And so it goes, now only three more days until the regular season kicks
off. There are a lot of surprises, reliefs, groans, worries, but most
importantly, questions. I intend to do a thorough analysis of what’s
been bugging the fans’ minds, so let me know if I answer most of the
riddles this offseason has posed.
1. Cliff Lee had a terrible spring. Should we be concerned? NO.
No, no, no, nay, no. For those of you who don’t already know, Lee had
been wanting to work on specific things this spring. This was evident
by the fact that he pitched about 85% or higher of his pitches as
fastballs in his outings. Hitters were eventually picking up on that,
and the lack of a scouting report for Lee could have contributed to
this. Long story short, I’m confident he will be fine.
Pavano-Lewis. Lewis is starting the season in the Bigs for the first
time, while Pavano is doing the same for the first time in four years.
As much as I say pitching doesn’t matter in Spring Training, for these
guys, it did. Pavano needed to show himself he still had the stuff he
used to, while Lewis was trying to vie for the final spot in the
rotation. Both guys showed pretty good stuff, my favorite being Pavano.
He got stronger and more confident as he went along, while Lewis seemed
to recess after he won the spot.
3. Travis Hafner. Can the guy
we know as Pronk really be Pronk? In my opinion, I can’t see him
hitting over 30 homers. Until he starts proving he can hit the ball,
not just the long ball, I can’t see him being an effective middle of
the order guy. However, he has shown signs of improvement according to
Eric Wedge, but his BA and HR’s in Spring Training weren’t that
4. The corner outfielders. Shin-Soo Choo and Ben
Francisco will start the season as the right and left fielders, and i
expect them to stay there. Dellucci needs to go, especially with Trevor
Crowe’s surprisingly good spring. Our outfield is, plain and simple,
loaded. Grady, Choo, Francisco, Crowe, and prospect Matt LaPorta are as
good as it gets.
5. The bullpen. Unlike last year, our bullpen
is strong. The tribe acquired real closer in Kerry Wood and a great
relief arm in Joe Smith. With Rafael Perez and Rafael Betancourt, and
of course Jensen Lewis, I wouldn’t worry about us holding onto leads
late in the game.
Alright, guys and gals, my first post of my life. Please, feel free to comment.
Sometimes, we get lost in the excitement, the passion, the emotion of it all. Sometimes, we act like little kids waiting to open their birthday presents. Others simply lounge around, waiting to criticize another player or coach. We have enough cynics, though, so screw those people.
As the days get shorter (4 now) until Tribe Time officially begins, I can’t help but act all jittery inside. We’ve been dormant for six months, painfully yet patiently watching time pass by, counting the days until we can see another Grady Sizemore highlight reel, or to some die-hard optimists, maybe even a pie in the face after a home win. I feel like a kid. I don’t care about the worthlessness of the economy, or the painfulness of school. No, all I can feel is the spring air on my face, the sun soaking me, while I bathe under a sky of blue.
Whether it be the voice of Tom Hamilton on AM 1100, or Rick Manning and Matt Underwood on STO, it’s still the voices of The Cleveland Indians.
Heading into Friday, I leave you all with these thoughts of wisdom:
- It’s great to see former Cleveland Indians beat up on us. Really, the irony is just hilarious. Franklin Gutierrez displayed some of his talent against Lee and the Tribe, as well as against Lewis the other day.
- I gotta say, though, Joe Smith is looking like he’s worth every bit of talent we gave up for him. It would take at least five Edward Mujicas to equal a half of a Joe Smith.
- Travis Hafner hit a nice homer on Wednesday. What was most impressive, however, was that he was down 0-2 in the count. It’s way too early to assume anything, but it’s definitely a nice sign of live game improvement from Pronk, who’s bating practice sessions just haven’t been translating onto the field.
- I wouldn’t be worried about the Tribe’s offense right now. Batters 1-5 are some of the most dangerous in the league. If Asdrubal can continue his awesome spring with a good regular season, I forsee a lot of 9-1-2 (Cabrera-Sizemore-DeRosa) runs and RBI’s.
Please, someone tell me the name of the band that sings “What’s My Age Again?” They are my favorite band, and I will forever love the person who knows the answer.