"You dipped a chip, you took a bite… and you dipped again."

By Anthony Castrovince/MLB.com
http://www.twitter.com/castrovince 2_61_turtle_two_heads.jpg

It’s a doubleheader tonight, but it’s a single serving of minutiae.

Kind of a ripoff, if you ask me.


  • Joe Smith is hurt again. Smith, as you might have noticed, hasn’t pitched since Aug. 29, because he injured his left knee. He’s not exactly sure how he did it, but his best guess was that the injury occurred when he missed a step while walking down the stairs at home on the off day on Aug. 31. Smith tore his posterior cruciate ligament in the knee in 2005, and this injury might be related. He played catch today, hopes to do so again tomorrow and hopes to be ready to throw off a mound by the weekend. Smith has already battled a viral infection, a strained tendon in his right index finger and a strained rotator cuff this season. “It’s been a great year,” he said sarcastically.
  • Why Niuman Romero? Well, the Indians had planned to call up Jason Donald, but Donald suffered lower back injury in August and was not deemed ready to help out at this level. Eric Wedge wanted somebody to take some of the load off Asdrubal Cabrera, Luis Valbuena and Jamey Carroll up the middle, so the switch-hitting Romero, who can play all four infield spots, fits the bill.
  • Why did Jordan Brown get the shaft? Good question. Wedge said the reason was that there simply aren’t enough at-bats available to him. But Brown’s defense is what hurt him most. He’s still considered a bit of a liability in left field and at first base, so his International League batting title was considered moot.
  • Still, it seems certain that Brown will be taken in the Rule 5 Draft if the Indians don’t protect him this winter. I’m surprised they didn’t add him for September to at least try to showcase him, if they don’t feel he’s in their future plans. And clearly, he’s not.
  • Indians media relations director Bart Swain points out that Grady Sizemore’s stats after his June 23 activation from the DL were virtually identical to his numbers from 2007 and 2008. From June 23 to Sept. 3, Sizemore batted .270 with a .373 on-base percentage, .470 slugging percentage and an .843 OPS. In ’08, it was .268/.374/.502/.876. In ’07, it was .277/.390/.462/.852.
  • Bart’s point, in case you can’t tell, is that the elbow problem, once addressed with a few weeks of rest and rehab, did not affect Sizemore’s day-to-day performance and perhaps did not need the immediate surgical intervention that people have suggested would have been more appropriate than allowing Grady to play. You can take that for whatever it’s worth to you personally.
  • Columbus manager Torey Lovullo said Yohan Pino, the player to be named from the Carl Pavano trade, looked impressive. He has a four-pitch mix, so he profiles as a starter. At the time of that trade, it wasn’t expected that the prospect acquired would be of much impact, but Pino has the potential to surprise some people next year. We’ll see. For now, the Indians simply don’t have a need for another starter. So Pino and Hector Rondon are headed home.
  • Speaking of Rondon, he got the start in the Clippers’ season finale Monday, and he gave up three runs on eight hits with no walks and five strikeouts over 7 2/3 innings. He finished with a 4-5 record and 4.00 ERA in 12 starts at the Triple-A level. Next stop is a Spring Training competition for a rotation spot, but Rondon will have to develop his secondary pitches more if he’s going to claim a spot.
  • The Clippers finished 57-85, 27 games back in the West Division of the International League. Not an auspicious beginning to their Tribe affiliation, though they did set a franchise attendance record in the first season at Huntington Park.
  • Double-A Akron opens the postseason with a best-of-five series against Reading. Game 1 is at 7 p.m. ET Wednesday at Canal Park. Right-hander Josh Tomlin (14-9, 4.16) will get the starting nod.
  • Short-season Mahoning Valley is also entering postseason play. The Scrappers, led by manager Travis Fryman, posted a franchise-record 49 wins this season and have clinched home-field advantage throughout the playoffs. They play at Brooklyn tonight, with left-hander Vidal Nuno (5-0, 2.05 ERA) on the mound.
  • Class A Kinston wrapped up its season Monday with a loss to Potomac. Right-hander Nick Hagadone going three innings and giving up a run on three hits for a no-decision. Hagadone, acquired in the Victor Martinez trade, had Tommy John surgery last year and is already throwing in the upper 90s. He could be a name to watch as the 2010 season progresses.
  • The Indians have extended their player development contract with Class A Lake County through 2014. The Captains will move from the South Atlantic League to the Midwest League in 2010.


UPDATE (5:05 p.m. ET): As of first pitch, there might be 350 people in the ballpark. Maybe.

UPDATE No. 2: Jason Stein, the Master of Self-Promotion, points out that if all goes to plan, Wednesday’s 12:05 p.m. ET start time will be the fifth different start time in five games for the Tribe. 


I saw Hagadone in his last start at Lake County, and he was clearly outclassing hitters there. His age is a bit advanced due to the Tommy John Surgery, so I’d like to see him progress through AA and potentially up to AAA next year. His fastball is electric, and his offspeed stuff is quite good as well. The problem, like many fireballers is control, but he looks to have a decent handle on his command.

