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New Strategy

Talk shop about the various prospects and teams that make up the Cleveland Indians organization.

New Strategy

Postby OhioBaseball » Fri Feb 07, 2014 5:41 pm

The Cleveland Indians can't afford to have an unproductive farm system and for some reason, ownership/management has accepted mediocre performance. This has to end now. I suggest a new strategy...

The Indians have demonstrated a willingness in past years to spend significant amounts of money on players that fell in the draft. Due to recent changes in MLB rules, they can no longer do that. Here is what they can do;

(a) Spend serious $$ to get top talent instructors. Take that money that used to be spent on players and use it to hire the best baseball instructors you can. Get the St. Louis Cardinals guys, get the Oakland Athletics pitching coordinators. I don't know what those guys make, but I'm guessing it's not a ton and they are probably worth a lot more than they are being paid.

(b) More desirable affiliate cities for baseball personnel. (This won't be popular) Hiring the top baseball instructors may be difficult b/c the Indians' minor league affiliates are in undesirable locations for baseball people. Not true in every circumstance, but the majority of baseball instructors are people that have played baseball their entire lives and very likely aren't from Ohio (where the majority of Indians minor league affiliates are). It's not a baseball state. Getting minor league top coordinators that grew up playing baseball in Florida, Texas, California, Georgia could be difficult -- how many people from those regions want to go live in Cleveland, Youngstown, Akron or Columbus? I'm an Ohio boy and I really like Cleveland/Columbus so I'm not putting that region down, but if I were from a warm weather baseball state, I'd say no thanks to living in Akron. So I'd cut ties with the minor league affiliates and get teams in the Florida State League, Southern League, Texas League, South Atlantic League b/c it'd be easier to hire minor league coordinators. "Here's a 50% raise and instead of living in Akron far away from family, you'll be in Savannah". If you have to take a loss breaking a contract with the Akron Ducks or whatever they are called now, do it. Try to change affiliates to warmer weather, more desirable locations to those that most likely grew up and hope to have that completed in a couple years. Sorry, but it makes a difference. There's just not a lot of baseball people that are from Ohio -- they are from Georgia, California, Texas, Florida and they'd probably prefer being closer to the family and friends they grew up with. I know a good deal of time is spent in Arizona pre and post season, but the baseball season is about half the year and that's a lot of time to be somewhere that you may not want to live.

The Indians drafted Clint Frazier in the first round last year. He probably won't see MLB action (if ever) until he puts in roughly 4 more years of minor league ball. Why? It's because he needs his skills to be developed and minor league instructors play a major role in that. If you can't pay up extra for talent, you should pay up extra for the top minor league instructors. Good teaching makes a difference and you're not optimizing your talent if you don't have good people instructing the talent.

I don't expect this to be popular, but to be honest, reading this message board about draft prospects gets me frustrated. I see players I like, but in the back of my mind I have no faith that the Indians can make MLB players out of them (citing the last 10 years). That needs to change.

BTW, I'm not against firing Brad Grant and company, too. I'd be in favor of finding someone new but my main premise is spending $$ to get top instructors.
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Re: New Strategy

Postby daingean » Tue Feb 18, 2014 12:30 pm

I think moving some of those affiliates out of NE Ohio would do the Big League club favours in the revenue area. I think the Indians are competing with their minor league affiliates for the entertainment $$$.

I do think the Indians lack something in the player development aspect. Now there are only so many jobs in pro baseball, you can find good baseball people especially if you treat them right.
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Re: New Strategy

Postby Hermie13 » Tue Feb 18, 2014 12:46 pm

daingean wrote:I think moving some of those affiliates out of NE Ohio would do the Big League club favours in the revenue area. I think the Indians are competing with their minor league affiliates for the entertainment $$$.

I do think the Indians lack something in the player development aspect. Now there are only so many jobs in pro baseball, you can find good baseball people especially if you treat them right.


Agree here....sadly though don't foresee Akron or Lake County moving any time soon.
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Re: New Strategy

Postby daingean » Tue Feb 18, 2014 1:42 pm

Hermie13 wrote:
daingean wrote:I think moving some of those affiliates out of NE Ohio would do the Big League club favours in the revenue area. I think the Indians are competing with their minor league affiliates for the entertainment $$$.

I do think the Indians lack something in the player development aspect. Now there are only so many jobs in pro baseball, you can find good baseball people especially if you treat them right.


