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A Postmortem Report on the Cleveland Indians’ 2015 Season... October 5, 2015 | Bob Toth
At Did the Tribe Win Last Night, we provide our readers with glimpses of all levels of the Cleveland Indians organization – the farm system and parent club, the players, the coaches, the facility, special events, and the front office.
Change is a big, inherent part of that business. The Indians will be facing plenty of that in the offseason with the departure of president Mark Shapiro to Toronto and the usual end-of-the-year roster moves.
Just like the franchise that we cover, the offseason will be busy at Did the Tribe Win Last Night, and sadly, some changes have been made of which our loyal readers need to be made aware.
It feels like it’s the same ol’ song and dance: it’s the last weekend of the Indians season, the team struggled and hung on by a thread until the very end and just couldn’t come together long enough to make it. They played mediocre baseball and, although the team is *technically* playing some October baseball right now, it’s not what fans were expecting to start the season and they certainly aren’t games that matter.
I ended last season with an eerily-similar story that looked at the pieces the Indians had in place. On paper, last season, the pieces were all there and looked strong but, of course, the team could not complete the puzzle.
This season, it was almost worse.
I’ll never forget the summer of 1995.
I was 13 years old, just about to enter the eighth grade and in love with the Cleveland Indians. But I wasn’t just some fair-weather fan. In my mind, I had dealt with the hardships of the bad years, having lived through the late 80’s and early 90’s teams that lost almost all of the time. I couldn’t stand that it was suddenly sopopular to root for the Indians. The words “fair weather fans” became a part of my regular vocabulary during the summer of ’95. Where were all of you when the rest of us were all rooting for a losing team? It wasn’t until I was in college and the glory years were almost over that I realized that I hadn’t really “dealt” with anything.
“Kids growing up (in the 90’s) and that’s all they knew…they’re in trouble,” former Indian and TV color man Rick Manning said. “Now look at it…it’s not even close. (The way it is now) is how Indians baseball was when I played (1975-1983) and even before me.”
People my age are spoiled. I’m only 30-some years old and have seen the best, most exciting stretch of baseball that Cleveland has ever had. Sure, I haven’t seen my Tribe win the ultimate prize, but heck, my father just turned 60 and has seen the exact same amount of World Series titles that I have. We’ve seen the same amount of pennants as well, unless you count the one in 1954 when he was two (even with as big of a baseball fan as my dad is, I doubt that he was paying attention at two).
With the hopes for the playoffs eliminated on Wednesday night, the Cleveland Indians look to sweep the Boston Red Sox this weekend for the moral victory of achieving a winning record in an otherwise disappointing end result to the 2015 season overall.
The Indians (78-80) hung around far longer than most would have predicted after they played themselves out of contention in the first month of the season. As some may say, the World Series isn’t won in April, but it can be lost.
The Lynchburg Hillcats team clinched the second half Northern Division title of the Carolina League on Tuesday September 1 with a loss by the trailing Frederick Keys. This set a matchup with first half Northern Division winner Wilmington for the evening of September 9.
The Hillcats finished the second half with a 39 – 31 record, bringing their season record to 72 – 68, best overall in the Northern Division. The second half resurgence was headed up by two key performers, starting pitcher Michael Peoples and center fielder Clint Frazier, who would lead them into the playoffs.
Consistency is usually an admirable quality.
Whether you’re talking about parenting or public transportation, there’s something to be said for someone or something that you can count on to deliver what’s expected each and every time.
Michael Brantley‘s season ended yesterday due to an injured shoulder. His season began with an ailing back. Despite the injuries that book-ended his 2015 campaign, Brantley proved that his breakout 2014 season was absolutely no fluke.
Last year, Brantley put up numbers that were, by far, career highs. He hit a blistering .327 with 20 homers and 97 RBI. Despite the fact that he had gradually improved throughout his career, some wondered if a year ago was a career season. He finished in the top three of the American League Most Valuable Player voting, but had he peaked?
Throughout the 2015 season, Did the Tribe Win Last Night will take a look back at the 1995 Cleveland Indians for the 20th anniversary of their fourth pennant winning season. Included will be historic game recaps, headlining stories and a ranking of the team’s most influential players that truly made 1995 The Greatest Summer Ever. Today looks back October 1, 1995.
Any teacher who was grading the 1995 baseball season would have to agree on the score…the Indians get a perfect 100.
The Tribe finished their strike-shortened, regular season campaign with an amazing 100-44 record as they destroyed the second place Kansas City Royals by a score of 17-7 on Sunday afternoon at Jacobs Field. The Tribe finished a record 30 games ahead of the Royals and will appear in their first postseason in 41 years starting this week.
Throughout the 2015 season, Did the Tribe Win Last Night will take a look back at the 1995 Cleveland Indians for the 20th anniversary of their fourth pennant winning season. Included will be historic game recaps, headlining stories and a ranking of the team’s most influential players that truly made 1995 The Greatest Summer Ever. Today looks back September 30, 1995.
MVP. MVP. MVP.
Tribe slugger Albert Belle put a stamp on his incredible season on Saturday afternoon by slugging his 50th homerun of the season in the Indians 3-2 victory over the Royals. The win was the 99th of the season for the Tribe, but Belle stole the headlines by becoming the first player in baseball history with 50 homeruns and 50 doubles in the same season.
To add to the accolades, Belle was the first player since Detroit’s Cecil Fielder hit 51 in 1990. He is 12th player ever and the first Indian to ever accomplish the feat and will end up as the first Indian to lead the league in homers since Rocky Colavito in 1959. His 103 extra base hits make him the first hitter since Stan Musial in 1948 to eclipse the century mark. With just one game to play, Belle will end up pacing the American League in homeruns, doubles, runs, total bases, slugging percentage and extra base hits.
I’m going to Saturday’s Indians game. Corey Kluber’s supposed to start for the Indians, but I’m going to see Joe Boyle pitch.
Joe’s my friend and mentor, a teacher at Waite High School, father to three children, wife to Katie and a Cleveland sports fan. He’s also light one kidney, a casualty of a fight against cancer that’s nearing five years.
I met Joe at Bowling Green State University. As we like to remind you at this website, 1995 was the Greatest Summer Ever, and it settled into the most exciting fall in Cleveland sports in decades. The Indians moved into a shimmering new ballpark the year before, and were taking all comers on the way to 100 wins in a shortened season.