CLEVELAND (AP) - Cleveland Indians manager Manny Acta has spent all season juggling an injury-riddled roster.
He's got yet another problem to handle.
All-Star shortstop Asdrubal Cabrera, who has carried Cleveland for long stretches, sprained his right ankle making a throw in the third inning of Tuesday night's 9-2 loss to the New York Yankees, a blowout that may have lasting repercussions if Cabrera misses any significant time.
Acta described Cabrera's injury as ``mild,' but doesn't know how long he'll be without his best player.
``We'll see how he shows up (Wednesday),' Acta said. ``It's nothing serious. He tried to grind through it. You could see he was favoring the other leg and he was hurting. We appreciate him trying to stay in there, but we have to think long term here.'
In the third, Cabrera backhanded Francisco Cervelli's grounder in the hole before making the jumping throw to second and landing awkwardly. He was checked by trainer Lonnie Soloff and Acta but remained in the game. However, Acta pulled him for pinch-hitter Lonnie Chisenhall in the fourth.
Cleveland has managed to hang onto first place in the AL Central despite a rash of injuries. Grady Sizemore, Travis Hafner, Shin-Soo Choo and ace Fausto Carmona top the list.
CC Sabathia took out any anger for being snubbed as an All-Star by striking out 11 in seven shutout innings, Curtis Granderson homered twice and Derek Jeter moved closer to 3,000 career hits for the Yankees.
Jeter went 2 for 6 and has 2,996 hits, leaving him four shy of becoming the 28th major leaguer - and first Yankee - to reach 3,000. The path there hasn't been easy.
The 37-year-old's play has been scrutinized like never before, and the 12-time All-Star recently missed three weeks with a calf injury.
``I haven't been talking about this too much,' Jeter said, surrounded by two dozen reporters and an HBO camera crew chronicling his bumpy path to 3,000. ``There's been other things in the media, so it's kind of hard to enjoy it when there's a lot of negativity that's out there.
``Hopefully I'm going to be able to enjoy it these next few days.'
Jeter doesn't know yet if he'll play in Wednesday's series finale. Yankees manager Joe Girardi wants to give Jeter, who has played four straight days, some rest and might sit his captain before the team returns to New York to open a four-game series against Tampa Bay on Thursday.
Girardi plans to ``sleep on it' before announcing his plans.
``I want to talk to him, think about it and I'll go from there,' said Girardi, who seemed to be leaning toward sitting Jeter on Wednesday.
Girardi said he has not gotten any pressure to keep Jeter out until the team gets to New York, so he can get his 3,000th hit at Yankee Stadium.
``No one has ever said a word to me about where he should do it,' Girardi said.
The Yankees had eight players with at least two hits.
Sabathia (12-4) allowed five hits, walked two and overpowered the team that drafted him in 1998 and traded him 10 years later. Despite leading the league in wins and going 9-1 in his last 10 starts, Sabathia was left off the AL roster for the July 12 All-Star game in Phoenix.
The Indians barely had a chance against Sabathia.
``We don't match very good with him.' Acta said. ``The majority of our hitters, especially the main guys, hit from the left side and he's very tough against lefties. Sabathia was very tough, he pitched in the mid-90s the whole night with a very good slider.'
Granderson hit a two-run homer in the second and solo shot in the fourth off Carlos Carrasco (8-5), who lasted just four innings.
Sabathia hasn't publicly complained about his All-Star omission, but the left-hander has to wonder what else he has to do to make the squad. He dominated the Indians, who put two runners on to start the fifth before Sabathia struck out the side on 10 pitches.
He also struck out three in the fourth and seventh, and has 33 Ks in his last 22 2-3 innings.
``I wasn't thinking about the All-Star game, not at all,' Sabathia said. ``I just wanted to help my team win. That's my job.'
Sabathia saved New York's bullpen, which was without closer Mariano Rivera. He missed his second straight game because of a sore triceps muscle and hopes to be back for the series finale. Girardi said he was encouraged that Rivera said his arm felt better.
``If he had gotten worse, I would have been concerned,' he said.
Jeter's two-run double highlighted the Yankees' five-run second off Carrasco, who nearly worked his way out of the big inning without giving up anything.
New York loaded the bases with one out before Carrasco got Cervelli to hit a tailor-made, inning-ending double play ball to shortstop. Cabrera flipped it to second for the force, but second baseman Cord Phelps threw a one-hopper that first baseman Carlos Santana couldn't handle.
One run scored on the play, and instead of being in the dugout, Carrasco had to face Jeter, who made it 3-0 by lacing a two-run double into the gap in left-center.
``It's a double play ball,' Acta said. ``We should turn it. We're all human and make mistakes, but we have to turn that one. No excuses. I'm sure he turns that nine out of 10 times, but he didn't do it today and it ended up hurting us.'
Carrasco shrugged at the pivotal play.
``I can't control that,' Carrasco said. ``I can just control pitching. It cost me a five-run inning.'
NOTES: The Indians are expected to activate 1B Matt LaPorta from the DL Wednesday. He's been out since June 18 with a sprained right ankle. ... Zach McAllister, 8-3 at Triple-A Columbus, will start Thursday in Carmona's spot. ... The Indians dropped to 13-11 against the AL East. ... Indians RHP Joe Smith pitched one scoreless inning. He hasn't allowed a run in 22 appearances since May 12, the third-longest stint by a Cleveland pitcher since 1919.
The Associated Press News Service
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