It’s the God Damn White Sox

How do you lose to the damn White Sox? Who still suicide squeezes? Two in a row. Jesus Christ. This will easily be the most frustrating season as an Indians fan. It makes me want to drink bleach at times.

Let’s be honest. This division is the Indians. No one is going to win it other than them. But losing back to back games to the White Sox is worse than Rickey Davis trying to get a triple double on his own basket. Oh well, we will complain about these issues till playoff time…When’s Miller come back?

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Is Naquin for Real?

Tyler Naquin is off to a pretty good start for a guy that for all intensive purposes lost his MLB job a year ago and struggled to get it back. And if it was not for an injury to Lonnie Chisenhall, he would not have received this opportunity. Naquin is taking advantage of it though. As of 5/7/18, Naquin is batting .319 and playing pretty good defense. Right field seems to be a good spot for him. His on base is solid as well though his slugging percentage could improve.

If Naquin is just a line drive singles hitter who plays solid defense, I can live with that.  The thing that concerns me though is his batting average on balls in play. He is hitting over 400 on balls in play. That is not sustainable. Naquin is due to come down to earth. I think we will see him settle in to being a .270 hitter. That though is pretty good coming from him. I think Naquin understands himself now. Naquin can be a solid piece for the Indians the remainder of the year and for the next few seasons to come. Another example of the Indians developing talent.

Fix the Pen

It’s become pretty clear the Indians bullpen is in shambles right now. Between the injuries and the home runs, the Tribe pen needs some work. However, I don’t think it is far off. Some guys are just in the wrong role.

Cody Allen will be fine. I’m not worried there. Andrew Miller will come back from injury. The top two guys will still be shutdown pitchers this year. After that, is where it gets interesting.

They need a third guy. Nick Goody can be a good 4th. Dan Otero needs to be your 5th guy. Tyler Olson should only face left handed batters. I think McAllister’s time in Cleveland will be ending soon. Tomlin will stay in the rotation. I do not see that changing. The remaining guys of Ogando, Marshall, and newcomer Oliver Drake will have to battle it out. The real help though I believe does come from outside the organization. A guy I think they could target is Raisel Iglesias. He is 28, under contract for two years after this season and is only 28. I think the struggling Reds would be willing to trade him. The Indians farm system is not loaded with Talent but I think the Indians could make something work without mortgaging the house. Hopefully they figure something out soon. 

2018 Tribe Roster

It’s almost time for pitchers and catchers to report. So why not get a jump start on predicting the Cleveland Indians 25 man roster. Most of the roster is pretty much set, but there are a few key battles that will play out. While I think a trade could still happen, you never know if someone will get hurt or a free agent will be signed, I’ll assume none of those things will happen, except for one prior injury you’ll see below.

1. Two starting rotation spots

2. One to two bullpen spots

3. 1-2 backup infield spots

4. 1-2 outfield spots

Let’s review the players that will make the roster without question.

Rotation: Trevor Bauer, Carlos Carrasco, Corey Kluber.

Relievers: Cody Allen, Andrew Miller, Nick Goody, Zach McAllister, Tyler Olson, Dan Otero.

Catchers: Yan Gomes, Roberto Perez

Infielders: Francisco Lindor, Jose Ramirez, Jason Kipnis, Yonder Alonso, Edwin Encarnacion

Outfielders: Michael Brantley, Bradley Zimmer, Lonnie Chisenhall

That is 19 for sure spots locked up. Let’s start with the two rotation spots. Mike Clevinger, Danny Salazar, Josh Tomlin and Ryan Merritt all have shots. However, I think it ends up being a fairly easy choice. Danny Salazar and Josh Tomlin get it and Clevinger goes to the bullpen and takes that spot. I would love to see Clevinger in the rotation and Salazar become a reliever but I don’t think it happens. This brings the total to 22. Three spots remain. At least one will be an outfielder, one will be an infielder and one open spot that could go a variety of ways.

For the infield I think it’s really between three players. Erik Gonzalez, Giovanny Urshella, and Yandy Diaz. I want Diaz to hit his way into the spot but he I think ends up in AAA. Urshella and Gonzalez are both major league level backups but are out of options. One of them will be on another team this year. Tito I think will go with Urshella. 23 spots gone.

Next, the outfield. Melvin Upton Jr., Tyler Naquin, Abraham Almonte, and Brandon Guyer are all options here. I think Guyer is not healthy to start the year. I’m going to cancel him out for now. The 4th outfielder could go so many ways here. I lean toward Almonte or Naquin winning out. Likely Almonte will snag it.

One spot left. Gonzalez, Naquin, Upton, or Merritt. With this spot I think Tito keeps an extra outfielder and leaves Naquin on the roster. Upton gets released and Merrit and Gonazalez are traded since they are out of option.

There you go. The 25 man Cleveland Indians roster. Let’s play baseball.

