Tribe Talk With Ted is officially number 35 on the top 100 MLBlogs on the ‘sphere and I am loving it! The wahoo maniac inside me is jumping around and John Adams is pounding the crap out of his drum! The Indians are winning, and Michael Brantley is on a six game hitting streak! Time to break out the old Ted with some Ted’s Takes in there along the way!
Other things that have to do with 35:
1. Rickey Henderson
2. Cole Hamels
3. Frank Thomas
4. Mike Mussina
5. Justin Verlander
The number itself is an honor. With Rickey Henderson wearing it I will take it any day. The Hall of Famer wore it with style as he “stole” his spot in the HOF. Rickey has the most stolen bases of all time with 1,406 and also has the most leadoff homers and the most runs scored of all time.
Ted’s Take: Rickey is “the best” base stealer of all time in my opinion. He had one of the biggest lead-off’s and was one of the quickest guys in major league history. He got so many good jumps that is was rare that he got thrown out. He made things happen and was a catalyst for his team wherever he went. It is an honor to celebrate this number with a Hall of Famer.
Cole Hamels was the World Series and Playoff MVP last year as he posted a 4-0 record and shut down every offense he faced. Even though Cole has had a tough season, he will make sure he gets it going in the playoffs because that is where he shines.
Ted’s Take: With Cliff Lee coming to town via your Cleveland Indians, Cole has to work twice as hard to keep the number 1 job over a phenomenal Cliff Lee. Lee has showed Philadelphia how well he can pitch when hot, as well as how bad he can be when he is cold. Hamels has been a great playoff pitcher, so look for him to compete to be the number 1 in the playoffs. It will be a fight til the end.
Frank Thomas “Big Hurt” is one of the greatest hitter’s of all time. He joins Mel Ott, Ted Williams, and Babe Ruth as one of four to have at least a .300 average, 500 HR, 1500 RBI, 1,000 R, and 1,500 walks in their career. He is sure on his way to becoming a member of the Baseball Hall of Fame and being one of the greatest hitter’s of all time.
Ted’s Take: If your name is anywhere near those three guys (Williams, Ott, and Ruth) you ought to be in the HOF. To have so much power and hit for such a high average is just mind blowing. Frank Thomas is going to go down as one of the greatest hitter’s of all time and will surely be voted in as soon as he is on the ballot. He was a great player as well as a great guy and also swung an iron pipe in the on deck circle. If you don’t vote him in, maybe he will come and hit you with it!
Mike “Moose” Mussina was one of the greatest Yankee pitcher’s of all time. He went 17 straight seasons winning 11 or more games which is an AL Record to this day. Mussina posted strong number’s his whole career though never earning a Cy Young award. He won the gold glove award 7 times and was an All star 5 times. You tell me he isn’t good?
Ted’s Take: It is amazing to look through his whole career and see that he didn’t win the Cy Young at all throughout it. The pitching was very good when he was around leading to the fact that he wasn’t really recognized for all of his great performances. He won 18 games in 2002 which was only good enough for 8th in the league. He has been influential to many around the world and might have a shot at the HOF. He will go down in my book as one of the greatest pitcher’s who ever suited up.
Justin Verlander is the number one pitcher in the Tiger’s rotation. He is the guy to look to when your down, and is the guy to point your finger’s at when struggling. He completed the sixth no-hitter in Tiger’s history in 2007 and is still shutting down opposing offenses. He is compared to Mark Fidrych who was nicknamed “the bird.”
Ted’s Take: Verlander has the best stamina around today in the majors. He can hit 99 on the gun in the seventh inning and still has enough heat to blow it by you. He has a sickening curve ball with a silly change that makes hitter’s shed a tear at the sight of it. Verlander bounced back from a shaky 08 season and is really shining this year for the Tiger’s. He is leading the team with 16 wins and has a great ERA at 3.29. He is carrying the whole Tiger’s team to a playoff run and to AL Central victory.
35 Reasons to like the Indians
35.) Best fan-base in baseball
34.) Got Grady? We do!
33.) Its all about Choo!
32.) Dollar Dog Nights
31.) Shakiest team in baseball
30.) Heritage Park
28.) We have Carlos Santana in our farm system
27.) We have a pink mascot named Slider
26.) Mark McGwire hit a homer off of our jumbotron
25.) John Adams and his bass drum
24.) playoff fever like no other
23.) You can see Kelly Shoppach snap his bat over his leg
22.) We trade all of our starter’s
21.) We like to rebuild
20.) Have one of the best stadiums in baseball
19.) We have Indian Fever
18.) We have Wahoo Brothers
17.) Have Kid’s Fun Day at the stadium
16.) Low selling tickets
15.) Usually follow a bad season up with a good one
14.) Our GM is so nice: he gave my uncle box tickets!
13.) Paul Byrd gave me a ball
12.) We sing ‘Hang on Sloopy’
11.) Have an annual Rock and Blast Fireworks presentation
10.) Celebrate Father’s and Mother’s Day in style at Progressive Field
9.) Have the first Jamaican born pitcher: Justin Masterson
8.) Justin Masterson is “masterful”
7.) Have one of the youngest teams in baseball
6.) It’s Tribe Time Now! Why not join in?
5.) Omar Vizquel played here
4.) Had a dynasty in the late 90’s early 2000’s
3.) Have one of the coolest nicknames “Pronk” AKA Project Donkey
2.) Have the coolest manager: Eric Wedge
1.) Have a talk show: All Bets Are Off with Bruce Drennan
I thank the ‘sphere and also everyone who contributed to the cause of me being the #35 blog on the top 100 MLBlogs. I can’t wait for next month. Be ready for some more of Ted and some more Indian Fever! Thanks for letting me come on down and share my thoughts and feelings about the Tribe!!
