Sunday, June 11, 2006

Lazy Sunday in the Squared Circle

How’s this for a pulse in the locker room? It seems Wickman and Byrd went head to head after Saturday’s game, complete with a challenge to “take it outside”?

Couldn't they at least wait until Larry Merchant was available for his phenomenal commentary, and not covering a Tarver-Hopkins fight?

I don't even know what the stand-off between the veteran pitchers means, other than that the temperature is rising in the Tribe locker room, with the boiling point not too far away.

It could mean that there's not a definitive leader in this locker room and two players who feel that they could (or should) be leaders are at odds on how to pull the Tribe out of this funk.

Wedgie, that was your pager that just went off.

Since it's Sunday, it's time to take it around the horn:
Terry Pluto opens the mailbag and tries to answer some of the frustration that is simmering to the surface.

Shelly Ocker examines Jason Johnson and Guillermo Mota, and whether they are really necessary on this team.

My problem with the Indians on these moves (first Graves and SauerBush, now Johnson and Mota) is their reluctance to make a change until it’s painful to watch. Can’t we make these moves when it becomes blatantly obvious, like seeing that Peralta is struggling at the plate a month ago and dropping him in the lineup then, as opposed to keeping him in the 3 hole too long?

I find it frustrating and surprising, because with a Front Office that prides itself on relying on basic business strategies and tenets, they seem reluctant to make changes or evolve.
I’m going to buy these guys a copy of “Who Moved My Cheese” and see if we can get some decisive moves made TODAY, not in 3 weeks.
Fellas, don’t be afraid to make changes, when changes are obviously necessary.

And, just when you think that EVERYONE is on the same page on Johnson and Mota (meaning that the Front Office HAS to notice), Paul Hoynes reports that they’re not considering bringing up Sowers to replace Johnson because, “they aren’t convinced he’d be a marked improvement over Jason Johnson at this point in his career.”
That’s an acceptable statement…only with the added caveat that Guthrie will be the first alternative to Johnson, and soon.

Hoynes also writes in the game-wrap that a rookie-laden bullpen is no way to contend, which may or may not be true. The alternative, right now, though is to rely on the Danny Graves, Scott Sauerbecks, and Guillermo Motas of the world.

Apparently, Mark Shapiro is shopping for a trade, but there couldn’t be too much out there right now, could there? Could you go after a Roberto Hernandez or Damaso Marte from Pittsburgh?

Not many teams are looking to move solid bullpen arms in June, and they’re going to ask for a king’s ransom to do so. So, what do you do if you’re Shapiro?

Still want to be a big-league GM?

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