Tag Archive: Indians


As reported by Cleveland.com Indians designated hitter Travis Hafner has been placed on the 15 day disabled list due to an injury to his right knee.

This should come as no surprise as in the last 4 years he’s been on the disabled list 6 times. We should not only be used to him being injured at this point, expect him to be injured. I don’t mean to be a Debbie downer on Hafner; however his production the last few years has been very low to nonexistent. Though his production has provided a nice jolt in the middle of the lineup if you can’t rely on him to play every day what good is he to you?

Related: Josh Beckett Missed Game from Golf Injury

This season he’s hit 6 homeruns and 23 RBI, not bad for the first month of the season, and considering his power numbers has been down in previous season, this would rank as phenomenal for him.

Hopefully it’s nothing more than just a bruise and a after a couple weeks off and rehab he’ll be able to return to play and produce at the rate he was prior to the injury. The only concern I have is, while he is out, the Indians won’t have enough offense to maintain their current position.

Advertisements

Did you miss the last episode of Smooth Shots this past Tuesday? No worries, click the link Or picture below to listen to the show from your phone or computer.

Smooth Shots Ep 39 Chris Perez Bashes fans NBA Playoffs 05/22 by JbSmooth84 | Blog Talk Radio.

Remember when the Cleveland Indians were 1-4 to start the season? Remember when half of the city of Cleveland were ready to bury them and give up on the season? No? Well I do, and I also remember saying not to worry. And look at them now, since that 1-4 start they’re 16- 7, sit atop the Central Division and their pitching so far has been as consistent as they thought it would.

However, I won’t bang that drum that they’re a championship contender yet; I’ll still reserve my opinion until the 40 game mark. As things could change in the next two weeks and people will be right back to where they were with their thoughts as they were opening week. But as they roll along, let’s see how they deal with being the hunted compared to last season.

Related: Indians Off to Slow Start

For the majority of last season they were they were in first place, and I don’t think they were used to being the top dog and having all eyes on them. Now with that experience, they should be better equipped to hold off the Tigers and the White Sox who are bound to make a push. The Key is, when the push comes what kind of resistance will the Indians show this summer compared to lasts’?

Cleveland Indians Sign Johnny Damon

Then Indians looking to add a jolt of energy to their lack luster offense have signed free agent Johnny Damon to a one year deal, full of incentives that could bolster his pay from 1.25 to 1.4 million dollars.

Last year with the Tampa Bay Rays Damon played well and provided a veteran bat that helped keep the Rays in playoff contention. Though his batting average was a slender .261 he did hit 16 home runs and 73 runs batted in along with swiping 19 stolen bases last season. The Indians looking to turn around a 1-4 start to the season hope that Damon can match that same production from last season. Damon who is a career .286 batter, has never had an on base percentage lower than .313 which should provide plenty of opportunities for the Tribe to drive in more runs. Also with the health of Grady Sizemore unknown it’s very possible that Damon will get plenty of chances to contribute.

Related: Indians Slow Start Nothing to Panic Over

However, it will be a few weeks before we see Damon join the club, as he will head to the minor leagues to get in ‘game shape’ before he’s with the team. No one knows how long it will before but the speculation is anywhere from 10 days to 3 weeks, which would put him on the Indians 25 man roster sometime in May.

Now, though I’m not a fan of this particular move, I don’t blame them for making it. They felt they need to show some urgency and so they made a move. I think they should’ve tried to acquire an offensive threat in the off season, someone younger than Damon who is 38, either a speedster or a power bat. However, it would hypocritical to complain of them making no moves, than whine when they do. I’m willing to give it a chance to see how it goes before I laud or crush it.

For the Indians sake, hopefully it works out.

 

With one week of baseball in the books, the Indians have gotten off to a 1-4 start. Not necessarily the blazing beginning fans were looking for. But let’s keep this in mind, it’s only been five games. FIVE! Are we really going to start stoning the team before they’ve even played a month of baseball? From growing up playing baseball as a kid, to know writing about it on this site, I’ve held true to one standard that was taught to me by my dad. In baseball, you make your first concrete judgment on a team after the first 40 games. Theory, after 40 games you have a big enough sample size to make an estimation of what the team will become is has turned into.

