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Did The Tribe Win Last Night? | December 18, 2017

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1995: The Greatest Summer Ever

Hall of Fame Voting Shows How Talented Those 1990s Teams Were

January 25, 2017 |

It’s entirely possible that every January for the next decade or so, we get reminded just how good those Indians teams of the 1990s really were.

As my friend and colleague Craig Gifford pointed out earlier this week, Jim Thome and Omar Vizquel will be among those on the Baseball Writers Association of America ballot for the first time in the next election. Both have legitimate if not strong cases for induction.

Thome, inducted into the team’s hall of fame last year, hit 612 home runs and is the team leader for home runs in a season and a career. Vizquel’s strength was his defense, winning a total of 11 Gold Gloves at shortstop. Nine of those came in a row – including eight with the Indians. Read More

Playoff Games with Chuck

October 12, 2016 |

Last Thursday, for the first time this century, I went to an Indians postseason game.

Admittedly, there haven’t been as many in the past 15 years as there had been in the late 1990s, when October baseball was a matter of course, filling the days during the time the Browns were on hiatus (or, as I like to call it, the three years they were undefeated).

And it certainly didn’t feel like October. Shortly before midnight, the scoreboard thermometer read 70 degrees. But it did feel like October. I went with Chuck (my father, to the uninitiated). Read More

Countdown to Indians’ Opening Day – 4: Catching Up With David Bell

March 31, 2016 |

As Did The Tribe Win Last Night helps fans count down the days until the Indians retake the field in an official Major League game, we look back at some of the players who wore the Cleveland jersey with pride.

Countdown to Opening Day – 4 days

Former infielder David Bell may have only worn the Indians #4 jersey for two games, but the first one, at least, was a very memorable one.

A top prospect in the Tribe system through the early 90’s, the middle infielder was the son of former Tribe All-Star and bench coach Buddy Bell. When he made his Major League debut in May of 1995, his dad was in the dugout as manager Mike Hargrove’s right-hand-man.

“Being in the dugout that day was the best and the worst thing because I was nervous as hell,” the elder Bell said. “It being at the Big League level made it that much worse.” Read More

Countdown to Indians’ Opening Day – 7: Catching Up With Kenny Lofton

March 28, 2016 |

As Did The Tribe Win Last Night helps fans count down the days until the Indians retake the field in an official Major League game, we look back at some of the players who wore the Cleveland jersey with pride.

Countdown to Opening Day – 7 days

Hal Trosky and Al Rosen both wore #7 throughout their Indians’ careers. Mike Garcia, John Romano, Joe Azcue and Harvey Kuenn all had cameos in the number as well.

The Cleveland Indians #7 jersey, however, belongs to Kenny Lofton.

Acquired via trade in December of 1991, Lofton brought little fanfare but plenty of talent with him from the Houston Astros. Lofton was just three years removed from a Final Four run as the sixth man on the Arizona Wildcats basketball team and had just about two years of professional baseball experience when he was dealt to Cleveland, but he proved to be up for anything at that point. Read More

Countdown to Indians’ Opening Day – 9: Catching Up With Buddy Bell

March 26, 2016 |

As Did The Tribe Win Last Night helps fans count down the days until the Indians retake the field in an official Major League game, we look back at some of the players who wore the Cleveland jersey with pride.

Countdown to Opening Day – 9 days

For a young boy, not much could be cooler than having your dad play Major League Baseball. For a father, not much could be cooler than having your son play in the Big Leagues either.

Former Indian Buddy Bell is just one of four people in history to know what both are like. Read More

Countdown to Indians’ Opening Day – 15: Catching Up With Sandy Alomar

March 20, 2016 |

As Did The Tribe Win Last Night helps fans count down the days until the Indians retake the field in an official Major League game, we look back at some of the players who wore the Cleveland jersey with pride.

Countdown to Opening Day – 15 days

Some baseball players have a special connection with a city because of their outstanding talent. Some players have a special connection because of their outstanding personalities.

Former Indians catcher Sandy Alomar had both. Read More

Countdown to Indians’ Opening Day – 21: Catching Up With Mike Hargrove

March 14, 2016 |

As Did The Tribe Win Last Night helps fans count down the days until the Indians retake the field in an official Major League game, we look back at some of the players who wore the Cleveland jersey with pride.

