6.30.2008

I'll Have What Jhonnys Having

For some odd reason, Jhonny Peralta hit everything thrown in his direction tonight.

5-5, three doubles, three runs batted in, a home run and three runs scored.

That brought his average all the way up to .257, a little bit more respectable. He's also had seven straight hits.

And all of a sudden, Eric Wedge is looking a little bit like a genius.

Now come on here..

The comeback came a little short.. The second Swisher home run hurt a bit, and the fact that Jeremy gave up both of those jacks with TWO outs.

It also stung that Jeremy gave up the three spot after we took the lead. It looked like it was going to be a good night offensively and it was. But the pitching did not hold up their end of the bargain.

Hey, thumbs up to the bullpen tonight. Squirrelly Cheeks Mujica and Joe Borowski pitched two scoreless and sandwiched in between that Mastny had the three innings. For five innings of work, one run is not bad.

Shin-Soo Choo had two hits for two RBI as well.

The Indians did out hit the White Sox, so that's encouraging. Gotta get a better starting effort though, and oh look at that.

Tomorrow we got a doooooozy of a pitching match-up. Cliff Lee will try to stop ANOTHER three game losing streak against John Danks who's been awesome this year.

[BOXSCORE]

Scott Elarton placed on Restricted List

Looks like I was totally wrong.. Turns out it was a strange move, because Scott Elarton is going on the restricted list.

The report is "personal reasons" so we probably won't know much more than that for the most part.

Oh well. Wonder how much time Mastny will get. I wanna see him tried out a little, he did a good job in Buffalo this year to date.

It just proves what kind of year this is. You can't pinpoint what moves are happening at all.

What is up Shapiro's Sleeve? Mastny To Be Called Up

Could the Indians have made a move?

I'm not suggesting something has been done. But this is really odd to me.

Anthony Castrovince has posted that Tom Mastny has been called up to the major league team today.

What's the big deal?

Well so far no corresponding move.

Castrovince said he will post it when he can.

What could be that move?

Someone getting sent down? Who would be sent down at this point?

Did someone get released? It had to be.

Or maybe traded?

Who knows..

I have a feeling there is a big shakeup coming.. And this is the start of it.. I mentioned it in the Minor League update the other day. Mastny is tearing it up in Buffalo, the call up is well deserved.

I'm gonna guess..

Rick Bauer got released
Dellucci got released or DFAed or traded

or this would be a big shocker.

Andy Marte is gone.

Something is happening here.. More Later..

Morning Update: It ain't over till you're mathematically out! Get me a bagel!

I think...?

Paul Byrd is pretty sure that if they are mathematically in the race, that they have a chance.

Well Paul that's all well and dandy, but if you keep pitching like this we will be out of the race sooner than later.

This is the road trip though. They need to make something happen with the three top dogs in the division.. If not, then well good bye! Here's your defining moment.

Masa Kobayashi hasn't pitched more than 58 innings in a year. Well Wedge thinks he'll pass that by far.

They are keeping an eye on him though. With him being the one guy who has been close to stable out of that pen, they have no choice but to continue to use him when hes needed.

Masasan has been good, he sometimes has those where did that come from inning, but he's been as solid as you can ask for coming over from Japan.

Jamey Carroll finally got a day off, I would have waited till today, but Wedge decided he wanted Carroll for this entire divisional run. To his surprise, he was on the All-Star ballot for the players.

Wedge by the way said that the "element of surprise" is gone now that the "replacements" have been in there for a good time.

From the same article, Grady Sizemore has joined the Progressive Field 50 home run club.

A little tidbit I learned this weekend on Grady by the way. He's three away from 100 on his career. That was fast...

You've seen me say it.. The players have said it, and Eric Wedge has said it.

Now.. Chris Herring says it.

I don't know who Chris Herring is....

Kelly Shoppach has a few good quotes concering Adam Dunn on Sunday.

On Laffey hitting Dunn twice, "Whatever you do, don't make this guy charge the mound. He's bigger than both of us." (Plain Dealer)

Then on the collison with Dunn at the plate, ''No hard feelings,'' Shoppach said, smiling. ''I was able to ask him if that's all he had. It was a clean play. I was just joking with him.'' (ABJ)

You can blame the lack of attendance on whatever you want. Weather, poor performance. I like to blame it on the midges, but whatever.

But yeah it's been bad. I'd blame it on the bad play.

Bill Livingston says the injuries are not to blame for the poor performance. I sort of agree with him, but the injuries are a part of it.

Minor League Update: Mulhern to DL, Rincon Activated

The Bisons have activated new reliever Juan Rincon to counter the move of Ryan Mulhern going to the Disabled List.

The Indians fully believe that Rincon will be in their bullpen sometime this year. It's just a matter of what he does at Buffalo and what they see needs to be fixed.

For the record, Armando Camacaro was placed on the DL as well, Yamid Haad who was on reserve after accepting the Triple A assignment was activated.

The Bisons swept the double header the other night. over Scranton/Wilkes-Barre Yankees. Yesterday they won 7-5, and tonight they go for the four game sweep.

Akron keeps winning and Trevor Crowe keeps hitting. The guy went deep again yesterday and had two RBI.

Kinston wins as well and they have the best record in the Carolina League.

To prove so, Josh Tomlin and Jason Denham took home both CL awards for this past week.

Tomlin is the pitcher of the week, and Denham is the player of the week. Denham went 7-14 with six runs batted in

Josh Tomlin's award is well deserved though, as he officially threw a one hit shutout. He only threw six innings because of rain, but it's officially a complete game shutout.

6.29.2008

Marty Join The Party!

Everyone in the lineup got a hit today, except Andy Marte.

Man, not real good back up for the ones that want to support him. Then again can you blame him with the playing time he gets?

Like I said, everyone got a hit today. Benny Fresh had the late two run jack that got your hopes up. Grady had his 19th to pull into a tie for the league lead.

Aaron Laffey was playing with fire the whole time, and he finally got burned in the 5th. He just kept giving up hits and eventually home run capped it off.

I thought we could get back into it. Had Casey not gotten greedy with the double it would have been two runs on the Choo phantom triple.

Cruddy series to lose.. Especially since they swept the earlier one.

Tomorrow is the first day of the rest of the season in my mind. Just over the halfway point by a game, and the division is lined up for us three series in a row. It's now or never for the Indians.

Gavin Floyd and Jeremy Sowers.. Oh Boy

[BOXSCORE]

Paul Byrd will let you hit his fastball

I'm not real into it tonight.... I also promise this is the last time I'll use that kind of title.. I think the joke is over..

Most of my energy was spent writing this lovely gem.

Here's what I got to say..

Casey Blake went 3-3 and his average has quietly perked up to .281. Hmm hitting at HOME and the road will do that for ya Casey.

Fear the Fu Man Choo, Sal Fasano gets two hits and a walk.

I love Fasano already. He's got manager written all over him and I think we gotta sign him up somewhere.

I also think that if he hits a home run this year, everyone on the team should grow a Fu Man Choo to the best of their abilities.

Paul Byrd absolutely sucked. He got helped out in the first few innings with some great defense(Sal Fasano), and some lucky breaks. But they eventually got to him.

The offense didn't get enough lucky breaks. They had guys on just about every inning and every other inning there was a legit scoring opportunity. You need to get those guys in.

Tomorrow we got Aaron Laffey against a joker named Bronson Arroyo. We better pound him into salt.

[BOXSCORE]

6.28.2008

Morning Update: Hafner's shoulder only at 50%

It's 11:45, maybe if I hurry I can beat the Noon Deadline so this doesn't become "Afternoon Update." GO GO GO GO!

Jamey Carroll has not sat a game since taking over and I don't think I blame Wedge. I'd play him every day against the National League, and why not? He played in it for the last few years.

Jamey has been giving Wedge and the team pointers on the NL.

Anthony Castrovince is always digging for a new story. Which is why I like him.. That and he's Italian and his brother does the local sports here in Youngstown. Trust me, Anthony is the better of the two.. No Offense Bill.

BUT, for some strange reason he talked to Andy Marte... Marte provided some quotables about his playing time.. Here Here..

"I'm still young," said the 24-year-old Marte. "All I need is playing time. If not here, maybe somewhere else. But I'd like to stay here. I like this organization and the way they've treated me. I like it here, but I've got to think about my career."

We all believe that something needs to be done here.. If they fall out of the race, Casey Blake must be the second guy to go. We need to give Marte a real shot at showing he can play. They can't have this guy hanging over their head next year.