So why are so many people losing their minds after the first two series, when we’ve gotten relatively good starting pitching? Yes, I know the offense has struggled and ranks in the bottom 20 in runs scored (25th) batting average (30th) on base percentage (21st) and slugging percentage (26th). And this should be a concern… just not today and five games doesn’t make or break a team, especially the first five of the season.

Too many times we rush to judgment and want a team to look like world beaters for the entire season. Slumps happen, and yes considering the Indians offensive woes last season this slow definitely doesn’t give you a warm and fuzzy feeling inside, however, I’m just not down with saying this team sucks and they’ll never hit when the sample size we have is so small.

Now if this trend continues through the beginning of June and middle of May, then yes, be concerned all you like. But for now, at least let them play more games than you can count on your hands before we’re ready to trade everybody away and bring up 15 players from minor leagues.

Indians Must Weigh their Options

After the end of the World Series the Indians will have 3 days to decide whether they’ll pick up the option of two players that they once considered a big piece of their core. Centerfielder Grady Sizemore and pitcher Fausto Carmona both have options the team has to decide to pick up or not. Fausto is due $7 million and in a game where pitching is premium you may just want to hold on to him. Yes he’s been inconsistent and has not turned out the production you’ve wanted. However, you’d hate to give him away and then he blossoms and you have nothing left to show. Fausto when he’s on has the ability to be a top of the rotation guy and can make an impact. For the salary he’s due to make, it’s worth bringing him back and maybe offering him some incentives that would put a little more dough in his pocket. Since his hang up seems to be focus why not try to motivate him with money. If he can’t harness his emotions with extra money on the line then you may have your answer on his future with the team. As for Grady, the circumstances get more complicated. When he’s healthy he has All-Star capabilities and a potential 20 homerun, 20 steals kind of player. Only thing is the last 3 years he’s been hampered by injuries. I would say bring him back as well, because if you let him go then who would you bring in to replace him? You never quit a job before you have another one, and you don’t fire someone until you have your replacement. So before you get all prepared to kick him to the curb you might want to consider that at $8 million a year if you can get just average production from him, he’ll be worth the money. Now with all that said, if they see something they don’t like with his health, then let him walk. But I don’t think it would be a bad move to keep him and Fausto, considering their salaries, the production they can provide and the fact that you may not be able to find legitimate replacements.

Tribe & Jim Thome Come Full Circle

They say you can never go home again… That seems not to be true for Jim Thome as he comes back to Cleveland where his career started. The Indians claimed him off waivers and completed a trade with the Minnesota Twins sending a player to be named later to the twin cities. Now, this wasn’t the bat I thought the Tribe needed, however, with Travis Hafner out for who knows how long you need somebody that could provide some pop. Thome will help, but is it too late, you’re 6 games out of first place, the ace you traded for hasn’t performed to expectations and you’ve had the worst week of the season at the wrong time. Hopefully Thome can bring back some of that late 90’s magic win he steps into the box at Progressive Field. Now, how will fans receive Thome in his first game back, he unlike other Indian greats didn’t leave on the best of terms, and the quote  “my wife is my rock” still resonates on fans minds when thinking of Thome. I believe for the most part Thome will be cheered, considering we need him to play well and he’s one of ours again the fans won’t bash him, however I think the ratio of fans cheering to jeering will be 60-65% to 40-35%. Hopefully this works out, because up until two weeks ago the Indians season had been very exciting and I would hate to see it all go to waste.

