Cy Kluber or Sigh..Kluber?

There's a whole lot of buzz in Cleveland lately. And today in particular, that buzz is surrounding the one sport that is dormant right now. Sure, the Browns are in first place, the Cavaliers are a hot ticket in town, even the other football team that this area cheers for picked up a huge Big Ten win.

But today is about one individual and one individual alone.

Back in 2008, it almost a given what was going to happen. The Cleveland Indians were going to nail down their second American League Cy Young award winner in a row. Cliff Lee had an incredible season and unless all the writers decided to ignore the facts and give the award to Roy Halladay based on career consistency and name recognition, the Arkansas native was going to take home the trophy.

And he did, almost without a doubt, at least in Indians' fans minds.


BBA Award Voting: Cleveland Chapter

Every year, the Baseball Writers get together to pick out the best of the best in Major League Baseball. Usually, they like to get a thing or two wrong. The Baseball Bloggers Alliance likes to get together to do the same thing. We may not be flawless either, but at least we have some fun with it. With a few blogs in on the fun, (make sure you check them out: Did The Tribe Win Last Night? and Wahoo's On First), Cleveland's Chapter gets a vote. Here is the collective vote of 14 writers from those sites and myself.


Tribe Chasing Playoffs and the Makeup of a Championship Contender

This will be incredibly disorganized and lacking of my usual clever segues...but what can I say? I'm a little unpracticed in the form of organized blogging.
Photo - Chuck Crow via Cleveland Plain Dealer

I figured when I keep getting the point that I need send out five to six tweets at a time, I'd probably use the space I have created for such matters. It is that point as the Indians sit on the cusp of keeping their season alive, or letting it falter away with just one game.

Last night hurt. It wasn't the end-all-be-all, thanks in part to the completion of that rain-suspended game that they had yet to win (and did their best to at least make us think otherwise on the virtual plus one in the Wild Card standings), but it sure did hurt to lose and end up right back where they started when Monday dawned.

So here's the scoop...


Watch the Kluber Final Vote Madness in Action

The little spectacle late Thursday morning and afternoon was quite something to be a part of. Major League Baseball completely took over Twitter with their Final Vote campaign. Strangely enough though, it wasn't even enough to completely derail the LeBron madness.

However, social media and the internet as a whole has completely changed the way we watch and follow sports, as evidenced by what is happening with this whole LeBron thing. And that alone is evident in the 10 seconds of video I'm about to show you.

I enjoyed wasting some time by partaking in the #VoteKluber campaign. But how ridiculous is the MLB to make tweets count as votes? It didn't really help Kluber at the end of the day, as he finished pretty much where he started with the actual voting on MLB.com despite finishing with the second most hashtag tweet votes.

To keep me entertainined, in addition to reading some of the ways some of you and others were getting the word out about Kluber, I opened up myself a column on Tweet Deck so I could watch the #VoteKluber madness unfold.

Towards the end of the vote, I was interested to see just how well he was keeping up with everyone else and well, these 10 seconds show you exactly that.

Incredible...just incredible. Clearly, Kluber and Richards had the most activity. There was one point where Richards was going way faster than Kluber. Needless to say, poor Dallas Keuchel didn't stand much of a chance, did he?

Great effort from the fanbase today on trying to get our guy in the game. Unfortunately it fell just short, but I have a feeling he'll still end up in the game in a few days. 


Unimpressed Kluber: An All-Star Roster Without the Klube?

Yesterday the MLB All-Star rosters were announced and, unsurprisingly, Corey Kluber was not among the selections of either the players or manager John Farrell. Why unsurprisingly? Because, Kluber has no name recognition and his numbers, while better than some of the pitchers that got picked, he simply will not garner the selection over others who most know. If he was having a slightly better year (not that his year isn't All-Star worthy), with more wins, he'd have been a lock.

Instead, he has to try and get in via final fan vote or hope one or many of the pitchers ahead of him will either drop out, or become ineligible by pitching on Sunday, and there's a 99.9% chance that happens. So if you really want to see The Klube in the All-Star game, chances are, you will.

That being said, Kluber does have something to stay in regards to a roster without him on it, of course.

Maybe in a few days, that tune will change.


The Big Masty Problem: What's the Real Issue with Tribe "Ace"?

Photo - Getty Images via Yahoo! Sports
Alright so Justin Masterson. A key piece to what this club has put together over the years. Masterson had a masterful 2013 and when the Indians were piecing together contract extensions to core players this offseason, there was talk of Masterson getting one. But he didn't and at this juncture, doesn't appear as if he will.

