Posts By Bob Toth
Is there any player on the Cleveland Indians roster right now that is more polarizing than Carlos Santana? If you want an instant, animated response from most fans, a discussion about Santana will get even the average fan fired up a bit.
A fair number of fans have expressed their frustrations with Santana, who has bounced around the field, but not so much the lineup, while being a streaky hitter. In fact, the inconsistencies at the plate have driven his batting average in each of the last two seasons all the way down to .231. While he made up for it with a career-high-tying 85 runs batted in, the 19 home runs from the switch-hitter were the second-fewest he had hit in any one full season in the Majors, yet happened to lead the club in 2015. His slugging percentage for the year was nearly 50 points below his career average.
Other fans accept the Indians first baseman and cleanup hitter for what he is – a man playing out of position and in the wrong spot in the lineup, not due to any errors by manager Terry Francona, but a lack of better options at first base and for the fourth place hitter. He will get into slumps, his average will never be among the best in the game, but he will get on base and drive in a chunk of runs over the course of the year, even with a fluctuating number of home runs over his career.
Pitcher and Cleveland Indians’ 1997 World Series standout Chad Ogea is born in Louisiana.
The former Louisiana State University Tigers pitcher spent six years in the Majors from 1994 to 1999, five with the Indians and one final year with …
May 20, 1948
Despite the great record to start the season by the Cleveland Indians, team president Bill Veeck is not comfortable with the makeup and effort of his ball club.
The Indians have been a team of streaks. After winning their first six games of the year, they dropped four straight. They rebounded with a five-game winning streak, only to trade off a pair of losses sandwiching a win before their current four-game victorious run.
It looks as though there are holes throughout the roster and the overall composition of the team seems to be unusual and unconventional at best.
The Cleveland Indians entered this offseason with just a handful of key roster decisions to make regarding members of their 2015 team.
Three players – Mike Aviles, Gavin Floyd, and Ryan Webb – have already filed for free agency. The Indians announced this past week that they were electing to decline Ryan Raburn’s option for the 2016 season, making him a free agent. As for internal moves, that leaves any remaining 40-man roster additions and the arbitration statuses of a handful of players to navigate.
While many of the arbitration discussions will be quickly and easily resolved, the Indians do have some discussions to have regarding Lonnie Chisenhall and Josh Tomlin. Both men have their pros and both men have their cons, especially regarding what they are projected to earn through arbitration for the coming season. The Indians will have to make a decision as to whether that dollar amount is worth the sporadic production that they have received from both men throughout their Indians careers.
May 19, 1948
Indians starting pitcher Bob Feller pitched a three-hit gem and was aided by a five-run fifth inning as Cleveland defeated Philadelphia by a 6-1 final on Wednesday night, completing the two-game sweep of Connie Mack’s Athletics.
The Indians jumped on the board in the bottom of the third. Catcher Jim Hegan singled to left and was sacrificed to second on a bunt by Feller. Thurman Tucker delivered a single to left, scoring Hegan from second and giving the Indians a 1-0 lead off of Philadelphia starter, Bill Dietrich.
Two innings later, Cleveland sent eleven men to the plate and ended Dietrich’s night.
Nobody stirs speculation and hope from the bowels of doubt quite like Lonnie Chisenhall.
Chisenhall, who has been a member of the Tribe’s Major League roster since late June 2011, is still looking to find his big league identity and role. Most players who have participated in five different seasons usually have established a role long ago, but not the up-and-down Chisenhall who has struggled both offensively and defensively at times in his career.
Coming off his best season, and only one without a demotion to Triple-A Columbus, Chisenhall looked to solidify himself as a piece to the Indians puzzle moving forward early in 2015. Chisenhall hit .280 with 13 home runs in 2014 – riding a hot first half before cooling off – and was expected to hopefully provide a full season of production in 2015. Despite poor defense in the past, Chisenhall worked extensively last winter and spring to improve his defense at third base.
Cleveland Indians catcher Sandy Alomar Jr. is announced as the unanimous winner of the American League Rookie of the Year Award.
Alomar becomes just the third player to be elected by a unanimous vote (Carlton Fisk, Mark McGwire). He hit …
This Saturday, the local SABR chapter will have its annual fall meeting at League Park from 9:30 AM to 3:30 PM. Even if you are not a member, guests are welcome and you should consider stopping by for the day’s festivities.
A $5 donation to the Baseball Heritage Museum at League Park will grant you admission for a day full of baseball talk, plus free pop and snacks for everyone. It also gives you a fantastic opportunity to see the renovated League Park grounds and the Baseball Heritage Museum.
May 18, 1948
A strong pitching performance from southpaw Gene Bearden and a six run outburst in the first two innings gave the Cleveland Indians a 6-1 victory over the Philadelphia Athletics on Tuesday night.
Bearden (2-0) held Philadelphia in check throughout the game in the first night game of the season at Cleveland Stadium. He easily outdueled fellow Purple Heart recipient Lou Brissie of the Athletics. Both men left their military obligations behind with the fear that severe injuries to their legs would prohibit them from ever playing professional baseball again.
Both have defied the odds.
May 18, 1948
An unlikely pitching matchup between two rookies is set to take place on Tuesday evening in the first night game of the season at Cleveland Stadium.
What makes the matchup so unusual is that neither of the ballplayers set to take the mound should be playing professionally, let alone be standing center stage. Both of these young men very well could have died from their experiences during World War II.