So it turns out the bat C.C. Sabathia used was just a loner from Adam Dunn. Dunn planed to go get the bat back. Hopefully C.C. used all the power it had in or Dunn doesn't use it this series. Garsh.

Since I brought him up (7 minutes to noon), I forgot about something on C.C. yesterday.

Jon Heyman of SI rounded up some stuff on Sabathia that likes.

Heyman said the Tribe will probably not committ to a fifth year for C.C., uh-oh. May I propose a mutual option?

There are as many as 12 teams interested and all the contenders have at least asked, excluding the Cardinals.

C.C. could be looking for 125 million.. Yikes, over 6 years thats 20 million, and over 7 thats around 17, but closer to 18.

And finally the Indians probably won't give anyone a window to negotiate.. Why should they? Unless of course the other team sweetins the pot.

Cliff Lee is superstisious. Not really, but he steps over the chalked lines. Carmona hops over them, but Lee tries to make it subtle. I would do the same thing.

Also, Paul Byrd's book is in and he gave it to the media members. I'm thinking of picking it up when it comes out, just to see what's up about this steroid use. Straight from the Byrd himself.

Finally we got injury updates on Fausto Carmona and Travis Hafner.

Shoot, it's noon.

Welcome to the Afternoon update...

First Fausto Carmona...

He played catch yesterday and also ran sprints. The plan is to get him throwing on a mound for a bullpen session in the next week, then go on some rehab assignments. Wedge is pinpointing right after the All-Star break for Carmona.

The news is less-exciting about Travis Hafner, who could be out for a longgggg time.

40-50% is the shape his shoulder is at. They want him to get it to 75% before they even think of letting him swing a bat and what not. There is really no time table, but Lonnie Soloff is supposed to talk to the media today sometime, so maybe he can provide a better insight into this 40-50% thing.

Minor League Update: Rondon To Play in Futures Game

Every year on the Sunday before the All-Star Break, the MLB gets together a bunch of the world's best players to play a little thing called the Futures Game. ESPN usually televises it and you can see some of the best prospects in the minor leagues.

The Indians are usually well represented, especially on the World team, but this year they only had one selection.

K-Tribe Starting Pitcher Hector Rondon has been chosen to represent the Indians at New York next month.

You can check out the rosters here: US Team, World Team.

Congrats to Hector, and once next year rolls around I'm expecting the game to have a lot more Indians.

Akron laid a smacking on Reading last night 16-6. That man appeared again, Trevor Crowe went 3-5 and has a grand slam. He also scored four times. Josh Rodriguez also had three hits with thee runs batted in.

Kinston hit four home runs last night, including two from Beau Mills who is starting to get locked in.

The Captains swept a double header yesterday.

6.27.2008

C.C. Sabathia dares you to hit his slider.

Wait a minute....

Two straight games of 8 inning shut out ball?

What the hell is going on here!

Then offense to support it?

The world must be coming to an end as we know it. The Tribe have won two straight in great fashion, manufacturing some two out runage after Sir Franklin struck out with runners on 2nd and 3rd and noooooooobody out! Kelly Shoppach had a sac-fly followed by line drive double by Grady Sizemore, who looked as if he saved the day in the 5th inning with a solo shot and rain coming down.

Sparkplug threw in a single up the middle, and thanks to some sloppy defense he got to second in addition to Garko scored almost surprisingly on the Grady double.

Let's also mention that play Grady made early in the game. I swear to god I thought he broke his ankle, but man did he go up and get that sucker.

CC? Oh yeah 8 innings, 4 hits, 2 walks and 11 of those things we like to call strikeouts.

Looking good here.. Jamey Carroll's average is up over .300 now by the way.

Tomorrow it will be Free Money Night, so I encourage you go and get your free money. You might also see Paul Byrd pitch a good game, but I wouldn't hold your breath. Johnny Cueto for the Reds from Cincinnati.

Oh hey did everyone catch DAVE BURBA in the booth tonight? I think he did radio as well, but man. Gotta love Burba. They showed his home run as well. DAVE BURBA!!

Maybe that's where all this good karma is coming from.

DAVE BURBA!! BRING HIM BACK!

[BOXSCORE]

Blake drumming up interest; C.C. Suitors We like

The always great Ken Rosenthal has a new article out and he talks about a few Indians.

Of course on of them has to be C.C. Sabathia.

The Brewers and Rays are two contenders for C.C. by virtue of their deep farm system and the fact that they are in the race right now.

Like I've mentioned before. A team like Tampa or Milwaukee and Oakland are ones that we Indians' fans need to support if in fact he is traded.

A) Deep Farm System, We would be sure to get some good talent

B) Not so deep pockets, so they probably wouldn't negotiate or attempt to sign C.C. to a long term contract as noted by Rosenthal. Thus they wouldn't need or want a "window" to sign him.

C) They really would rather have the draft picks, which are very useful considering they are both very high. Those teams are good with their draft picks too.

D) They aren't the Yankees

If a deal has to happen, these are the teams you want to see C.C. end up on. They've got loads of talent to make us happy and fill some needs and it still keeps the slight chance of us making a run at him in the off-season, whcih I know is a pipe dream, but it can't hurt to have that.

Rosenthal also mentions Casey Blake's name as having some interest around the majors. Of course the guy who has been knocking in most of our runs is going to. Remember he is a Free Agent and teams will love his versatility.

The possible landing spots, New York(Mets), Oakland, LA(Dodgers).

I'm all for trading Casey Blake as we know. Get a decent guy in return would not hurt at all. Those are the moves Shapiro lives for (Broussard/Perez for Choo/Cabrera ring a bell?).

Morning Update: Casey Blake, master of the deadpan

Hey here's a neat little tidbit.

Despite not starting the year on the active roster, Ben Francisco leads the entire American League in outfield assists with 9.. Benny, your thoughts..

"I didn't know it was that many," he admitted." (Indians.com)

Yeah, neither did I. From the department of great quotes, I now give you Casey Blake's thoughts on playing shortstop the other night.

"Omar was taking some notes," Blake said. (Indians.com)

I swear, between Hafner and Blake, we have two of the most dry humored guys ever. No wonder those two are good friends.

Wedge in all seriousness praised Blake for being an athlete.. He then openly admitted how much of a man-crush he has on his fellow Wichita State Shocker..

Kidding.

We will have some updates on Fausto Carmona and Travis Hafner today, yay!

The Lord of the Flies will be playing catch today.. Eric Wedge said in his presser he hopes to have a schedule for Carmona down fairly soon.

Pronkilicious will be doing some more strength exercises and Wedge was pretty adamant that was all he was doing.. In other words.. NO SWINGING :blink blink blink blink BUGEYE:

Speaking of Pronk, and rerally there is nothing today so far.. Which is why I've got silly quotes from Casey Blake....

The Pronk Bar has made a reapperance..

Rick Bauer and C.C. Sabathia snagged a few at the top of Haf's locker.

Oh.. Yeah and of course.. C.C. The daily grind here of reporting the latest rumors.

Buster Olney says Rays could be a sleeper.. I hope so. Give me Dave Price, no kidding, but really they got a deep farm system.

There was a rumor the Angels could pursue a Sabathia deal.. Well wait, that just contradicts the rumor that they would stand pat.... That's Rumors for Ya!

and of course San Francisco had to ask C.C. if he would consider San Francisco... I think he would if they didn't suck.. But his answer surprised me.

From the same place of the Angels rumor, which is Jayson Stark of ESPN. He speculates that the Indians could make Rafael Betancourt, Rafael Perez and Franklin Gutierrez available. I don't think Perez will be, left-handers in the pen are too hard to come by. I really wonder if Betancourt wouldn't be a bad guy to shop. Like I mentioned, I love Jeff Stevens, we have Jensen Lewis, Perez. He hasn't displayed that control he did last year, maybe it was a one year fluke?

Minor League Update: Bullpen Shakeup Could Be Next for Stevens

There's been a lot of shake up in the bullpens lately if you haven't paid attention. Luis Perdomo was sent to Akron, in response Vinnie Pestano was sent to Kinston. The next move could be Randy Newsome to Buffalo.

For that to happen though, would mean that Buffalo would lose their closer. Their closer is... Jeff Stevens, a guy I really like.

All of this means Stevens could be on his way to Cleveland soon.

Make sure you read the Minor League Happenings every week. There is a lot of great stuff in there, including more on Stevens and his possible call up.

