The Cleveland Indians are 57-48 and 2.5 games over the Kansas City Royals in the American League Central but just suffered two huge losses. The Indians bullpen has been a strength over the course of these last two seasons. However, reliever Andrew Miller and starter Josh Tomlin are going to miss some time as both are now on the disabled list.

Miller has right knee tendinitis

Miller was the prized acquisition last year at the trade deadline.

Miller was a setup man that helped the Indians close games out in route to their World Series appearance. Miller is 4-3 this season with a 1.67 earned run average in 46 appearances. Miller pitched in Tuesday's game but has shown signs of pain in his recent outing. He has ten walks in his last 21 innings after just giving up nine walks in 74 1/3 innings. Adam Plutko was called up to replace Miller.

The loss of Miller is huge for the Indians.

The Indians have a tough schedule coming up. The team has a four game series against the New York Yankees, a two game series against the Colorado Rockies, a two game series against the Tampa Bay Rays, and a makeup game against the Boston Red Sox. All of these teams would make the playoffs if it started today. Sidearmer Joe Smith will have an increased role until Miller gets back.

Tomlin has mild to moderate left hamstring tendon strain

Tomlin had to be pulled from Sunday's start against the chicago white sox.

Tomlin is 7-9 this season with a 5.38 earned run average in 20 starts. Manager Terry Francona believes that it is just a mild strain, but nothing is confirmed as of now.

The loss of Tomlin means that Mike Clevinger will have to step up in his role. Clevinger is 5-4 with a 3.68 earned run average in 73.1 innings. The team has Corey Kluber, Carlos Carrasco, Danny Salazar, and Trevor Bauer in the rotation still. Tomlin was the team's fifth starter but had logged 110.1 innings this year.

Royals have prime opportunity

If the losses of these two pitchers impact the Indians regarding wins and losses, the Royals have a chance to gain some ground. The Royals play the Seattle Mariners in a four game series, the St. Louis Cardinals in a four game series, the Chicago White Sox in a three game series, and the Oakland Athletics in a three game series.

All of the following teams are under .500 for the season, while the White Sox and Athletics are in the last place in their respective divisions.

If the Royals are going to take the lead in the Central, this might be the time to do it.

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