Breaking Tribe News: Vizcaino in, Sowers Out

Giants Rockies BaseballAs predicted by WFNY yesterday, the Indians have sent LHP Jeremy Sowers to AAA Columbus to make room for the newly signed right handed reliever Luis Vizcaino.

Per the Indians official release:

Vizcaino, 34, began this season with the Chicago Cubs, recording 4 scoreless relief appearances (3.2IP, 2H, 0R, 0BB, 3K, .154AVG) before being designated for assignment on April 23 and later released.   This spring he appeared in 12 games for the Cubs, limiting hitters to a .244 (10-41) average against with 13 strikeouts in 10.1IP (11.3K/9.0IP this spring).  He will wear #47.  He spent the 2008 season in the Colorado Rockies bullpen where he made 43 appearances and recorded an ERA of 5.28 and over a strikeout per inning pitched (46.0IP, 48H, 27ER, 49K) despite missing 2 months with a right shoulder injury.

This was a move a week in the making. Vizcaino adds another veteran arm to the embattled bullpen. You may remember him best as the guy who gave up the game winning, RBI single to Travis Hafner in the 2007 ALDS “Bug Game.” Expect manager Eric Wedge to work him somewhere in front of Rafael Betancourt and Aaron Laffey.

While Sowers has been sent down to AAA (where he belongs may I add),  another move will have to be made before Sunday’s game, which Sowers was scheduled to start. The leading candidates for the spot are David Huff (5-1, 4.35 ERA), and Zach Jackson (1-2, 5.84 ERA in five games, two starts). Huff pitched six innings on Tuesday – the same day Sowers started in Cleveland – getting a win despite allowing four runs on nine hits. Jackson’s last start was Sunday, where he was very impressive in his five innings of work (one run on two hits).

When that decision is made, expect the Masa Kobayashi experience to come to an end.

  • dwhit

    “When that decision is made, expect the Masa Kobayashi experience to come to an end.”

    And there was much rejoicing

  • Alex

    I wouldn’t be surprised to see Laffey move back in the rotation here… that could always be an option as well

    but the truth of the matter is that anyone is better in the bullpen than Masa, and that anyone is better in the rotation than Sowers

  • http://waitingfornextyear.com Scott

    “the Masa Kobayashi experience”

    Its like if the Jimi Hendrix Experience kicked you square in the balls every fourth night…

  • Harv 21

    @3: lol.
    Maybe he’ll get on his knees on the airplane tarmac, douse his mitt in lighter fluid and watch it burn before he gets on the plane out of here.

  • Boomhauer

    Why not just move Laffey back to the rotation?

  • http://waitingfornextyear.com Craig

    Now I wish we really had the hot dog eating phenom instead of this “relief” pitcher…

  • Mark

    @3, 4 and 6 – Very funny guys. Rare form! It will be a pleasure to see him go.

  • Alex

    A shoutout on mlbtraderumors.com for WFNY … now my mind has been blown

  • The Other Tim

    …before he gets on the BUS out of here…

  • WahooDroo

    The front office is to blame on the “Kobayashi Experience.” Did anyone wonder how it was the Indians outbid anyone else to get a player from overseas? Actually I would be skeptical of nearly any player (that does not come up through the Indians farm or via trade) that they manage to get in a bidding war…e.g. Michaels, Dellucci, we’ll see how Wood fairs over this season and next. I do hope the best for him.

    The 1-year low-risk signings have worked for the Tribe though…Juan Gonzalez, Kevin Millwood, and now possibly Carl Pavano.

  • Harv 21

    @ 9: I just assumed he will be leaving for Kyoto, not Columbus.

  • http://waitingfornextyear.com Denny

    Great news – he’s from the NL, so maybe he can hit too!

  • Hermie13

    Don’t completely rule out Ohka at AAA or Laffey moving back to the pen.

    And if it’s Jackson or Laffey, Kobayashi’s spot could be saved for a few more weeks. No 40-man spot will need to be created and they could wait til it’s needed for Jake Westbrook next month (not saying I’m opposed to cutting Kobayashi though)….

  • BisonDeleSightings

    WahooDroo–don’t forget, the Indians nearly outbid the Devil Rays (before they were good) for Akinori Iwamura and he turned out to be solid.

  • WahooDroo

    BisonDeleSightings – that also seems typical of the Indians, always coming up just short in the bidding war for a player that turns out great. being a mid-market club I guess their hands are tied, but you gotta get tired of the same song and dance. it’s always nice to hear that your club was a close 2nd in landing a prime time player. that should keep fans on the edge of their seats.