Cleveland Indians: Five Players That Could Play a Key Part in 2016

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Mandatory Credit: Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

Cody Anderson – SP

The revolving door at the back end of the rotation has been an area of concern for the Indians, but it also may have opened the door for Anderson who wasn’t in the mix when the season started. Entering this year, the depth of the Indians’ staff seemed strong–but that can change quickly, especially with pitchers.

Before they even got out of the gate, Josh Tomlin and Gavin Floyd went down with injuries. Danny Salazar–who has since worked his way back–was sent to Triple-A Columbus to start the year. Shaun Marcum had a shot, Bruce Chen–the list seems endless. Once Anderson got the call, it looked as if the Tribe had their No. 5.

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A strong start in his first five starts was encouraging. He opened with a 2-1 record and a 1.91 ERA in 33 innings. His next three starts were the exact opposite. Anderson managed to complete just 15 innings while posting a 9.60 ERA. Opponents were batting .311 off him n that stretch. He shortly after when on the DL with a strained oblique. No one really knew how much was Anderson, how much could be the fault of the oblique injury

He’s pitched in three games since his return from the DL and has pitched well, including a seven-inning shutout performance against the Tigers on Sept. 6. It appears his “true” numbers likely fall right in the middle, but would be welcome at the No. 5 spot after this season’s debacle.

Next: Will he return in '16?