Cleveland Indians’ Zach Walters Out 3-4 Weeks with Oblique Strain

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Zach Walters Out 3-4 Weeks

Several Cleveland Indians have been battling injuries the last few days, and the team got some bad news on one such player. Zach Walters, who left Thursday’s game against the Royals, will be out three to four weeks with a strained right oblique muscle.  Tribe fans may remember that Walters dealt with a right intercostal (rib area) injury late last year; however, the Indians have said they believe this injury is unrelated.

Zach Walters was had been hoping to make the Indians Opening Day; however, this latest injury setback assures that he’ll open the year with the AAA Columbus Clippers instead.  A trip to the 7-day minor league disabled list to begin the season is also a distinct possibility now for Walters as the Indians likely won’t want to rush him back and risk further injury.

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Zach Walters was always on the outside looking in with players such as Mike Aviles, David Murphy, and Ryan Raburn ahead of him, and complicating matters was the fact that Walters wasn’t off to the best of starts this spring batting just .167 with one double in 12 at-bats.  He did manage to show off his versatility before getting hurt. Walters played mostly the outfield last year with the Indians; however, this spring he played exclusively on the infield playing at least a game at all four infield spots, including first base (a position he has never played in the major or minor leagues before).

Tomlin and Raburn Make Their Returns

Thankfully the injury news wasn’t all bad yesterday for the Indians. Josh Tomlin returned to the mound today after being scratched from his start Sunday due to shoulder soreness. This is great news for a Tribe team that has already lost Gavin Floyd for an extended period.  The Indians also saw the return of Ryan Raburn to the lineup yesterday with him playing right field. Raburn left Thursday’s game early after injuring his left knee (the same knee he had surgery on last year).  He had the knee drained and received lubricant injections to help relieve the pain.  While this sounds bad it actually was something that had been planned according to Tribe skipper Terry Francona:

"“He was going to an injection of the lubricant after the game anyway,” said manager Terry Francona. “So the timing worked out pretty well.”"

It sounds like Raburn’s knee will be something that could continue to bother him for a while and something he’ll have to just continue to play through.  Perhaps all the more reason for the Indians to hope for a speedy recovery from Zach Walters…

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