Cleveland Indians manager Terry Francona told reporters, including Paul Hoynes of The Plain Dealer, that outfielder Michael Brantley will return to the lineup Sunday for the team's exhibition contest against the Texas Rangers.
Brantley has been sidelined since the end of February after he was spiked on the left forearm by Oakland Athletics third baseman Josh Donaldson during a spring training game. The injury was significant enough to warrant 15 stitches - five internal and 10 external.
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Following the injury, Francona told reporters that he expected to be without his projected left fielder for 10 days. Brantley's Sunday return will be closer to two weeks, but Cleveland had little incentive to rush him back considering it's still only the beginning of March.
Prior to sustaining his injury, Brantley was off to a great starting this spring for the Indians. In three games he collected five hits, including four doubles, in six plate appearances.
Brantley was the Indians' regular center fielder last season, but he'll move over to a corner spot with Michael Bourn now in the fold. The 25-year-old hit .288/.348/.402 with 37 doubles and six home runs over 609 plate appearances last season and owns a career batting line of .274/.329/.376.