Agree here....sadly though don't foresee Akron or Lake County moving any time soon.


two of these really should move:

Lake County
Mahoning Valley
Akron
Columbus

None are really the issue but the number of those teams competing. If you live in say Canton (where I grew up), going to Akron or Youngstown for a game is much more doable (especially on a week night) than driving to Cleveland. Now since none of those teams existed (Columbus wasn't and Indians farm team) we would make that drive but most of the games we made were on weekends (and a fair number of those were the old scheduled double headers).
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Re: New Strategy

Postby Hermie13 » Tue Feb 18, 2014 2:17 pm

daingean wrote:
Hermie13 wrote:
daingean wrote:I think moving some of those affiliates out of NE Ohio would do the Big League club favours in the revenue area. I think the Indians are competing with their minor league affiliates for the entertainment $$$.

I do think the Indians lack something in the player development aspect. Now there are only so many jobs in pro baseball, you can find good baseball people especially if you treat them right.


Agree here....sadly though don't foresee Akron or Lake County moving any time soon.


two of these really should move:

Lake County
Mahoning Valley
Akron
Columbus

None are really the issue but the number of those teams competing. If you live in say Canton (where I grew up), going to Akron or Youngstown for a game is much more doable (especially on a week night) than driving to Cleveland. Now since none of those teams existed (Columbus wasn't and Indians farm team) we would make that drive but most of the games we made were on weekends (and a fair number of those were the old scheduled double headers).


I think Lake County and Akron are the problems though. Mahoning Valley is only around for a couple months out of the year, plus Youngstown is an area you want to have an Indians presense to keep fans from jumping ship to the Pirates...like 90% of people have done in football. Columbus is also far enough away that you don't lose out on fans coming up much. Plus actually a big (and growing) market that you should want a foot in the door if you're Cleveland.

Akron and Lake County though, just so close to Cleveland and really in the same market almost (some stats actually include Akron in the Cleveland market). So many suburbs north of Akron (Cuyahoga Falls, Stow, Hudson, Twinsburg, Brunswick, Brecksville, etc) that you risk losing fans too the bathtoys. Same goes for the East side of Cleveland with the Captains.


I also think with Lake County and Akron, Cleveland has those markets sewn up. Not like if they didn't have farm teams there that those areas would just lose all interest in Cleveland and start rooting for someone else. As said, with Youngstown and Columbus you do have that. But if you're Cleveland and you're obviously short of fans/money...branch out with your brand. Take a team like Boston...their A-ball team is in Greenville, SC. Biggest market in South Carolina and while it's only about 2 hours from Atlanta, still have a ton of Red Sox fans there now. Cleveland needed to do this IMO instead of bringing every farm team (just about) to Ohio.
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Re: New Strategy

Postby daingean » Tue Feb 18, 2014 2:41 pm

Hermie13 wrote:I think Lake County and Akron are the problems though. Mahoning Valley is only around for a couple months out of the year, plus Youngstown is an area you want to have an Indians presense to keep fans from jumping ship to the Pirates...like 90% of people have done in football. Columbus is also far enough away that you don't lose out on fans coming up much. Plus actually a big (and growing) market that you should want a foot in the door if you're Cleveland.

Akron and Lake County though, just so close to Cleveland and really in the same market almost (some stats actually include Akron in the Cleveland market). So many suburbs north of Akron (Cuyahoga Falls, Stow, Hudson, Twinsburg, Brunswick, Brecksville, etc) that you risk losing fans too the bathtoys. Same goes for the East side of Cleveland with the Captains.


I also think with Lake County and Akron, Cleveland has those markets sewn up. Not like if they didn't have farm teams there that those areas would just lose all interest in Cleveland and start rooting for someone else. As said, with Youngstown and Columbus you do have that. But if you're Cleveland and you're obviously short of fans/money...branch out with your brand. Take a team like Boston...their A-ball team is in Greenville, SC. Biggest market in South Carolina and while it's only about 2 hours from Atlanta, still have a ton of Red Sox fans there now. Cleveland needed to do this IMO instead of bringing every farm team (just about) to Ohio.


