April 24, 2014

Tribe Loses Two, Gains One in Rule 5 Draft

The Major League phase of baseball’s Rule 5 draft was just completed.  For those who aren’t familiar with it, it works this way, per MLBTradeRumors.com:

Players are eligible for the Rule 5 Draft if they aren’t on the 40-man roster four or five years after signing, depending on the age at which they signed. Teams draft in the reverse order of the previous season’s standings but aren’t required to make a selection. If they do choose a player, they pay his former team $50K and must keep that player on the Major League roster all season or offer him back to his original team for $25K.

This morning, the Indians lost two players from their organization. One time top prospect, Hector Rondon, was selected second overall by the Chicago Cubs. Rondon spent almost three full seasons recovering from a multitude of injuries before, but was said to be pitching well and a potential bullpen option for the Indians late in the 2013 season. Instead, he will be a Chicago Cub, unless they don’t like what they see. The Tribe also bids farewell to 23 year old left-handed starter T.J. McFarland, who was taken 23rd by Baltimore. The soft-tossing lefty went 16-8 with a 4.03 ERA in 27 starts between Akron and Columbus.

Don’t fret – if the Indians were that high on either player, they’d have been protected on the 40-man roster.

On the other side, the Tribe took 24-year old first baseman Chris McGuiness from the Texas Rangers with their Rule 5 pick. The left-handed hitting McGuiness was just named MVP of the Arizona Fall League who spent the 2012 season in AA Frisco. He hit 23 homers and drove in 77 runs with an OPS of .840 in 123 games. He is said to be a solid defensive player but with the Rangers system loaded with talent, he was left off their 40-man roster.

The Tribe has now loaded up with low-budget options at first base should they not find what they are looking for in trades or on the open market. McGuiness, Mike McDade (added from Toronto), Lars Anderson, and Russ Canzler are all on the 40-man roster.

[Source - MLB Trade Rumors]

Updates on Baseball America’s Top 10 Prospects in the Cleveland Indians System

With the MLB All-Star Break underway, it is time to take a look back at the top prospects in the Cleveland Indians organization. The major league club has shown some promise in the early goings of the 2010 season, but sit at the halfway point in last place in the Central Division with a 34-54 record.

Two of these top 10 players below are currently with the Indians major league team and have had very different early results. Among the other eight players as ranked by Baseball America prior to the season, three currently play for the Class AAA Columbus Clippers, two are with the Double-A Akron Aeros and another has yet to play at all this year. Without any further ado, here is an update on how they are progressing so far (stats as of games completed Saturday):

1. Carlos Santana, C – 5’11″, 190-lbs, Born 4/8/86
[Read more...]

Da Clip Show: Keeping an Eye on the Tribe’s AAA Squad – 5/18/10 – “The Big Smooth” Edition

Clip Show aims to be your weekly update for all things Columbus Clippers. Check back each Tuesday afternoon for team records, roster updates, and performance updates on some of the brightest prospects in the Tribe system.

 header

The wheels came off the train just a bit this week, as the Clippers found themselves coming back home mired in a four-game losing streak. The bats had cooled (only 2.5 runs per game during the losing streak) and the pitching wasn’t getting it done (almost 7 runs per game allowed during the streak). But, as they’ve done much of this young season, the club managed to right the ship [rim shot] and finish the week on a high note winning two in a row to maintain their 3-game lead in the IL West. Let’s take a closer look at the Clippers’ week…

This Week: 3-4
Current Record: 24-15, 1st place (of four) in ILW (International League West)

While We’re Waiting… McCoy Redshirts, Hector Rondon and LeBron’s Fury

While We’re Waiting serves up an breakfast buffet of WFNY-esque goodies for your daily viewing pleasure (on weekends too!!) Have something else you think we should see? Send it to our fancy tips email address at tips@waitingfornextyear.com.

Talking about McCoy’s upcoming season and his future prospects: “Quarterback Colt McCoy redshirted his true freshman year at Texas while Vince Young guided the Longhorns to a national championship, so he knows something about waiting. A day after the Browns selected McCoy in the third round with the 85th pick team president Mike Holmgren said McCoy won’t play in 2010.

Of course, that could change. Jake Delhomme and Seneca Wallace could be injured or flop colossally and McCoy could tear up the preseason, but for now the plan is for McCoy to be Delhomme’s understudy.” [The Orange and Brown Report]
[Read more...]

