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Friday, May 13, 2016

No, Jose Ramirez’s Helmet Doesn’t Defy The Laws of Gravity

The Internet loves a great video. In today’s clip we see José Ramírez of the Cleveland Indians sliding into second base. But wait! His hat (I’m calling it a hat, not a helmet, because no one has a magic helmet) flies off and hits his foot. Magically, the hat appears to fly backward yet still end up hitting Ramírez on the back as he reaches second base.


Saturday, May 07, 2016

Indians notebook: Closer Cody Allen not tied to save situations; Cody Anderson returning; Roberto Perez has surgery - Indians - Ohio

On Cleveland’s bullpen and the recall of Cody Anderson.

Jim Furtado Posted: May 07, 2016 at 01:38 PM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: indians

Thursday, April 21, 2016

Real or Mirage: Corey Kluber’s poor start for the Indians this season - CBSSports.com

Jonah Keri thinks Kluber will get better results soon.

Jim Furtado Posted: April 21, 2016 at 12:06 PM | 3 comment(s)
  Beats: corey kluber, indians

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 4-13-2016

Grand Forks Daily Herald, April 13, 1916:

Cleveland lost its opening game to St. Louis [yesterday], 6 to 1, chiefly because they could not hit Groom, ex-Federal league pitcher.
...
Tris Speaker played his first game as a Cleveland player. He fielded spectacularly and walked three times, being passed purposely twice. The crowd was the largest that ever witnessed an opening game in Cleveland.

Something tells me Cleveland fans are going to like Tris Speaker. I think he’s going to have a big year.

Jefferson Manship (Dan Lee) Posted: April 13, 2016 at 09:38 AM | 13 comment(s)
  Beats: dugout, history, indians, tris speaker

Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Indians moving Trevor Bauer to the bullpen; Cody Anderson No. 4 starter, Josh Tomlin No. 5 - Cleveland Indians - Ohio

Indians pitcher Trevor Bauer was relegated to the bullpen toward the end of last year, and that’s where he’ll be beginning the 2016 season as well.

The Indians announced on Wednesday that they will be moving Bauer, an assumed starting pitcher this spring, to the bullpen and slotting Cody Anderson and Josh Tomlin into the No. 4 and No. 5 spots in the starting rotation, respectively, to start the season.

The moves effectively finalize the Opening Day 25-man roster. Bauer will be the eighth man in the bullpen and the team will carry four outfielders to start the year with Jose Ramirez acting as a utility fifth outfielder if needed.

Jim Furtado Posted: March 30, 2016 at 06:23 PM | 13 comment(s)
  Beats: indians

Sunday, March 27, 2016

Michael Brantley unlikely to open season on time with Cleveland Indians | cleveland.com

If Brantley opens the season on the DL, the Indians will carry five outfielders. After Joey Butler was optioned to Class AAA Columbus on Saturday, there are eight viable candidates still in camp – Tyler Naquin, Rajai Davis, Lonnie Chisenhall, Marlon Byrd, Collin Cowgill, Shane Robinson, Robbie Grossman and Will Venable.

Naquin, Davis and Chisenhall are on the team. Chisenhall has been sidelined with a sore right forearm, but it does not sound like he’ll open on the DL. Cowgill is on the 40-man roster, while Byrd, Robinson, Grossman and Venable are invitees on minor-league deals.

Jim Furtado Posted: March 27, 2016 at 06:40 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: indians, michael brantley

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Cleveland Indians Scribbles from Goodyear, where Joba Chamberlain, Tyler Naquin are close to making team—Terry Pluto (photos) | cleveland.com

The Indians could not have asked for a better spring performance from rookie Tyler Naquin. At the start of training camp, the Indians challenged the players to give the team a reason to notice them. The rookie has done just that and is on track to start in center field once the season the opens. Naquin is hitting .400 (1.090 OPS) with two doubles and three triples.

Jim Furtado Posted: March 23, 2016 at 07:12 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: indians

Tuesday, March 22, 2016

Indians continue to inquire about adding depth to their outfield | FOX Sports

De Aza would be a good stopgap.

