The American League champion Cleveland Indians will open defense of their title without standout second baseman Jason Kipnis.
Kipnis is expected to be placed on the 15-day disabled list prior to the season opener after receiving a second opinion on his sore right shoulder over the weekend. The consensus between Dr. Keith Meister and Indians’ medical staff is that Kipnis should rest for a week, then begin light throwing and hitting, the Cleveland Plain Dealer reported.
If he does not suffer any setbacks, Kipnis will need four to five weeks to recuperate and build enough strength back in the joint.
Last season, Kipnis hit .275 with 23 homers, 82 RBI and 15 stolen bases while playing in 156 games.
The Indians also announced on Sunday, that right-handed pitcher Cody Anderson will miss the entire season.
Anderson, 26, has a “UCL sprain along with a mild flexor strain” according to the Indians’ media release. He will have elbow reconstruction surgery and be out for the entire season.
Anderson was in the Tribe starting rotation at the beginning of last season, but had arm troubles throughout most of the campaign. He went 2-5 with a 6.68 ERA and had “impingement” elbow surgery after the 2016 season.