CLEVELAND -- Grady Sizemore's return is more uncertain than ever.
The Cleveland Indians won't have the injured center fielder back until at least September, and there are no guarantees he'll be in their lineup again this season.
Manager Manny Acta said before Tuesday's series opener against first-place Detroit that Sizemore, sidelined since July 18 with a bruised right knee and after undergoing surgery for a sports hernia, will definitely not be back this month. The Indians originally said Sizemore would be out 4 to 6 weeks, placing his return around Sept. 1. Acta would not give a possible date for the 28-year-old's return.
"We never anticipated him coming back by the end of this month," Acta said.
Sizemore has not resumed baseball activities. Acta said there's a chance that by the end of the week he could be playing catch and taking swings.
A three-time All-Star, Sizemore's career has been slowed by injuries the past few seasons. He played only 33 games last year before having microfracture surgery on his left knee. Sizemore worked his way back -- ahead of schedule -- and played well earlier this season before bruising his right knee sliding into second base on May 10. He then aggravated the knee while running out a double last month.
Sizemore had an operation to fix the hernia in Philadelphia on July 21. Acta was asked if Sizemore could be a major contributor when he does come back.
"Who knows?" he said.
The Indians, who trail the Tigers by four games in the AL Central, are hoping to get outfielder Shin-Soo Choo back for the playoff chase. He's been on the DL since June 25 with a broken left thumb. Choo began a rehab assignment on Monday at Lake County (A). Acta said the plan is for Choo to steadily work his way up the minor-league ladder for a week, facing better pitching along the way, before rejoining Cleveland.