NEW YORK -- The Indians reached a point where a change was needed in their rotation. With first place in the American League Central on the line, Cleveland could ill afford to carry on with the prolonged struggles of right-hander Jeanmar Gomez.
Prior to Monday's game against the Yankees, the Indians optioned Gomez to Triple-A Columbus and recalled left-hander Scott Barnes from Triple-A to give the bullpen an extra arm for a few days. Come Thursday, Columbus righty Zach McAllister is expected to replace Gomez in the Tribe's starting staff.
"We're expecting to recall McAllister to start in [Gomez's] spot," Acta said on Monday. "This is not a one-and-done type of thing. When Zach came up earlier, he threw the ball well for us."
McAllister, 24, went 1-1 with a 3.96 ERA in four starts for Cleveland earlier this season. The right-hander struck out 22 and walked six in the 25 innings he logged for the Tribe. In 11 starts for Columbus, McAllister has gone 5-2 with a 2.98 ERA, 52 strikeouts and 19 walks over 63 1/3 innings.
Gomez, who earned a spot on the starting staff with a stellar showing this spring, endured a stretch of rough outings of late. Over his past six starts for Cleveland, the 24-year-old right-hander went 1-5 with a 7.92 ERA, striking out 12 and walking 13 with 42 hits allowed over 30 2/3 innings.
During that span, Gomez saw his ERA climb to 5.18 from 3.19, and his record dropped to 4-7 through 14 appearances.
"It's about consistency throughout the game and throughout outings every five days," Acta said. "[Gomez needs to work on] staying aggressive with his fastball and pitching ahead in the count, and then getting back to being more consistent with his delivery from the stretch. He ran into a lot of trouble with that, not being able to stay back and leaving pitches up in the zone."
Barnes returns to the Indians after a brief tour with the club earlier this season. In four big league appearances, the 24-year-old lefty allowed five runs in 4 1/3 innings, but he has shown promise as a reliever in the Minors. In 11 relief appearances for Columbus, Barnes posted a 2.35 ERA with 18 strikeouts in 15 innings.
Overall, Barnes posted a 3.73 ERA in 14 games (three starts) for the Clippers. Over 31 1/3 innings, the he piled up 35 strikeouts against 15 walks with a .188 opponents' batting average.