August 26, 2014

While We’re Waiting… Indians’ Standing Pat, Jim Tressel’s New Career and Hardesty Running Hard

While We’re Waiting serves as the early morning gathering of WFNY-esque information for your viewing pleasure. Have something you think we should see? Send it to our tips email at tips@waitingfornextyear.com.

“This 2012 season ought to serve as a lesson that, no, the almost completely left-handed lineup and the right-handed rotation do not lend themselves to the kind of sustained winning stretches it takes to be a true contender. Both of those issues absolutely need to be addressed, one way or another, if the Indians are going to contend in 2013, and perhaps Travis Hafner and Grady Sizemore coming off the books will help Antonetti do so. You can look at the Indians’ lineup, factoring in a healthy Lonnie Chisenhall and matured Jason Kipnis, and see the seeds of a competitive club. But as I wrote earlier, if the Indians do ultimately decide to deal Choo, they’d almost assuredly be taking a big step back with regard to their 2013 outlook, and that’s a tough sell to a fractured fan base.” [Castrovince/MLB.com]

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“After a national championship and ten-year period of unprecedented dominance in the Big Ten, such success that could have been perhaps been even greater never was. In the wake of major NCAA violations involving the former OSU coach, Tressel was urged by athletic director Gene Smith to step down.

On the Monday morning of May 30, 2011, he did exactly that. Almost exactly 14 months later, Tressel finds himself full-circle at the University of Akron, a place where he began his coaching career as a graduate assistant.” [Maks/The O Zone]

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“Practice after practice, Hardesty would either be held out of practice or was “limited” in what he was allowed to do. Even after he had returned full speed to practice, Shurmur questioned whether he was mentally over his injury. Hardesty’s load was expected to be light at the beginning of last season, until Brandon Jackson unexpectedly landed on injured reserve with a turf toe.

This year? The expectations, at least in the eyes of many fans, were low. The team drafted Trent Richardson. After being the darling of camp last year, Jackson was returning from injury. It was believed that a roster spot might come down to a side competition between Hardesty and second-year back Chris Ogbonnaya, who was second on the team in rushing yards a year ago. If things ended today, I don’t think there is much of a decision to make: Hardesty will be on the team’s 53-man roster.” [Pokorny/Dawgs by Nature]

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“You have to wonder if we just witnessed Derek Lowe’s final start for the Cleveland Indians. For a team that is desperately trying to cling to the fringe of the postseason discussion, it seems too high a risk to keep sending the veteran out there. As great as Lowe was on the mound early this season, as great a pitcher as he’s been throughout his career, and as much as he has been liked by teammates and coaches and reporters throughout his career, he has undoubtedly reached a turning point.” [Bastian/MLB]

  • Vindictive_Pat

    I still need to see a lot more of Hardesty before deciding that what I’m about to say is true, but I should have known better than to throw a guy under the bus for looking terrible in his first season back from a torn ACL. It always, always, always takes 1.5-2 years to come back from an ACL tear… 6 months to rehab and 12-18 months to get to the point mentally where you can put weight on it and change directions quickly without thinking it’s going to snap again.

  • http://twitter.com/RickWFNY rick grayshock

    We’ve been told Hardesty looked great in camp before though. I will say the threat of being cut or glued to the bench should motivate him.

  • Vindictive_Pat

    Agreed, but I do put stock in the whole “player never looks good in the season after an ACL injury” thing. I’ve seen it too many times. The best example I can think of off the top of my head is Wes Welker in 2010.

  • Harv 21

    Agree, especially given the explosivenes needed and pounding taken by RBs. But I do fear this is a guy with one of those bodies that looks solid but just can’t take NFL punishment. I still remember his 7 carries in the exhibition game his rookie year just before he tore the knee, with that power and quick interior moves, and thinking “aah, we finally have our feature back.”

    Would be funny if we suddenly go from practice squad RBs to 3 good ones the next season.

  • http://twitter.com/RickWFNY rick grayshock

    Yes, not downplaying that part at all.

  • mgbode

    might as well also hope we go from a terrible WR corps to a dynamic one with Gordon, Little, and Benjamin. That another year and Schwartz is all that the OL needed. Oh, and that we finally found our QB in Weeden.

    it’s just now August, might as well go all out :)

  • The_Real_Shamrock

    No pressure and no expectations with regard to Hardesty so I would think he’d perform better the problem is once the hitting starts for real.

  • Harv 21

    you’re joking but really, when was the last time we were excited about an entire group of young players in pre-season? For me, maybe baseball spring trainings, 1994 and 2008. It’s appropriate for Cleveland fans to allow themselves some giddy dreams if there appears to be a critical mass of young talent gathering. I’m riding it until reality barges in. Shhhh…

  • mgbode

    honestly, I’m half-joking. I don’t really expect much out of Hardesty, Benjamin, Lauvao, Moore, and probably not Gordon.

    but, I am very excited about Richardson and the OL. and am hoping my pre-draft scouting on Weeden was incredibly inaccurate (I was among the harshest on him pre-draft – I hope he makes me regret those words).

    as far as excited about young players in pre-season. the most was LeBron’s rookie year. nothing will ever surpass that one for me.