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Indians Cut Matsuzaka and Capps as Opening Day Nears

Veteran pitchers could be reassigned to Triple-A if they decide to stay with the organization


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With Opening Day now just two weeks away, the Cleveland Indians needed to make some tough roster decisions, and on Monday they announced that veteran pitchers Daisuke Matsuzaka and Matt Capps will not be a part of their roster when the season begins on April 2 nd. Matsuzaka was competing for the lone open spot in the Indians’ starting rotation, and Capps was trying to earn a spot in their bullpen.

Matsuzaka appeared to have a shot at making the ball club, but his progress was slowed last week when he injured his calf. He must now decide whether to accept a minor league assignment to Columbus, or walk away and try to make it with another club. If Matsuzaka should choose to accept an assignment to Triple-A, he will be eligible for a $100,000 bonus and should he still remain with the Clippers on June 1 st, he has on out clause built into his current deal.

Capps also received an offer to be reassigned to Columbus under the same terms, but he has not shown a lot of interest in a minor league assignment and could walk away to join another club to make a run at their roster. The Indians would like both men to stay to provide them with experienced depth in case they need help down the road. Depending on who wins the final rotation spot, the Indians could have as many as five experienced pitchers to call upon in Columbus if they run into injuries or if one of their starters have a rough go in their first month of action.

The Indians also announced that catchers Omir Santos and Brian Jeroloman, outfielder Matt Carson and Luis Hernandez will not be breaking camp with the ball club, and they assigned shortstop Juan Diaz to Triple-A Columbus while giving pitchers Preston Guilmet, Matt Langwell and Joe Martinez and outfielder Ced Hunter minor league assignments as well.



By Robert Gonzalez
Cleveland Indians Correspondent