Da Clip Show: Keeping an Eye on the Tribe’s AAA Squad – 4/20/10

Clip Show aims to be your weekly update for all things Columbus Clippers. Check back each Tuesday afternoon for team records, roster updates, and performance updates on some of the brightest prospects in the Tribe system.

 header

What a difference a year makes. The Clippers were pretty dreadful for most of last season. But, while I know it’s still very, very early, this year’s squad looks like a completely different animal. A couple of nice winning streaks this week put the Clippers into an early first-place spot in their four-team division. Let’s take a closer look at the Clippers’ week…

This Week: 5-2
Current Record: 8-4, 1st place (of four) in ILW (International League West)

Return of CLIP SHOW! Keeping an Eye on the Tribe’s AAA Squad – 4/13/10

Clip Show aims to be your weekly update for all things Columbus Clippers. Check back each Tuesday afternoon for team records, roster updates, and performance updates on some of the brightest prospects in the Tribe system.

 header

It definitely feels like spring. The Clippers are back, I’ve been able to take in two games in beautiful Huntington Park, and I’ve enjoyed seeing Carlos Santana almost a little too much. But hey… I need to enjoy it while he’s still here. Let’s take a closer look at the Clippers’ week…

This Week: 3-2
Current Record: 3-2, t-1st place (of four) in ILW (International League West)

Manny Acta Sticking By Chris Perez…For Now

With Kerry Wood throwing bullpen sessions in attempt to recover from a back injury, the Cleveland Indians will continue to go to Chris Perez with late game duties despite two recent outings that could be kindly described as terrible.  Head coach Manny Acta stuck up for his temporary closer following yesterday’s loss to the Texas Rangers.

“[Perez] saved two very good games in Chicago and we were celebrating and being happy,” said Acta.  “He had two bad outings in a row, [but] we’re not going to run him out of town because of that.

The four reference outings could not be more night and day.  In Chicago, Perez recorded two saves while allowing only one base runner in two innings of work, striking out one.  On Sunday in Detroit, things took a turn for the worst as Perez walked three batters, gave up three hits and allowed three earned runs in a blown save and a loss. 

[Read more...]

Indians Make a Round of Roster Moves

While TD kept us all updated on the move to send Alex White to minor league camp, the Indians have gone ahead and reshuffled a few more pieces of the collective puzzle.

Heading to DP’s awaiting arms in Columbus are Jeanmar Gomez, Hector Rondon, Carlos Santana and Jordan Brown.  The first three players spent much of their 2009 season with the Akron Aeros while Brown will start another stint with the Triple-A team.  There is a very good chance that at least one of these four players makes an appearance with the big league squad at some point this season.

Going to Akron will be prospects Carlos Rivero and Nick Weglarz.  Weglarz had one of the higher on-base percentages in the Cactus League heading into this week and will likely turn out a very successful campaign withthe Aeros. 

The last of the three moves involve sending Beau Mills to minor league camp where he will join the abovementioned White. 

The recently released Brian Bixler managed to clear waivers and was outrighted to Columbus.  The team currently has 48 players still partaking in spring training as the deadline to trim the roster down even further is quickly approaching – the active player roster (or the “25-man”) must be turned in by April 4th, the official opening day.

Preview of the 2010 Indians Starting Rotation

AL PLAYOFFS INDIANS MARINERSYesterday’s hire of Tim Belcher as Cleveland’s pitching coach gave a glimpse at what the Indians are looking to accomplish this season at the Major League level. Belcher, who has been all around the organization for the past eight years, had a relatively solid MLB playing career under some of the top pitching coaches in the business including Bud Black over for the Angels. With this hire in place, it is now the perfect time to analyze what he and new manager Manny Acta will have to assemble their opening day rotation.

Beginning from #13 and advancing to your projected opening day starter, I preview all of the different individuals that could have an impact as a starter for the Cleveland Indians this season. I included all of the recent stats at the top levels of the minor leagues as well as their career MLB record and age for the start of this season. I have heard grumblings that the team might be interested in acquiring an extra starting pitcher to help all of the youngsters, but we will see later how that affects this early breakdown.

[Read more...]

Tonight’s the Night: Carrasco’s Debut

carrascoWith the influx of new blood infused into the Indians organization over the past month and a half, it seems like we are getting a test of something new every game. Guys like Matt LaPorta, Chris Perez, Andy Marte, and Jess Todd have gotten plenty of opportunities to show that they are indeed a part of this team’s future.

The next kid to get his chance is 22-year old Carlos Carrasco. The right-handed starting pitcher will be recalled today to make his major league debut for the Tribe in Detroit against the Tigers. [Read more...]

Carlos Carrasco to get the Call

carlos-carrasco-flickrNothing better than an alliteration on a Wednesday afternoon, especially one that may help us feel a little better about the whole Cliff Lee trade situation.  In due time, anyway…

Anthony Castrovince reports that Carlos Carrasco (along with Lou Marson) will be in Cleveland come September.  Had Jason Donald not hit the shelf with back spasms, we may have seen him as well to get a head start on Operation “Let’s hope Shapiro knows something we don’t.”

