Lewis In Rotation; Pavano Pitches Well

Scott Lewis

Scott Lewis was named to the starting rotation in the morning and Carl Pavano pitched well in the afternoon for the Indians in a productive Wednesday. Manager Eric Wedge said Lewis earned the job as Cleveland optioned Aaron Laffey to Triple-A. Pavano then worked six strong innings and Andy Marte, Kelly Shoppach and Trevor Crowe all homered in an 8-4 exhibition win over the host San Diego Padres.

Lewis is on schedule to start the Indians' home opener April 11 against Toronto. Wedge named him the No. 4 starter and dropped Anthony Reyes to No. 5. The move was made primarily to put right-hander Reyes in the rotation between lefties Lewis and No. 1 starter Cliff Lee.

It also could give Reyes a break at times during the season when a fifth starter is not needed. Reyes was shut down with a sore elbow last year, but has been fine this spring.

Pavano was signed as a free agent after four years in New York, where he spent more time on the Yankees' disabled list than he did on the mound.

Against the Padres, the right-hander allowed two runs and seven hits over six innings, striking out two without a walk.

"I felt good, strong, but I have to thank my teammates for scoring runs and making plays behind me," Pavano said. "Their defense kept my pitch count down."

Pavano made 77 pitches, 53 for strikes, then went to the bullpen and threw 15 more.

Pavano said the toughest thing for him this spring has been to remain patient.

"I want it now, now, now," he said. "But you have to build on every outing. As long as you don't take a step backwards, it's good."

Pavano said a recent tip from pitching coach Carl Willis has helped.

"I was kind of getting frustrated with some things and he came to me and offered a suggestion that simplified things for me and gave me peace of mind," Pavano said. "That's a good pitching coach.

"I was rushing my delivery a bit. He got me to stay on my legs a little longer."

Pavano raved about three defensive plays by second baseman Asdrubal Cabrera.

"He supplied three outs," Pavano said. "I love it."

Wedge was happy with Pavano's outing.

"He threw well, moved his fastball around and mixed in his changeup," the manager said. "Then he found his slider.

"He came up in the zone that one inning, but was able to get it back down. It's good to see a guy make an adjustment like that."

Kerry Wood gave up three hits and two runs -- both unearned -- in one inning.

"He just didn't give in when we didn't play well behind him," Wedge said.

One player almost certain to start the year in the minors is third baseman Andy Marte. He already was dropped from the 25-man roster earlier in the spring and just hasn't shown much at bat or in the field -- despite delivering a two-run homer Wednesday against San Diego.

Watch Marte's homer:

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