The playoffs in the winter leagues kept rolling Thursday night, with some Cleveland players in key roles. Jose Ramirez kept hitting (no surprise there), Ezequiel Carrera joined him, and Paolo Espino turned in a strong performance on the mound. To help recap their performances and look at the others in action, join Jim Piascik as he takes you Around The Farm.
Another year has come and gone, and while the 2012 Cleveland Indians did not come together as planned there were still some bright moments during the journey. 2012 is over, and as we look back on it one more time here on New Year's Eve, it is time for an Indians Baseball (Baseball!) Insider year-end recap piece. To avoid a generic, boring article, however, the IBI's Jim Piascik framed the year around Pink Floyd's famous The Dark Side of the Moon album. Check out one of the best pieces of the year after the jump...
Carlos Santana looked like the Carlos Santana we all want to see in 2013 Thursday night, hitting a home run and drawing two walks. He was not the only Cleveland player making waves around the world, though, as Jose Ramirez, Ryan Battaglia, and others impressed. Join Jim Piascik as he checks in to the action last night and goes Around The Farm.
Cleveland got itself an early Christmas present, as Nick Swisher agreed to sign with the team Sunday morning. As exciting as it is to see the biggest free agent contract in team history signed, such a deal does not come without risk. At 32, Swisher is more likely to get worse than better, meaning that contract could get ugly at the end. Jim Piascik analyzes the downside to the signing and what pressures that puts on 2013.
If you're reading this, then it appears we have all survived the Mayan apocalypse. And since the simple act of a calendar running out of room (which seems to happen on my wall every year) has failed to predict the end of the world, it is time to dive into the action from around the winter leagues. Join Jim Piascik as he goes Around The Farm, checking in with Andrew Campbell, Roberto Perez, and more.
It has been years since Cleveland had flexibility with the designated hitter spot, as Travis Hafner's complete inability to play in the field relegated him to full-time DH status. Now that Hafner is not expected to be with the team in 2013, Chris Antonetti and Terry Francona have the ability to use the DH spot as a way to keep the everyday players fresh. But exactly how would that fall out? Jim Piascik takes a stab at fitting the pieces together and offers how he thinks it could all fall together.
Many people took a holiday last night to enjoy the premiere of The Hobbit (yours truly included), but it was not a night of rest throughout the winter leagues. Luis Hernandez and Ezequiel Carrera continued their onslaught against Venezuelan League pitching, Asdrubal Cabrera kept showing why he is a great shortstop for Cleveland (or any other team) in 2013, and much more. Join Jim Piascik as he takes you Around The Farm.
Terry Francona and Chris Antonetti are off to a good start this offseason with reshaping the major league roster. To take this team from simply improved to playoff contention, though, some upgrades will need to come cheaply via the minor league system. As such, the growth of minor league players into major league contributors is a key to having successful teams in Cleveland. The IPI's Jim Piascik provides his list of ten prospects he thinks can help the team in 2013.
The Cleveland Indians acquired Trevor Bauer and three other players tonight as a part of a three-team nine player mega-trade involving outfielder Shin-Soo Choo. The IPI's Jim Piascik has the scoop on what Bauer will bring to the team: a legit front of the rotation starting pitcher.
The Winter Meetings and the Rule 5 Draft may be over, but the Winter League action is still rolling along. Now former Cleveland prospect Hector Rondon made his nominal debut for the Cubs, but he is still in our hearts here at IPI, along with players like Paolo Espino, Luis Hernandez, Rob Bryson, Giovanni Soto, and more. To catch up on all the action from last night, join Jim Piascik as he takes you Around The Farm.
The Winter Meetings are typically when the offseason really begins to heat up, so with them scheduled to start today in Nashville, let us take a little time to get acquainted with some names Cleveland has been attached to this offseason. Any number of things could go down in Tennessee, but these are the players that Chris Antonetti has the best chance at acquiring as free agents, trade pickups, or recent non-tenders.
The 2013 Cleveland Indians Baseball Insider book featuring the Indians' Top 100 Prospects and more is now available. Also, previous editions from 2008-2012 are also available at a discounted rate. Just click on the book image for more information. Thanks again for all the support!