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Did The Tribe Win Last Night? | September 28, 2020

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Countdown to Indians’ 2020 Opening Day – 47

Countdown to Indians’ 2020 Opening Day – 47

| On 08, Feb 2020

Baseball takes little time off in between seasons, so neither can we. Follow along at Did the Tribe Win Last Night as we count down to March 26, when the Cleveland Indians host the Detroit Tigers for game one of the 2020 season. – BT

Countdown to Opening Day – 47 days

Trevor Bauer made his mark on the Tribe from the mound for seven years. Now his impact will be in the men acquired to replace him after last season’s deadline deal that shipped him to the Queen City.

After a 9-8 start with a 3.79 ERA and a 1.21 WHIP over 24 outings, the Indians moved on from Bauer with a year remaining on his contract. The Cincinnati Reds have picked up the tab on his final year, paying him $17.5 million after the two sides avoided arbitration in January.

It marked the second time in Bauer’s career that he had been traded in a massive three-team deal. He joined the Indians in December of 2012 after making his Major League debut earlier that season with the Arizona Diamondbacks. He came to Cleveland with Arizona teammates Matt Albers and Bryan Shaw and was joined by Cincinnati’s Drew Stubbs in relocating to northeast Ohio. The Reds sent shortstop Didi Gregorius to the Diamondbacks in the deal and acquired Shin-Soo Choo and Jason Donald from the Indians. Arizona also got Lars Anderson and Tony Sipp from Cleveland.

Bauer spent much of 2013 in the minors, making just four starts for the Indians in his second big league season. He was inserted into the starting rotation for good in 2014 and put together four straight seasons with very similar numbers from 2014 to 2017, averaging an ERA of 4.30 and a WHIP of 1.34 in that span of 124 games. His work in 2016 was highlighted by his playoff performance, when a lacerated finger forced some rapid changes to the postseason pitching rotation.

In 2018, he put it all together. Coming off of a 17-9 season in 2017 with a 4.19 ERA in 32 games (31 starts), he became an All-Star for the first time in a career year. He finished sixth in the American League Cy Young voting and may have finished higher if not for a fluke broken leg suffered when struck by a line drive off of the bat of Chicago’s Jose Abreu late in the season. He finished the campaign with a 12-6 record in 28 games with a 2.21 ERA and a 1.09 WHIP, both career best marks.

Bauer - Vaughn Ridley/Getty Images

Bauer – Vaughn Ridley/Getty Images

After joining the Reds rotation late last season, Bauer struggled in his return to the Senior Circuit. He made ten starts for Cincinnati, posting a 2-5 record with a 6.39 ERA and a 1.35 WHIP. He kept up with his strong strikeout numbers, but suffered some from a jump in the long ball and almost two more hits allowed per nine innings in the National League. He allowed at least a homer in seven of his ten games pitched and just four times he supplied the Reds with quality starts.

While the 29-year-old Bauer had been a mainstay of the Cleveland rotation and was an All-Star for the first time in 2018, the Indians were able to turn an expendable piece into five players, including a couple of lottery tickets. Rental Yasiel Puig has come and gone, hitting free agency after posting a .297/.377/.423 slash with 15 doubles, two homers, and 23 RBI in 49 games for Cleveland. Franmil Reyes will likely hold down the designated hitter spot on the roster, but he could potentially factor in as the club’s right fielder if he can prove himself capable during spring training. He hit .237 in 51 games for the Indians with ten doubles, ten homers, and 35 RBI, extending his season totals to 19 doubles, 37 homers, and 87 RBI in his second season in the Majors.

After the two more known quantities picked up by Cleveland, the Indians have some possible pieces for the future depending upon how career trajectories pan out. Left-hander Logan Allen is only 22 years old and could give the team a different look in its rotation. He went 2-3 in nine games in 2019 (including eight with San Diego) with a 6.18 ERA and a 1.77 WHIP. He will likely start the year in the minors but could be one of the first starters up when the rotation needs some help. Scott Moss, a 25-year-old left-hander who came over from Cincinnati’s farm system, concluded another strong season in the minors with two scoreless outings at Double-A Akron and a 2-1 mark with a 1.93 ERA and a 1.07 WHIP in four games at Triple-A Columbus, his first work at the top level in the minors. He was added to the Indians’ 40-man roster following the season. The final piece of the deal, utility man Victor Nova, came over from San Diego and worked in 16 games for the Indians’ Arizona League Blue team and hit .246 in limited work after hitting .330 in 26 games for the Padres’ equivalent farm club.

