CLEVELAND (AP) — Danny Salazar is headed back to the minors but his return ticket to the major leagues might come soon.
The Cleveland Indians sent the rookie right-hander to Triple-A Columbus one day after his dazzling debut. The 23-year-old took a no-hitter into the sixth inning, struck out seven and got his first win Thursday in a spot start against Toronto.
Indians manager Terry Francona gave Salazar high marks in all categories, starting with the way he warmed up to how he kept his composure.
"Everybody saw his stuff," Francona said. "That was self-explanatory but the way he conducted himself was impressive. Nothing threw him. Nothing made him step back. He did everything. We're really pleased."
Salazar showed the Indians he was ready for the promotion, and it may not be long before he's back. Cleveland has had inconsistent starting pitching and the team is waiting for right-hander Zach McAllister to return after being sidelined with a sprained middle finger.
Reliever Chen-Chang Lee was called up from the Clippers to give the Indians short-term help in the bullpen.
"He (Salazar) can go back down and this creates an extra roster spot," Francona said. "We can make a determination on, first of all how Zach's doing, or we can do whatever we want. A lot of that is going to be decided on how Zach's doing."