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Indians place DH Jason Giambi on disabled list; CF Bourn still out with hamstring issue

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CLEVELAND - Jason Giambi is back on the disabled list. He could soon have familiar company.

The Indians placed Giambi on the 15-day DL with a strained right calf muscle on Monday, and the team may soon have to make a roster move with centre fielder Michael Bourn, who missed his second straight game with a tight hamstring — the same one he had surgically repaired in October.

Manager Terry Francona said the plan was for Bourn to "go hard" on the hamstring before the series opener against Minnesota.

"We've got to see how he feels and he's the one who has to tell us," Francona said. "It's his legs. We just want to make him understand that he's got to be honest and then we'll sit down with him and make decisions."

Bourn left Saturday night's game against the Chicago White Sox after beating out a bunt in the third inning. He had strained the hamstring during training camp and began the season on the DL, along with Giambi, who had a rib broken by a pitch while the club was in Arizona.

Bourn, who signed a four-year, $48 million contract with Cleveland last season, has played in 15 of Cleveland's 32 games.

Francona was asked if he's concerned the injury could linger all season.

"I hope not," he said. "It has crept up now a couple times. I think from talking to the trainers, the hope is that there's just some scar tissue in there and he's going to feel it sometimes. If that's all it is, we're good to go. That's the hope."

Bourn is batting .266 with two steals and has been caught three times.

Giambi was removed Saturday after grounding into a double play in the fourth. The 43-year-old, who came up with several big hits during his first season with Cleveland, is 0 for 10. He's struck out twice and only reached base when he was hit by a pitch.

The Indians' roster is currently in flux.

Catcher Yan Gomes returned early from the paternity list following the birth of his daughter, Brooklyn. With Gomes back, the Indians could have sent George Kottaras back to Triple-A Columbus, a day after he became the first player in franchise history to homer in his first two plate appearances.

But Kottaras will be around at least 24 more hours, when the club recalls Josh Tomlin from Columbus to start Tuesday's game against the Twins.

Francona said Giambi understood the necessity of going on the DL.

"The reason that I say what I say about him is because he continues to amaze me by his willingness to see past himself, to see the team, which amazes me," Francona said of Giambi. "When you leave the room after talking with 'G,' even after you put him on the DL, you just feel like a better person."

Kottaras is likely to be sent down on Tuesday, but he's made quite an impression in his short stay after batting just .080 (2 of 25) with the Clippers.

Francona briefly managed Kottaras in Boston.

"We'd love to keep him, but we're going to have to walk through it daily for a while to see what fits and how to make it fit," Francona said. "We can only have 25 (players)."

He's only been around Kottaras for a short time, but Francona is a big fan.

"I love George," he said. "He's hard not to like. He shows up and has a great attitude. He grew up playing softball and he has that swing. I betcha he can hit a softball. He's a great teammate. There's reasons why guys like that find their ways back to the big leagues."

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