3.22.2011

Oh about that whole bullpen thing

Yeah it rained in Arizona, let's get over it. Actually let's not. That's pretty wild. The rain destroyed any and all games the Indians were slated to play yesterday, which means we have significantly less to talk about. Actually that just means we have more about the current stuff to talk about. You know like Jensen Lewis, because he's so popular.

[TO WAIVE OR NOT TO WAIVE]

One thing that Jordan Bastian is trying to make oh so perfectly clear, is the fact that Jensen Lewis has not been released.. Heck, he hasn't even been thrown off the 40-man roster yet. He's only been waived, which means any club can take him. He also can't confirm if he has been waived or not. That's probably something he won't find out, unless he talks to a source outside of the club, let oh, one of the other 29 teams that could see if Lewis was on waivers.

Which is probably why one a national guy like Ken Rosenthal was able to pick up the story.

Basically, the Indians can hold onto Lewis if someone puts in a claim, because apparently he is not on irrevocable waivers. If he was, someone would put a claim in on him and he'd be gone. But if someone were to put a claim on him, they could pull him back and keep him around.

So really, who knows what they're trying to do with Jensen. I don't doubt for a fact that the Indians did put him on waivers with the intention of getting him to pass through so they can option him to Columbus.

If that happens is a completely different story.

Obviously with no game, there was plenty of time for Jensen to get mugged about this whole ordeal. He's taking it surprisingly well and hasn't gone onto Twitter to say something silly either. He's even acting like he will be on the Opening Day roster, which is a positive, I guess?

"We're just going through a rough patch," Lewis said. "This is baseball. It happens. I'm just glad that I'm getting it out now, so it doesn't go on the back of my baseball card." 

Meanwhile, Acta maintains that there are still a couple of open spots in the bullpen and even one more than we originally thought.

[BATTLE OF THE BULLPEN]

Bastian says there are three open spots for the remaining participants, Lewis being one of them. The others include Justin Germano, Frank Herrmann, Vinnie Pestano, Jess Todd, and Doug Mathis.
Photo Courtesy of Chuck Crow - Plain Dealer

Oh and Joe Smith, but the reason there is another open spot is because of Smith's injury that will likely hold him back from the Opening Day roster.

They won't officially say anything like they have with Grady Sizemore, but we're in single digits as far as days left until camp breaks and as even Smitty put it, he hasn't even pitched consistently before he got shelved. He hasn't gone through the proper spring to get himself ready for the season yet.

"I don't know if I'll be ready for opening day," said Smith. "You have to wonder about the bounce back (pitching in consecutive days).  I haven't thrown a ball in two weeks. Even if it is just for a matchup situation, you still could get up two times to face one guy."

"Then it's "Can you pitch tomorrow?' I haven't done that this spring (pitch on consecutive days).  Not throwing for two weeks, I think it would be kind of hard."

I don't see things working out for Smith to start the season on track, which puts the Indians in even more of a crunch in terms of the roster. That could just mean one more non-40 man player that will need a spot, which is potentially why they are clearing space with Lewis.

I think this all but signals both Vinnie Pestano and Frank Herrmann claim a couple of those spots, considering they've both pitched well and are on the roster. And who would have thought, but Justin Germano may find his way back onto the roster as well.

It wouldn't even surprise me at this point to see Jess Todd, who has also put up some decent spring numbers. But something Acta said needs to ring true.

"It's never been cut and dry with those last couple of spots," Acta said on Monday. "From the beginning, we told everybody, including you guys, that there were a couple of spots open. We also made it clear that we're not going to load up our bullpen with one-inning guys." 

Justin Germano is not a one-inning guy and Acta talks about him highly. He's also slapped praise onto Vinnie the Gangster saying he's pitched very well. Throw in Herrmann's ability to go two frames and I think he's going to get his wish of having a few guys who can give some length.


[RANDOM RUNDOWN]

When Acta names his fifth starter, which should come rather soon, he will name the rotation order. You might get a clue as to the order this week as Fausto Carmona goes today and it may be his second to last start of the spring.

Mitch Talbot has one of those spots and he was the subject of Terry Pluto's notebook scribbles. He mentions that Acta said Talbot clinched a spot after his last four starts in 2010 after he bounced back from his down-turn.

Josh Tomlin was supposed to audition yet again yesterday against the Royals, but due to the rain, he's been pushed to a minor league game today.

Grady Sizemore's start in center will not be delayed. He will go at it for three innings today against Arizona as scheduled. Asdrubal Cabrera will also return to the lineup after not doing much on Monday.

Anthony Reyes will see one more game of Cactus League play because other pitchers need to get stretched out and be prepared for the season.

Minor League Releases: Nick Kirk, Ben Carlson, Alexander Morales, Matthew Speak, Andrew Shive.

Carlson is yet another first baseman that has been released and Kirk was drafted in 2009. I had Andrew Shive nowhere on any of my roster sheets, so I ask, Who?!

Finally, I love when Acta talks about cloning players. He always says he'd love 5 Roy Halladay's and now he is using Joe Mauer as his latest clone.

"If you get offered nine Joe Mauers, would you throw seven back because you want seven right-handers in there, or would you take the nine Joe Mauers?" said Acta. "We don't care from what side they hit, as long as they hit."

I love this guy...

[TRIBE TWEET OF THE DAY]


I could dig some Girl Scout Cookies right now...

Now seems as good time as any to mention all the new additions in Tribe Twitter land...

New Indian Chad Durbin has a twitter and you will be pleased to know that his picture pays homage to the late Bob Feller.

Luke Carlin has one and I'm sure you will all run out and follow him.

Nick Weglarz has had a twitter, but it seems now he's just recently started using it. So give him a follow. He's joined in prospect land by shortstop Tony Wolters.

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