The Indians were ultimately reluctant to sign off on the deal due to concerns of too many years. Many of us on the Internet, myself including at times, thought something needed to get done with him. That he was a key piece to this club moving forward and with the lack of top-flight starting pitcher on this club, signing Masterson up for the next three seasons was necessary.

I sort of waffled on that notion though, because like the Indians, I wasn't sure if that extra year would make it worth it. Waffling aside, I more times than not wanted Masty signed, to something.

Now we are seeing why the Indians were so reluctant in 2014. Maybe it is odd-year syndrome, but for yet another skipped year, Masterson is dealing with some issues after having a great season the year before.


Chief Concerns: Wahoo's Time May Be Winding Down

It seems pretty silly to have last posted some weird Unimpressed Kluber memes and now follow things up with a serious post about the latest with the Chief Wahoo business, but that's kind of where I am at right now.

In case you have yet to catch it, the Native American's (or at least a group representing them, better yet, a guy representing a group called "People Not Mascots") are suing in the Indians. Well, the Cleveland Indians. Not themselves. That would be counter-productive.

For Nine...Billion...Dollars.

You read that. Yes that's a nine as the highest single digit number and yes that's a B for billion, not million, billion. The lawsuit, or at least all I can glean from the CBS story, is against the Indians for their offensive logo, Chief Wahoo. It doesn't appear as if it is against the Indians in name or anything like that, but it very well could be. It certainly isn't a federal trademark denial like the Washington Redskins are going through.

But this seems really significant in the grand scheme of offensive sports names, logos, and mascots.

I might be skipping dangerously close to politics here. If you think this is a political debate. It isn't. I don't follow politics, nor do I care to engage in discussion about them. In fact, that is primarily my reasoning behind my stance. Baseball isn't politics. So let's get the politics out of baseball. Let's just worry about the on-the-field stuff. Your baseball team is your baseball team. What they wear on their hat should be secondary to everything else in regards to where they play and how they play.


Unimpressed Kluber: Johnny Football

You're probably thinking, man, what is this guy going to do? Just post Unimpressed Kluber images all the time?

Yeah, maybe I will. Sitting here during rain delay theatre, I'm not sure there is much more to do than sit here and think of Corey Kluber memes.

So, here I am. Making Corey Kluber memes.

I promise some real content soon. Even though this is pure gold.

Kluber isn't impressed though. How could he be?

Other great fun facts about Johnny Football after the jump.


Unimpressed Kluber: Game of Thrones?

Last year, we did a little thing around here called Positive Swish. The enthusiasm of Swisher was displayed in image form, with an inspiring message of positivity relayed from him, to me, to you.

This is all well and good, and Positive Swish will be making his return at some point. Perhaps when he starts hitting.

But we have a new character to embrace around these parts. And really, none of it needs any sort of explaination. In fact, from every post with it from here on out. There will be no explaination. The best jokes go unexplained, right?

Without further hesitation, or else I'll get some disapproval thrown my way. Literally.... I give you, Unimpressed Kluber.


Kluber, Brantley, Turning into More than Tribe All-Stars

Forget the All-Star Game coming up in a matter of over a month. The Indians have two players worthy of that designation of All-Star, and much more with the way they've been playing this season.

I'm saving and sparing you the long winded intro because you should know exactly who I'm talking about, not just because it is in the title, but because it just makes too much sense from the get-go. We've now entered the territory in the season when things are real. If a team is in contention, they've probably got staying power. If a guy is still playing well, he's probably going to have a good season.

Memorial Day is usually that point in the season when things are pretty set into motion. There's really no coming back if you aren't in contention, which is why this run the Indians have been on has been so crucial. They needed to get to this point where they don't look as if they are dead fish flopping around on the dock, looking to flop back into the water before they dry out. They've reached that point, and it couldn't have happened without the two individuals this entire thing is about.


Win or Lose, it's a Long Season...It Ends in October

Photo - Getty Images via Zimbio.com
The last time we spoke, we spoke about expectations. They're high, and we all know that. This team can do some good stuff this year and we all expect them to do that, mainly because they are expecting to do that. That factor more than any other is why we think this team at the very least should win the World Series. Right?

Hashtag, sarcasm, right?

