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Did The Tribe Win Last Night? | October 25, 2021

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Chris Antonetti

From the Perfect Storm to the Indians’ Attendance Disaster

December 1, 2013 | | 3 Comments

Time and time again throughout the 2013 season, the attendance at Progressive Field has been a topic of discussion.

After low attendance totals through the cold and windy month of April, it was said that fan participation would increase with warmer weather and the end of the school year for local students. As the season rolled on, the Indians remained in contention, and yet, the number of empty green seats always seemed to outnumber the number of fans who showed.

The excuses from the fan base continued to trickle in all year long.

“They’re not good enough to take down the Tigers.”

“They’ll just blow it just like they do every year.”

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Ranking the Indians Player Trade Values

November 11, 2013 |

The Indians are officially entering the off-season today. The World Series is over. It’s expected Ubaldo Jimenez will turn down their qualifying offer and General Manager Chris Antonetti and Manager Terry Francona will embark on trying to construct a 2014 Cleveland Indians with the expectation to win now, but opportunity to win in the future also.

It’s not real easy when you don’t have an infinite budget and your minor league system is still in the bottom third of Major League organizations.

Thus, the Indians have relied heavily on trades. It hasn’t been their only means of improving the team, but since they are never favorites on the free agent market, trades are a viable necessity for Cleveland.

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Antonetti Practiced What He Preached in Winter Roster Rebuild

February 11, 2013 |

During Spring Training the DTTWLN staff will profile and examine the coaches and players that make up and are vying to be part of the 2013 Cleveland Indians—A Team With A New Direction. Today, we examine the work of General Manager Chris Antonetti this winter how it will affect the Tribe’s Opening Day roster.

By Mike Brandyberry

“We need to do a better job of shaping our roster. There were some decisions we made last year that didn’t turn out the way that we had hoped. We certainly need to reinvent our process that led to those decisions. The good thing about those decisions is that none of them negatively impact us for this year. We didn’t enter into any bad contracts that are going to handicap us moving forward. We have a rather clean slate heading into this winter and I’m looking forward to capitalizing on it.” – Chris Antonetti on Oct. 4, the day after the end of the season.

At the time, it seemed like a line most fans believed probably were hollow words, but General Manager Chris Antonetti practiced what he preached this winter.

After a season of disappointment in 2012, in which the Indians lost 94 games while the organization promised playoff contention, it appeared the winter could begin a new retool and rebuild. I expected soon after this October press conference to see Sandy Alomar hired as manager and the eventual explanation that escalating salaries of Chris Perez, Asdrubal Cabrera and Justin Masterson while the team was not in a cycle to win, was too much.

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Fans Flock to Tribe Fest

January 20, 2013 |

By Bob Toth

The Kansas City Royals were hitless through eight innings. Francisco Lindor had given Justin Masterson and the Cleveland Indians a 4-0 lead after sending a pair of triples into the right field corner. In control, Lindor eyed the competition, cracked a smile, and said, “bring back the kid, you can’t hit me.”

Three pitches later, a seeing-eye single just under the glove of Indians’ second baseman Jason Kipnis ended Lindor’s no hitter. A brief sigh of disappointment escaped his lungs as he let go of the controller and took a temporary step away from the Playstation 3 “MLB 12 The Show™” display at Day One of Tribe Fest, having just fallen short of virtual immortality. Lindor’s five or so young challengers, who combined to control the Royals for nine innings, were only able to muster that one lone hit.

Lindor was just one of more than a dozen attractions at Progressive Field on Saturday afternoon as the Indians played host to thousands of their fans for the first-ever Tribe Fest.

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Swisher Happy for Ohio Homecoming and Signing with Tribe

January 4, 2013 |

Nick Swisher may be the happiest person ever to move to Cleveland. If the production is half as entertaining and heart-felt as the press conference, Cleveland is in for a treat.

Thursday afternoon the Cleveland Indians introduced their new right fielder to the media. Swisher agreed a four-year contract, valued at $52 million on Dec. 23 with the Tribe but passed his physical and was officially added to the roster on Wednesday. His outgoing and infectious attitude could be felt in the room the moment he walked in, creating a feel not felt around the Indians in some time.