On the other hand......AA and AAA clubs in the state allows fans to become familiar with the guys as they approach the majors where A ball guys are so far away that the excitement dissipates. And the Akron (Canton before that) pre-dated the other teams (except Columbus). I agree Columbus should be the last one considered to move. But we agree that the Indians did this to themselves and shouldn't cry about attendance.
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Re: New Strategy

Postby Hermie13 » Tue Feb 18, 2014 4:05 pm

I'd be more ok with the Aeros/Ducks if they were still in Canton...may not seem like that much of a difference but a whole nother county further south of Cleveland. All those people in the Akron area were then about equal distance from the AA team the big league team, with the northern Akron suburbs closer to the parent club.

Also think it's nice to have one of the AA/AAA teams somewhat nearby for rehab purposes.

The "combined" greater Cleveland metro area actually includes Lake County and Akron/Summit County....there are 3 teams there (4 if you count the Independent team out in the western suburbs). Cleveland has enough trouble supporting the Indians, we don't need all those other teams.
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Re: New Strategy

Postby allhailshapiro » Thu Feb 20, 2014 9:20 am

So folks are actually advocating that Akron and Lake County lose their baseball teams? The ones playing in publicly financed stadiums? Must not live in those areas, I guess. And maybe I missed something, but Akron's attendance has been dropping- which is why Babby is spending like he has to change Canal Park. I didn't realize even those declining numbers were keeping fans from Cleveland. I don't doubt there are people who would rather spend far less and go to a game in their backyard, but simply moving these teams isn't going to make the average Clevelander care about baseball any more than they did before. It has always been a shiny metal object and that isn't really going to change.
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Re: New Strategy

Postby Hermie13 » Thu Feb 20, 2014 10:36 am

allhailshapiro wrote:So folks are actually advocating that Akron and Lake County lose their baseball teams? The ones playing in publicly financed stadiums? Must not live in those areas, I guess. And maybe I missed something, but Akron's attendance has been dropping- which is why Babby is spending like he has to change Canal Park. I didn't realize even those declining numbers were keeping fans from Cleveland. I don't doubt there are people who would rather spend far less and go to a game in their backyard, but simply moving these teams isn't going to make the average Clevelander care about baseball any more than they did before. It has always been a shiny metal object and that isn't really going to change.


We both know that neither Akron nor LC are actually going to move. The Indians screwed up there already and have to live with it. More of a just wishful thinking.

Also, no one is saying that simply moving LC and Akron will all of sudden see a giant bump in Cleveland attendance. But you're kidding yourself if you don't think having some many cheaper games nearby doesn't keep some fans away from Cleveland. Agree the average "Clevelander" won't care more about the Indians...but the average Akronite may make the trek to Cleveland once or twice more a year if Akron Aeros/RDs weren't there.
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Re: New Strategy

Postby criznit2009 » Thu Feb 20, 2014 11:34 am

OK. My 2 cents...what I think some of you fail to realize when complaining about Akron and LC is that it they weren't Indians affiliates, they would be minor league teams for OTHER organizations.. Do you really think that the Indians F.O thinks, "man this Akron team sure affects our attendance... Better move our AA team"... So they do, meanwhile those responsible for running Canal Park are busy securing another minor league team.. Wanna see it actually effect attendanc? Lets put the Yankees/Cubs?Cardinals (you get the idea) AA or even their high A team in Akron..

Now Lake County is a touch different IMO as it is a little closer and a little cheaper...And in this case Mr. Johnny Fairweather-I don't care about baseball but my kid seems too, is probably just as, if not more inclined to see a Captains game than an Indians game. Hence they show up at Captains games. The LC team fan base probably has 2 general types of "fans".. Those who don't care so much about baseball and are seeking cheap entertainment. There just happens to be a baseball game going on and those "real" fans who probably see more games at Progressive Field than your average Indian fan does.


The LC team/stadium should not have been built in the 1st place IMO and the only thing that is gonna put butts in the seats (people who don't actually give a shit unless there is a party on the bandwagon) in that dirty, shrinking, depressed, fake ass fan town is a winning ball club period.. If you closed down the Lake County affiliate and no one else moved in.. You would get a small spike, but how that would play out in improving overall attendance would be based almost 100% solely on how well the team was doing in the standings.
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Re: New Strategy

Postby daingean » Thu Feb 20, 2014 11:43 am

criznit2009 wrote:OK. My 2 cents...what I think some of you fail to realize when complaining about Akron and LC is that it they weren't Indians affiliates, they would be minor league teams for OTHER organizations.. Do you really think that the Indians F.O thinks, "man this Akron team sure affects our attendance... Better move our AA team"... So they do, meanwhile those responsible for running Canal Park are busy securing another minor league team.. Wanna see it actually effect attendanc? Lets put the Yankees/Cubs?Cardinals (you get the idea) AA or even their high A team in Akron..