Speaking of Buffalo, they won last night. Jordan Brown hit a solo shot and went 3-3.

The big news.. Jensen Lewis went three PERFECT innings with three punch outs. That's what you want to see outta the kid.

Akron's new pitcher, Luis Perdomo factored into the win last night. Perdomo came in for two shutout innings of relief and got the win.

Tony Sipp watch... Sipp is on rehab with the GCL Indians and last night he pitched two perfect innings with a strikeout.

6.26.2008

Cliff Lee Dares You To Hit His Fast Ball

Has anyone pitched with more control this year than Cliff Lee?

I've never seen someone get as many strikeouts as Cliff Lee has, based on control alone.

He's spotting his fastball on the corner, to the point where these guys just don't want to swing at it. They can't hit it, or at least they hope it's a ball.

But it ain't!

Here's the line for you tonight.

8 innings, 4 hits, 1 silly run, 1 walk, 11 sit-downs and here was his strike-ball ratio.

79 strikes to 32 balls.

That's over 7o % strikes. For every 10 pitches he threw, he only threw three balls.

That doesn't even equal a walk.

One of his better outings, despite the earned run in my mind. Cliff was at his best tonight.

What can you say about that Jamey Carroll guy though? His average is up to .293, he knocked in two runs tonight with a triple and a single.

Mr. Cleanup hitter Jhonny Peralta had a two run double to finish that up. I was going to seriously destroy him if he didnt come through in that situation.

Ryan Garko was bumped to the 8th hole.. If that doesn't tick him off and ignite him, I don't know what will.

It wasn't even Jumpin' Joe tonight.. We had 9 pitch three out Joe... That was even with an error by Blake.. Four hitters, 9 pitches, bing bang boom.

I'm feeling good now.. We got this good news about making one more run at C.C. We avoided the sweep. We got those silly Reds coming in, interleague play hasn't been kind to us, and we need to end it.. Luckily we've won the past two interleague weekend series matchups after droping the middle of the week ones..

Won SD, Lost Colorado, Won LA, Los SF.. Let's keep up the trend here.

Tomorrow to kick it off, it's DA BIGUN.. C.C. Sabathia faces off against a dude named Daryl Thompson. Making his second start of the season.

[BOXSCORE]

One more attempt at signing CC in the works?

MLBTR has put up a story from a Yankee writer in New Jersey.

Take it for what you want.

"According to a major-league executive, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because he was discussing a player not on his team, the Cleveland Indians are making a last-ditch attempt to sign ace Sabathia to a contract extension before trading him." (NJ.com)

So..

Well? C.C. cut off talks.. But this is gonna be it.. If he doesn't say yes.. Then that has to mean you trade him.

This could be their Mark Buehrle move. They may be out of it, but if they can get their guy signed up now, why not?

No one expected Buehrle to be re-signed like that. Certainly C.C. is no Mark Buerhle and he'll want a better contract.

But, the last ditch effort doesn't surprise me.

We'll see if this is true. I hope it is. Either way, C.C. will walk.. He'll either be an Indian with a new contract or finishing the 2008 year with a new team. Mark Shapiro has handled this situation very well so far.

Omar Vizquel and how we've arrived to this point

Omar Vizquel. The modern legend of Cleveland and an idol to all.

No one has ever gotten the response Omar got Tuesday in his long anticipated return to the city he won eight gold gloves in.

Not even Kenny Lofton when he returned to the Tribe last year for a playoff run.

Omar was the one constant from the 95 world series run to the dismantling and eventually the rebuilding.

I won't focus on Omar and his career here. It was awesome, and it deserves to stand alone. I've read his autobiography and I suggest, even though its years old, you go check it out and read it. You can learn so much more about the Indians' greatest shortstop ever.

What I want to talk about is how Omar left.

I believe it was the right time.

Omar knew it, the fans knew it, and the organization knew it.

Omar's time was up, and it was the perfect chance to part ways and move on to the future.

You can say what you want about Jhonny Peralta. But Omar wasn't going to be in the Tribe uniform for ever.

I hear a lot of people bash the organization for the move. It's simply one you cannot continue to look back on and say "Oh yeah real brilliant move there Shapiro!"

Does this team go to the ALCS with Omar Vizquel and not Jhonny Peralta?

I don't think so. Peralta was a big part of that team, he had clutch hits and some real good playoff games for them last year.

It was simply the time for Omar to move on in his career.

The fan base is still really bitter about the fact that they moved on, but most need to realize this. Mark Shapiro is trying to win and sustain the winning.

A lot of people didn't like when they traded him to Seattle for Carlos Guillen. Truth is, that would have been a steal of a move.

Omar wasn't in the long term plans. As much as people love the man, they have to put it to rest that he is gone.

It's awesome to have him back for one last visit(probably) and he deserves EVERYTHING that he got these past few days. I'm glad he got to come back to Cleveland for the series.

But let's get over him. He is gone, he isn't coming back and letting him walk when they did was the right move.

Morning Update: Last Place is the Loneliest Place

Well it's official.. The day you didn't want to see.

Surging Detroit passed us up awhile ago, and now the interleague dominating Kansas City Royals have sent us to the basement with a swift kick to the temple. Our fingers are barely holding on to that 5th step as our feet dangle just above the ground.

Can we find our footing?

Bah I don't know.

By the by, because Jorge Velavidivichi (I'm done trying to figure out where the A goes okay?) played short last night, and Jhonny Peralta was the DH, they needed to do some shuffling after Marty came in to hit for him.

So Casey Blake made his first apperance at short. He has now played the outfield, first, third and rumor has it he can play second base as well. I figured that's what they would do and more Carroll to short. I think Wedge is just trying to have fun.

You gotta love the headline on this article though.

"Jorge Velavidivichi Gets First Start with Tribe"
.............. Infielders time with club could be coming to an end soon.

Well Shucks.

I found a real good tidbit in this article from Paul Hoynes..

Or bad depending on how you look at it.

The Indians drafted Tim Lincecum in 2005.. But of course he was drafted in the 42nd round. He didn't sign and of course that was a good decision for him, he was a first round pick in 2006.

I really like the young guy. Too bad.

Michael Taylor of Bleacher Report attended the Return of Omar Game and he shared his thoughts on Omar's time with the Tribe.

Obviously there isn't much news out there right now, which is why I'm talking about Jorge Velavidivichi and Tim Lincecum. But The DiaTribe has a well rounded entry about a double standard, and the reaction guys like Jim Thome and Manny Ramirez get in comparison to Omar's heros welcome.

Also, entirely not related to C.C. Sabathia in anyway, but count the Angels out of the sweepstakes if they were to get into it.

Los Angeles will not be making a blockbuster mid-season deal.

As this series wraps up, I'll be giving my thoughts on Omar later today.

Minor League Update: Two More Picks Sign

Jason Cooper probably would rather not have the distinction, but at least it isn't something like a strikeout record.

Cooper is an outfielder with Buffalo and his first action came in 2004. He is now second place on the all-time RBI list. Not sure what that says about Cooper, who is 27 years of age. Will he ever make it to the majors? Not sure, probably not with the Tribe at least.

Buffalo lost last night, former number one pick Bryan Bullington shut the Herd down for 6.1 innings of work, allowing just one hit. The Indians' bullpen finished it off without anymore hits.

David Briggs posting in Mike Harrington's blog mentioned Bullington was taken with the number one overall pick a few years ago, but Dave Littlefield basically said "We took him because we feel the safest about him and he can contribute faster than anyone." Well neither of that is working our right now.

Asdrubal Cabrera went 0-4 last night, he did no have that one hit.

Trevor Crowe knocked in two more runs last night as the Aeros slipped up against Bowie. Bowie now pulls into a tie for 2nd and Akron leads the division by 2.5 games. Nathan Panther is off the DL and he too knocked in a couple of runs.

It looks as if Luis Perdomo is on his way to Akron. He's listed on their roster as of today. Perdomo was the closer for Kinston.

The Lake County Captains got swept.

Two more draft picks signed, giving the Indians 19 of 50. 14 of their first 21 have also signed.

Matt Langwell out of Rice is a right handed pitcher taken with the 11th pick.

Nate Recknagel out of Michigan (Go Blue) is a first baseman taken with the 19th pick. Mahoning Valley has Brock Simpson, a listed outfielder playing first, so they could use Recknagel.

6.25.2008

How do you cure a 17 million dollar pitcher?

Give him a start against the ailing offense of the Cleveland Indians.

