Yandy's early numbers not concerning Tribe

Yandy's early numbers not concerning Tribe

CLEVELAND -- Francisco Lindor knows what Indians rookie Yandy Diaz is going through offensively. When Lindor was getting his first taste of the big leagues two years ago, the shortstop was hitting the ball hard, but running into a lot of tough luck.

Heading into Wednesday's game, Diaz had posted an average exit velocity of 94.6 mph on balls in play, ranking fifth-best in the Majors among players with at least 20 results, per Statcast™. Through seven games, though, the third baseman was sporting a .222 batting average with a .509 OPS.

"His at-bats have been really good, for the most part," Indians manager Terry Francona said. "Normally, when you use the whole field, you get rewarded. That hasn't necessarily happened with him yet. But, if he keeps swinging like he is, you'll see some numbers get better."

After being called up in 2015, Lindor hit .223 with a .568 OPS in 111 plate appearances before the All-Star break. The shortstop said he began to get caught up in trying to swing like the more veteran players on the team. When he went back to just being himself at the plate, he relaxed and saw the results follow.

Lindor has given the same advance to Diaz.

"We let him know that he doesn't have to be like me," Lindor said. "He does't have to be like [Tyler Naquin], [Michael Brantley], [Jason Kipnis], [Jose Ramirez]. He doesn't have to be like none of us. He's a very good hitter. He made the team hitting, and he's going to hit. He's got to continue to be himself and not try to be like anybody else. Just keep on swinging it."

Chisenhall due back Thursday

Francona said Wednesday that right fielder Lonnie Chisenhall (right shoulder) will likely be activated from the 10-day disabled list prior to Thursday's game against the White Sox. Chisenhall is scheduled to play one final Minor League rehab game with Double-A Akron on Wednesday before being re-evaluated by the team.

"He's felt pretty good," Francona said. "We'll certainly want to see him get through the game, but I think all things are leading toward him being activated."

Worth noting

• With no outs and runners on first and second in the eighth inning Tuesday night, Lindor used a sacrifice bunt to move the runners up. The rally ended with Edwin Encarnacion grounding into a double play. The decision to bunt came from Francona.

"I gave it to him, and I was wrestling with it," Francona said. "You don't want to take the bat out of his hand very often. That just seemed to me like a situation where it was so hard for us to score. Now, maybe if we let him hit, maybe we would've scored quicker. But, nobody has a crystal ball. You do what you think is right."

Jordan Bastian has covered the Indians for MLB.com since 2011, and previously covered the Blue Jays from 2006-10. Read his blog, Major League Bastian, follow him on Twitter @MLBastian and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.