Countdown to Opening Day – 21 days

The Indians’ #21 jersey will never be worn again, as the team retired the number for their Hall of Fame pitcher, Bob Lemon, in 1998. The last player to actually don the number was pitcher Greg Swindell during the 1991 season, but the last person to wear it was former Tribe manager Mike Hargrove.

Grover wore #21 on his back for all 12 years of his playing career – including the seven he spent in Cleveland – and then again for the first seven and a half years he spent as a manager. He surrendered the number and switched to #30 nearly two decades ago in the middle of the ’98 season when the Indians raised Lemon’s number up into the mezzanine section at Jacobs Field. The uniform switch occurred almost a decade and a half after Hargrove hung up his playing spikes as well. Read More

Countdown to Indians’ Opening Day – 25: Catching Up With Jim Thome

March 10, 2016 |

As Did The Tribe Win Last Night helps fans count down the days until the Indians retake the field in an official Major League game, we look back at some of the players who wore the Cleveland jersey with pride.

Countdown to Opening Day – 25 days

When Indians legend Jim Thome was first called up to the Major Leagues, he, the Indians, and their fans all had no idea what a ride we were all about to be put on. In fact, even Thome worried about whether or not he would be able to stick around at first.

“I did,” Thome said, “because I wasn’t a very good player…There were many nights that I didn’t know if I would make it.”

Now, Thome’s #25 jersey may never be worn by another Cleveland Indian again. Read More

Countdown to Indians’ Opening Day – 32: Catching Up With Dennis Martinez

March 3, 2016 |

As Did The Tribe Win Last Night helps fans count down the days until the Indians retake the field in an official Major League game, we look back at some of the greats who wore the Cleveland jersey with pride.

Countdown to Opening Day – 32 days

In the early 1990’s, the young and talented Cleveland Indians ball club was on the brink of something special. All that they needed after their 1993 season was a couple of veteran leaders to bring all of the pieces of the puzzle together.

“We had said all along that we were going to try to develop our core players and when we felt like we had a chance to contend, we would try to trade for or sign a couple big time free agents that would help us to get over the top and contend,” Indians manager Mike Hargrove said. “We did that when we signed Dennis Martinez and Eddie Murray.” Read More

Countdown to Indians’ Opening Day – 38: Catching Up With Eric Plunk

February 26, 2016 |

As Did The Tribe Win Last Night helps fans count down the days until the Indians retake the field in an official Major League game, we look back at some of the players who wore the Cleveland jersey with pride.

Countdown to Opening Day – 38 days

There have been 38 Cleveland Indian players to wear #38 as their jersey numbers, so if the Tribe’s front office wanted to just be ironic, they could choose to never pass out the number again and retire it up in the mezzanine level at Progressive Field.

If they were going to retire #38—not that they should—the man who deserves it the most is probably former reliever Eric Plunk. Read More

Countdown to Indians’ Opening Day – 45: Catching Up With Paul Assenmacher

February 19, 2016 |

As Did The Tribe Win Last Night helps fans count down the days until the Indians retake the field in an official Major League game, we look back at some of the players who wore the Cleveland jersey with pride.

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.

In Assenmacher’s five seasons with the Tribe, the team won five American League Central Division titles and went to the World Series twice. Assenmacher pitched in more games than any other Indian over the club’s most successful half-decade stretch and smiles bigger when looking back on his time in Cleveland than any of his other four Major League stops. Read More

Countdown to Indians’ Opening Day – 73: Catching Up With Wayne Kirby

January 22, 2016 |

As Did The Tribe Win Last Night helps fans count down the days until the Indians retake the field in an official Major League game, we look back at some of the greats who wore the Cleveland jersey with pride.

Countdown to Opening Day – 73 days

Yes, former outfielder Wayne Kirby is on most of the 1994/1995 highlight reels wearing his famous #35, but the now coach for the Baltimore Orioles broke into the Big Leagues with the Indians sporting #73 for 21 games in 1991. No matter the number that was on his back, Kirby always looks back on his time with the Cleveland Indians fondly.

“There’s so many memories,” Kirby said.  “I can’t pin-place just one.” Read More