Jim Furtado Posted: March 22, 2016 at 06:42 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: indians

Friday, March 18, 2016

Indians’ Casey Weathers can throw 108 mph | MLB.com

Casey Weathers, yellow sneakers flashing, takes a few running steps and a crow hop before hurling a baseball with all his might into a sock net, which is a mere 30-ish feet away from his release point. A radar gun reading gets spit out on a monitor mounted on the wall: 107.8 mph.

“I got really fortunate in the last year,” says Weathers, 30, who battled bad luck and injuries for the better part of five seasons. “I basically got signed by the Indians off a pull-down video.”
Casey Weathers Radar Gun Throw

The “pull-down” drill is so named because it comes from the end of the second phase of pitching guru Alan Jaeger’s long-toss regimen, in which, after “stretching out” to 300-foot throwing distances, pitchers “pull down” to the comparably minute distance at which their final throws are made. But at Driveline Baseball in Seattle, where Weathers has been training for parts of the last two years, the drill is used as a once-weekly “max-intent” stress test to see just how hard a pitcher can throw.

Jim Furtado Posted: March 18, 2016 at 06:41 AM | 6 comment(s)
  Beats: casey weathers, indians

Thursday, March 17, 2016

Indians Michael Brantley in Minor League start | MLB.com

Brantley is still working to be ready for Opening Day.

Jim Furtado Posted: March 17, 2016 at 07:38 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: indians, michael brantley

Saturday, March 12, 2016

Indians outfielder Michael Brantley clears big hurdle, takes live batting practice - Indians - Ohio

While Brantley wants to play in Cleveland’s opener on April 4, it appears unlikely the outfielder will be able to do so. He still must work his way back into game shape before being inserted in a regular-season lineup.

If Brantley feels he’s able to play when opening day rolls around, however, Francona will listen to him.

“We don’t want to hold him back,” Francona said. “He asked us to trust him and that’s really not a very hard thing to do.”

Any setback with Brantley’s shoulder could alter any plans, but Francona isn’t worried about that hypothetical scenario.

“I don’t foresee any complications moving forward,” Francona said. “He’s doing so well.”

Jim Furtado Posted: March 12, 2016 at 07:51 AM | 2 comment(s)
  Beats: indians, michael brantley

Sunday, February 14, 2016

Indians General Manager Mike Chernoff continues to carve out role in baseball world - Indians - Ohio

A lot of good stuff in this article.

It is in this goal that Chernoff finds his place in the Indians’ front office as the de factor second-in-command to Antonetti. He is an organizer, a representer and an evaluator.

“[Antonetti] and I have been working side-by-side for 12 years. We’ve gotten really close and know each other’s styles really well,” Chernoff said. “Chris is leading decisions and he gets this intense focus on that process. I’ve often found my role to be to go out, gather a lot of input and ideas, generate new ideas and look at it from different angles. I tend to have some emotion and passion for what I’m advocating for. Chris is a really good balance for that. Those styles complement each other. Hopefully, sometimes I bring some of that to the table in our discussions.”

The information revolution in baseball over the past decade has created a need for streamlined systems of organization. Synthesizing data is as crucial as it has ever been. More data, viewpoints and ways to break down the game means a higher chance of disorganization and crucial information getting lost in the fray. Chernoff is a facilitator of data to take to Antonetti as a means to better make a more informed decision rather than relying on incomplete information, which recently has become an increasingly present issue for teams when any player could have half a dozen indicators of future performance all pointing in different directions.

Jim Furtado Posted: February 14, 2016 at 07:18 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: general managers, indians, mike chernoff

Thursday, January 28, 2016

Walt “No Neck” Williams passes at 72

I’m a Walt, I grew up in Chicago, I really started becoming a baseball fan in 1970.  Of course he was one of my favorite players.

RIP.

Walt Davis Posted: January 28, 2016 at 05:24 PM | 10 comment(s)
  Beats: colt .45's, indians, walt williams, white sox, yankees

Monday, January 11, 2016

Nick Cafardo: The case for and against Manny Ramirez’s Hall of Fame bid - The Boston Globe

Ahh, no.

2. Another brilliant marketing move by Fenway Sports Group, introducing Tessie as Wally the Green Monster’s sister. It may lessen the appearance load for poor Wally.

