Indians’ Bieber says increased shoulder pain stopped him
Published 11:39 pm Tuesday, June 15, 2021
CLEVELAND (AP) — Indians ace Shane Bieber had been bothered by irritation in his right shoulder for most of the season. But when the pain hit a different area of his upper arm, the reigning AL Cy Young Award winner knew it was time to stop.
“It’s something we’ve been trying to manage for a while, but when my discomfort started to move in my last start, that’s generally not a good sign,” Bieber said Tuesday.
“It made things a little bit dangerous, a little bit sketchy, so we’re giving the shoulder a little break,” he said.
Bieber, who is 7-4 with a 3.28 ERA in 14 starts, was put on the 10-day injured list Monday with a strained muscle. He won’t be permitted to throw a baseball for at least two weeks.
It was his first career stint on the inured list.
One day earlier, the 26-year-old righty was tagged for a season-high five runs in 5 2/3 innings during a 6-2 loss to Seattle. He struck out eight, but his curveball command was shaky and his fastball slower than usual.
“Obviously, this is super unfortunate timing for this to happen, so I’m frustrated,” Bieber said. “But it’s not an arm fatigue thing, I definitely think it’s execution based. I’ve just got to come out better on the other side.”
There was no pitcher better than Bieber last season, when he became the 13th player to lead the majors in victories, ERA and strikeouts. He went 8-1 with a 1.63 ERA and 122 strikeouts over 77 1/3 innings in the abbreviated campaign.
Bieber said he takes pride in his durability and is unhappy that he will miss his turn in the rotation for the initial time since turning pro in 2016.
“I guess I have two weeks off, so I’ll spend a lot of time in the weight room and clubhouse,” he said. “It’s only one limb, so I can do everything else, and the one nice thing is I can watch a lot of baseball from different perspectives.”