Sunday, September 14, 2008

Lazy Sunday With the End in Sight

With everyone locked up by two football games happening this weekend for Cleveland/Ohio teams, let’s bring it back to Tribe Time on a Lazy Sunday as we’re running out the clock on this 2008 season.
And…we’re off…

Terry Pluto touches on Asdrubal’s emergence since his return from Buffalo and (once again) beats the drum for a “Jhonny to 3B, Asdrubal to SS, find a 2B” solution to the infield hole. I’m not sure if Pluto is so adamant about this simply because he thinks it’s a good idea or if the Indians have intimated to him that the move may be in the works. Quotes like this by The Atomic Wedgie lend credence to the fact that he may be slotting to his right come 2009. Regardless, given what’s available in terms of 2B and 3B this offseason, 2B may be the easier hole to fill.

In a mildly related article, Kenny Rosenthal identifies potential landing spots for 2B Orlando Hudson, listing the Mets or Yankees if either trade their de facto 2B, the Rangers (not sure I get that one), the White Sox, the Rockies, the Cardinals, and…YOUR Cleveland Indians. Rosie also lists Mark Ellis as the “only other quality 2B” on the FA market and points out that Brian Roberts and Dan Uggla are the two 2B most likely to be moved this offseason.
Please Brian Roberts…please Brian Roberts…

Jon Heyman identifies the Marlins as a team who may be compelled to make some moves this offseason as 18 of their players will be eligible for arbitration, and I’m guessing that having a paid attendance of fewer than 600 isn’t exactly helping that revenue stream.
One name on that list – 2B Dan Uggla.
Let me say this again… please Brian Roberts…please Brian Roberts…

Jon Heyman also thinks (in the same piece) that the Angels are readying themselves for a run at a certain Hefty Lefty, which certainly would fit the Left Coast criteria and the offer wouldn’t figure to be short on years or zeroes.

Paul Hoynes has a quick run-down of John Meloan’s first appearance for the Tribe (which some had questioned whether it would ever happen…what with the Indians dead set on seeing that Juan Rincon has nothing left in the tank and that the needle on Masa’s gas tank has broken off because it’s so far below “E”). But back to Meloan, as the Hoynes piece doesn’t do justice to his mid-90’s fastball and a breaking ball (in the low-80’s) that just drops off the table. Obviously one appearance a career does not make, but Meloan looked good, getting two SWINGING third strikes and has the presence on the mound that one would want out of a back-end-of-the-bullpen pitcher.
Then again, so did Ferd Cabrera.’s John Donovan identifies the Indians as “spoilers” again, as if this is a new perspective. Can we PLEASE see a September in 2009 when we’re not included in these articles as “spoilers”?

Anthony Castrovince, over at his blog, identified the songs that Indians’ players come out to. Unfortunately, none of them (apparently) read my little exercise in suggestion prior to every year…although Jenny Lew coming out to the theme from the “Dark Knight” is pretty sweet.

Finally, here’s the podcast from this Thursday’s “Smoke Signals” that I do with Minor League guru Tony Lastoria. This week’s show features an in-depth analysis of the arms that may slot themselves into the back end of the Indians’ 2009 rotation as well as getting into the depth that figures to be available in Columbus (remember, that’s the AAA affiliate in 2009), in addition to going deeper into the organization. While we had about 5 topics to hit on, the conversation on starting pitching depth (prompted by Scotty Lew’s debut) lasted nearly the whole hour, with a fascinating interview that Tony did with Jeff Stevens to close it out.

If you need another carrot to listen to it, Steve Buffum (writer of the fabulous B-List over at TCF) makes a surprise phone call to lament the presence of Juan Rincon and Brendan Donnelly on the parent club.

Time for some good old couch time with the Indians’ first pitch mere moments away, followed by something happening on the Lakefront that I dare not mention given the risk of throwing my jinx down E. 9th.


R.M. Jennings said...

Tribe just re-upped their lease with Gateway through 2023! (The old lease expired in 2013.) I'll sleep easier tonight!

Seriously, I didn't even know it worked like that. But at least now we know President Palin won't try to move them to Nome.

RE said...

2 Q's, PC.

Who are other pitchers like Scott Lewis who have started with 14 or more shutout innings in major league first games?

When last time anyone done a Cliff Lee and won thirty per cent of team's victories?

Paul Cousineau said...

I can't find a website that works out that info on starting a career, though I know Oakland's Brad Ziegler started his career with 29 scoreless innings this year. Thing is...he's a reliever.

On the 30%, I know that Steve Carlton won an absurd amount of games when he won the Cy Young for a BAD Phillies team.

RE said...

Yes, Carlton was 27-10 for a 1972 Phillies team that won 59 games, so nearly 50% of its victories came from him (he also had 30 complete games.) As one looks at it, perhaps one of the two or three best pitcher's seasons in baseball history (and I am only equivocating--I can't think of one that is clearly better.)