As DP mentioned yesterday, Carrasco recently took his first loss with the Clippers following a wave of solid outings. Carrasco has now made five starts, going 4-1 with a 3.57 ERA/0.93 WHIP across 35.1 innings. He has allowed 27 hits, walked only six batters while fanning 33.  Not too shabby. 

For an update on the rest of the Triple-A possible call-ups, make sure you catch DP’s latest.  Others that Indians fans will see come the fall are likely to be Jordan Brown, Jose Veras and perhaps Hector Rondon – who started the season with the Arkon Aeros in Double-A.  Carrasco and Rondon: the rotation of the future, ladies and gentlemen.  Just not as far in the future as you may think.

(image via puffygreenjacket/Flickr)

Memo to the Tribe FO: Moves the Organization Should (and Should Not) Make

large_mark-shapiro1

Now that the dust has settled a bit—and it’s quite clear that the only playoffs anyone in the Tribe’s organization should be worried about are at the AA level—Jacob and I thought we might take a moment to draft a few notes for Mark Shapiro and Co about the minor league system and the near future. From playing time for certain players to roster protection moves for others, we aim to offer up our ideas for the best course of action for the rest of the 2009 season. Please note that we won’t be discussing the potential for further waiver-trades at the ML level, but instead are focusing on guys down in the ranks a bit.

DP: Call up Jordan Brown and give him every-day at bats for the Tribe.

It’s no secret that I’ve been lobbying hard for Brown for most of the last month or so, especially given the fact that Chris Gimenez continues to languish in the majors. [Read more...]

Jake Westbrook – From Tommy John to Opening Day Starter?

2769westbrookimageSomething that was glossed over in the wake of the Cliff Lee trade was a comment made to the press from GM Mark Shapiro:

When asked who might be the Indians’ opening day starter next season, GM Mark Shapiro said, “Jake Westbrook if he’s healthy.”

Quite an interesting development considering Jake hasn’t pitched since May 2008 and has never been considered top of the rotation material. True, Jake is a rock of consistency and probably the one vocal leader left on the team, despite being on the disabled list.

Before blowing out his elbow early last season, Jake has rightfully earned his three year, $33 million extension. The shame of it is the Indians haven’t been able to reap the benefits of it as of yet. Westbrook averaged 15 wins from 2004-2006 while pitching over 210 innings per year. He missed time in 2007 with a side muscle injury but returned to be a solid post-season starter during the run to game seven of the ALCS. [Read more...]

The All-Star Break is Here… Thank Goodness

Indians Tigers BaseballThings I wouldn’t have believed if you had told me on April 1, 2009:

1. The Indians would enter the All-Star break as the worst team in the American League, 19 games under .500.

2. The bullpen would be the worst we have seen (and we have seen a lot of bad ones) since the days of the “bullpen from hell.”

3. The afformentioned pen would have Mike Gosling, Chris Perez, Winston Abreu, and Jose Veras in it, while Rafael Perez and Jensen Lewis had pitched their way down to Columbus (with Perez doing it twice).

4. Grady Sizemore would be hitting .236 having spent a month on the DL.

5. Tomo Ohka would be in the rotation.

6. Carl Pavano would be easily the teams #2 starter and top realistic trade commodity. [Read more...]

Best Team in NE Ohio? The 2009 Akron Aeros

akron-aerosThe five-time defending Southern Division champions are on pace for greatness again here in 2009 as the Akron Aeros currently stand at 53-28, a mark that is good for the second best record in full-season professional baseball. Led by several marquee prospects, the Aeros look as good as ever this year as they look to win their third Eastern League championship in franchise history (also won in 2003 and 2005). Instead of going with my “Double Dose of Double-A” feature, I decided to simply recap the season as it stands right now, just a handful of games over the halfway mark.

I could go on and on about every single one of the players on our team, but I first want to mention the incredible pitching staff. While the Indians have had their struggles on the mound thus far this season prompting several responses of varying degrees from our very own TD, Akron has just been amazing this season and especially recently. Over the past 28 games, the Aeros pitching staff has a combined 2.02 ERA while holding opponents to one run or less a spectacular 11 times en route to a 19-9 record. On the season, the Aeros now lead the entire 12-team Eastern League with a 3.17 team ERA.

[Read more...]

