The Indians and left-hander Craig Breslow have agreed to a minor league contract, reports WEEI.com’s Rob Bradford (Twitter link). Breslow was released by the Twins shortly before the non-waiver trade deadline after being designated for assignment.
Breslow, 37 next week, put extensive work into revamping his mechanics this offseason and dropping to a more sidearm angle from the left side, but the results unfortunately didn’t line up with his efforts. Through 31 innings with Minnesota, Breslow averaged 5.2 K/9 against 3.5 BB/9 with a 40.4 percent ground-ball rate en route to a 5.23 ERA. His new approach, however, did sufficiently stymie left-handed batters at the plate. When left-handed bats squared off against Breslow, the result was a brutal .180/.279/.257 batting line, albeit in a fairly small sample of 44 plate appearances.
The Indians just placed Andrew Miller on the 10-day disabled list, leaving the inexperienced Tyler Olson as their only southpaw option in the bullpen. Perhaps, given Cleveland’s impressive depth when it comes to right-handed relievers, the Indians will be able to use Breslow in more of a specialized capacity. Despite his dominance over lefties, Breslow was clobbered for a .344/.404/.573 batting line by righties. The Twins, though, generally lacking depth and quality in their relief corps, were forced to use Breslow against right-handed bats more often than they’d probably have preferred (99 PAs vs. righties).