The 2020 Cleveland Indians

Do Not Sell My Personal Information

TFIR

In the Rotation
Joined
Mar 4, 2014
Messages
549
Reaction score
589
Points
93
My take on the "slow starting Indians" is that this is partially due to the iffy (putting it politely) weather April and May usually bring. Jose Ramirez really heated up in June last year, along with others, and I don't think that was a coincidence. Hard to have a home field advantage when both teams are freezing. So my optimism says that starting in warm weather will be nothing but a help to the Tribe.
 

NorthCoastBias

Hall-of-Famer
Joined
Feb 14, 2009
Messages
12,856
Reaction score
16,424
Points
123
Not Indians related, but Ryan Zimmerman, Joe Ross and Mike Leake are all opting out of playing this season. Certainly something to monitor going forward.
 

TFIR

In the Rotation
Joined
Mar 4, 2014
Messages
549
Reaction score
589
Points
93
DeShields looking like a lucky pickup now! Who better to put in as a pinch runner at 2B in the 10th inning when you start out with a guy there??
 

MirORich

Hall-of-Famer
Joined
Sep 29, 2007
Messages
18,753
Reaction score
26,163
Points
135
Not Indians related, but Ryan Zimmerman, Joe Ross and Mike Leake are all opting out of playing this season. Certainly something to monitor going forward.
Surely there will be more out of the 750+ guys who were Regular major leaguers but no stars or impact players yet.
 

TFIR

In the Rotation
Joined
Mar 4, 2014
Messages
549
Reaction score
589
Points
93
This is the type of player to opt out - and remember Zimmerman is also 35 and could have retired any time but....

Zimmerman has a three-week-old baby and also a mother with multiple sclerosis who he refers to as "super high-risk,".
 

6.19.2016

In the Rotation
Joined
Dec 21, 2011
Messages
1,914
Reaction score
855
Points
113
Looks like we all dodged a bullet by not going for the Cactus League idea.

AZ going back into shutdown of gyms, bars, waterparks, movie theaters for 30 days.

Interesting to think that it was considered a "safe haven" for people in other states, especially CA, to travel to for business, a few months ago.

The Orlando NBA bubble looks ridiculous now, although it made good sense at the time; FL was considered another "safe haven" for so long.

Ohio is, by the way, not out of the woods; significant increase this past week in new cases from the previous week. Even NY has had some bad days recently.
 

Gson

Rookie
Joined
Mar 28, 2020
Messages
70
Reaction score
49
Points
18
Looks like we all dodged a bullet by not going for the Cactus League idea.

AZ going back into shutdown of gyms, bars, waterparks, movie theaters for 30 days.

Interesting to think that it was considered a "safe haven" for people in other states, especially CA, to travel to for business, a few months ago.

The Orlando NBA bubble looks ridiculous now, although it made good sense at the time; FL was considered another "safe haven" for so long.

Ohio is, by the way, not out of the woods; significant increase this past week in new cases from the previous week. Even NY has had some bad days recently.
As the # of tests increase.. so do the # of cases of players / personnel / families / others that are infected. The care and actions once known are clear and being followed.. Therapeutics are coming.. and the world will heal itself and allow us all this small enjoyment that is MLB baseball, hopefully.

Thoughts?..
 

CATS44

Towel Waver
Joined
Feb 25, 2020
Messages
77
Reaction score
163
Points
33
Fewer teams equal less media revenue. Fewer teams equal fewer bidders when FAs go to auction themselves off. Fewer bidders equal lower salaries.

And no matter how much MLB and fans stay in denial, attendance will remain far below 2019 levels for years.

No matter how you look at it, overall revenue is going to be significantly lower for years, with no way for franchises to accurately forecast their financials, which is the basis for making long term contract offers necessary to obtain the top level players.

And all that is before any consideration of the long term effects of the next round of bargaining.

Does anybody really think that Frankie's future bargaining power has gotten better over the last four months?

An assumption that elite players will maintain the current trend in contracts in an environment that includes contraction means that you think that the Yanks are gonna consider a payroll that may approach half a billion a year, while producing lower revenue.
 

