CLEVELAND (AP) — Michael Bourn hopes his time out of the lineup is a short one.
Bourn, the Indians’ center fielder and leadoff hitter, is sidelined again by a hamstring injury that has lingered for several months. He had to leave Saturday’s game against the Chicago White Sox when the hamstring tightened up while he was running to first on a bunt hit in the fourth inning.
Bourn had surgery on his hamstring in October. He re-injured it in spring training, forcing him to begin the season on the disabled list before being activated on April 15.
Nyjer Morgan, who began the season as Bourn’s replacement, was recalled from Triple-A Columbus, and is playing center and batting leadoff Sunday.
Bourn, who missed the season’s first 15 games, said he hopes to play again in a few days. He’s optimistic he won’t need a return trip to the DL.
“I don’t think it is, but I can’t tell you for sure,” he said.
Indians manager Terry Francona said the team’s training staff told him there’s a chance Bourn will be able to play Monday.
“That might be a little ambitious, but if they’re saying that, it’s a very good sign,” Francona said.
Francona understands the concern that Bourn’s hamstring issue won’t go away.
“He’s actually been running pretty well,” Francona said. “I don’t see him favoring it. I see him in the outfield going all out and not holding back, but he did feel it (Saturday). I’m glad he was smart enough to say something. I don’t know. Hopefully this is something he works through.”
Bourn is batting .266 with six runs, two stolen bases and four RBIs in 15 games.
Morgan batted .348 with three steals, four runs and four RBIs in nine games. He was sent down when Bourn came off the DL.
Designated hitter Jason Giambi also left Saturday’s game with a cramp in his right calf and wasn’t in Sunday’s lineup.
Cleveland’s injury list gets longer by the day. The Indians placed All-Star second baseman Jason Kipnis on the 15-day DL with a strained right oblique Friday. He’s expected to miss three to five weeks.
The Indians optioned left-hander Nick Hagadone to Columbus to make room for Morgan. Another roster move must be made by Tuesday when right-hander Josh Tomlin is called up to start against Minnesota.