Barry Zito certainly had a fun time out there, giving up three hits through six innings. He gave up another hit and eventually was charged with a run, but for the most part, he baffled the Tribe hitters.

I caught the first two innings.. I had some radio duties, so I missed the middle. But I caught Jeremy Sowers give up the runs early.. For the most part, that isn't a bad start. Simply put though you need to do more than 4 hits against Barry Zito.

Just really a bad offensive performance, and bad is understating it. I mean, for the most part, Barry Zito got that curveball falling in for strikes.. He isn't a former Cy Young winner for nothing. They could not touch that curveball, and from what I saw, they dared him to throw it for strikes. He did just that

I did notice his arms lot changed when he threw the fastball. It was more of a sidearm, but when his arm came over the top a bit more, you could tell it was a curveball.

Choo had the lone RBI by the by..

Tomorrow we look to avoide the sweep... :sigh: You shall see Cliff Lee taking on Matt Cain.. Should be a fun one to watch pitching wise. Offensively, it will be another dagger in the leg.

[BOXSCORE]

Morning Update: Sabathia could have missed his chance to stay in Cleveland

It isn't exactly morning now is it?

Just a quick tidbit on the Juan Rincon pick up. Wedge plans on seeing Rincon in the majors this year. They wanna figure him out in Buffalo first, but if things work out, this could be a Bobby Howry type pick up for the Indians.

Tony Graffanino on the other hand is going to be awhile, they want to monitor him physically.

Let's tackle the C.C. stuff early.

C.C. Sabathia will not get that Johan Santana contract from the Yankees. At least that is what it looks like.

Teams might finally be wising up. If the Yankees aren't willing to give C.C. the Santana like 7 year-100 +++ deal. Then who will?

You people might continue to laugh at me. But Johan Santana getting traded and getting that contract might have been the best thing for the Indians in more ways than one.

Teams can point to those guys like Barry Zito and Santana and say.. Hey look, we aren't taking that risk.

C.C. left a very good offer on the table, it was a Peavy like deal, and if he'd rather have the Santana deal, then good luck to him. He is going to be sorely sorry when he tests the market, doesn't get that Santana deal and ends up pitching in a place other than Cleveland.

Paul Dolan was on Bruce Drennan's show yesterday and he said the same thing about what they offered him. If C.C. Sabathia is looking for a deal like Santana's, he will not get it in Cleveland. They felt something closer to what Peavy got is perfect. Remember Jake Peavy won the Cy-Young too, so it isn't like he isn't getting paid Award Winning Pitcher money.

In other news, the Indians aren't even sure they want to trade him yet.

That's just awesome isn't it? I did a complete breakdown on what the Tribe might target if they were to trade him.. You can read it here..

Here is your Hafner and Carmona update that we've been waiting for.

Fausto Carmona will play catch this week. Yeah how awesome is that?

Travis Hafner will continue to do absolutely nothing until later this week. From there they will decide if he can resume activities.

Riveting, isn't it?

Now let's make the rounds on Omar Vizquel.

He had a press conference yesterday that I got a chance to watch. I found it funny as all get out that he felt he could go right into managing without testing the waters in the minor leagues. Gotta love his confidence.

Anyway, the ovation was as expected, and I heard going down to his presser he shook just about everyones hand and even went early.

You can read Omar's response to how the fans and team greated his return. He was really moved.

Terry Pluto shared his always appreciated perspective on one of the greatest shortstops to play the game.

You can read about and hear the entire press conference here. This is one quote from Omar that I really enjoyed hearing. Early in his Indians' career he made three errors in a game. Safe to say that would be the last time that ever happened.

"I think there's a part of me that made me a man that day," Vizquel said. "I think it was the best thing for me, to say to the reporters what was going through my mind about what happened that day. I think, to this day, that took a big weight off my back, expressing my feelings that day. I think it was one of the best moments for me in showing my feelings."

I talked about Paul Dolan on the All Bets are Off Show. Well he gave Shapiro and Wedge votes of confidences essentially yesterday. You didn't expect any heads to roll on this. Bill Bevasi, John Gibbons, Willie Randolph and John McLaren were all on the hot seat, and their teams simply didn't perform with the talent they were given.

The Indians have injuries galore, and you can't place that blame on Wedge or Shapiro.

Minor League Update: Kinston All-Stars Come Up Big

John Halama pitched seven strong for the Herd last night.

He allowed just three hits, one being a solo home run against Indianapolis. He struck out four and walked none.

Asdrubal Cabrera had three more hits last night, his average keeps climbing and he is now around .456. Looks like he wants to get back in the worst way.

How about Tom Mastny? He had the hold last night, his ERA is 1.90. If this bullpen keeps struggling I don't see why Mastny should be in Buffalo. Jeff Stevens got the save.

In other Bisons news, not only did they add Graffanino and Rincon, who right now are on reserve. They got back Yamid Haad, who was designated by the Indians when they got Sal Fasano. He'll probably be the backup now for Gimenez while Camacaro goes back to Akron.

The K-Tribe All-Stars were big in last nights CAL-CAR All-Star game, which saw the Carolina League All-Stars win 3-1.

Niuman Romero had one at bat, a walk, that scored a run, the third run that is.

Josh Tomlin pitched a solid inning of relief with no walks or hits and a strikeout.

Then Luis Perdomo, the K-Tribe closer struck out the final batter in the game for the Save.

Kaimi Mead pitched a solid 5 innings for the Scrappers last night. Five hits, three strikeouts no runs.

6.24.2008

Game Recap?

It was supposed to be a fun day.

Omar was supposed to come back, ya know.. We were supposed to beat up on them. All would be good.

But Omar's squeeze play(when have we seen that before?) would be the difference in the score, and would be the final straw in me jamming my foot through the television.

I really don't feel like going over this game. I'm just not in the mood for it. Laffey pitched great, the error in which the ball hit the player and rolled into center field ticked me off in the worst way.

Again with the pinch hitting of Marte.

Do we realize this guy has played in like 23 games, and has only gotten 50 at bats?

He's had 7 hits.. I mean, Wedge is just killing this kids career or at least his FAIR opportunity to have one.

What.........Ever...

Tomorrow. Jeremy Sowers and The 100 million dollar blow.. If we don't lay the smackdown on Barry Zito tomorrow, it's over.

[BOXSCORE]

Indians Sign Two For Buffalo: Rincon, Graffanino

I was hoping the Tribe could go out and get this guy, and they did.

Juan Rincon of the Twins was released awhile ago. He used to be their best set up guy and has recently has sort of just lost it all.

He declined to be sent to Triple A, and now the Indians have picked him up and sent him to Buffalo. You never know with this type of move, he used to have success, so maybe he can find it again.

They also added veteran infielder Tony Graffanino, former Royal, Brewer, Red Sox and probably a gazillion other teams. He won't play right away, but he will be working on and recovering from knee surgery.

No word on the corresponding roster moves, but I'm sure Graffanino will go on the DL and the Bisons bullpen will have to lose someone.

Morning Update: More CC and More Omar

It is a very slow morning with the off-day yesterday, and because of that. You get more OMAR and more CC. Just what you wanted, I know, isn't it great? A former Indian and a most likely-soon to be-former Indian.

Sucky.

Mark Dent talks about Omar Vizquel's return to Cleveland from a different perspective. This will be the first time he is in the visitors dugout, rather than in the home one.

Bill Livingston of the Plain Dealer talks about the unforgettable magic that Omar provided.

As for the crowds? I hope it's JAM packed tonight to give Omar a proper welcoming. Shelden Ocker provides his perspective on Omar. I can't go, or I would. But I plead with you to go if you get the chance. Even if you can't go today, go tomorrow and check out the legend. Especially if you have a young kid who didn't get to see Omar in his glory days.

He is one guy that the Indians' fans need to pass down to their children. I'm going to be doing my opinion on Omar and how he left sometime soon. I think enough time has passed between him leaving for us to get a very fair view of it.

If you want to read what more Indians' fans have to say about Omar, check out this article over at Bleacher Report. I helped contribute to it, and every week the round table of Tribe fans get together to discuss the current happenings as well.

Steph Storm talks about the two young Tribe players who are trying to fix themselves in Buffalo. Jensen Lewis and Asdrubal Cabrera are having different results so far, but I'm sure we haven't seen the last of either this year.

And of course, your daily C.C. Sabathia update thanks to MLBTR.com

This time we get some information on the Phillies and their trading chips.