Benway

Cultural Obstacle
Joined
Mar 7, 2011
Messages
329
Reaction score
285
Points
63
And no matter how much MLB and fans stay in denial, attendance will remain far below 2019 levels for years.
I'm not looking to attend a game until likely 2022 at the earliest. I've shared season tickets for about 20 years, but that's done.
My group is just getting too old now, and everybody's bailing.
I'm pretty sure this'll be far more chilling to attendance than the 1994/95 players strike, and that was devastating to revenues.
 

ncinthenext3

Towel Waver
Joined
Feb 24, 2020
Messages
68
Reaction score
138
Points
33
"I know COVID adds an extra wrinkle, but if things get bad enough that we're going deep into the taxi squad during a 60 game season, then the season is probably doomed at that point anyway."

It stands to reason there will be fewer injuries in a 60-game season than a 162-game season. Unless there is a significant virus outbreak they might need only 2-4 replacements brought up. I agree that the majority of the taxi squad should be the prospects with the highest long term upsides regardless of age. There's no point in having a ton of older, AAAA guys unless the Indians think they could lose a lot of players to the virus and other teams could as well.

Could you imagine going into the final week or two tied for first with the Twins and both teams down to their 10th and 11th starters?

This season might come down to who does the best job of keeping their top players eligible to play and who has the best AAA players. Losing three starters for two weeks to covid at the same time would be devastating, especially considering the reduced number of games.

This caught my attention from Hoynes' latest column:

"Since teams will be able only to trade players from their 60-player pool this season, if you see teams adding their top prospects to their pool as the deadline approaches, it could be a sign that the bidding for Lindor is on."

I didn't realize teams could add and subtract players from their 60-man pool. However, they would have to trade or release somebody to make room.

"Teams cannot exceed 60 players in their designated player pool. To add a player, they must remove another through an improved transaction (including trades, waiver claims, releases, outright assignments, etc.)"

One thing the Indians have in their favor is a lot of guys who can play different positions, especially in the outfield. But Hosey can shift over to second base if necessary and I can see how a guy like Mike Freeman would be valuable.

Fans are always wanting to rank prospects and of course teams are not going to release their internal rankings. But this might be one exception. We should get a good insight into which prospects the Indians are highest on when the taxi squad roster is fully released today.

For me the biggest issue is not who is going to fill out the last few spots on the 20-man, but rather how this season will affect the Indians going forward. Antonetti was quoted recently as saying the Indians' financial losses this season will be "extraordinary". What does that mean for the future?

According to Hoynes:

"A few days ago a national baseball writer told a Cleveland sports talk show that he’d been told that the Indians were going to conduct “a fire sale.”

I believe it, but when? Next month? After the season? They've already been conducting mini fire sales at the end of every season. Kluber, Bauer, and Gomes are already gone in order to reduce payroll. Puig was not resigned. And that was pre-virus when they weren't having huge losses.

Now they expect to have "extraordinary" losses. I'm expecting an extraordinary fire sale. Hoynes mentioned Santana, Hand, and Clevinger in addition to Lindor. This season might be our last window of opportunity for a few years. At the end of this season at the latest I think they'll all be gone and probably Carrasco as well.
The fire sale aspect of this post and the Hoynes quotes....................This would suck.......................:puke:
 
Last edited:

TFIR

In the Rotation
Joined
Mar 4, 2014
Messages
549
Reaction score
589
Points
93
Well, I will say that this would also apply to every single middle or low revenue team. Seeing as this is the case, it wouldn't surprise me to see MLB step in with either some sort of regulation or actual cash flowing to those teams.
 

TFIR

In the Rotation
Joined
Mar 4, 2014
Messages
549
Reaction score
589
Points
93
From the Athletic:

