The AL Central this year is scary to look at. The Indians are up 14 games on the lowly Twins who are 8 games from .500. The Indians seem to be sitting pretty on the surface. Nothing to really stress about except how they’re going to set up their rotation for the postseason and keeping their players healthy. That’s on the surface. When you look a little closer you see some players going through some shit or hurt. Trevor Bauer with a fractured right fibula and not expected to return until maybe a month, which is the best case scenario. Andrew Miller currently on the disabled list with shoulder problems and just received a cortisone shot to try to speed up the healing process and not exactly sure when he will be able to throw again. Closer Cody Allen isn’t pitching the best of his ability lately allowing runs in 4 of his last 5 appearances. Pitching seems light at the moment. So what did Cleveland, the “mystery team” do?
They threw a party for Lebron James and invited Lance Stephenson and J.R. Smith. That would be cool if they did that, but sadly, they did not. Instead Cleveland made the bold move of trading for Josh Donaldson on August 31st around 9 P.M. A few hours before the midnight deadline.
It’s always fun as the deadline hour approaches to watch your preferred choice of sports news updates. From about 6 P.M. until the news came around about 9 P.M., the sports media world was going nuts trying to find out the inside scoop. The funny thing is, they only know as much as they’re told. Not saying they are being told wrong information, I would use the word misleading. For example, the great website of Rotoworld.com reported: “MLB Network Radio’s Steve Phillips reports that the Blue Jays are having discussions with the Yankees, Phillies, Braves and Cardinals about Josh Donaldson.”
Those teams mentioned don’t seem to sound like “Indians” but I think it was in the fine print. My point is NO ONE knows until it actually happens. But that’s what the pride and joy of reporting for these guys is. Whoever’s the first to know of the news is the big dog. The Inside scoop type shit that gives guys woody’s as their names are read as they were the first to report the news that the whole world will know and other media outlets will soon write about. No one cares who first reports it except for the dude that actually does. And his employer, of course. It’s an honor to be the first one to know a secret. Like in Elementary School. So I wouldn’t pay too much attention to anything leading up to a big trade or anything and just wait a little for the real shit to come out.
Back to baseball. So with the Indians having Jose Ramirez in the midst of a MVP type season, Francisco Lindor balling out per usual, Michael Brantley having a bounce back year from an injury riddled 2017, and now adding Josh Donaldson to the mix? Can’t really tell if General Manager Mike Chernoff is being bold or not. I think yes. He is putting together a team to not only make the do the championship series, but a World Series. After losing to the Yankees in all time tragic fashion last year, went up 2-0 in the American League Division Series only to lose the next three games in a row, I can guarantee that taste has not left any of the players or front office personnel.
After being acquired on Friday evening, Donaldson has yet to make an appearance yet. It is a bit concerning, but I’m sure the Indians would rather him be 100% healthy towards the end of the season and the playoffs rather than rush him into action ASAP. With Donaldson taking the reigns at third base, Jose Ramirez will be moved back to second base thus making Jason Kipnis an outfielder. I’m sure that’s not ideal, but Kipnis played a little outfield last year to make himself more versatile. Even as they do seem a little light on pitching, let’s hope, for the Indians sake, that Donaldson becomes some sort of difference maker in the playoffs this year. That is if he can stay healthy.