Indians notebook from Aug. 2.
The Indians were to depart on their charter flight for Minneapolis as scheduled Thursday night after the team’s 5-0 afternoon victory over Texas at Jacobs Field.
The team was braced for a change in plans after Wednesday night’s collapse of the I-35W bridge near downtown Minneapolis, but team spokesman Bart Swain said the Twins never contacted the Indians to suggest a change of venue.
“Most of that came from the media,” Indians Manager Eric Wedge said. “None of that came from the Twins.”
Minnesota had postponed its scheduled game Thursday against Kansas City. The Minneapolis Star-Tribune reported team officials decided Thursday afternoon to play this weekend’s four-game series against the Indians as scheduled.
At least four people were killed and 79 injured when the bridge fell into the Mississippi River. Another 20 to 30 people are still missing.
“It’s one of those things, those disasters, that can take a toll on a city, a town, a lot of people,” Indians pitcher Jake Westbrook said. “I’m sure it’ll take time for them just to get used to believing it happened. It’ll be weird for the team as well.”
The Twins said they were not aware of any employees or members of the players’ families who were victims.
Many of the cars crossing the bridge at the time of the collapse could have been headed to the Minnesota-Kansas City game.
“I would imagine the city’s pretty shocked about it,” Cleveland third baseman Casey Blake said. “I’m not sure how it will affect the players or the crowd.”
Blake said the players were never asked to meet to approve a possible rescheduling or site change.
“It’s obviously a horrific scene there,” Wedge said. “Our thoughts and prayers are with everyone in Minneapolis and everybody involved there.”
Grady Sizemore, who turned 25 Thursday, was given a day off from playing center field. He started at designated hitter instead and was 2-for-3 with two RBIs and moved a runner along with a seventh-inning groundout. “Talk about a complete game," Wedge said. “Maybe he felt like he had to do more because he wasn’t playing center field today. Truthfully, I didn’t find out it was his birthday until halfway through the game.” Sizemore has played in 304 consecutive games.
A Day Off
DH Travis Hafner was given a day off Thursday. He is 6-for-43 (.140) since July 20.
Texas infielder Ramon Vazquez had 10 hits in nine games against the Indians this year. He had 14 hits for Cleveland during the entire 2006 season.
The Dotted Line
The Indians have signed their draft picks in round 40 (Dallas Cawiezell, RHP, Valparaiso), 48 (Walter Diaz, INF, South Florida) and 49 (Matt Willard, INF, Arkansas).
On the Farm
Triple-A Buffalo left-hander Jeremy Sowers allowed two runs (one earned) on four hits over 5 2/3 innings Wednesday during a 3-2 victory at Pawtucket. Sowers has a 0.91 combined ERA over his last three starts.
Reach Repository sports writer Andy Call at (330) 580-8346 or email@example.com.