You can count out Jason Werth, but aside from Victorino there aren't many noticeable names for me at least. I love Victorino, he is talented as all get out. He can run, throw, play defense and his bat is solid. He'd easily appease Tribe fans because he could hit second, or even make most people's fantasy of Grady in the three hole come true.

The rest are prospects that you can view by clicking the link. MLBTR links to their statistics. All of them are in AA ball or lower, which I don't think is a good fit for the Indians. They are going to want a few guys that are a lot closer to contributing than that.

Dennis Manoloff of the Plain Dealer is posing the question about C.C. now. He ponders what the Tribe need to be thinking in this situation and what options they need to be weighing.

I have seen nothing on Fausto Carmona yet. He was supposed to be evaluated today. I'm sure Castrovince will blog it sooner or later.

Minor League Update: Herr Dealt; Captains Starters Thriving

Big update this morning on the Minor Leagues. The Bisons lost another player.

Aaron Herr, who used to be in the Cincinnati Reds organization, is going back.

Herr was traded to the Reds for Cash Considerations. Yay, Free Money.

To take his spot on the roster, Buffalo gets infielder extraordinaire Chris De La Cruz up from Kinston.

The Herd meanwhile lost last night in a close one. Asdrubal Cabrera lead the game off with his first Bisons' home run. Drubby also went 3-4 with two runs batted in. His season average with the Bisons is up to .434.

Jensen Lewis gave up two earned last night for the loss.

Walk off city in Akron last night. A walk off sac fly by infielder Brandon Pinckney gave the Aeros a 11-10 winnar over Bowie. That divsion lead keeps growing with every win over the Bay Sox, who are now third in the division, a game and half behind Harrisburg. The Aeros hold a 4 game lead over Harrisburg.

Eastern League Player of the Week goes to another Aero. This time it's outfielder Trevor Crowe who ripped it up last week. Crowe went 13-28 with a coupel jacks and eight runs knocked in.

After all the rain outs and what not, the GCL Indians finally won a game. They moved to 1-3 on the year defeated in the GCL Phillies. It was the drafees making an impact, Third Baseman Adam Abraham and Short Stop Kevin Fontanez.

As we all know, the Lake County Captains are just loaded with starters this year. They seem to be have the magic they had in 2003 when Fausto Carmona lead the Captains to a historic season.

Tony Lastoria has a great article on Ryan Morris and the Indians' strategy with the younger starters in Lake County. The Captains staff needs to be commended for the job they've done the past few years. This year is no exception, they might be providing a few more arms within a few years.

A while ago the Indians extended their deal with Kinston to remain the High-A affiliate of the Indians. Now the Indians have reached a deal with Akron for the Aeros to remain the Indians Double A affiliate.

The writing is on the wall for Buffalo and their fanbase. They really love the Bisons up there, but unfortunately next year this team will become the Columbus Something Or Others.. Check out Mike Harrington's blog on the side for updates, he believes that two possible teams that could pick the Bisons up are Toronto and the New York Mets. Both don't exactly excite Harrington, and really can you blame him? Toronto and NY are both closer to Buffalo than Cleveland is, but the Herd is always a competitive team when Cleveland was their parent club.

The Cal-Car All Star Game Is Tonight! Cheer on our K-Tribers!

6.23.2008

Morning Update: Here Comes Omar!

I have a quick update on the Fasano Facial Hair Watch. I hear someone mention the minor league team that Sal Fasano played for didn't allow the facial hair. He told them it puts the fans in the seats and that they should have let him keep it. I agree 100%

If you were thinking Coors Field and Chavez Ravine look different from an outfielders perspective, Joel Skinner agrees.

"Here it looks like you're playing at a Little League field," said Skinner, of Dodger Stadium. "It looks like the outfielders are right on top of you. At Coors Field the yard is so big, you can hardly see the outfielders." (Plain Dealer)

The Tribe struck out 61 times this road trip. Awful, I say.. AWFUL

Fausto Carmona shall be evaluated today, and if all goes well, I'll take a stab and say he could make have a bullpen session or a simulated game in a few days. I'm not really sure what they plan on doing today though, or what they will do if all goes "well." Remember he was shut down after he felt soreness after a simulated game. So who knows if they A) Go back to square one with bullpen sessions, B) Try another sim game or C) Skip right to rehab starts.

As I mentioned, It's Omar week all around for Tribe fans as the beloved short stop makes his triumphant return to the city he had his best years with.

With that, I have three very good links to kick it all off.

Obviously, the first thing we need to talk about is his replacement. Jhonny Peralta doesn't have the glove Omar did, and he knows that. So when he started booting ground balls, fans got on him in a hurry. Fact is we were spoiled, and when you are used to seeing anything and everything caught at short, Jhonny can just tick you off.

"That," Peralta recalled Sunday, "was not fun." and "I think fans and everybody look at Omar Vizquel, and see a different guy than me," Peralta said. "He's a really good shortstop. I'm a different kind of shortstop. He has more range than me. He makes a lot of fantastic plays. It's something different, but fans need to understand that nobody is the same." (Indians.com)

Speaking of Jhonny. Eric Wedge feels real strong that Peralta has turned the corner, which is why he was hitting 4th yesterday. He feels Jhonny is a run producer and that will be his role from now on. We'll howdiedoodie then.

Bill Lubinger of the Plain Dealer looks back at Omar, and the day he left Cleveland. Noting that both the Indians and Omar knew the timing was right.

Eric Wedge wasn't the manager of Omar for the longest time, but he had nothing but great things to say about Omar and what he was for that young team the Indians were trying to build.

"You hear me talk about having fun and enjoying the game and loving to come to the ballpark," Wedge said. "I don't know if you could think of somebody who did it better than him.

"I just remember watching Omar play. It was like he was playing Little League. He was so relaxed and enjoyed it so much. And I don't think that was just baseball, I think he generally enjoys life." (Plain Dealer)

Wedge said he was a great deal of help to him for his first two years as a manager.

And finally... C.C. Sabathia didn't use the bat of a fellow Indian to hit that home run on Saturday. No, in fact he used the bat of Adam Dunn. C.C. said he wanted a bat to hit a home run with, and he asked him for some bats when they were in Cincinnati. I guess the strike outs wore off on him to because his other two at bats were both punchouts.

Speaking of C.C. The list of suitors is growing by the day and there is now two more names that you need to add. Two teams that weren't expected to be in contention this year, but then again, you expected the Indians' to be in contention, so go figure.

MLBTR notes that John Perrotto has listed the CC Suitors

You already knew The Yankees, Phillies, Cubs, Red Sox, and Angeles. You can add the Tampa Bay Rays to that list. Tampa has a lot of young talent and even more young talent behind that, so a deal with them would really be beneficial to the Tribe. Plus, they probably wouldn't spend the money to re-sign him. It may not be a national league team, but I wouldn't mind dealing him to a team that wouldn't attempt to bring him back after this year. I'm still headstrong on us bringing him back no matter what next year.

More MLBTR tidbits... Ken Rosenthal thinks the Athletics could be buyers, and they are certainly another team in that Tampa Bay mold. Plus we don't face the A's the rest of this year. Oakland is in the race with Texas faltering and Seattle being as bad as they are, and probably wouldn't mind another starting pitcher if they were to make a run. Moneyball probably suggest they won't give C.C. that contract he desires. I wouldn't mind a team like the A's or Rays. Both would probably just seeking a rental, and they are stocked with talent.

Minor League Update: Huff settling in at Buffalo

David Huff is starting to get his footing in Buffalo, he had a great start last weekend in a 4-1 Bisons win.

Akron finally lost yesterday. Their offense is still hitting, but they stranded 14 runners. They are still leading the division though, and are starting to build up their lead.

The Cal-Car All-Star Game is tomorrow night. Luis Perdomo and Josh Tomlin are pitching and Niuman Romero is playing, Steven Wright was promoted so he will be unavailable.

Mahoning Valley rallied in the 9th inning to get back to .500.

Akron closer Randy Newsome is on the rise according to Tony Lastoria.

6.22.2008

A sweep is too much to ask for, but I wanted it

I understand, It is too much to ask for.

But man I wanted it.

It looked as if they were doomed early when Paul Byrd was set to completely implode.

Rocky Start: The first four men that came up to the plate all rounded the bases. Byrd gave up four runs when James Loney doubled home two and Russell Martin followed with a two run home run. Byrd gave up one more hit and then set it on cruise control.

