With athletic family all around, DeShields fits into Indians


By Theresa Smith - Associated Press



Cleveland Indians right fielder Domingo Santana, right, chases down a double hit by Los Angeles Dodgers' Tyler White as Indians center fielder Delino DeShields, left, watches during the fourth inning of a spring training baseball game Thursday, Feb. 27, 2020, in Goodyear, Ariz. (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin)

Cleveland Indians right fielder Domingo Santana, right, chases down a double hit by Los Angeles Dodgers' Tyler White as Indians center fielder Delino DeShields, left, watches during the fourth inning of a spring training baseball game Thursday, Feb. 27, 2020, in Goodyear, Ariz. (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin)


GOODYEAR, Ariz. (AP) — Dad, the elder Delino DeShields, is working less than 100 yards away, behind a fence dividing Cleveland’s training complex from the Cincinnati Reds facility. Sister Diamond DeShields is just a phone call away.

Together, they help Delino DeShields strive to meet his latest challenge: making an impact in his first season with the Indians.

He talks baseball and life with Dad and mental outlook with his sister, a rising WNBA star.

“Baseball is a big part of our lives, so it is something we both bond over,” DeShields said of his father, a 13-year MLB veteran who is in his second year as the first base coach of the Reds.

DeShields relishes discussions with his sister as well. The former Tennessee standout earned all-WNBA honors last season for the Chicago Sky and was an All-Rookie selection in 2018.

“She has a killer mindset,” Delino proudly said. “I thought she could have been a professional in high school, just the way she carried herself and the way she led her team. She says no one is better than her — from birth.”

“We talk every now and then about mentality stuff, but for the most part she’s got it down pat,” he said.

Along with hard-throwing reliever Emmanuel Clase, who is sidelined by an upper back injury, DeShields came from Texas to Cleveland in a Dec. 15 trade for two-time AL Cy Young winner Corey Kluber.

DeShields will provide depth at center field, particularly in light of the wrist injury currently sidelining Oscar Mercado.

DeShields relies on speed and quickness to run down balls in gaps, and extraordinary leaping ability to track drives at the wall and dive to snag line drives.

At the plate, DeShields is a career .246 hitter with a .326 on-base percentage. In spring training, he’s hitting .211 with one extra-base hit in eight games after going 0 for 3 Sunday against the Colorado Rockies.

“I’m focused on hitting the ball hard, getting my strikeout percentage down and just using the big part of the field, just keeping the ball between the lines,” DeShields said.

For his five-year MLB career, DeShields has struck 447 times and drawn 193 walks.

Hitting coach Ty Van Burkleo is among the Indians’ personnel DeShields knew before he was traded.

“We have that relationship, to where we know each other,” DeShields said. “We say what we have to say, we have that comfort level instead of having to form that relationship.”

Detailed swing work is part of his DNA, along with dealing with injuries. The 27-year-old DeShields dealt with one of the most dreaded in baseball — he was hit in the face with a fastball in 2014 as a minor leaguer with the Astros.

Indians outfielder Greg Allen grew up aware of the older DeShields, but he knew more about his new teammate.

“I definitely was familiar with him, the type of player that he is, and the type of outfielder that he is, what be brings to a ballclub,” Allen said. “It has been great having the chance to be around him these past few weeks, getting to know him and be in the outfield with him.”

Manager Terry Francona likes what he’s seen from the newcomer, saying DeShields is “playing center field like we thought he would.”

“He’s fit in from Day One,” he said.

REDS (SS) 11, CUBS (SS) 9

Kris Bryant had an RBI double and a sacrifice fly for Chicago’s split squad. Anthony Rizzo hit two doubles and Josh Phegley had a solo home run and an RBI double.

Kyle Farmer and Alex Blandino had RBI singles in Cincinnati’s four-run first inning. Phillip Ervin had two hits, including a solo home run, raising his average to .444.

REDS (SS) 8, ANGELS (SS) 8

Joey Votto singled and scored on Matt Davidson’s second home run for Cincinnati’s split squad. Trevor Bauer pitched four innings in his second start, yielding one run on a hit and a walk, striking out four.

Arismendy Alcantara and Michael Hermosillo homered for Los Angeles’ split squad.

ROCKIES 3, INDIANS 1

Raimel Tapia homered for Colorado. Kyle Freeland made his second start, pitching three innings and giving up a run on two hits and two walks, striking out four.

Bobby Bradley hit his third home run for Cleveland. Jordan Luplow doubled for one of the Indians’ three hits.

TIGERS 7, NATIONALS 5

Miguel Cabrera doubled and singled and Jody Mercer homered for Detroit. Jordan Zimmermann threw four shutout innings in his third start, allowing one hit.

Washington prospect Carter Kieboom doubled and drove in a run.

RANGERS 9, DODGERS 8

Texas outfielder Willie Calhoun suffered a broken jaw when he was hit in the face by a 95 mph fastball from Los Angeles lefty Julio Urias. Calhoun was down on the ground for several minutes, carted off the field and taken to a hospital.

Newcomer Todd Frazier hit his first home run with Texas, connecting off Dodgers closer Kenley Jansen.

DIAMONDBACKS 8, CUBS (SS) 1

Jake Lamb hit a two-run homer and an RBI single for Arizona. David Peralta had an RBI single and Stephen Vogt had two doubles and a single, scoring twice. Top pitching prospect Jon Duplantier made his second start, yielding a run on two hits and three walks in 2 1/3 innings.