“We are excited to introduce Nick Swisher as the newest member of the Cleveland Indians,” Indians General Manager Chris Antonetti said. “As we started our off season we wanted to fortify our lineup by bringing in an established run producer. In agreeing to terms with Nick, we’ve done exactly that. I’m not sure we could have found a more perfect compliment to our team and our organization.”

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Indians Officially Hire Terry Francona

October 8, 2012 |

By Mike Brandyberry

Monday morning the Cleveland Indians officially hired Terry Francona as the franchise’s 42 manager in their 113 year career. Francona brings more than 30 years of professional baseball experience as a player, coach and manager.

Francona has twelve years of Major League managerial experience, having compiled a record of 1029-915 (.529), and previously guided the Philadelphia Phillies over four seasons from 1997-2000. His 744 wins with the Red Sox rank second in the 112-year history of the Boston American League franchise and he has received BBWAA Manager of the Year votes in six different seasons during his 12-year big league managerial career. His 1029 wins currently rank 7th among active Major League managers. He signed a four year contract as the Indians manager.

“As excited as we are about those accomplishments, I think what excites us most are what those accomplishments are built upon,” Indians General Manager Chris Antonetti said when introducing Francona. “Terry is a exceptional leader, has boundless energy, is a relentless communicator and brings a winning attitude.”

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What Francona Does and Doesn’t Bring to the Tribe

October 7, 2012 |

After a disappointing 2012 Cleveland Indians season the organization is at a crossroads to decide how to progress with the organization, not just for the 2013 season but several seasons to come. Decisions involve ownerships, the front office, managerial and coaching decisions and the players. For the month of October, we’ll look at the how the Indians ended up in their current predicament, but most importantly, Where Do the Indians Go From Here.

Saturday evening, the Cleveland Indians announced they named Terry Francona the 42nd manager in franchise history. While fans are excited to see the organization find a leader with a proven track record, they should be careful of assuming what the managerial signing signifies.

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Long Term Front Office Success Has Been Overshadowed by Short Term Failures

October 6, 2012 |

After a disappointing 2012 Cleveland Indians season the organization is at a crossroads to decide how to progress with the organization, not just for the 2013 season but several seasons to come. Decisions involve ownerships, the front office, managerial and coaching decisions and the players. For the month of October, we’ll look at the how the Indians ended up in their current predicament, but most importantly, Where Do the Indians Go From Here.

At the end of any season a team is evaluated by their wins and losses, versus the expectations set before the season. In 2012, those expectations were set high and the accomplishments were low. Whenever expectations aren’t met, there is plenty of blame to go around.

A large part of that blame rests directly at the steps Team President Mark Shapiro and General Manager Chris Antonetti. Despite support from ownership—still impressed by their long term accomplishments of building an organization—fans are frustrated with the recent decisions that helped lead to a disappointing 2012.

The 2012 campaign started with promise. The Tribe was an outside shot at the playoffs, especially with the new format of two wild card teams, and the hot start of last season was fresh in the minds of Cleveland fans. This season started off rocky, blowing an Opening Day lead in the ninth inning to the Toronto Blue Jays, but the Indians bounced back to win eleven of their next eighteen games.

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Examining the Indians Ownership and the Front Office Message Heading Forward

October 5, 2012 | | One Comment

After a disappointing 2012 Cleveland Indians season the organization is at a crossroads to decide how to progress with the organization, not just for the 2013 season but several seasons to come. Decisions involve ownerships, the front office, managerial and coaching decisions and the players. For the month of October, we’ll look at the how the Indians ended up in their current predicament, but most importantly, Where Do the Indians Go From Here.

Years ago, I was told by a school superintendent, “perception is everything.” It doesn’t matter to the public what is true or not, once the perception is there. If you are in the public eye, always worry about your own personal perception.

The Indians have an image problem in Cleveland. The perception is the Indians don’t spend money, pinch pennies and don’t make those bold moves to compete in the billion dollar business of baseball, while pocketing money through revenue sharing.