Now Lake County is a touch different IMO as it is a little closer and a little cheaper...And in this case Mr. Johnny Fairweather-I don't care about baseball but my kid seems too, is probably just as, if not more inclined to see a Captains game than an Indians game. Hence they show up at Captains games. The LC team fan base probably has 2 general types of "fans".. Those who don't care so much about baseball and are seeking cheap entertainment. There just happens to be a baseball game going on and those "real" fans who probably see more games at Progressive Field than your average Indian fan does.


The LC team/stadium should not have been built in the 1st place IMO and the only thing that is gonna put butts in the seats (people who don't actually give a shit unless there is a party on the bandwagon) in that dirty, shrinking, depressed, fake ass fan town is a winning ball club period.. If you closed down the Lake County affiliate and no one else moved in.. You would get a small spike, but how that would play out in improving overall attendance would be based almost 100% solely on how well the team was doing in the standings.


Not sure anyone would have moved to LC if the Tribe didn't move the Bowling Green KY franchise there. But the Tribe did this and they have to live with it. But recently Shapiro made a comment about attendance......well they were the ones that move the franchise there so don't cry about attendance. One or two in the area isn't the problem it's the fact they have 4 (including Columbus). In the '90s when we had those sell outs only Akron was around (Columbus was a Yankee affiliate). It's just a fact that it affects attendance.
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Re: New Strategy

Postby Hermie13 » Thu Feb 20, 2014 12:09 pm

daingean wrote:
criznit2009 wrote:OK. My 2 cents...what I think some of you fail to realize when complaining about Akron and LC is that it they weren't Indians affiliates, they would be minor league teams for OTHER organizations.. Do you really think that the Indians F.O thinks, "man this Akron team sure affects our attendance... Better move our AA team"... So they do, meanwhile those responsible for running Canal Park are busy securing another minor league team.. Wanna see it actually effect attendanc? Lets put the Yankees/Cubs?Cardinals (you get the idea) AA or even their high A team in Akron..

Now Lake County is a touch different IMO as it is a little closer and a little cheaper...And in this case Mr. Johnny Fairweather-I don't care about baseball but my kid seems too, is probably just as, if not more inclined to see a Captains game than an Indians game. Hence they show up at Captains games. The LC team fan base probably has 2 general types of "fans".. Those who don't care so much about baseball and are seeking cheap entertainment. There just happens to be a baseball game going on and those "real" fans who probably see more games at Progressive Field than your average Indian fan does.


The LC team/stadium should not have been built in the 1st place IMO and the only thing that is gonna put butts in the seats (people who don't actually give a shit unless there is a party on the bandwagon) in that dirty, shrinking, depressed, fake ass fan town is a winning ball club period.. If you closed down the Lake County affiliate and no one else moved in.. You would get a small spike, but how that would play out in improving overall attendance would be based almost 100% solely on how well the team was doing in the standings.


Not sure anyone would have moved to LC if the Tribe didn't move the Bowling Green KY franchise there. But the Tribe did this and they have to live with it. But recently Shapiro made a comment about attendance......well they were the ones that move the franchise there so don't cry about attendance. One or two in the area isn't the problem it's the fact they have 4 (including Columbus). In the '90s when we had those sell outs only Akron was around (Columbus was a Yankee affiliate). It's just a fact that it affects attendance.


And when the sellout streak started, they were still in Canton even (didn't move to Akron til 1997), effectively doubling the distance (though still only about an hour's drive).
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Re: New Strategy

Postby MadThinker88 » Fri Feb 21, 2014 7:10 pm

daingean wrote:Not sure anyone would have moved to LC if the Tribe didn't move the Bowling Green KY franchise there. But the Tribe did this and they have to live with it. But recently Shapiro made a comment about attendance......well they were the ones that move the franchise there so don't cry about attendance. One or two in the area isn't the problem it's the fact they have 4 (including Columbus). In the '90s when we had those sell outs only Akron was around (Columbus was a Yankee affiliate). It's just a fact that it affects attendance.


I thought the LC franchise had been in Columbus GA before relocating. That was why the squad still played in the South Atlantic league for a few seasons before finally shifting over to the Midwest League and being able to play Dayton, Bowling Green KY and others...
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