CLEVELAND — Bradley Zimmer was taking an ice bath after a minor league game when he got word his manager wanted to see him.
With no time to dry off Monday night, the top prospect in the Cleveland Indians’ organization threw on some workout clothes and went to see Chris Tremie, the manager at Triple-A Columbus.
The news was unexpected. The 24-year-old would be joining the defending AL champions.
“Honestly it’s hard to put into words what that moment was,” he said. “It’s something I’ll never forget.”
Zimmer called his parents, who traveled in from California to watch his major league debut against Tampa Bay on Tuesday night. The Indians’ first-round draft pick in 2014 batted ninth and played center field.
Zimmer also called his brother, Kyle, who is pitching at Triple-A Omaha. Kyle Zimmer was the Kansas City Royals’ No. 1 pick in 2012.
Trying to get some rest proved to be Zimmer’s biggest challenge before the two-hour drive to Cleveland on Tuesday morning.
“It was tough at first because it was so exciting,” he said. “Once I settled in and packed, I was able to get some sleep. I’m treating it like another day. I was supposed to be in the lineup at Columbus and instead I’m in Cleveland.”
Zimmer was hitting .294 with five home runs and 14 RBIs in 33 games with Columbus.
The Indians have been dealing with several injuries this month. Right-hander Carlos Carrasco was removed from Monday’s game because of a strained left pectoral muscle and will have his next start pushed back to May 23 in Cincinnati.
Outfielder Abraham Almonte was put on the 10-day disabled list with a strained right biceps. Almonte injured his arm during an at-bat last week. He started in right field Monday but was removed in the fifth inning. Almonte is batting .221 with one homer and six RBIs in 33 games.
Right-hander Corey Kluber (strained lower back) and outfielders Austin Jackson (sprained left toe) and Brandon Guyer (sprained left wrist) are also on the 10-day DL.