I’m a Stoolie and the Sun is Cold

Have to say, I’m fairly late to the game at becoming a self proclaimed “Stoolie”. I️ probably first learned about Barstool back in 2010 as a college freshman and over the next 5 years dabbled in their content. I️ experienced serious FOMO over never going to a Barstool Blackout Party, perused the Smokeshow pages back as 20 year old college guy in the dorms and laughed at all the absurd videos. Sometime in late 2015 or 2016 I️ became a full fledged Stoolie. Yes, the sun is cold.

Barstool has been all over the news circuit since the cancellation of their show on ESPN after one episode and then the New York Times wrote this piece here https://www.nytimes.com/2017/11/14/magazine/spurned-by-espn-barstool-sports-is-staying-on-offense.html. Like many of my friends, Barstool appeals because it is not PC. We are not racists or homophobes. Many of us have libertarian type leanings. Fiscally conservative, socially liberal. We really don’t give a fuck what you do. Just don’t tell us what to do either. And that’s where barstool appeals. It doesn’t try to be a moral compass, it doesn’t shove its views down my throat and it never takes itself too seriously. We don’t think any joke is off limits because in comedy it shouldn’t be. Barstool offends people and make them uncomfortable because it isn’t afraid to. I️ can’t watch ESPN talk shows anymore. I️ use to love Around the Horn but wouldn’t waste five minutes on it anymore. Instead, I️ look forward to Michael Rapaport calling people out for being sick fucks and want to know who Pardon My Take will name Football Guy of the week. I️ enjoy drinking and sports and comedy. I’m your average 25 year old male. Barstool gets me. Do I️ always agree with everything they say or post? Hell no, but I️ don’t get caught up in it. I️ laugh and move on like countless other Stoolies.

The PC world wonders how this media outlet rose to prominence and can’t believe people enjoy it. But I️ ask how can you not enjoy it? I️ know someone will think I’m a prick or misogynistic asshole for calling myself a Stoolie. Yet, there in lies the beauty of Barstool and its followers. We really don’t give a fuck what you think.

Projecting the Indians ALDS Roster

The regular season is close to wrapping up and while the Indians are still playing to secure home field advantage, it is not too early to start thinking about the playoff roster for the first round.

Majority of the spots I feel are pretty secure. A few guys are injured right now and (knock on wood) hopefully no one else gets hurt at this point. So right now, I am assuming Brantley, Zimmer, and Guyer will be out. I am also assuming Lonnie Chisenhall makes it back.

Saying that, let’s start with the pitching staff. Corey Kluber, Carlos Carrasco, and Trevor Bauer are locked in as the 1, 2 and 3 spots in the rotation. The fourth spot is one of my question marks. In the pen, Andrew Miller, Cody Allen, Bryan Shaw, Mike Clevinger, and Joe Smith are all for sure going to make it. Still leaves 2-3 pen spots open depending on how many arms Tito wants to carry.

Now, the easiest position is catcher. Yan Gomes and Roberto Perez are locks. That position is set. Edwin, and his parrot, at DH is locked as well.

The infield is easier than the outfield so let’s go there. Carlos Santana, Francisco Lindor and Jose Ramirez are all set. Giovanny Urshela will make it at third and I’m going to go with Yandy Diaz making this roster as well.

So heading into the outfield now, we have 16 spots reserved with at least 3 more going to pitchers. Austin Jackson, Jay Bruce, and Lonnie Chisenhall will all make it. I also believe Jason Kipnis gets a spot. Now, how many outfielders do the Indians keep out there is a big question.

With five spots left, this is where it gets tricky. The starting rotation spot is a battle between Danny Salazar and Josh Tomlin. It’s a real toss up here but I think Tito goes with Salazar. Tomlin deserves to be on this roster but I don’t see it in the cards for him unless Salazar has a meltdown in his next start. 21 spots down.

Now to the pen. Keeping Salazar means you need another pen arm with his limited innings. I think Tito picks 8 and that means to me that Dan Otero, Nick Goody and Tyler Olson all make this roster. Ryan Merritt and Zach McAllister are the two arms that get left off for this round. 24 secured leaving us with 1 more position player.

This is really coming down to three players I believe. Erik Gonzalez, Abraham Almonte, and Greg Allen. Gonzalez is a great utility guy and a speedster on the base paths but I think Urshela, Jose and even Kipnis being able to come back to the infield eliminates his need. Which means it’s Almonte or Allen. Allen is the better defender here and for that reason I think the kid makes the roster. There you go. 25 man roster complete.

Here is the quick run down again.

Starting Pitchers:

Corey Kluber

Carlos Carrasco

Trevor Bauer

Danny Salazar

Pen:

Mike Clevinger

Bryan Shaw

Cody Allen

Joe Smith

Andre Miller

Dan Otero

Nick Goody

Tyler Olson

DH:

Edwin Encarnacion

Catchers:

Yan Gomes

Roberto Perez

Infield:

Carlos Santana

Yandy Diaz

Giovanny Urshela

Francisco Lindor

Jose Ramirez

Outfield:

Jay Bruce

Austin Jackson

Jason Kipnis

Lonnie Chisenhall

Greg Allen

Go Tribe!