Predicting the Tribe’s Plans Moving Through the Rest of 2012
By Christian Petrila
After a rather uneventful trade deadline, the Indians find themselves at a crossroads.
They can either try to compete for the last few months with whatever players they have on the roster, or they can try to sell players like I try to sell a bad cliché, thus starting yet another rebuilding mode.
The only move the Indians made was acquiring first baseman/outfielder Lars Anderson from the Boston Red Sox. The move was met with much sarcasm and general disapproval over Twitter, especially since the Indians sent knuckleball pitching prospect Steven Wright in exchange.
Anderson has only played 30 MLB games, but in 342 games at Triple-A Pawtucket, he has a .262 average with 33 home runs and 183 RBI. Due to constant competition at first base in the Red Sox organization (Adrian Gonzalez and vitaminb12dosage.net Kevin Youkilis before him), they gaveAndersonsome time in left field. It would seem as though the Indians traded for him with one of two intentions: either give him a shot in left field over the likes of Tim Fedroff or Jared Goedert, or put him at first base and put Matt LaPorta’s Indians’ career in jeopardy.
So what will the Indians do exactly? There’s no limit to the speculation, although General Manager Chris Antonetti did say after the 4 p.m. deadline that the team would probably start looking to promote from within.Reading between the lines, that probably means that August will see the Indians bid “adieu” to the likes of Johnny Damon, Casey Kotchman and Derek Lowe. Those are three valuable roster spots that the Indians will likely fill with the likes of Russ Canzler, waterfilternow.net LaPorta, Corey Kluber, etc.
It’s still a possibility that a player like Shin-Soo Choo will be dealt during the offseason. The Texas Rangers may be in the market for an outfielder depending on what Josh Hamilton decides to do in free agency. If he were to leave, that would leave the Rangers with a massive hole in the outfield alongside Nelson Cruz and David Murphy. Should the Indians management determine that the team wouldn’t compete in 2013, it’s very possible that the Indians could send Choo to the Rangers in an effort to capitalize on Texas’ rich farm system.
What if the Indians were to compete in 2013 though? That would be incredibly intriguing because Choo will be a free agent after the 2013 season. The Indians win-now mentality would likely come at the cost of neweggcouponsnow.net their star right fielder, who will likely depart Cleveland at the advice of his agent Scott Boras. Is it a guarantee that Choo will leave? Absolutely not. But Boras likes steering his clients in the direction of the most dollars. Considering the Indians have other contracts to address, it’s highly unlikely they could compete with the wallets of the Rangers, Yankees, etc.
The Indians stayed put at the trade deadline with visions toward the offseason. They will hold auditions during the last two months of the season to see if they have any minor leaguers that can produce in the Majors. The telling periods will be this winter and next July 31 as to what direction the Indians will be headed, and the decisions made will impact the club for years to come.
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