bit of an enigma. I think that’s the best word.

“He’s in great shape and is a big strong kid. Between fighting mechanics and the stress of a game, I think can tire you out. It’s a constant fight to find where you can excel. That’s part of the game.”

However this plays out, the Indians certainly have options. What it means for Carlos Carrasco, however, is a completely different story.

Tags: Carlos Carrasco Cleveland Indians Mickey Callaway Terry Francona

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