Jim Furtado Posted: January 11, 2016 at 06:12 AM | 101 comment(s)
  Beats: hall of fame, indians, manny ramirez, notes, red sox

Friday, January 08, 2016

Manny on PEDs, Hall: ‘Sometimes you think you’re doing right, but you’re not’ | Chicago Sun-Times

Why would players already talented enough to play at high levels in the majors, already capable of making millions in the game, capable of lasting a decade or longer in the majors, take performance enhancers? Take the chance?

After all, those are the players in question when it comes to the Hall of Fame debate – exemplified most by Bonds and Clemens if you believe the timelines of their alleged uses.

“Life is like that. You make mistakes,” Ramirez said. “Everybody makes mistakes. We’re humans. You’ve made mistakes; I’ve made mistakes. Everybody.

“Like I say with some of my friends, I could tell you, `Look at that guy: He’s a cheater, he uses steroids.’ Maybe you smoke weed. Maybe you do cocaine. Maybe you cheat on your wife. Maybe you’re a drunkard. It’s the same.

“Nobody’s perfect.”

Jim Furtado Posted: January 08, 2016 at 07:05 AM | 34 comment(s)
  Beats: cubs, indians, manny ramirez, red sox

Thursday, January 07, 2016

The 1998 Indians had a “dream team” front office.

John Hart’s real legacy.

“It’s one of those things you get a sinking feeling,” Hart said. “But we were doing so well and people want to take your guys.”

Success affected the front office in other ways, in O’Dowd’s estimation.

“The culture changed when we got really good,” he said, “because everybody wanted something for themselves within that process, including me. It changed the dynamic of the relationships. Sometimes it’s harder to manage success than failure. When you fail, there’s this bond that ties you all together and creates something special. Once you get special, where do you go from there? I actually think Apple’s going through that now.”

Just as the Indians endured the difficulty of keeping an elite team together on the field after the sell-out streak ended and the robust revenues ran dry, they also saw the front office evolve. As evidenced by Toronto’s hire of Shapiro to run both the business and baseball operations, Cleveland is still regarded in the industry as one of the more collaborative and well-organized offices in the game. A place worth poaching.

But we might never again see a group as jam-packed with GM prospects as that 1998 stash. Hart’s family tree has surely left its mark on baseball, and DePodesta’s bold move to the Browns is extending its influence to the gridiron.

Jim Furtado Posted: January 07, 2016 at 10:16 AM | 9 comment(s)
  Beats: front office, general managers, indians, john hart

Monday, January 04, 2016

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 1-4-2016

Ogden Standard, January 4, 1916:

Star ball players have been trembling in their shoes since the peace pact between the National and American leagues and the Federals has been ratified lest their high salaries would be lopped off.
...
Tris Speaker will be the first to have his salary cut down. The salary of fifteen thousand simoleons, which went to him in pay checks in exchange for helping Mr. Lannin win pennants and world championships…is a thing of the past, according to the report circulated [in Boston].
...
But despite the fact that his salary is to be reduced, Speaker will undoubtedly be seen cavorting around in center field…Indeed, it is pointed out, where could he go now that there no longer is a Federal league to offer fabulous salaries to underpaid and overworked ball players.

Man, that’s bogus. Anyway, trying to cut Spoke’s salary in half backfired on the Sox. Unsurprisingly, Tris refused to take that kind of pay cut, so Boston traded him to Cleveland for pitching prospect Sad Sam Jones, a replacement-level third baseman, and a huge pile of money.

Speaker led the league in batting average, on-base percentage, and slugging with the 1916 Indians. Four years later, he managed Cleveland to a World Series championship.


Thursday, December 17, 2015

Mike Napoli, Rajai Davis agree to one-year deals with Indians

The Cleveland Indians have reached agreements with first baseman Mike Napoli and outfielder Rajai Davis on one-year deals, a baseball source told ESPN’s Jerry Crasnick.

Napoli’s deal is for $7 million and includes $3 million in performance bonuses, the source told Crasnick. Napoli must pass a physical for the deal to be finalized.

The Indians have long sought a right-handed power hitter, and Napoli might be able to fill that void. Napoli, 34, has 204 career homers. He can play first base and catch in a pinch, and the Indians can use him as a designated hitter along with Carlos Santana.