Well now it's May and while that suddenly doesn't change a damn thing, it certainly does change everything. That's how it works in baseball, right? New month, new slate. This team is sitting at the bottom of the AL Central as we speak, and while all is not lost, it feels as if things are slipping away, and most of you are frustrated. You probably don't want to read this right now. You're sick of mantras like "it's a marathon, not a sprint" and "it's a long way til September."


The Anatomy of Irregularity and Expectations

I spent time trying to convince myself that I can be the same old-same old when it came to posting updates to this blog, that I could do it as often as I and you had become accustomed to. Only, do it differently, in a new way.

Then I stopped trying to re-invent everything that this space is about and embrace it for what it is, just as I embraced it for what it was at each period of time. No doubt, if you've been here since 2008, you know just how different each year has looked, aside from a few years where it was pretty much the same. The last few had some external pressure to perform, but make no mistake, there was way more internal pressure from myself.

I'm going somewhere with this, I promise, and I may get there quicker than you think.


Pulse of the Tribe: The Real Opening Day

All we need to do today... is celebrate...

Of course, we have many reasons to celebrate. There is nothing better than an Opening Day in Cleveland, even if the Indians have already started playing. Sure MLB's "Opening Day" was earlier this week, and shoot, the first game was in Australia this year. That technically opened up the MLB season and even then, Sunday night's contest was the first official game in April.

But today... Today is the real Opening Day that everyone in the 216 and surrounding local areas waits for.

Nothing beats the excitement or energy than what this day is and means to everyone who loves the Cleveland Indians.


The 25 Man Roster, in One Sentence or Less

Well the roster is set. Year after year I'd sit around in February and early March and try and figure out who exactly was going to make it through the spring, how the roster would eventually shake out.

As you already know, I didn't do that this year. It didn't stop me from sitting back and thinking about it though. As I look at how the roster actually shook out though, it is quite obvious that the common themes with how this team operates continued to develop.

Its actually pretty scientific if you ask me. This team (and I don't know how other teams operate, I don't follow them closely, so others might do the same sort of thing or follow the same protocol) tends to follow the same lines. There's a few common rules.


Springing Into Action: Brantley's Spot and Finding a Place for Chiz

Things are starting to come together for this version of the 2014 Cleveland Indians as they round the corner of spring training. Plenty of roster moves have been made in the past few days, and plenty more to follow as the Opening Day roster beings to take shape. We've got just one week to the season's beginning, and I really can't believe it is already here.
Photo - Chuck Crow via Cleveland Plain Dealer

I said this last time, but I think things go quickly when you are paying less attention or are less entrenched in the happenings. Other things for me have been going really slow. The baseball season though? It has approached very quickly.

I'm not sure I prefer that though. I like to stop and savor each moment. I like it taking forever. The anticipation, the build-up, the fact that I get to let my steak marinate for an extra long time so that when I do finally get to enjoy it, it tastes really freakin' good.

Here's a first for you. I'm going to be out of town for the start of baseball season. I'm going to miss the first three games. So, I guess, I do have to wait. I have to wait a little longer than all of you. Which is why I'm throwing myself back into the fray right now. I'm going to let this week-plus between now and real live Indians baseball that counts go by incredibly slow. My steak needs some seasoning before I bite in.


Back Again... The Name Topping, Always Entertaining...

What has become a yearly tradition is back, for the third year in a row. That means, its like, a tradition right? Once is a coincidence, twice is a trend, three times is...something or other.

For your entertainment, and potentially, my downfall, at least not last year, The Tribe Daily Invitational Fantasy Baseball League (mouth full) is back! The third installment is underway and ready to take applicants.


Another Form of Hibernation

The best way to make it through a long cold winter of no baseball when you operate a blog and write about it on almost-daily basis?

Don't write about it for two months, which is a large majority of that long cold winter...

Monday is the start of the week, so it seemed as good of a time as any. Excuse me friends as I dust off the blog log-in, trying to get in was a little hard. I'm not a fan of spiders (who really is?) and there was a big ole' spider web sticking in the corner of the doorway. I had to find a broom to knock it down. That took enough time.

Three paragraphs and I'm already making up dramatic sequences that are not real for the purposes of, well, I don't really know.

I have been away and look, it has been two months, and a few days, since I've even logged in to pen words, I'm a little rusty, so excuse the ups and downs and if I end up citing something in APA format, try and look past it, that's just grad school talking (Hoynes, 2014, p. I'm just kidding... no one cites Hoynes).