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Did The Tribe Win Last Night? | March 27, 2017

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2017 Spring Training

Countdown to Indians’ Opening Day – 42

February 20, 2017 |

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Countdown to Opening Day – 42 days

Major League Baseball retired Jackie Robinson’s number 42 across the game on April 15, 1997, on the 50th anniversary of his monumental breaking of the color barrier. Indians reliever Michael Jackson was one of 13 players who were wearing that number at the time and was allowed to continue wearing it, making him the last to call the number his own for Cleveland.

In 2013, the last of those original 13 players, Mariano Rivera, retired from baseball. Since 2007, the number has returned around the league for one day each year, thanks to the efforts in 2007 of 2016 Hall of Famer Ken Griffey Jr., who wanted to honor Robinson on the 60th anniversary of his debut.

Jackson not only has the honor of being the last to wear the number regularly for the Tribe, but he had some of the best seasons in Cleveland history by a player wearing the number. Read More

Countdown to Indians’ Opening Day – 43 – Josh Tomlin

February 19, 2017 |

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Countdown to Opening Day – 43

The Cleveland Indians rode with their Little Cowboy deep into the sunset of the 2016 season.

Had it not been for the October heroics of the Indians’ fifth starter Josh Tomlin, Cleveland’s postseason dreams may have more resembled a daydream. With two-fifths of the starting rotation out for the majority or entirety of October and another two men dealing with injuries heading into or during the playoffs, Tomlin’s ability to pitch against some of the big names in the game helped the Indians participate in the postseason, rather than watch it from their respective couches. Read More

MLB Should Consider Moving World Baseball Classic to Safer Time of Year for Teams and Players

February 19, 2017 |

The concept of the World Baseball Classic is a good one. The execution of when it is played out could use some work.

Spring training is supposed to be an important time for baseball teams to gel together, get to know each other, learn how to play with and integrate new teammates, and get ready for the long grind of a 162-game regular season schedule to come in less than two months.

Every four years, the WBC robs teams and their players of that important time. Not only that, but it puts key members of a regular Major League Baseball roster at unnecessary risk of a preseason injury. Read More

Countdown to Indians’ Opening Day – 44

February 18, 2017 |

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Countdown to Opening Day – 44 days

There is something magical about a large number of the Indians players who have worn the number 44 during their Cleveland careers.

Many were well known for having glorious facial hair.

It’s a strange correlation, no doubt about it. Forty players have worn the number (most recently Ross Detwiler at the beginning of the 2016 season) and the most memorable of the bunch can be remembered for the beards and mustaches that they sported on the field. Read More

Countdown to Indians’ Opening Day – 45 – Paul Assenmacher

February 17, 2017 |

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Countdown to Opening Day – 45 days

Of the 23 former Cleveland Indians to don the #45 on their back, no player wore it longer – or better – than former southpaw reliever Paul Assenmacher. Read More

Countdown to Indians’ Opening Day – 46

February 16, 2017 |

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Countdown to Opening Day – 46

The number 46 has been missing on the field for the Cleveland Indians over the last several years.

Not exactly the most popular number in baseball lore, it was last worn by utility man Cord Phelps during his time with the Indians from 2011 to 2013. As it bounced around the infield in his 53 games with the club, it marked a rare deviation from its usual home on the pitcher’s mound. Read More

Narveson Becomes Newest Name to Join Cleveland’s Lefty Collection

February 16, 2017 |

When the Cleveland Indians added left-hander Andrew Miller at the trade deadline last season, it provided relief for a notable hole in their bullpen. This offseason, the Tribe has added to that southpaw selection several times and did so once again this week by signing veteran lefty Chris Narveson to a minor league contract with a non-roster invitation to spring training.

Narveson becomes the fourth left-hander added to the squad in the last two weeks. The Indians made a big splash with the surprise acquisition of Boone Logan on a one-year deal with a club option at the beginning of the month, and has since added free agents Luis Perez, James Russell, and Narveson. The team also brought in former St. Louis Cardinals left-hander Tim Cooney through a waiver claim in November and selected southpaw Hoby Milner in the Rule 5 draft in December. Read More

Countdown to Indians’ Opening Day – 47 – Trevor Bauer

February 15, 2017 |

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Countdown to Opening Day – 47

With five years under his professional belt at the Major League level, the Indians will once again look for big contributions from Trevor Bauer in their starting rotation.

After losing his spot last spring, the right-hander pitched in relief through much of April before getting reinserted into the rotation when Cody Anderson struggled with his effectiveness and Carlos Carrasco landed on the disabled list with a sprained left hamstring. While his numbers out of the bullpen (1-0 record, 4.76 ERA, 1.59 WHIP, .289 batting average against in 11 1/3 innings) did not scream of a player necessarily deserving of a shot to start again, Bauer plugged the leak in the rotation with a 5-2 record, one complete game, a 2.96 ERA, a 1.11 WHIP, and a .216 average against in a two-month span from the end of April to the end of June, once again reminding the baseball world that Cleveland manager Terry Francona knows a thing or two about how to successfully manage a roster. Read More

Countdown to Indians’ Opening Day – 48 – Travis Hafner

February 14, 2017 |

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Countdown to Opening Day – 48

He may not have been one of the best to wear 48 in Cleveland, but Travis Hafner was one of the better sluggers in the history of baseball to have the number on his back.

Sam McDowell may hold the honor of being the best pitcher and player to wear 48 in Indians history, but Hafner easily claims that title from the offensive side of the game. The Indians’ long-time designated hitter was part of one of the better thefts in club history, as the team picked him off from the Texas Rangers in a low-cost trade that gave the Tribe a dangerous power-hitting weapon in the middle of their lineup for the better part of his decade in a Cleveland uniform, serving as a suitable replacement for another left-handed slugger, Jim Thome, who left the club following the 2002 season. Read More

Indians Add Russell to Bullpen Depth on a Minor League Deal

February 14, 2017 |

Pitchers and catchers have reported to their spring homes, but the Cleveland Indians are still shopping as they added veteran left-hander James Russell on a minor league deal on Monday.

Russell, a seven-year Major League veteran and the son of former big league reliever and one-time Indian Jeff Russell, spent last season in the Philadelphia Phillies organization. His deal is pending a physical and is believed to include a non-roster invitation to spring camp. Read More

Countdown to Indians’ Opening Day – 49 – Tom Candiotti

February 13, 2017 |

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Countdown to Opening Day – 49

If you were a fan of the Cleveland Indians in the 1980s, chances are you were well aware of right-hander Tom Candiotti and his mastery of the elusive knuckleball. Read More

Countdown to Indians’ Opening Day – 50

February 12, 2017 |

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Countdown to Opening Day – 50 days

Like many numbers chronicled over the last nine days, the number 50 has long appeared on the backs of pitchers for the Cleveland Indians organization.

It made its debut in 1945, but was worn by catcher Gene Desautels in ten uneventful games in 1945. The light-hitting backstop, a career .233 hitter in 13 seasons in the Majors, was 1-for-9 that season with a single, a walk, and a strikeout. He spent four seasons with the club at the big league level. Read More