In a town that has three last place teams, even after a 68-94 season concluded Wednesday night, a fan could argue the Indians have the best nucleus on the field and opportunity to succeed in town. While Major League Baseball is far from a perfect system, the Cleveland Cavaliers are slowly rebuilding and the Cleveland Browns are mired in their second straight decade of ineptitude, yet the Indians remain as the least trusted and respected franchise in Cleveland.

The disconnect and lack of trust begins at the top.

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Where Do the Indians Go From Here?

October 4, 2012 |

Well, that didn’t go as planned.

When the Cleveland Indians left Goodyear, Ariz., at the end of March, expectations were high. The team was coming off an 80-82 season in 2011 that could have been much better had injuries in the second half of the season not taken their toll. Now, with a healthy team in place and a young group of players with a season of contention under their belts, 2012 was supposed to be a season to compete for the playoffs.

Six months later, those predictions of playoff baseball all seem foolish now.

After a good start, the Indians found themselves 37-33 after 70 games and a half game in first place. The plan seemed to be working.

But 71 games later, the plan had been exposed, the wheels had fallen off the tracks and the Indians were in last place. It’s one of the fastest falls from the top spot to the bottom in baseball history. At 68-94, the Indians narrowly missed being only the third team in baseball history to finish in last place after leading the division at the 70-game mark.

Chris Antonetti’s plan to resign Grady Sizemore, sign Casey Kotchman and entrust left field, third base and first base to a collection of veteran journeymen or stars past their prime didn’t work. The offense faltered, most notably against left-handed pitching. The team hit .235 against southpaws for the season and was only 18-36 when a lefty started against them.

“I can tell you I’m accountable for those decisions,” Antonetti said last Thursday. “Certainly many of the decisions we made haven’t worked out as well as we hoped.”

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Twitter Mailbag: Antonetti, Acta and Looking to 2013 Questions

August 23, 2012 |

By Mike Brandyberry

When the Indians lose 21 of 25 games and fall from 3.5 games to 14.5 in back of first place in less than a month, it’s easy to hit the wall with writer’s block. And, despite our analytics that say we have great readership, we don’t receive many comments, so I decided to use my last day of summer vacation to interact with our tweeps. Our twitter following and interaction has been great since our birth last summer.

Every writer knows, the easiest way to produce a story is just churn out a fan mailbag, so now I’m just like everyone else; a little lazy and fatigued with this season. I’ve thought of doing this for a while as we want to interact with our readers more (that’s one of the points of a blog).

So, without further ado, here is the first DTTWLN mailbag. If questions remain this good, I’ll try to do this about once a month. On to the questions…

Question from @dhall95: When will we see the last of Chris Antonetti and Mark Shapiro? That’s the only hope of turning this franchise around.

Unfortunately, I don’t think fans will like my answer, but I don’t think either are going anywhere in the immediate future. Shapiro has been a part of the organization since 1991 and worked with Hank Peters and John Hart. He’s really the last link to the success the Indians had in the 1990s. Granted, he is no John Hart, but he was hand-picked by Hart to replace him. I definitely believe that Shapiro has involvement in the baseball operations aspect, but I also know the majority of his time is dedicated issues off the field.

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Holding Antonetti Accountable

August 12, 2012 |

By Bob Toth

The search for a scapegoat continues in Cleveland, as an intriguing start to the 2012 season was cut short by an eleven-game losing streak that followed an impressive victory over Justin Verlander and the Detroit Tigers on July 26th.

It is safe to say that everyone, from the top down, is deserving of some further evaluation to determine whether they belong in the long-term plans of the organization or not.

Pitching coach Scott Radinsky took the fall for some of the team’s struggles, as the axe befell him publically on Thursday afternoon.

The same axe has gradually cut away at the team’s current roster, as veteran ballplayers Johnny Damon, Derek Lowe, Jose Lopez, and Jeremy Accardo have all been designated for assignment this week. Lowe has signed on to pitch out of the bullpen for the New York Yankees, while the future for the other three players is still hazy.

The team and its fans continue to look for scapegoats.

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