Last season, Napoli hit .224 with 18 home runs and 50 RBIs for Boston and Texas. After being traded to the Rangers, he batted .295 with five homers in 35 games.

Davis, 35, agreed to a deal worth $5.25 million, according to the source.

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: December 17, 2015 at 10:06 PM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: indians, mike napolis, rajai davis

Wednesday, December 09, 2015

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 12-9-2015

Milwaukee Sentinel, December 9, 1915:

Before the next American league pennant season opens the Cleveland American league baseball club, as well as the Cleveland American association team, will have acquired new owners, according to present indications.

Although no official statement has been made, it is known that the bankers’ committee in charge of the financial affairs of Charles W. Somers, the present owner of the teams, is in favor of selling the clubs as a means of meeting Somers’ present financial difficulties.

Elsewhere, the Milwaukee Journal reports the names of seven people said to be interested in buying the Indians, none of whom would actually do so. The Pittsburgh Gazette Times reports that Somers says he’ll fight as hard as he can to keep the club. And the Toledo News-Bee reports that the American League wants the Cleveland AA club to move, with Toledo being the only reasonable relocation option.

The News-Bee was on to something. The Cleveland American Association team, which had moved from Toledo in 1914 in order to block the Federal League, was back in the Glass City for 1916 and has been there ever since.

Jefferson Manship (Dan Lee) Posted: December 09, 2015 at 08:13 AM | 22 comment(s)
  Beats: dugout, history, indians

Carlos Carrasco is extremely valuable in trade | MLB.com

The deal Greinke signed, starting with his age-32 season next year, will pay him more than $34 million in 2016, or approximately $1 million per start. The extension Carrasco signed last April pays him roughly the same, $37.5 million, but over the next five seasons combined—and even that’s only if the team exercises the 2019 and ‘20 club options. He’s making about the same over five seasons as Happ, who is nearly five years older and with a fraction of the success, is making over three. Carrasco is owed 17 percent of what Price is.

We could make that comparison all night long, but you get the idea. You could even argue that Carrasco’s contract makes him as or more valuable than Jose Fernandez, who is cheaper and younger but also controllable for only three more seasons. (And, according to reports, isn’t even really on the market.)

Really, the combination of these attributes is so rare. Talented pitchers are expensive (Kershaw, Greinke, Price, etc.), or nearing free agency (Stephen Strasburg), or on teams who wouldn’t even consider moving them due to competitive or fanbase reasons (Arrieta, Madison Bumgarner, Felix Hernandez, etc.) If you want to argue Carrasco against Sonny Gray, so be it, but Carrasco was better in nearly every way in 2015, and it’s splitting hairs at that point anyway.

Cleveland may very well decide against moving Carrasco, but it’s easy to see the Indians have needs, particularly without a center fielder and with Michael Brantley’s shoulder surgery further complicating matters. If they were to hold out for an A.J. Pollock, Yasiel Puig, Jorge Soler or George Springer as mere starting points, they’d be entirely justified to do so. Carrasco’s that good. His contract makes him that valuable.

Jim Furtado Posted: December 09, 2015 at 06:58 AM | 8 comment(s)
  Beats: carlos carrasco, indians, sabermetrics

Friday, December 04, 2015

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 12-4-2015

Rock Island Argus, December 4, 1915:

Unless B.B. Johnson, chief mogul of the American league, is able to paint a rosy picture of the financial outlook for next season, when he comes [to Cleveland] next week to discuss the Cleveland situation, the Cleveland Indians probably will be sold.
...
The Cleveland club barely made expenses last season, the sale of most of their star players being made as a means of filling up the large vacancy in the strong box…Jackson, Gregg, Lajoie, Leibold, Johnston and Olson were disposed of, Birmingham was deposed as manager and new blood in the shape of youngsters with low salaries, were added to the team.

Yep. Sounds like a Cleveland thing to do. In fairness to Somers, though, if he hadn’t run out of money in 1915, the roster likely wouldn’t have changed as much and the Tribe probably wouldn’t have won the World Series in 1920.

Jefferson Manship (Dan Lee) Posted: December 04, 2015 at 10:51 AM | 8 comment(s)
  Beats: dugout, history, indians

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Plain Dealer | Cleveland Indians acquire Kevin Slowey

The Indians acquired Slowey and a reported $1.25 million from the Rockies for right-hander Zach Putnam.