Kyle Schwarber drew a bases-loaded walk to drive in the lone run for Chicago’s split squad. Jose Quintana gave up a run on three hits and two walks, pitching two innings in his second start.

BREWERS (SS) 7, ANGELS (SS) 3

Matt Andriese made his second start, pitching four shutout innings on two hits for Los Angeles. The Angels tabbed Andrew Heaney as their opening day starter.

Christian Yelich singled for his first hit this spring in his second game for Milwaukee’s split squad. Logan Morrison his this third home run and Orlando Arcia hit his fifth homer.

ATHLETICS 11, BREWERS (SS) 3

Matt Olson had an RBI single for Oakland. Franklin Barreto had three hits and scored on a wild pitch by Milwaukee closer Josh Hader.

Ben Gamel had a two-run triple for Milwaukee’s split squad. Ryon Healy had a double and a single.

WHITE SOX (SS) 6, PADRES 0

Cheslor Cuthbert hit two home runs for Chicago’s split squad. Newcomer Yasmani Grandal drove in a run with his first spring double. Yermin Mercedes hit his third home run. Reynaldo Lopez made his second start, pitching 4 1/3 scoreless innings on five hits while striking out five.

Manny Machado went 0 for 3 for San Diego and is batting .050. Eric Hosmer had three singles. Ace Chris Paddack was roughed up in his third start, allowing four runs on six hits in four innings.

WHITE SOX (SS) 5, ROYALS 4

Zack Collins homered for Chicago. Hunter Dozier and Bubba Starling hit back-to-back solo home runs for Kansas City.

GIANTS 8, MARINERS 4

Darin Ruf hit three doubles for San Francisco and is batting .455 in exhibition play. He also has three home runs this spring in his first big league camp since playing three seasons in South Korea. Hunter Pence homered and Buster Posey had two hits, including an RBI double. Jeff Samardzija made his third start, surrendering a run on two hits and two walks, striking out four in 3 2/3 innings.

J.P. Crawford drove in newcomer Carlos Gonzalez with a second-inning triple for Seattle. Justus Sheffield made his second start, pitching three innings and allowing a run on three hits while striking out five.

METS 3, ASTROS 1

Noah Syndergaard made his third start for New York, pitching three innings and allowing a run on two hits, striking out four. Robinson Cano and Pete Alonso both had two hits, including RBI doubles.

YANKEES (SS) 5, ORIOLES 5

Yankees catcher Gary Sanchez was held out of batting practice this weekend because of back soreness after being behind the plate on back-to-back days. He was left off the travel roster for Monday’s exhibition game against Philadelphia.

Dwight Smith Jr. had two RBI singles and Chris Davis singled in a run and walked twice for Baltimore. Tommy Milone homered, doubled, singled and drove in three runs for New York.

YANKEES (SS) 1, BRAVES 0

Masahiro Tanaka made his third start, pitching 3 2/3 shutout innings and giving up one hit while striking out four. Chris Iannetta had an RBI single.

Sean Newcomb threw four scoreless innings in his third start for Atlanta, allowing three hits and two walks while striking out four. Dansby Swanson had one of the Braves’ two hits.

RED SOX 7, TWINS 6

Kenta Maeda excelled in his third start for Minnesota, pitching four scoreless innings and giving up two hits with six strikeouts. Josh Donaldson doubled and singled.

Martin Perez threw four shutout innings in his third start for Boston, yielding four hits and a walk while striking out seven. Kevin Pillar doubled and scored on a single by J.D. Martinez.

CARDINALS 7, MARLINS 3

Paul Goldschmidt had a two-run double and Yadier Molina added an RBI single and a sacrifice fly for St. Louis. Harrison Bader had a two-run single. Dakota Hudson allowed a run on two hits and three walks, pitching 3 2/3 innings in his second start and striking out five.

Miami prospect Jazz Chisholm homered.

RAYS 2, PIRATES 2

Colin Moran had two singles, driving in a run for Pittsburgh. Mitch Keller pitched three innings in his fourth start, allowing one run on three hits and a walk.

Tampa Bay’s Austin Meadows went 0 for 3, driving in a run with a ground out as his average fell to .087 this spring.

BLUE JAYS 9, PHILLIES 0

Matt Shoemaker made his second start, issuing only a walk in four shutout innings and striking out four. Travis Shaw homered for the second straight day and Bo Bichette also connected.

Vince Velasquez struggled in his second start for Philadelphia, surrendering three runs on two hits and three walks in 2 2/3 innings. The Phillies didn’t get their first hit until Jay Bruce’s single with two outs in the sixth.

Cleveland Indians right fielder Domingo Santana, right, chases down a double hit by Los Angeles Dodgers' Tyler White as Indians center fielder Delino DeShields, left, watches during the fourth inning of a spring training baseball game Thursday, Feb. 27, 2020, in Goodyear, Ariz. (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin)
https://www.limaohio.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/54/2020/03/web1_124552819-899a75babce34f7ba06a99bbbeeb1109.jpgCleveland Indians right fielder Domingo Santana, right, chases down a double hit by Los Angeles Dodgers' Tyler White as Indians center fielder Delino DeShields, left, watches during the fourth inning of a spring training baseball game Thursday, Feb. 27, 2020, in Goodyear, Ariz. (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin)

By Theresa Smith

Associated Press

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