While We’re Waiting… Hedo Turkoglu, Detroit Signs Two, and Hector Rondon

smugly-hedo-turkogluWell I guess Turk isn’t going to Portland after all… “Free agent Hedo Turkoglu has backed out of his commitment to the Portland Trail Blazers and plans to sign with the Toronto Raptors, multiple league sources told Yahoo! Sports on Friday night. Turkoglu had agreed on a five-year, $50 million deal with the Blazers, but changed his mind and is headed for a five-year, $56 million deal with the Raptors. Toronto would have to renounce three free agents – Shawn Marion, Carlos Delfino and Anthony Parker – to create the cap space for Turkoglu.” [Adrian Wojnarowski/Yahoo Sports]

A statistically minded Pistons fan concedes that the two big signings won’t be enough for anything in the end: “Of course, if all we focus upon is scoring, then Gordon and Villanueva are above average players. But once we move past scoring we see that Gordon was below average last season with respect to rebounds, steals, turnovers, blocked shots, and assists. And Villanueva was below average with respect to steals, turnovers, and personal fouls (and not really far above average with respect to anything else). In sum, it looks like the Pistons have traded away valuable cap space for two players who are not going to take this team to a championship.” [Dave Berri/Wages of Wins]

[Read more...]

Double Dose of Double-A: Akron Aeros Weekly Review – 5/17/09

With DP creating his weekly feature following the Columbus Clippers, I decided to create my own weekly review for my hometown Akron Aeros. The Aeros are off to an incredible start this season, and this is no surprise to Akronites that have witnessed the team make the Eastern League finals three of the last four years, and win two championships in the last seven years overall.

The Indians farm system has always been stacked, and 2009 is no different as current organizational studs Carlos Santana, Matt McBride, Beau Mills, Hector Rondon and Jeanmar Gomez are on the Aeros right now. Without any futher ado, here is a double dose of Double-A baseball with two Boot Ups and two Boot Downs for the week that was for the Akron club.

akron-aeros

This Week: 5-3 (.625); Lose 1-3 Monday vs. Bowie, Lose 4-7 Tuesday vs. Bowie, Win 2-1 Wednesday vs. Bowie, Win 7-0 Thursday at Altoona, Win 5-3 Friday at Altoona, Lose 0-8 (7) Saturday at Altoona, Win 8-2 Sunday (7) at Altoona, Win 9-2 (7) Sunday at Altoona

Current Record: 27-8 (.771); first place in Southern Division 5.5 games ahead of Erie. Overall, Akron is 1 game ahead of the double-A Birmingham Barons and 1.5 games ahead of the Class AAA Scranton/Wilkes-Barre Yankees for the best record in professional baseball.

[Read more...]

The Hector Rondon Experiment

Lynn Ischay/The Plain Dealer

Photo from Lynn Ischay/The Plain Dealer

I am the Media Relations Intern for the Akron Aeros and on Tuesday, after dining at Swenson’s Drive-In with my boss Rob Sinclair, we heard back from Aeros manager Mike Sarbaugh that there were a couple of changes in the roster. First of all, Matt McBride (.405, 6 HR, 36 RBI) was coming to town after absolutely tearing up the Carolina League, and secondly, newly minted reliever Ryan Edell (26 starts in 2008 with Akron) would come down from Columbus to make the spot-start in place of ace Hector Rondon.

Rondon, as reported by Scott earlier this week, was phenomenal in his first five starts with the Aeros going 5-0 with a 1.23 ERA. He led the Eastern League in wins, and was second in ERA leading up to his scheduled start on Tuesday. In the end, however, Edell made the start after the demotion, and Rondon made his first ever professional appearance out of the bullpen. The 21-year-old native of Venezuela is supposedly being moved to the pen in order to give him a faster route to the Major Leagues, as scouts are saying his fastball already has MLB potential. His first outing, however, did not go as everyone planned…

[Read more...]

Hector Rondon Continues His Assault on the (Double-A) Opposition

hector-rondonWhile the pitching at the big league level has been absolutely atrocious (save for a few select starters), Tribe fans should take pride in the fact that things are not as bad a few miles Interstate 77. 

The 21-year old Hector Rondon has moved to 5-0 on the year after yesterday’s one-run outing against the Altoona Curve.  Perfect through his first four innings, Rondon finally allowed a single in the fifth.  In six and one-third total innings, Rondon allowed a mere three hits and one walk while striking out four.  For those keeping score at home, that’s two fewer hits than Masa Kobayashi allowed in his zero innings of work in Boston.

[Read more...]

While We’re Waiting… Wiz Fans Waiting, Hector Rondon’s Cannon, and B.J. Raji’s Drug Test

While We’re Waiting aims to be the round-up of the recent WFNY-esque information for your morning viewing. Have something you think we should see? Send it to our tips email in the sidebar.

gilbert-arenas 

Sorry, fellas.  The URL’s taken: “Maybe tonight’s win cost us a few ping-pong balls, but at this point, I don’t really care.  This roster just proved that they can beat the best team in the NBA without their upcoming lottery pick.  That has to get you excited for next year.” [JTS/Bullets Forever]

[Read more...]