The next six he gave up only two hits and just really had it working. The first inning and the rest of the game was night and day. Byrd's line was 7 innings, 7 hits, 4 runs, and a strikeout. What is shocking is he only threw 86 pitches, even with the bad inning.

I was ready to start the "damnit he's doing it again" but then he really impressed me the way he came back.

Unfortunately that four run inning wasn't enough to over come.

Good Inning Not Enough: The Indians had plenty of chances, especially in that third inning. Choo grounded into a fielders choice, which very well could have been a double play. The run would have scored anyway, but it kept one man on and one out. That let Ryan Garko knock in a run and then Casey Blake added on with a groundout.

The bad part was the inning before that. The Indians had two out and Garko on first when Shoppach smoked a double. You'd figure anyone else would have scored, but not Garko. The downside in not sending him was this.. Paul Byrd was due up, so if you are expecting a 2 out hit from Byrd in that situation, you are crazy.

Skinner realized this later in the game. In the fifth inning with 2 outs, David Dellucci hit a double that Peralta really shouldn't have been sent on. But because Kelly Shoppach was on deck, and first base was open, it would have essentially been Paul Byrd once again with 2 outs. Peralta was dead as a duck, but it didn't hurt to try.

I really am not a fan of the pitcher hitting, it derails possible innings, and it certainly could be considered a big culprit in why we didn't score more runs today.

Thankfully, our pitchers are done hitting (well in C.C.'s case, I'm sad, but yeah) as we get an off day tomorrow, and then the Giants roll in to face the Tribe on Tuesday.

Yep, the Giants. The return of Omar Vizquel. It will be an energized week, and I have some Omar stuff planned.

Tuesday's pitching matchup is Jonathan Sanchez and Aaron Laffey.

[BOXSCORE]

6.21.2008

What's that you say? A win?

We'll I'll be. I fully expected to come on here and say.. Yeah C.C. hit a home run and pitched 7 shutout innings.

He Called His Shot: C.C. told FOX Sports host and Indian fan Chris Rose that he was going to hit his second career home run today.

He did just that. A towering blast off of Chan Ho Park.

That was unfortunately all the scoring that would be done for 10 innings.

The Indians struck out 16 times, 9 of them coming off Chan Ho Park. That makes another really bad pitcher that has struck the Tribe out a lot in their outing. Disappointing to say the least.

Jamey Carroll got it going in the 11th. Peralta singled him in later that inning, another clutch hit for the P-Gun.

Then everyone just fell into place. Casey Blake followed with a RBI single and then Shoppach had the dagger with a two run hit.

Sizemore knocked in one more with a single then Carroll had a sac fly in which Casey Blake got tagged out on trying to advance.

Pitching wise: He was great.. 7 strong with the lone run off the bat of Matt Kemp.. Had 3 innings of perfect baseball.

7 IP, 5 H, 1 R, 1 BB, 10 Punchouts

The bullpen held strong too. Betancourt had the nerve rattling 8th, Perez shut them down in the 9th and Kobayashi struck out two in the 10th. Elarton finished it off in the 11th, but he gave up a run.

Tomorrow we look for a sweep! Holy Crapola! Paul Byrd and Chad Billingsley

[BOXSCORE]

Morning Update: Garko At Home; Sal Fasano Is Cool

Much discussion over the big time acquisition the Indians made.

Sal Fasano is a fun guy, just what you want in a catcher I guess. Anyway Castrovince said he no longer has the fu-man-choo or the mustache, but a goatee is in the works.

Yesterday he leaned over while Toshi Nagahara was translating scouting reports for Koby and said "Hey I can't read that."

So suttle, yet so funny. Welcome Sal.

Someone at a Golf Resort told Kenny Lofton that the Indians could use him... He replied "Tell Them To Call Me."

Yeah, no thanks.

If there is one thing that is there in the Tribe's play that wasn't earlier in the year, it's the effort.

"I like the effort, I like the energy our guys are showing," (Plain Dealer)

Eric Wedge remarked the Indians are out there with the effort. He ripped them earlier this year when the team wasn't even hitting for giving up At Bats and not showing the effort he expected.

Wedge is an easy guy. You give him effort, he doesn't care if you succeed or fail. Like a parent I guess.. Whaaat?

Ryan Garko is back home, he always does good on the west coast when we faces his beloved Angels. Now we visits the other stadium he holds respect for and had experienced once in High School.

"They wouldn't let us on the field," Garko recalled with a laugh. "If you took one step on the grass, the usher was like, 'Get off the grass!' We were all having some fun with it. It was like, 'What are we going to do, kill the grass just by touching it?'" (Indians.com)

I guess Rafael Betancourt has changed up his mechanics...

"I was opening up too quickly when I was going to home plate," he said. "Sometimes something small like that can throw off your whole mechanics."

Uh oh, so you mean he is even slower now?!

If C.C. Sabathia ends up a Dodger, he may have to block out the images of his childhood.

"It's a sin to root for the Dodgers where I come from," Sabathia said.

And it was heartache for Sabathia rooting against them in the 1988 World Series, when his beloved A's were felled in Game 1 by a hobbling Kirk Gibson's famous one-handed homer off Dennis Eckersley.

"I was crying," Sabathia recalled." (Indians.com)

C.C. ain't thinking about those rumors though.. He is just ready to pitch.

Tribe know how to deprive fans of sleep

I went over the ninth inning last night..

I'm coming around a little more after actually winning, but just watching the way that ninth unfolded was awful.

Shopping What?: With all the "Shopping" being talked about with C.C. Sabathia, it was Kelly Shoppach that provided the spark early for the Tribe. His two run blast in the 3rd inning gave the Tribe an early lead. They would add on in the 4th with a Casey Blake double.

Then it wasa the Jhonny Peralta show.. Mr. Jhonny Come Lately was acting all clutch like with that game yesterday.. With two on and no one out and Scott Proctor in, Garko and Choo struck out. Save Peralta who singled to knock in a run and not let the scoring opportunity go by.

Then late in the 10th after the blown save, with the bases loaded, Franklin Gutierrez hit a ball in the infield that got the force at the plate and because Ben Francisco had no clue what he was doing, the double play happened at third, when there could have been 2 outs with 2nd and 3rd.. OR even 1 out.

Save....... Jhonny Peralta, who got a high fastball from closer Takashi Saito. Winnar..

Cwifford!: I'm done talking about Cliff Lee. The guy just goes out there and puts you in the game.

The cruddy part is when we just screw it up for him.

Cliff shouldn't have even gave up that one run he did. But because Rafael Betancourt has become so incompetant to the point where he can't get a guy when he has him down 0-2, Cliff's ERA climbed a whole .10.

I've gone over Joe Borowski, I don't blame him for that blown save. I absolve him, and I think he's pretty much been nails since coming back. Don't change a thing Joseph.

Cliff's line... 7.1 IP 6 H 1 R 1 BB 3 K

Today it is a afternoon game, thank god! C.C. Sabathia will take the mound and hit ninth tonight, MWAHAHAHAHA! Oh and we face Chan Ho Park. I swear to bajesus....

[BOXSCORE]

Minor League Update: Bison Drama

It's you Bison Mama Drama for ya.

Jordan Brown unloaded the bases with a triple last night to give the Herd a 3-1 winnar in the 9th inning.

Michael Aubrey was activated off the disabled list to go 1-3 and Drubby Cabrera was 2-4 with one of those 9th inning runs.

Just to keep you updated on Asdrubal Cabrera, he is hitting .391 and still has yet to walk. He's struck out 7 times and scored the same number of runs.

Jensen Lewis came in to strike out four in two innings. To update you on him, he's pitched 13 innings to carry a 4.15 ERA with 13 strike outs. I'm gonna monitor him in a little bit to see how his velocity is coming.

Akron keeps winning, they won again last night 7-3 over Reading.

Trevor Crowe hit his first home run of the year, and Josh Rodriguez went deep in the same inning.

Both the Scrappers and Captains lost late, the Scrappers in 11 and the Captains in the 9th.

GCL Indians are now playing. Tony Sipp made his season debut with them as he starts his rehab process. He pitched a scoreless first inning then gave way to the starter.

They lost to the GLC Yankees 2-1.

This Isn't Our Year

Tonight opened it up for me to a point.

Watching Joe Borowski get bad-ball hit to death in the 9th made me realize that something is working against the Indians this year.

As I type this, Joe just intentionally walked James Loney to load the bases. So, the game is not over.

But watching this inning unfold just sickened me.