Indians Stock Falling

With 4 losses in a row, tied for second place, and 5 and a half games out of first place the Indians look to be falling out of the playoff. I say there’s no need to panic, you still have a month and a half of the season to go, and 14 games with the White Sox (8 games) and Tigers ( 6 games) so if the Indians can just pull it together they can still end up on top of the division. Now it does seem like the deck is stacked against them with Travis Hafner going to the disabled list and Ubaldo Jimenez is pitching like a 5th starter instead of an ace, but that doesn’t mean they still can’t win. This is where you find out if your team has what it takes to be a champion, if they continue to fight when the chips are down. I won’t allow this team to rely on the excuse of being young, having a coach who is in their first pennant race, at the end of the day the name of the game is to win baseball games, and though the stakes are higher and pressure is more intense, the approach should stay the same. Too many times in Cleveland we’re just happy to be in the race because so often we’ve been bad. At some point you have to hold teams accountable and expect more from them. This team has for the most part performed pretty well, and though it was a surprise to many, that doesn’t mean we should just be happy with being surprisingly good. When circumstances change so should expectations. So me, I’m not giving up on the Tribe yet and hopefully you aren’t either, vote below on what you think.

 

 

In the Thick of it All

image

The Indians have a chance to close the gap between them and the Tigers down to one game if they can find a way to get to the unhitable Justin Verlander. Just a week ago the Tribe looked to be on a downward slide after only going 3-4 on their road trip losing 3 of those 4 in the final at bat. But they have rebounded strong, taking 2 of the first 3 with a chance for the sweep. Ubaldo Jimenez had one shaky inning out of the eight he pitched,  struck out 6 batters and was in command all night. If they can get that kind of production from him for the rest of the year the Indians will be poised to take the central division. Though the bullpen has been shaky the last week the offense has been exceptional of late and thats with rookies Jason Kipnis and Ezequiel Carrera being inserted into the lineup. I like what Carrera brings at the top of the lineup and wouldn’t mind him staying there when Brantley is healthy and just dropping everybody down one in the lineup. And where was Kipnis earlier in the year, he’s played fantastic in his 16 games he’s scored 13 runs, 18 hits, 6 homeruns and .295 batting average. I won’t deem tonight as a must win because they have 10 more games against the Tigers and and 30 of the remaining 48 against divisional opponents. However tonight would hammer home the point that the Tigers can’t beat us at home and we can beat their ace when no one else can.

Deadline Winners & Losers

Winners

Pittsburgh Pirates

The Pirates haven’t been in pennant race since NWA had a hit record on the radio went out and acquired Derek Lee and Ryan Ludwick to add some offense to a team that is 26th in the league in runs scored. We should laud the Pirates for being aggressive and going for it at the deadline, though Lee and Ludwick are both batting under .250, putting them in the middle of a playoff might be the spark that energizes them both.

Boston Red Sox

The Red Sox traded very little to get left hander Erik Bedard who has an ERA of 3.45. This also fills a need as Clay Bucholz is likely out for the rest of the season and adding a left hander is always a plus. Decent plan b since they bowed out of the Ubaldo Jimenez sweepstakes.

Atlanta Braves

The Braves were in desperate need of an offensive spark. With Chipper Jones out for a while they could use another bat. So adding Michael Bourn who is batting over .300, has 39 stolen bases and has 26 doubles should definitely give stabilize the top of the lineup, and give them more opportunities to score more runs.

Losers

Cleveland Indians

As the old saying goes, you can never have enough pitching. Yes this is true, but they failed to improve the weakest part of their team which was the offense. Fans should be happy that they went all out and got an established ace in Ubaldo Jimenez, but I’d still be weary of an inconsistent offense.

Chicago Cubs

The Cubs who are saddled with bad contracts, and overpaid players were unable to find anyone to bail them out. A lot of the players they kept on to Soriano, Zambrano, have horrible contracts that no one else wants. I’d look for them in the winter to be very active, however its another fall for Cub fans where watching the ivy grow may be more entertaining than the team itself.

Tampa Bay Rays

Being 10 games out of first place in the A.L. East and 9 games out of the wild card places you in a weird place. Not close enough to make a run at the division, but possibly enough time to chase down a wild card berth. Choosing to stand pat and not doing anything may position them well to make a few moves in the winter to make another run at the playoffs in 2012.

%d bloggers like this: