CLEVELAND — Lonnie Chisenhall is seeking a second opinion on his chronic calf issues. The right fielder will meet with a specialist in lower body injuries in Washington.
Manager Terry Francona said the Indians’ medical staff had no problem with Chisenhall going elsewhere for assistance.
“Our guys kind of encouraged Lonnie to do it. He’s going to miss significant time and, if he gets another opinion that is more positive, we don’t see how it could hurt,” Francona said. “Getting more information is good. And I commend our medical people for feeling that way, because I don’t think everybody always does. It’s good that they do encourage guys to do that.”
Francona was asked if “significant time” meant a season-ending injury for Chisenhall, who missed nearly two months with a right calf strain shortly into the season and is currently on the disabled list with a left calf strain.
“I didn’t mean that, but significant time is significant time,” Francona said. “It’s more than a couple weeks.”
This is the second straight season the oft-injured Chisenhall has dealt with calf issues. Off to a promising start last year, he missed nearly the entire second half with a right calf strain.
“I think we’re trying to gather as much information as we can, because something’s going on there,” Francona said. “If he kept hurting the same one, but ... Is he predisposed? There’s a doctor — a gait doctor — kind of like the way a guy runs and they’re trying to take advantage of the down time to see if they can help him for the future.”
Chisenhall, 29, has spent time on the injured list in each of the past three seasons.
There is an opportunity in right field for Francisco Mejia, but the Indians are meeting some resistance from the highly touted prospect, who has been splitting time at catcher and the outfield at Triple-A Columbus.
“He really wants to be a catcher. I don’t disagree with that,” Francona said. “But, I think we’ve had moments where his heart isn’t in it as much as it could be. He still views himself as a catcher. And we’re trying to explain to him that, ‘Man, you may be a catcher next year, but you could be a starting right fielder (this year).’ So, we’re just not there, yet.”
The position change hasn’t affected Mejia at the plate. He started slowly, but hit .455 in June and had his season average up to .279 with seven home runs and 42 RBIs in 73 games through Friday.
He’s been selected to the Futures Game for the third consecutive season.
After a miserable start to the season, veteran right-hander Dan Otero has improved, lowering his ERA from 7.47 on May 15 to 5.51.
“He always almost throws the ball the same. He’s just down,” Francona said. “He’s going to give up base hits through the middle or on the ground, but he stays on the ground for the most part. And when he’s doing that, he’s fine. He’s always one pitch from a double play. His WHIP is really good. He sometimes just gives up hits.”
Edwin Encarnacion ran through a stop sign from third base coach Mike Sarbaugh to score the Indians’ first run in a 10-4 victory over the A’s on Friday night.
Encarnacion said he saw Sarbaugh indicating that he should stay at third. He just couldn’t.
“I was coming hot to the plate, so I can’t stop in that situation,” Encarnacion said. “I gotta keep going. Sorry, Sarby.”
Encarnacion’s 61 RBIs through Friday ranked third in the American League.
- Francisco Lindor entered Saturday leading the majors with 78 runs, accounting for the most by an Indians player through the first 86 games since Kenny Lofton and Roberto Alomar matched the total in 1999.
- With 24 home runs and 18 stolen bases, Jose Ramirez is one of only three major league players — the Angels’ Mike Trout and Minnesota’s Eddie Rosario — to lead their teams in both departments.