Courtesy of Jordan Bastian / mlb.com
The Lonnie Chisenhall era has officially arrived.
On Monday, the Indians will summon former Pitt Community College star Lonnie Chisenhall -- Cleveland's top prospect and the 36th-best prospect in baseball entering 2011, according to MLB.com -- from Triple-A Columbus in hopes of breathing some life into the club's ailing offense. To clear room on the roster for the young third baseman, the Tribe designated for assignment veteran infielder Adam Everett, who confirmed the move.
The decision on Chisenhall comes one day after Cleveland suffered a three-game sweep at the hands of the reigning World Series champion Giants in San Francisco. Over the course of the series by the Bay, the Indians managed just four runs and finished a paltry 2-for-22 with runners in scoring position.
The Tribe is hoping Chisenhall can help correct that type of showing.
In 65 games for Columbus, Chisenhall hit .265 with seven home runs and 44 RBIs across 253 at-bats. Along the way, the left-handed-hitting third baseman posted a .352 on-base percentage and a .427 slugging percentage.
On Monday, Chisenhall was named the International League's Player of the Week after hitting .429 (9-for-21) with two home runs, 14 RBIs and an .801 slugging percentage in five games for the Clippers. He put up those numbers after being activated from the disabled list following a concussion.
Chisenhall enjoyed a torrid spring at the plate for the Indians but was never in serious consideration for a spot on the Opening Day roster. The regular third-base role went to Jack Hannahan, who has impressed with the glove but labored at the plate. Cleveland made it clear that Chisenhall still had defensive development to complete.
Cleveland has now summoned two of its top infield prospects in light of the Major League club's persistent offensive struggles. Earlier this month, the Tribe promoted Cord Phelps to assume Orlando Cabrera's role as the regular second baseman. Chisenhall, a first-round pick in the 2008 First-Year Player Draft, will likely see the bulk of the time at third.
Everett was signed over the offseason to a Minor League contract and made the Opening Day roster as a utility player. Mainly serving as a backup at shortstop and third, as well as working as a pinch-runner, Everett hit .217 with no home runs and one RBI in 34 games for Cleveland.
The Indians have 10 days to either trade or release Everett. The ballclub could also re-assign him to a Minor League affiliate, if he clears waivers.