The Cleveland Indians sit one game above the .500 mark at 49-48 and are 3 games behind the division leading Detroit Tigers as well as 3 games out of one of the two wild card positions in the American League.
Coming out of the All Star break the Indians are 5-7 twelve games into the second half. So now discussion has turned into whether the Indians should push their chips to the middle of the table and go all in for a playoff push or back away and re-tool for next season.
First lets address the Indians poor start to the second half of the season. While you can argue the front office needs to make move to give the offense a needed jolt, there has to be some accountability with the players. The games I’ve watched the Tribe play, they look lethargic, as if they lack energy. The one thing they can control is the amount of effort they take to the diamond every night. They have to play better, what good does bringing someone in if they players that are here don’t improve their performance?
While I do support the idea of making a deal for someone, it’s for a different agenda. Considering their lethargy, I recommend they send someone on the 25 man roster away. Send a message that no matter what you think, you are not safe, that you indeed are replaceable. No matter what the job is, we all need a reminder and some kind of action that brings back the focus necessary to a success. I believe making a trade of someone they’ve played with all season would deliver that message accurately. It will also bring you back the most value in a deal. Though I’d prefer to send minor leaguers, to get something you have to be willing to give up something.
Now, should the Indians be buyers or Sellers? Well that’s easy for you or me to say, it’s not our money that’s being invested per se. Whether you go to the stadium, buy merchandise or watch on television, the Indians will be on the hook, and if they turn out to be wrong, with the benefit of hindsight, fans will find a way to crush the move, whether it was right or wrong at the time.
I say that to say, yes they should be buyers. In most areas of life the more aggressive you are the more chances you have at being successful, and I for one wouldn’t blame the Indians if they made a real aggressive move to attempt to seize the opportunity they have right now. There’s no amount of money you place on winning now, or at least giving yourself the best chance to and the Indians as constructed are missing something.
If the Indians were to make a move, an impactful one, it would re-energize the fans excitement as well as dispelling the notion they aren’t interested in adding payroll as well as show your players that when need be you’ll give them the help they need to help get them over the top. There’s no greater feeling as an employee than knowing that management will do whatever they can to help you succeed.
I do believe if the Indians get hot at the plate have enough to snag one of those wild card spots and even make a run at the division title. However, banking on getting hot is a risky bet especially considering how inconsistent they’ve been of late. Add that with the fact that when it comes to the playoffs, pitching out duels hitting most times I’d feel more comfortable with them suring up that line up with another bat. I won’t nit pick, there’s a lot of ways they could go, power, a guy with a high on base percentage, no matter what way they go, just get someone to give them a boost.
With seven days left until the trade deadline arrives, we’ll have plenty of time to discuss who they should get and if they make a move, we’ll have the final two months of the season to debate on if it was the right move.