I think I'll surrender maybe the double by Martin as the only guy that Joe Borowski made a mistake to.

Angel Berrora hit a pitch down and out of the zone. Juan Pierre's wacky infield single was also down and out of the zone, a pitch he had no business swinging at. And then Jeff Kent's RBI ground out was just that. A GROUND OUT.

I can't blame Joe Borowski for this game being tied up. I just can't, not watching the sequence unfold, not in that way.

There is a greater force working against the Indians this year. Sure, they didn't do everything right tonight, and they should have had more than four runs on the board.

But, you just have to take what is given to you at this point in time, and what was given to us was really crappy draw. I can't get on Joe Borowski for the job he did tonight. But Rafael Betancourt and Rafael Perez, shame on you for allowing two runs to even put us in that position. I've just about had enough watching you two make games more complicated than they should be. Get your stuff together for the love of all that is good.

Andy LaRoche just flied out to end the inning, extras here we come. I wanted to see this for Cliff Lee, because he pitched a hell of a game, and he shouldn't have really been charged with the one run. You have a 0-2 count on a hitter, and you end up giving them a hit on the next pitch? Betancourt needs to fix himself, because that is downright horrendous.

I'll stop here... I'm staying up to watch the game, but I won't do a recap till tomorrow morning.

6.20.2008

Morning Update: No Window for Sabathia Suitors

If you've noticed all the hit by pitches this year, then well yeah... The Indians are on pace to destroy the AL Record.

They got hit again last night, and their pace is around 110. Club record is 80, and the AL record is 92.

Willy Taveras is just another former Tribe player that has destroyed us this year. If you remember he was traded with Luke Scott to the Astro's for Jeriome Robertson. Taveras was taken in the rule 5 draft, and I believe they worked something out for the Stros to keep him.

Datz was doing minor league things, and he and Taveras shared a hug before Thursdays game.

Here is your daily C.C. Sabathia update...

There will be no window for teams to negotiate with C.C. Sabathia. That won't stop them from offering him a deal or trying to get something worked out if a team does get Sabathia. But it certainly helps the Indians' if they would want to resign him after the year.

Paul Hoynes also has some scouts point of view on what Mark Shapiro would want in return for Sabathia.

"He's going to need another starter to replace C.C. for next year and because of the injuries he has to his pitching staff," said the GM. "If the Indians do trade him, I think Mark is going to do fine. C.C. is going to be the best starting pitcher available at the trading deadline [July 31]. He's going to be worth something."

Certainly interesting. I'd want at least a major league ready bat, a starting pitcher and another good prospect.

Terry Pluto basically has waved the white flag...

"It's over.

For the Indians, an extended spring training has begun -- and down deep, the front office has to know it.

There will be no contention this season, not even in the pathetic American League Central Division"

Whaaaaatever.

Also.. From the previous article, Masa's interpreter Toshi is trying to learn Korean from Shin-Soo Choo.

Minor League Update: Toregas Sent to AA

Well, he's gone from a backup candidate to Kelly Shoppach, to Double A catcher.

Obviously, he wasn't called up because of playing time, and the organizations desire for him to play everyday. Now, he will be playing every day at Akron.

The Indians made a switch of minor league catchers. Calling up Chris Gimenez to Buffalo and sending Wyatt Toregas to Akron.

A big reason for this move has to be Gimenez more than it is Toregas. Toregas was hitting .219 with 25 RBI, but Giminez has been on fire.

Gimenez has one more RBI but has 6 home runs and a .339 average in Akron. He went 1-3 in his Buffalo debut. Damaso Espina played for Akron.

Speaking of Akron, they swept Bowie yesterday. They now hold a 2 game lead on the division.

Kinston put a beating on Lynchburg last night to complete a sweep. They scored 13 runs in the second inning to win 13-8.

The Gulf Coast League Indians were supposed to start yesterday, but their game was postponed due to wet grounds.

All the boards will be updated later today, I'm in the process of updating the GCL Roster and all the transactions I've found.

6.19.2008

I'm Done Sticking Up For the Offense

The offense blows...

I'm pretty fed up sticking up for them at this point.

Ben Francisco gets it going in the first inning with a two run blast, so I'm starting to think, okay we're finally starting to get those hits falling in. Cause last night, if you read, I thought he got a few good rips in there.

Yet.. After that there wasn't much.

Casey Blake went deep in the 6th to tie the game up, but guess what.. There wasn't much after that. Blake had the three hits, including a ninth inning double. But aside from the Grady hit in the first and the Francisco homer that same inning, there was SQUAT!

10 strikeouts at the hands of JORGE DE LA ROSA?!

That is unacceptable. This team has killed the guy in the past, and for some reason, 10 strikeouts?

The pitching was no better. I'll go with Sowers and the 3 earned.. But I don't know.. I'm still not sold on him.. Kobayashi had his bad day this time out.

Just awful baseball played this series. This team just seems to be toying with us at this point..

I'm really getting upset at the faith I'm investing in them. I'm not giving up, but I'm getting real frustrated watching them.

Tomorrow we go out to LA to face the Dodgers. They've just lost two starting pitchers, so Kuroda won't be the guy going on Saturday. However, we get to see the young stud Clayton Kershaw tomorrow against Clifford Red Lee.

[BOXSCORE]

Hafner Is Fine, You Don't Have To Worry

I've been on pins and needles all day waiting to hear word on Travis Hafner.. Now thanks to the Plain Dealer and Paul Hoynes, we have some news.

"The Indians, in a e-mail, said Dr. James Andrews concurs with the team's evaluation of Hafner's sore right shoulder. Andrews recommended that Hafner continue strengthening the rotator cuff and shoulder girdle in his shoulder. He will undergo tests every week to 10 days to re-evaluate the strength in his shoulder." (Plain Dealer)

So.. Just more rest for Mr Pronk.. I'm gonna guesstimate about at least two weeks or so before he goes on a rehab assignment. There is no telling with this type of injury.

Tribe Acquire Backup Catcher Fasano

Well here is a move for ya..

I guess Yamid Haad was not good enough for a backup, so they went out and got catcher extraordinaire Sal Fasano.

Not only do I like him because he's Italian, but he grows a badass mustache.

Fasano was with the Braves, and we traded the always lovable Player To Be Named Later.

SAL is 36 and he probably can't hit worth a lick, but he is solid defensively and he's been a backup before.

Yamid Haad was designated... Later Bub..

Morning Update: Carmona Shut Down; Yankees Claim Perez

As noted yesterday, Fausto Carmona will be shutdown for three more days.

I consider this a minor setback to be honest. I expected it to be much longer when the words "set back" where mentioned. Hopefully he can get back on track and make his rehab starts next week sometime.

According to Lonnie Soloff, Carmona's inflammation flared up after the session, and he showed no signs of hindrance during it.

If you wan to check out the Tribe's third round pick, I hope you've been watching the College World Series. Stanford second bagger Cord Phelps is still in the show and he helped the Cardinal advance last night. He battled some back injuries but he's back to playing now.

With that, I've been updating the best I can on signed draft picks. If you find any information or links on signed picks, send a tip using the upper right hand corner links. There have been several signings, and the only reason I know this is because they've been placed on the Mahoning Valley roster. A bunch more will "Sign" once the Gulf Coast League starts up soon.

Chris Antonetti and a few officials for the Indians checked out how the progress was coming on the Tribe's new home for the Spring.

The Tribe lost Oneli Perez, big deal I guess. The Yankees claimed the reliever that started the year with the White Sox yesterday.

Minor League Update: Kinston Adds All-Stars

Kinston added a pair of K-Tribe players to the Carolina League All-Star game yesterday.

Pitcher Steven Wright was one of a few players called up to Double A that was already on the team, so that allowed pitcher Josh Tomlin and infielder Niuman Romero to be added to the All Star Game.

They now join Closer Luis Perdomo to represent Kinston next Tuesday at the Game.

Double A Akron shutout Bowie last night for to take the series in early fashion. More importantly they are now the sole owners of the division.

Mahoning Valley is 2-0 on the young season with a 6-3 win over Williamsport. Lonnie Chisenhall was 1-5 with a run scored.

6.18.2008

Hitters park? What The Hell? Tribe Lose Again

Boy Andy Marte can' t catch a break can he?

He finally gets his chance, guy on first with no one out in the top of the ninth, down two.

He gets into one real good, something that would be destined for extra bases at least.

But, not in the ninth inning my friend.

Not guarding the lines.

No Luck: Just like Marte and that ball hit down the line, the Indians just didn't get it tonight.

