July 1, 2016

Mostly clear

Indians notes: Smith involved in Put-in-Bay incident

CLEVELAND — It’s been a rough weekend for the “Bullpen Mafia.”

While closer Chris Perez was drawing fire for his inflammatory comments concerning Indians fans, another member of the relief corps — right-hander Joe Smith — was also embroiled in controversy.

According to a police report, Smith was involved in an altercation at the Roundhouse Bar in Put-in-Bay early Sunday morning. No arrests were made nor charges filed, but according to the police report, Smith was handcuffed at one point.

Smith disputed a story on a local television website as well as the report from Put-in-Bay police.

“All I’m going to say is there was a story written about an inaccurate and false report that was filed,” said Smith, who admitted to being in Put-in-Bay. “Other than that, I’ve got no other comments.”

According to the police report, Smith was with Fox 8 sports reporter and Vermilion High graduate Allie LaForce, who is identified as Smith’s girlfriend. Smith was asked if he was dating LaForce.

“That’s my personal life. I don’t think you need to know any of that,” Smith said.

According to the report, LaForce’s mother asked an officer if he accepted gratuity.


Wounded Wahoos

Third baseman Jack Hannahan (lower back) went through pre-game activities prior to the series finale with Detroit but was out of the lineup for the eighth straight game.

Manager Manny Acta said Hannahan was available in an emergency, signaling that the Indians were not preparing to place him on the disabled list.

“If we ask Jack to get out there, hell get out there,” Acta said.

(bullet) Josh Tomlin (right wrist) threw his first bullpen session and said he felt great afterward. The right-hander is expected to throw a simulated game over the next few days, but according to Acta, will not require a minor league rehab assignment before rejoining the rotation.

“We don’t think he’s been out long enough to affect him,” Acta said.

(bullet) Grady Sizemore (lower back surgery) took batting practice prior to the game. A minor league rehab assignment is the next step for Sizemore, who has yet to run the bases, but is eligible to leave the disabled list June 3.


Central showdown

Defending champion Detroit Tigers entered Tuesday in third place in the Central Division, but owning a 10-game winning streak against the Indians dating back to last season and outscoring them 76-31 over that span.

“It’s still a measuring stick,” Perez said. “I think they have the most talent in the division without a doubt. They haven’t started playing ball yet, but you know they’re going to.

“We know how we played with them last year, too. I don’t want to say they have the psychological edge, but they’re feeling good coming in here, beating us 10 in a row. So, yeah, this is a great measuring stick for us. They’re basically the reason we didn’t get into the playoffs last year.”


Minor detail

Acta was in attendance for Class A Lake County’s 2-1 victory over Lansing on Monday, getting a look at Captains shortstop Francisco Lindor, the eighth overall pick in last year’s draft and Cleveland’s top prospect.

“He’s going to be OK,” Acta said with a wry smile. “He’s a very good player. He stands out a little bit despite just being just out of high school.

“He’s got great body language and a lot of confidence in himself. You can see it. Regardless of the situation he’s in, he looks like he’s under control. He’s going to be a good one.”

Lindor, 18, entered Tuesday batting .302 with four homers, 19 RBIs and 11 stolen bases 39 games.


Roundin’ third

Shin-Soo Choo entered Tuesday batting .379 (11-for-29) with three doubles, one homer, three RBIs and four runs in seven games since being moved to the leadoff spot. … Tonight, 7:05, STO/WTAM 1100-AM. McAllister (1-1, 4.34) vs. Fister (0-2, 1.59).


Contact Chris Assenheimer at 329-7136 or cassenheimer@chroniclet.com. Fan him on Facebook and follow him on Twitter.