‘I’m good to go’: Terry Francona on opting to manage, new rules and bubble gum

By Zack Meisel Jun 29, 2020 4
By the end of the week, the Indians will be up and running as fully as Major League Baseball’s new protocols will permit.
They’ll host their first full workout on Friday, though smaller groups of players will continue to train at the ballpark until then. Players and coaches are still trickling into town. Upon their arrival, they undergo an intake screening, which includes a COVID-19 test. The first batch returned no positive test results.
Terry Francona returned to Cleveland from his Tucson, Ariz., home about three weeks ago. He chatted with reporters on Monday afternoon from his office at Progressive Field. Francona discussed why he opted to manage, how he’ll motivate players, his takes on the new rules and what he’ll do without his trusty bucket of Dubble Bubble in the dugout.
How much urgency will there be to come together as a team, maybe more quickly in light of this situation?
This is going to be a little different. We need to sit back and respect what we’re going through. And by that, I mean asking 40 guys to sit in the clubhouse just so I can feel good about talking to them isn’t fair. I’ve actually written out some things, and I’ve gotten some help with (translator Augustin Rivero) in Spanish, and we might just set it on their chair, just some thoughts. Because we’re going to have to be willing to give in in some areas. Again, our priority has to be the safety and the health of our guys. And we certainly want to be the best baseball team we can be. But that’s going to help if everybody’s healthy. We’re trying to rely on everything we believe in. That won’t change. But we really need to fall back on that now more than ever just because of all the challenges that are going to be in place.
Have you thought about how differently you’re going to have to manage and instruct given the wearing of a mask, social distancing and all of that stuff?
We’ve tried to walk through every possible scenario, and I guarantee you there’s a hundred that we’ve left out. We’re trying to be extremely respectful to the situation because we all feel if we’re not, we’re going to lose. And by that I mean, guys are going to get sick and it’s not going to work. We’re going to have to do some things differently. I have my mask here where, if I go out in the hallway, I put it on. I want to do the right thing. And everybody’s been pretty good about that. Our guys are normally pretty good about not complaining about stuff. We’ll talk to them. I tried to explain to the trainers today — I said, “Hey, be patient with us. We all want to do the right thing. We all care about baseball and sometimes we get a little ahead of ourselves. So just be patient with us and explain it to us and we’ll do it.”
What kind of a challenge do you think it’s going to be to get guys — not that they’re not enthused — but to get back that zeal and that go-get-it attitude?
If I had the perfect answer, I’d give it to you, but I’d be lying. We’ve never gone through anything like this. I do know that there are a few ways you can look at it. We can either look at it that we’re coming into August and we’re tied for first place with four other teams, or you can shrug your shoulders and roll your eyes and be like, “Yeah, there’s nobody in the stands,” and whatever. I can’t imagine our guys acting like the second. We’re going to have to come up with some of our own enthusiasm and fall back on the things that we believe in as a team, more now than ever, because there aren’t going to be people in the stands. We talk all the time about valuing what it takes to win more than the other teams. That is never going to be more evident than now, and the teams that handle it the best probably are going to give themselves the best chance to win.
You’re a baseball lifer. This is going to be completely unlike anything you’ve ever experienced. Did you get to a point as things were coming together where you thought, “It’s still baseball. It’s better than nothing.”
I’ve never even come close to the “better than nothing.” I’m sitting in my office today and we’re starting to talk about baseball. My palms are — I’m good to go. If I have to put a mask on, that might even help me. It is what you make it. I went through the ’81 season, my rookie year, and they cut the season in half. I don’t remember playing in those games thinking, “Boy, this doesn’t mean anything.” I remember being as nervous as could be and thinking that it was the greatest thing in the world. It is what you make it. I believe in our group, and that’ll be one of our challenges.
Do you have enough pitchers to get every hitter as many live at-bats as they might feel they need to get started?
From talking to (pitching coach) Carl (Willis), I think we actually have way too much pitching, where the hitters are going to be tired. The starters — (Shane) Bieber, every one of them — are out to, at a minimum, 65 pitches, so that’s four innings. We’re going to be breaking this up into morning and afternoon to try to keep smaller pods. These guys are going to get plenty of at-bats. We have to be sensible. We haven’t seen them for three months. We don’t want to just give them 10 at-bats the first day because we’re trying to play catch-up. We’re going to have to walk a fine line there. We’ll communicate with the guys and we’ll listen to them. We’ll take the first three or four days to see how their legs look because we don’t want to hurt anybody.
How close will this be to a normal spring training?
Not close. Not close. First of all, we’re going to play three exhibition games at the end. I’ve never been a big fan of intrasquad games, but we’re going to have to become fans of intrasquad games because we’re going to need to play. That first week, we’ll have a lot of sim-type games. We’ll work into the intrasquad type games, and then we’ll get into, finally, when we play another team. We’re just going to try to get our guys ready the best way we know how. And if we have to make changes, we will.
Again, there’s so much to balance right now. It’s not just baseball. It’s the safety of the players. It’s the cleanliness of the clubhouse. It’s giving guys time to clean it in between the groups. There are a lot of things to think about right now.
In a normal spring training setting, when you have more than five starting pitchers, you guys prefer to stretch them out, and if you have to make a decision, they can go to the bullpen. Is that still the plan for these guys, given all the starters on the roster?
I honestly don’t know. There’s going to be a — I don’t want to say concept — but some guys that are competing to make the team, it may not be entirely fair. I think you guys can understand why. We can’t wait until we play an exhibition game and if somebody hits a home run, he makes the team, or if he strikes out, he doesn’t. There’s going to have to be an element that we look and see how guys look, go on their track records, see where they fit. And we also can carry 30 in the beginning, so that’ll help. But it’s going to be a little difficult.
What are you going to do about bubble gum?
You know what? I actually didn’t chew during the spring, so I haven’t chewed now. It’s been like nine months, so I think I’m in pretty good shape.
How do you go about trying to balance the normal amount of patience you may have with guys at the start of the regular season when there are only 60 games?
I think you have patience when you think it’ll do you the most good. And I think sometimes if you feel like you need to make a move, you do. Baseball is still baseball. I’ve been in positions before where we’ve been tied going into August, and it’s a lot of fun, but there’s still some times where you sit there and think, “I need to be patient. Because if I am, the payoff has a chance to really be rewarding.” Are we perfect in our decision making? No. And I certainly haven’t been. But you try to do the best you can. I mean, if Bieber goes out and gives up four runs in the first inning, we’re not going to take him out of the rotation. We’re going to try to use some judgment there.
What do you think about the differences with the rules this year, with the universal DH and having a runner on second in extra innings?
I like the idea of the universal DH just because we’re in the National League so much. It’s one-third of our games. I really like that. I’m OK with the runner on second starting the 10th inning. I haven’t given it a ton of thought yet. I think it would be exciting. It would certainly be new. … I have no issue with anything they’re trying to do this year to make this work better.
Will you manage more aggressively, given it’s only 60 games?
The game still has to be played. If we’re down 8-0 in the second inning, my answer would be no. We have to understand there’s an urgency that we can’t coast into this, not that you ever would try. But during 162 games, you can play yourself out of a slow start. That may not be the case with a 60-game schedule.