When Grady is on the DL at the start of next season because of set backs due to his rehab after surgery, I’m sure I will take comfort in the fact that he produced good numbers in August of this year. Correct me if I’m wrong, but he still has to have surgery, yes? How does his performance in the second half matter then?
“I’m surprised they didn’t add him for September to at least try to showcase him, if they don’t feel he’s in their future plans. And clearly, he’s not.”
Once I started thinking about it more, this was the main issue I have the with the decision, too. He’s going to be another Michael Aubrey, assuming they even try to hold on to him.
As interesting as the rotation battle for next year should be, the Columbus rotation could be even more interesting.

Any time an Indians official speaks, the statements of ‘fact’ are filled with contradictions.

Let’s see — both Dellucci and Garko played OF for the Tribe this year. The only way Brown could be worse is if he doesn’t own a fielding mitt.

Look at Grady’s stats since 2005 and you will realize that 2006 was probably a career year. Factor in a staggering drop in SBs this season means that injuries HAD to be a factor there. We wouldn’t want to blame lack of effort or diminishing skills. Since defense is considered to be SUCH as premium now for the Indians, I am amazed they lived with his Crisp-like arm in CF for as long as they did. Second half stats be darned, Grady finished this season with an OPS of .788. A previous poster was spot-on — how great will it be to read stories next spring about how offseason surgeries (plural!) limited Sizemore’s ability to prep for the 2010 season?

And if .843 is approximately equal to .876 (not even close) in Bart Swain’s world, then I guess .758 is approximately equal to .788. By the way, .758 was Ben Francisco’s OPS with the Indians this year.

I am telling you:

Michael Brantley is a monster.

He is tearing it up so far in the bigs and is riding smooth in the 1 hole.

If he keeps it up he might get the starting LF job next year?

Good job and keep going Michael.

You make me cheer!///

Go Tribe.

–Ted “TTW/T” —


ah, I missed this quote earlier, on Romero: “He’s a grinder,” Wedge said. “He’s fought his way through the system. He’s a good kid, he’s versatile, and he can play everywhere in the infield.” You can’t make this stuff up, that’s just Wedge to the max … you also have to appreciate the Laporta in LF, Gimenez at 1b, Carroll at 3b and Peralta DH lineup. There just aren’t enough at bats …

ST, that’s fantastic! We should put together a montage of some sort.
Now that the Brown issue has been resolved (in my eyes, at least), it is time to look at Marte. Because, as Ted has pointed out, Brantley appears to be the real deal. I can’t see why they’d deal Choo and they’re clearly not going to deal Grady (yet, anyway). If Brantley plays like this in the spring, it’s hard to argue against him being in the OF every day, which then moves LaPorta to first.
I’m beginning to think that Marte has a very good chance of being a bench player, a first/third/DH bench guy, which can’t be a good thing, simply because he does seem to need regular ABs to thrive.

First off, post of the night goes to Ted for this phenomenal one-liner: “Brantley is riding smooth in the 1 hole.”

Epic. Enough said. But I gotta get my mind out of the gutter. This a family-friendly blog, after all.
On to baseball, the Brown situation blows my mind, and you guys have made some great points. Anyone over Dellucci and Garko in the corner outfielders is an improvement. Marte may still be ok as a bench player. He obviously needs everyday AB’s right now, but maybe once he finds his stroke and matures, he can settle into that role. Not my preference (trade Peralta, problem solved), but I am just sayin. And AM, I agree wth you as far as Wedge’s handling of Gimenez and letting Phillips go, but Bradley is an absolute head-case, and I am not defending him.

I have a man-crush on Michael Brantley. I love players like him, and this couldn’t be more reminiscent of Lofton. I truly look forward forward to him riding smoothly in the 1 hole for many years to come.

I had the same disgusting feeling when I read that “grinder” comment from Wedge. What a tool. Buy a freakin’ thesaurus and use a different adjective to describe one of your inexplicable favorites or exiled rejects (Gimenez, the utility infielder that plays 54% of the games, Brandon Phillips, Milton Bradley, etc). I so badly want this man to be fired worse than anyone has EVER been fired in the history of employment.

Unless Peralta is traded which is highly unlikely, we all know that Marte is gone. Perhaps we can file the “Marte in the future” discussion along with the “Jordan Brown discussions”: they’re pointless, a big waste of fans’ time (since the FO has already made a decision), and only makes us unquestionably angry.

one last thing: Mark Shapiro and Eric Wedge should thank their lucky stars that they are not part of a big market franchise or else the local and national media pundits would eat them for lunch concerning their decisions EVERY DAY. Case in point, Willie Randolph and Omar Minaya.

pigeon, I’m not saying that Parker Brothers isn’t a headcase. I’m just saying that stronger managers have been able to get him to play (Ron Washngton, Lou Piniella) despite the guy’s mental capacity that makes him think it’s ok to go up 5 flights to “talk” with a broadcaster that insulted him

Heh I like the two headed turtle picture, reminds me of these huge monsters in old Pc adventure games. Anyway, great blog! I’ve been reading through older posts and it’s quite nice to see how some players progressed over the years!

Makina Sanayi
Thanks for admin.nice sharing.very nice..
Cnc Torna
Makina Sanayi

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