Nearly a week after he began his rehab assignment -- doing so in spectacular fashion -- the Cleveland Indians are expected to activate third baseman Josh Donaldson from the disabled list.
With that, manager Terry Francona will be granted access to a potentially historic lineup. For the first time since then-40-year-old Harold Baines' 28-game stint in 1999, the Indians will be able to -- and will likely -- feature a starting lineup with an All-Star at every position.
With Donaldson expected to play third base, Jose Ramirez shifting over to second and Jason Kipnis moving to center field, the Tribe's new All-Star laden lineup would look as follows:
- Catcher: Yan Gomes
- First base: Yonder Alonso
- Second base: Jose Ramirez
- Third base: Josh Donaldson
- Shortstop: Francisco Lindor
- Left field: Michael Brantley
- Center field: Jason Kipnis
- Right field: Melky Cabrera
- Designated hitter: Edwin Encarnacion
Gomes (2018), Alonso (2017) and Cabrera (2012) are each one-time All-Stars, while Donaldson, Lindor, Brantley and Encarnacion have each been selected to "the Midsummer Classic" three times. Kipnis and Ramirez, meanwhile, both lay claim to two All-Star appearances, with the latter starting in each of the last two annual July exhibitions.
Factor in a starting pitching staff that includes a 2-time Cy Young Award winner (a 3-time All-Star) in Corey Kluber, another 2018 All-Star selection in Trevor Bauer and a bullpen featuring a pair of multi-time All-Stars in Andrew Miller and Brad Hand and it's not a stretch to say the 2018 Indians are one of the most -- if not the most -- talented teams in franchise history.
Cleveland has featured All-Star-filled lineups before, but never one this accomplished or featuring so many players at the peak of their powers.
Whether or not that will be enough for the Indians to break the longest World Series drought in baseball will be determined in the coming weeks. But for now, Cleveland appears set to make at least one type of history while hoping that more will be on its way.