Carlos Carrasco. (Frank Jansky / Getty Images)
How many pitchers do you think you’ll carry?
I honestly don’t know. It could be 15 and 15. I don’t know. It’s a little early. Some of it’s going to depend on health and how stretched out guys are. I think we start off with 17 in a row without a day off, so we’d probably err on the side of having an extra pitcher.
Because of the condensed season, is there a particular team that’s built right for this? Is there a good formula for a 60-game sprint?
I think whatever group handles the challenges that come at you. We’ve all talked about the challenges, but there will be some that we don’t even know yet. Whoever has the ability to adjust, not roll their eyes and embrace what’s coming at us, that’s going to be the team.
I know you have to pitch. I know you have to hit. But if you give yourself a chance to just roll with the punches and accept what’s coming, it has a chance to be fun. If we’re winning games, I’m going to go out on a limb and say we’re probably going to be having fun.
Are you nervous at all, having had health issues in the past?
No. I know I’m probably one of the higher-risk guys because of my age and some of the things that have gone on. But the trainers and the doctors have been terrific. I would rather manage and be around the guys and be around the game than not. I’d be miserable if I didn’t do it. I haven’t given that much thought.
There’s so much routine in baseball. As a manager, have you sat around trying to figure out new routines for pitchers and such to make this work?
Yeah, we have. Nothing is set in stone because we may have to adjust as we go. The starting pitchers, for example, they’re not supposed to sit in the dugout during the game. We could have them sit up in the stands, but that seems a little bit silly. So maybe we’ll just have them come in a little later on those days and they can get their work done during the game. It goes against everything we’ve always believed in as a team. Because we’ve always talked about the starters being there for the position players. But this is different this year. So, we need to adapt a little bit. Any time we have open space, like in the weight room where guys can get work done, we might as well take advantage of it. That’s one way we can make an adjustment.
Have you been getting fun texts from the guys saying they’re ready to go, any signs of enthusiasm?
Everybody that I’ve talked to, it’s amazing … as an industry we haven’t found a way to put our best foot forward yet in negotiations, which is disappointing. But once we get to the game, it’s pretty good. It was amazing: The day after we were like, “Hey, we’re ready to play,” I came in to swim at the ballpark and I ran into five or six of the guys, and it was like the button turned on. Everybody was smiling. I don’t know that we do a good enough job of making people understand how much we love the game we play. And that’s our fault. This game is really special to the majority of us, and I just wish we put a better foot forward. The business part, we haven’t quite got that right yet.
(Top photo: Nuccio DiNuzzo / Getty Images)
 

September Through December Server Costs

Total amount
$1,200.00
Goal
$1,200.00
Donation ends:

Advertisement

Radio

Top