In the Indians' 7-6 win at Minnesota Friday night, Roberto Hernandez missed his second consecutive start
due to a sprained right ankle. Indians officials are being very vague about any timetable for the return of
Hernandez, who is wearing a walking boot on his foot.
Hernandez has already missed most of the 2012 season, following his arrest for identity theft in his
native Dominican Republic last offseason. He rejoined the Indians in mid-August, made three starts, and
then sprained his ankle.
The lack of any specificity by Indians officials on when Hernandez might return this season raises the
question of whether he will return at all.
The Indians only have 24 games remaining in the season, and with the expanded September rosters, it's
not like the Indians don't have the manpower to cover the loss of Hernandez for the last three weeks of the
season. Friday night, his replacement in the rotation was Jeanmar Gomez.
Gomez wasn't very good Friday night. He was removed from the game after three innings and was replaced
by September call-up David Huff, who was terrific, retiring all 10 batters he faced. Either Huff or Gomez
could remain in that spot in the rotation in place of Hernandez, if he doesn't return.
The timing of the injury to Hernandez couldn't be worse for him or the Indians. The Indians hold a $6
million club option on Hernandez for 2013. They had intended to use the last six weeks of the season to
evaluate Hernandez in order to determine whether or not to exercise that option. But if Hernandez is done
for the year, all the Indians have to go on for evaluation purposes are his three starts, in which he went
0-3 with a 7.53 ERA.
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