DETROIT -- The way Indians manager Manny Acta sees it, shortstop Asdrubal Cabrera has done enough this season. That is why Acta is planning on giving Cabrera the final two games off.
"Let's see the young kids," Acta said on Tuesday. "Cabrera's probably not going to play anymore. Let me see Jason Donald. I know what Cabrera can do. Let's see some of those young kids."
Cabrera, who started for the American League All-Star team this summer, has hit .274 with 25 home runs, 32 doubles, 86 runs scored and 92 RBIs through 150 games. He was arguably the team's best player all season, and the shortstop stayed in the lineup through a variety of minor health woes.
The Tribe knows Cabrera will be back at shortstop come 2012. Donald, on the other hand, has an undefined role heading into the offseason. He began this year as a candidate for the starting job at third base, but a left hand injury sent him to the disabled list to start the season.
In his time back with the Indians this year, Donald bounced between second base, shortstop and third. With youngsters Jason Kipnis (second base) and Lonnie Chisenhall (third base) in the plans for next year, Donald's versatility figures to come in handy.
"We're very happy with the progress he has made adjusting to all those different spots," Acta said. "I see him being a big part of our infield. Depending on what we do during the offseason, what decisions we make, he could end up being a very valuable utility infielder for us."
Entering Tuesday, Donald was hitting .318 with one home run, six doubles and six RBIs in 38 games.
Sizemore to have right knee examined Monday
DETROIT -- The Indians are experiencing an unfortunate case of deja vu with Grady Sizemore. The same doctor who surgically repaired Sizemore's left knee last year is now scheduled to examine the center fielder's right knee.
Sizemore is currently scheduled to travel to Vail, Colo., where he will meet with specialist Dr. Richard Steadman on Monday. Cleveland is hoping that surgery is not required for Sizemore's ailing right knee, but it has yet to be ruled out.
"There's no real thought on that yet," Indians head athletic trainer Lonnie Soloff said on Tuesday. "I think we're going out there just to get another opinion on his knee -- what course of action puts Grady in the best possible position to play and perform next year."
Sizemore returned from the disabled list on Sept. 5 -- his third stint on the DL this year -- and hit only .139 (5-for-36) in 10 games before being shut down for the season. The center fielder initially injured his right knee, while also suffering a sports hernia, in May. He then aggravated the knee injury on July 17.
Following the second setback, Sizemore underwent surgery to repair the sports hernia and then used the subsequent recovery time to rest his injured knee. The issue -- described as a bone bruise by Soloff -- persisted, leading the Indians to seek Steadman's opinion.
Last June, Steadman performed microfracture surgery on Sizemore's left knee, and the center fielder needed 10 months to recover before rejoining the Indians' lineup in mid-April this year. In 71 injury-marred games for the Tribe this season, Sizemore hit .224 with 10 homers and 32 RBIs.
It is unknown at this point if Sizemore is heading down the same road as last year.
"I would certainly hope [not]," Soloff said. "I think that we're going into it just with the idea to get [Steadman's] thoughts, his impressions on the condition of his knee."
This winter, the Indians have the ability to exercise or decline a club option worth $8.5 million that is included in Sizemore's contract for the 2012 season. If the Tribe opts against picking up the option, there is a $500,000 buyout that would then allow Sizemore to become eligible for free agency.
"We're going out there just with Grady's best interest in mind," Soloff said, "both short term and long term. We're open to [Steadman's] assessment and his recommendation."
Quote to note
"I'd rather not see Konerko than [Ozzie] Guillen. I think Konerko makes more impact on the game than Guillen." -- Indians manager Manny Acta, joking about White Sox first baseman Paul Konerko, who has hit .275 with 43 homers and 156 RBIs in his career against Cleveland
Indians head athletic trainer Lonnie Soloff said no decision has been made about whether designated hitter Travis Hafner will need offseason surgery on his right foot, which has been an issue since late April. "We're in the process of evaluating that now," Soloff said. "But I think we'd all agree that he's running pretty well right now. It's been very encouraging."
Right fielder Shin-Soo Choo (strained left oblique) is still in Cleveland working through a rehab program. Soloff said Choo is scheduled to head back to his home in Arizona late this week or early next week to continue his rehab.
Indians left fielder Michael Brantley, who is coming off right wrist surgery, will be able to treat this winter like a normal offseason. Brantley is nearing the end of his rehab program and should be fully recovered in time for Spring Training. "He's feeling good," said Soloff. "His motion is good and his strength is good."
Not once this season did a runner attempt to steal a base against Indians starter Josh Tomlin. According to the Elias Sports Bureau, it marks the first time since 1969 that a pitcher qualified for the ERA title and went an entire season without having at least one runner try to steal a base with him on the hill.