Sunday, October 01, 2006


With a tear in the eye, it's time for the last 2006 regular season Lazy Sunday:

Paul Hoynes throws out two names to watch this off-season, Seattle P Gil Meche (a FA) and Phillies OF Pat Burrell (a trade possibility due to make…wait for it…$13M in ’07 and $14M in ‘08).

Terry Pluto intimates that the Tribe is comfortable enough with Carmona’s last 3 starts to consider moving a SP in a trade. Pluto’s guess (and it’s a good guess) is the Byrdman.

Socker defends the Indians’ readiness as a ballclub for 2007 and thinks that Matt Miller will be a part of the rebuilt bullpen.

In the same vein as the LS, Baseball America has named their 2006 Overall Minor League All Star teams.
Indians’ farmhands making the list:
Kevin Kouzmanoff – Overall 1st Team DH
Brian Barton – Overall 2nd Team OF
Adam Miller – Overall 2nd Team SP
Chuck Lofgren – Overall 2nd Team SP
Shin-Soo Choo – AAA OF (with Tacoma)
Jeremy Sowers – AAA SP
Scott Lewis – High A SP

I think the most fascinating thing to do when looking at a Minor League All Star team like that is to examine the prospects, their positions, and their teams. Then, it’s easy to determine who’s blocked by solid Major Leaguers, making them (or the players blocking their path) trade candidates.

Some things that stand out:
The Angels have two 2B on the list (Howie Kendrick and Erick Aybar), both in the upper levels. As has been mentioned before, if Scot Shields is a closer possibility, could one of those players be a possible solution at 2B? Add the fact that they have a SS on the list in Brandon Wood, while having Orlando Cabrera topside and it’s a situation worth watching.

Kevin Kouzmanoff is blocked by Travis Hafner, Andy Marte, and Ryan Garko. Oh wait, we knew that already. Add that to the fact that he has recurring back and hamstring problems and we’ve got a logjam on the North Coast. That is, unless, Kouzmanoff can play LF. Allegedly, 1B may still be in the mix for K2's future, but hasn’t Gonnie Garko earned it?

The White Sox have Josh Fields in AAA at 3B along with some great minor league arms, so don’t be surprised if they try to make a splash in the trade market (Carl Crawford) as Kenny Williams is unafraid to pull the trigger on a big trade, for better or worse. Podsednik is gonzo for next year, so Crawford could be a legitimate option for the South Siders.

The Diamondbacks are absolutely stacked with OF & 2B prospects, so if the Tribe is looking for a trade partner for some young talent, Phoenix may be the place to watch. The fact that Josh Byrnes has a relationship with Mark Shapiro won’t hurt.

Speaking of Arizona, with T-Crowe going to the Arizona Fall League to see if he can play 2B, expect Shapiro and the boys to spend some time watching the Peoria Javelinas.

Inexplicably, I’ll be heading down to the last game today (with serial commenter T-Bone) to bid a farewell to the 2006 Indians. Last year’s last game didn’t finish well - the enduring images were Sizemore going Ned Braden in Slap Shot, disrobing on his way back from 1B after making the last out, Ozzie giving the choke sign, and Wickman running around the ballpark giving out baseballs. In case you don’t remember here was the scene in the Tribe dugout:

Not as much to play for today, but we’ll try to solve the Indians’ problems…and make it to a TV for the beginning of the Browns' game.

1 comment:

t-bone said...

Updated: Oct. 3, 2006, 12:33 PM ET
Indians pick up options on Westbrook, Blake
Associated Press

CLEVELAND -- The Cleveland Indians quickly took care of some business following a disappointing season by exercising contract options for 2007 on steady starter Jake Westbrook and utilityman Casey Blake on Tuesday.