Cleveland, OH (SportsNetwork.com) - Danny Salazar, who started last October's American League Wild Card Game as a rookie for the Cleveland Indians, was optioned to Triple-A Columbus by the team Friday after struggling again in his most recent outing.
Salazar threw 98 pitches in just four innings and allowed a pair of solo homers in Thursday's 4-2 loss at Toronto, which dropped him to 1-4 on the season.
The talented right-hander has produced a 5.53 earned run average through eight starts this season, with opponents hitting .301 against him. He failed to last beyond the fifth inning in five of those assignments.
Regarded as one of the Indians' top pitching prospects entering the 2013 campaign, Salazar earned the starting nod in last year's Wild Card Game by striking out 65 over 52 innings and posting a 3.12 ERA in 10 starts following a midseason promotion to the majors.
Cleveland purchased the contract of reliever Kyle Crockett from Double-A Akron to fill the open roster spot.
A fourth-round pick of the Indians in the 2013 MLB Draft, Crockett yielded just one run and eight hits while recording six saves over 15 2/3 innings at Akron.
The 22-year-old lefty becomes the first player from the 2013 draft class to reach the majors.