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Indians Lose Lofton, Cruz to Injury

August 7, 1999

CLEVELAND (AP) _ Just what the Indians didn’t need _ another major injury.

Cleveland placed two more players on its lengthy disabled list Saturday, adding outfielders Kenny Lofton and Jacob Cruz, who may have been lost for the season after tearing a thumb ligament Friday night.

Lofton hasn’t played since injuring his hamstring when he tried to stretch a single into a double in the eighth inning of a 14-5 win over the Detroit Tigers July 27. He was placed on the 15-day DL retroactive to July 28, and could be eligible to come off next Wednesday.

Cruz injured his thumb Friday night, also trying to stretch a single into a double in Cleveland’s 4-2 loss at Tampa Bay.

Cruz, a rookie, flew back to Cleveland late Friday night and was undergoing an MRI to determine whether he needs surgery, team spokesman Bart Swain said.

Dave Roberts and Jolbert Cabrera were promoted from Triple-A Buffalo and will platoon in center field until Lofton can return.

The Indians now have seven players on the disabled list, including four regulars _ third baseman Travis Fryman, catcher Sandy Alomar, outfielder/DH Wil Cordero and Lofton. No. 5 starter Dwight Gooden is also on the DL.

In all, Cleveland has had 13 players on the DL this season yet still leads the AL Central by 13 1/2 games.

``I’ve never seen anything like this,″ said Cleveland general manager John Hart. ``Now even our shock troops are getting hurt before they get out of the trenches.″

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