Reyes and his potential power contributions and both young pitchers picked up give the Indians some high hopes that their returns for Bauer will be positive. The hurler was likely to walk away to greener pastures and bigger paydays once hitting the open market, and his desire for one-year prove-it deals means a future travelling the big league landscape. The Indians get back a player with an early track record of offensive success, plus two pitchers who could add to the already strong club depth at the position. It could turn out to be a good haul for a year and two months of Bauer’s services.

Other notable Indians to wear 47 in Cleveland history (33 in total): Jack Conway (the first to wear it in franchise history in 1941), Red Embree (1942) Ed Farmer (1971-73), Fred Beene (1974-75), Jesse Orosco (1989-91), Scott Scudder (1992-93), Jack Morris (1994), Joe Roa (1995-96), Ron Villone (1998), Tim Drew (2000-01), Scott Sauerbeck (2005-06), Joe Borowski (2007-08), Jeremy Sowers (2008), Shelley Duncan (2010-12), Bryan Shaw (2013)

Photo: Ron Schwane/Getty Images

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Miss out on our other Countdown pieces? Check out more Indians history below!

Countdown to Indians’ 2020 Opening Day – 99 (Daniel Robertson)
Countdown to Indians’ 2020 Opening Day – 90 (Adam Cimber)
Countdown to Indians’ 2020 Opening Day – 88 (Phil Maton)
Countdown to Indians’ 2020 Opening Day – 77 (Jack Armstrong)
Countdown to Indians’ 2020 Opening Day – 76 (Tom Magrann)
Countdown to Indians’ 2020 Opening Day – 75 (Mike Walker)
Countdown to Indians’ 2020 Opening Day – 73 (Ricardo Rincon)
Countdown to Indians’ 2020 Opening Day – 72 (Jason Giambi)
Countdown to Indians’ 2020 Opening Day – 71 (Johnny Hodapp)
Countdown to Indians’ 2020 Opening Day – 70 (James Karinchak, George Kontos)
Countdown to Indians’ 2020 Opening Day – 69 (Luis Medina)
Countdown to Indians’ 2020 Opening Day – 68 (Jefry Rodriguez, others)
Countdown to Indians’ 2020 Opening Day – 67 (Aaron Civale, others)
Countdown to Indians’ 2020 Opening Day – 66 (Yasiel Puig, others)
Countdown to Indians’ 2020 Opening Day – 65 (Zach Plesac, others)
Countdown to Indians’ 2020 Opening Day – 64 (Tom Kramer, others)
Countdown to Indians’ 2020 Opening Day – 63 (Josh Smith, others)
Countdown to Indians’ 2020 Opening Day – 62 (Nick Wittgren, others)
Countdown to Indians’ 2020 Opening Day – 61 (Dan Otero, others)
Countdown to Indians’ 2020 Opening Day – 60 (Jhonny Peralta, others)
Countdown to Indians’ 2020 Opening Day – 59 (Carlos Carrasco)
Countdown to Indians’ 2020 Opening Day – 58 (Neil Ramirez, others)
Countdown to Indians’ 2020 Opening Day – 57 (Shane Bieber)
Countdown to Indians’ 2020 Opening Day – 56 (Cody Anderson)
Countdown to Indians’ 2020 Opening Day – 55 (Roberto Perez)
Countdown to Indians’ 2020 Opening Day – 54 (Hunter Wood)
Countdown to Indians’ 2020 Opening Day – 53 (Logan Allen)
Countdown to Indians’ 2020 Opening Day – 52 (Mike Clevinger)
Countdown to Indians’ 2020 Opening Day – 51 (numerous)
Countdown to Indians’ 2020 Opening Day – 50 (James Hoyt, others)
Countdown to Indians’ 2020 Opening Day – 49 (Tyler Olson, others)
Countdown to Indians’ 2020 Opening Day – 48 (Emmanuel Clase, others)

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