The outfield is undoubtedly one of the largest areas of concern for the Cleveland Indians this offseason, and they have one less question mark to address as the club agreed to a one-year, $3 million agreement with Leonys Martin on Wednesday to avoid arbitration.
Martin was the Tribe’s big deadline acquisition in 2018, but he made it into just six games before enduring a bout with a bacterial infection that ended his season and could have ended his life.
If you are feeling a little bit of déjà vu, that is to be expected with the way the 2018 Major League Baseball schedule has worked itself out. For the second straight week, the Indians and Twins will meet on the diamond, with Cleveland playing the host to the visiting Minnesota club.
Cleveland (61-49) will look to continue its better play of late, winning back-to-back series over the Twins and the Los Angeles Angels. They dropped a sloppy 7-4 decision on Friday, but rebounded with a strong 3-0 shutout on Saturday and held on for a 4-3 win on Sunday in the season finale with the Halos. The Indians moved their season record against the Twins to 5-7 with their performance last week against their division rival. They will be looking to prevent Minnesota from locking up the season series between the two clubs.
The Indians’ Corey Kluber controlled the Los Angeles Angels on Saturday, firing a complete game shutout on just 98 pitches in a 3-0 win by Cleveland from Progressive Field.
While the Indians had a tough time at the plate against unfamiliar right-hander Felix Pena, Kluber made sure that his offense had plenty of time to get going as he limited the Angels to just five base runners on the night. He allowed three hits, walked one, and hit one while keeping the ball down and in the yard in a 98-pitch gem, accomplishing the rare “Maddux” by throwing a complete game under 100 pitches.
No Mike Trout, no problem for the Angels on Friday night as Los Angeles used a four-run eighth inning to break a 3-3 tie in a 7-4 win over the Cleveland Indians.
Progressive Field was packed with a sold out crowd, but the hometown Tribe could not capture a W as an unlucky eighth inning tipped the scales on a previously close contest.
The Cleveland Indians addressed their depleted outfield on Tuesday in advance of the non-waiver trade deadline, acquiring veteran outfielder Leonys Martin and minor league pitcher Kyle Dowdy from the Detroit Tigers for shortstop prospect Willi Castro.
Martin is not expected to arrive in time for the team’s game in Minnesota against the Twins on Tuesday night. The 30-year-old outfielder came at the cost of one of the Indians’ top middle infield prospects in Castro, who had been with the organization for five years and is just 21 years old.