Coot Veal and Cot Deal taste like Old Bay Posted: January 21, 2012 at 12:04 PM | 10 comment(s)
  Beats: indians, rockies

SI.com: Economic considerations at heart of Carmona’s decision

An interesting analysis of signing ages, signing bonuses, and success rates in the Dominican Republic, by Melissa Segura of Sports Illustrated ...

Teams pay premiums for 16-year-olds for two primary reasons: One, because teams often want to be the first to sign a promising player and, thus, avoid bidding wars with other teams; and two, clubs prefer to develop their players’ skills under the watchful eyes of their own club personnel rather than under those of unqualified and unaffiliated coaches or trainers.

But are 18-year-old Latin American players really worth 70 percent less than their 16-year-old counterparts? Here’s another data analysis that calls into question the industry practice of placing a premium on youth. Let’s assume the most basic marker of a successful signing is making it to the majors. We’ll make it simple and look at the 79 players who have made their major league debuts from 2008-2011 from Carmona’s Dominican Republic. Of those 79, only six were signed as 16-year-olds. The debuts suggest older players were more likely to advance to the majors. ...

[...]

What’s more, SI tracked down the bonus data for 60 of the 79 players. Fernando Martinez, signed by the Mets in 2005 for $1.3 million, was the only one to receive a seven-figure bonus. Only nine others signed for six figures and one — the Rockies’ Juan Nicasio — received nada to sign, according to the data obtained by SI. The median signing bonus among them tallied a paltry $35,000.

Joe Kehoskie Posted: January 21, 2012 at 04:09 AM | 16 comment(s)
  Beats: indians, international, mets, miami, minor leagues, rockies, scouting

Friday, January 20, 2012

Kevin Goldstein: Indians Top 11 Prospects

System in 20 Words or Less: This is the youngest, riskiest, most volatile Top 11 I’ve ever done.

Five-Star Prospects
1. Francisco Lindor, SS
Three-Star Prospects
2. Dillon Howard, RHP
3. Ronny Rodriguez, SS
4. Austin Adams, RHP
5. Tony Wolters, SS
6. Nick Hagadone, LHP
7. Dorssys Paulino, SS
8. Luigi Rodriguez, OF
Two-Star Prospects
9. Scott Barnes, LHP
10. Robel Garcia, INF
11. Elvis Araujo, LHP

Nine More
12. Jake Cisco, RHP: This 2011 third-round pick has size and stuff, but he’s raw.
13. Zach McAllister, RHP: He has command and fastball movement, but little else. His ceiling is a fifth starter.
14. Felix Sterling, RHP: This young righty has a power arm and big potential, but he needs refinement.
15. Jorge Martinez, SS: He’s yet another teenage Dominican with loud tools. He profiles as a third baseman with power.
16. Chen Lee, RHP: This undersized righty has an electric fastball. He should pitch in big leagues this year, and has a seventh- or eighth-inning ceiling.
17. Levon Washington, OF: He’s still a great athlete, but his swing fell apart in 2011.
18. Jesus Aguilar, 1B: This massive first baseman is a bat-only prospect, but there are questions about what he can do other than hit for power.
19. Chun-Hsui Chen, C: He has impressive offensive skills, but he’s well below average behind the plate.
20. Zack Putnam, RHP: Like Lee, Putnam should reach the big leagues this year, but he profiles as a solid reliever, not an impact one.

 

Tripon Posted: January 20, 2012 at 12:33 AM | 6 comment(s)
  Beats: indians, minor leagues, prospect reports, scouting

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Fausto Carmona arrested in Dominican Republic for using false identity

Sure, when Newton McPherson uses a different name, its okay, but when Roberto Hernandez Heredia does it, its a criminal matter!

Jorge Arangure of ESPN.com passes along word from reporter Yancen Pujols that Indians right-hander Fausto Carmona was arrested in the Dominican Republic and is being charged with using a false identity.

According to Pujols, Dominican police arrested Carmona–whose real name is apparently Roberto Hernandez Heredia–while he was leaving the American consulate after renewing his visa.

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: January 19, 2012 at 03:46 PM | 81 comment(s)
  Beats: indians, international

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