They haven't been getting it all season.

I'm starting to get worn out to be quite honest, watching this team, and slowly getting smack in the face with the realization that they don't have anything on their side.

There is no magic like there was last year. There was no lucky bounces.

It seemed like every ball hit hard into that Colorado outfield was dying tonight. Yet everyone the Rockies hit last night was falling in or falling over.

I'm not gonna bash the offense, because quite frankly, I saw way too many hard hit balls tonight to blame them. Francisco had a couple at least, Garko absolutely destroyed one that just missed a home run by a few inches foul. Aaron Laffey even got a good rip into one that Taveras was able to run down.

Jamey Carroll and Shin-Soo Choo had the RBIs, with Casey Blake going 2-4.

Props to Aaron Laffey who punched one up the middle in his first at bat for his first major league hit. He's obviously hit before, the way he swung the bat tonight and even his stance. He also carries a red bat, so watch out Darth Vader.

Punch and Judy:
Like I said, a lot of balls were dropping in there last night, and tonight they just seemed to be punching them over the infielders heads.

I don't know what is up with Coors, but the Rockies have certainly perfected playing there.

Laffey did a good job tonight. He went six and gave up three earned, walked three, surrendered eight hits and struck out one. He kept his team in the game the best he could, and really some of those hits were quite simply good hitting by the Rockies or slap hits.

The Indians will try and salvage this stupid series tomorrw. We got Mr Jeremy Sowers against a guy we've absolutely destroyed in the past, Jorge De La Rosa. 7.67 ERA there against the Tribe.

[BOXSCORE]

Carmona Update

Not good news on Fausto Carmona....

He will not do anything for the next three days, then be reevaluated after the inflammation in his hip flared up.

Instead of going out on a rehab assignment on Friday, he probably won't throw another bullpen session for some time.

Castrovince will have an update later, and so far nothing on Hafner. I'll cover it all in the Morning Update.

Rumors: Rangers Eyeing CC; Rockies *UPDATED

Of course, two of the favorite names brought up by Indians fans involved with the trade rumors are two Rockie players.

And since we are facing the Rockies, of course the discussions will be over Matt Holiday and Garrett Atkins.

The News Herald suggests that Aaron Laffey would be the guy the Rockies want, but the Indians just would not do that.

"Colorado would undoubtedly ask for Aaron Laffey in any deal, although perhaps would settle for Jeremy Sowers as the key piece to the package." (News Herald)

Now, also according to Buster Olney, the Rangers have a very strong eye for C.C. Sabathia.

Even if they can't get him in a trade this year, it looks like they'd be one of the major players for Sabathia.

Well, ya don't say. Count on the Rangers to ride in on their high horse with buckets of cash. We know they aren't afraid to break the bank for a big superstar.

Late Update Here.......

Paul Hoynes has some more Sabathia stuff...

Here is the list of teams that could be in the running:

Yankees, Red Sox, Angels, Rays, Cubs, Phillies

Mostly American League teams..

Here is what the "SCOUTS" said about what the Tribe could gain in return..

"I would say maybe they could get two young players that were at or close to the big-league level that they could control for a while."

Another scout said the Indians could get between two and three prospects, depending on whether that team could sign Sabathia to an extension before he becomes a free agent this winter.

"There are so many teams still in contention right now, who need pitching, that I think the market is going to be a really big market for him," said a scout" (Plain Dealer)

Take it for what it's worth.. I wouldn't want to see him on an American League team, that is for sure.. I'm still adamant about re-signing him or just letting him walk.. But if they do fall out of contention, I wouldn't feel bad about getting some prospects in return, and attempting to re-sign him in the off-season, if he was okay with that. That would be a complete long shot, but would be the ultimate cunning move by Shapiro.

Morning Update: Injury Set Backs Galore; Antonetti Staying Put

There has been much desire around baseball for a team to get their hands on young Indians' mind Chris Antonetti.

Antonetti is one of our favorites here. Not just because he is Italian, but he can crunch the numbers.

Anyway, Chris turned down the General Manager post with the Cardinals last off-season to stick around here. So obviously, there is no way he would take the Seattle job, would he?

He won't, and he made that very clear.

"I hope I've been very clear how happy I am in Cleveland. I'm looking forward to contribute to build a winning team here." (Plain Dealer)

Perhaps the reason he won't leave is because once Shapiro moves up to team president, the job is Antonetti's. Who would go to that disaster in Seattle when you can inherit a loaded team with a stocked farm system?

Speaking of Antonetti, he is just a busy man with the press. He downloaded the trade talk with the Tribe, contrary to the "Scouts" assessments.

I don't get it.. I'm pretty sure Chris is closer to the club than these scouts are.

Oh shucks, they are counting us out again.

Eric Wedge got a little chippy by the way, and cunning if I might add.

"Ninety percent of those [rumors] are nothing," Wedge said. "We could start a rumor right here and right now if we want to. It's like an in-season Hot Stove." (Indians.com)

Nice job Blinky... That will shut em down.

Jamey Carroll received his NL Championship ring last night in a pre-game ceremony.

"I understand it's not a World Series ring, but it's something you play for -- to get a chance to get something that's a symbol of going through a lot of emotional good times and bad times," Carroll said before the ceremony. "Knowing that they've had them for a while, to finally get it is exciting. I've been looking forward to it. (Indians.com)

Congrats to Jamey, and I understand that he receieved a very warm welcome in his return. Didn't expect anything less from the Rockie Fans.

Now for the bad news..

A setback has happened for Travis Hafner, and while it isn't a setback for Fausto Carmona, the Indians are proceeding with caution. They were expected to be sent out on rehab assignments this week at some point, but both will now be resting a little bit longer.

First, Carmona.. His session didn't go as expected. While he had soreness after his 50 pitch session, the Indians are not sure if it's common or not. He was sent back to Cleveland(was in Mahoning Valley) for an evaluation. If all goes well he could be still on track to go on a rehab assignment soon, but only time will tell.

Now, Pronk is scheduled to visit Dr. James Andrews today for a second opinion.

If you remember earlier, I referred to Andrews and Dr. Yocum(The surgeon who performed Tommy John surgery on Jake Westbrook), as the Drs. of Death.

Thankfully, his shoulder won't need surgery, but the Indians are not pleased with the fact that he is still having strength issues with his shoulder. The visit is mainly to find out what they Indians can do for Hafner in his road to recovery and how to treat him as he tries to get back into the lineup.

I'll try and have as many updates as I can when news comes available on both visits for Carmona and Hafner. CastroTurf is usually pretty good about getting something in, and once Anthony Castrovince talks to Lonnie Soloff closer to gametime(9 PM around these parts), he usually updates the world on his blog.

Minor League Update: Scrappers Win, Ensberg Debut

Ensberg Plays in 2nd Game: Morgan Ensberg was in uniform last night for the Buffalo Bisons, and he played in the 2nd game of a double header for the Herd. He is going to be taking over third base full-time for Aaron Herr who will move to the utility spot.

Morgan went 1-3 with a 2 out RBI single.

Cabrera Watch: Drubby Cabrera is 13 for 33 since getting called down. He's knocked in two runs, scored six times, hasn't gained a single walk and struck out six times. You wanna see that K-BB ratio improve, but at least he is hitting.

Akron Takes Over First: The Aeros moved into first place last night with a win over their main competition, the Bowie Baysox.

Bowie and Akron are now tied atop the division, and will continue their series tonight.

Captains Come Up Huge in ASG Win: With as many Captains sent to the game as there were, if the team came out on top, you'd almost expect Lake County to have a say in it.

The Captains' only position player, outfielder Roman Pena went 1-1 with and 2-run triple.

The bullpen members had a good showing, with closer Vinnie Pestano striking out his only hitter, and Dallas Cawiezell retiring two of the three batters he faced.

Captains' stud starter Ryan Miller started the game and threw a scoreless inning. Fellow Captains starters Kelvin De La Cruz and Ryan Morris each pitched an inning, but gave up an earned run.

However, De La Cruz was on the hook for the win.

Congrats to the Captains and their awesome first half, keep it up!

Party Time For Scrappers: What a way to start the year for Mahoning Valley, who defeated Williamsport in the bottom of the ninth after a rain delay.

First baseman Brock Simpson drove int he winning run with 2 outs in the bottom of the ninth after Lonnie Chisenhall reached on an error.

Chisenhall went 2-5 with a double and three runs scored.

Boards are Updated!