Hafner has strained tendon on right foot, wearing protective boot
Travis Hafner's strained tendon in his right foot has kept him from Tribe lineup
Manager Manny Acta said Hafner, who is hitting .342, could play if needed
Indians trainer Lonnie Soloff said Saturday that the veteran designated hitter will wear a protective walking boot when not in uniform. The Indians have not ruled out a trip to the disabled list for Hafner, though Soloff is hopeful the injury clears up with rest.
"With thoughtful treatment he should be in a good spot sooner than later," Soloff said
Hafner got hurt sliding into home plate to score on Wednesday night. He took batting practice the next day and was in the starting lineup, but scratched with what the team announced as inflammation in his right ankle.
A visit to Dr. Brian Donley at Cleveland Clinic along with an MRI exam showed the injury was to a tendon at the bottom of Hafner's foot.
"He will be reexamined on Monday to determine his ability to start games," Soloff said.
Manager Manny Acta said Hafner, hitting .342 with four homers in 21 games, could play if needed.
"He's available off the bench," Acta said. "That's all I can say. Be aware, Big Pronk can come out of there anytime. All he has to do is take off his boot. He can't go to the plate with that boot, can he? That would be an awful sight."
An 11-game home winning streak and AL-best record of 17-8 entering play against AL Central rival Detroit had Acta in a light-hearted mood.
Until this setback, Hafner had been healthier than at any time since 2007. Once one of the AL's most feared sluggers, the 33-year-old spent time on the DL each of the past three seasons with a weak right shoulder.
Hafner went from hitting .307 with 42 homers and 117 RBIs in 2006 to playing only 57 games and batting .197 with five homers and 24 RBIs in 2008.
Soloff said right-hander Mitch Talbot, on the DL with a strained right elbow, threw a 30-pitch bullpen session using only fastballs and changeups and will do it again Tuesday in Oakland.
Right-hander Carlos Carrasco, out with an inflamed right elbow, played catch from 75 feet, is scheduled to throw a bullpen session Monday, and may go on a rehab assignment next week.
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