LOS ANGELES (AP)Cleveland third baseman Jose Ramirez is out of the lineup for Saturday’s game against the Los Angeles Dodgers due to right thumb soreness. It is the first game he has missed this season.
Manager Terry Francona said Ramirez jammed the thumb during a swing about 10 days ago and then aggravated it during the Guardians’ recent series in Colorado. Ramirez will have it checked out again Sunday before Cleveland travels to Minnesota to begin a three-game series on Tuesday.
Ramirez – who has an eight-game hitting streak – leads the American League with 62 RBIs and is tied with Boston’s Rafael Devers with 40 extra-base hits. Ramirez’s .305 batting average is eighth in the AL.
The Guardians have won a season-high five straight and 14 of 17 to close within one game of Minnesota for the AL Central lead. After wrapping up the Dodgers’ series, eight of Cleveland’s next 11 games are against the Twins.
”When he’s not in there our lineup obviously doesn’t look as good. But then when you think `well, if we played him too much …’ So we’re going to stay away from him tonight,” Francona said.
Ernie Clement was at third base in Ramirez’s absence.
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