It came to an end yesterday. The long 10 game hit streaks by both Laporta and Marte finally came to an end as they both respectively went 0-4. Both of them deserve a round of applause, because they have done most of the hitting for the Indians over the past 10 games. They really built off of each other making one another better. And I really saw some talent in both of them. Time to start over, all good things come to an end.
It wasn’t like they were going to both go on 20 game hit streaks, I don’t see that being possible. But they both did go on 10 game hitting streaks, which really opened the eyes of many, and turned a few heads. Matt Laporta showed that he can hit the gaps while Andy Marte showed he can battle in at bats and come out the winner. They both really showed us something, they can play with the big boys.
Justin Masterson pitched 5.2 innings giving up 4 earned on 4 walks and 8 hits. He really didn’t give the Indians a chance to stay in the game. He once again, couldn’t find the strike zone, and got behind batters, leading to having to walk them, or give them a hitter’s pitch. You can’t live in the majors behind in the count, and that is what Justin does. I know he is a relief pitcher and all, but if he is going to make the transition he needs to know how to pound the strike zone. Should we have held out for Buchholz?
Yes. Buchholz is a major league pitcher, and really has three out pitches, fastball, curveball, change. He mixes well, and gets batter’s to chase his pitch. Most importantly, he doesn’t walk batters. His last start he went 8.1 innings giving up 1 earned run on 3 hits while striking out 9. That is what a good young pitcher does. Justin, not so much. Buchholz has the control down, Justin… not so much. Buchholz also gets ahead of hitters and Justin gets behind. That is the difference between these two young guys. You tell me, Buchholz or Masterson?
If Justin could hit his spots 3 out of 5 times, he would be fine. But he doesn’t do that, maybe one out of five would do the trick for him. Not exceptable, that leads to walks and hits, due to the fact he’s always behind in the count. Should we have held out for Buchholz? Heck yeah. He is young, knows how to pitch, and really has potential. He doesn’t need any polishing right now, and can just go out every time and pitch his game. Justin, not so much.
It’s not like we would of had to kill someone to get Buchholz. If we added in, oh Jhonny Peralta into that Victor Martinez trade, I think we could have gotten the job done to get Buchholz. But we got screwed, getting Masterson who goes out and works half the innings Buchholz did, giving up twice the amount of runs. We got ripped off, and that sometimes happens. But we are going to have to work with Justin and make him a heck of a lot better.
Maybe Justin Masterson wasn’t the guy we were going for in the trade though? Maybe there was another guy who we thought had the potential to become very good. Nick Hagadone throws a 98 mph fastball with a nasty slider, combined with a half decent changeup. Oh my gosh, another Randy Johnson? Could be. I am not saying he would be as dominant, I am just saying Nick has the potential to pitch exactly like Randy did. Hagadone throws hard, as well as Johnson and has a nasty slider. Maybe we didn’t get screwed?
I remember Eddie Taubensee for Kenny Lofton, just another one of those, “nobody” trades. Turned out to be one of the biggest ones in Cleveland history when Kenny started consistantly hitting .300 and stealing 50 bases. Then there was Eddie Taubensee, a no name lack luster catcher who had no potential at the big league level what so ever that ended up hitting like a career .200. We got the big end of the deal. They didn’t and that’s baseball.
We should have held out because we needed another starter. Justin as I said is a relief pitcher and hasn’t really pitched as a starting pitcher while Clay has been a starter all of his life, and really knows how to pitch in different situations. The Red Sox just didn’t want to give up Buchholz because of his raw talent at starting pitching and knew he would be a phenomenal pitcher in the future. There’s nothing you can do about it.
But then again in the Cliff Lee trade, the Indians got Lou Marson, and Carlos Carrasco who were big household names in the Phillies organization. The Phillies fans think that Cliff Lee was the best thing since slice bread, and he has pitched like it but the guy is human, he loses too. And they found that out his last start. Cliff Lee isn’t going to pitch undefeated with a sub 1.00 ERA for the rest of the season. I think we got the better half.
Carlos Carrasco is making his major league debut tomorrow vs. the Tigers. Carrasco showed to be a strong pitcher in AAA going 11-10 combined between the Phillies and Indians this year while leading the International league in innings (157) and strikeouts (148). Carlos also has gone 5-1 with a 3.19 ERA since the trade. I totally agree with Carlos coming up, as he has been pitching great. He could really open eyes during call-ups and could secure a spot in next year’s rotation if he really surprises.
Lou Marson isn’t the kind of guy who will hit 15+ homers and 70+ RBI each year. But Lou will give you this, a .270 average with 50 RBI and a good 50 runs. He doesn’t strike out as much as Kelly Shoppach, and doesn’t swing the bat at all like Wyatt Toregas, so I think Marson has the job. Kelly Shoppach strikes out so much I am sick of it. He almost has more strike outs than hits this year. Toregas can’t hit to save his life. He hasn’t seen daylight yet in the majors. Marson is my guy at catcher, just to hold it down until Santana gets up here, and then look out!
You do know that the Indians and Rays are both 11.5 games out right? I mean, the records aren’t the same, but the number of games is. The only factore is the Rays are in the wild card race and the Indians are no where near the wild card. It’s just a matter of who’s in your division. The Yankees, the best team in baseball are leading the East, making the Red Sox and Rays battle the wild card out. Looks familiar right? That’s always how the AL East goes.
The Indians haven’t had a great division this year in the Central, with the Tigers being (69-60). If the Indians could have played well in the first half, who knows how things could’ve changed? Maybe they could be leading the Central? Maybe half their team would’ve stayed? I don’t know? But I wish that would have happened, because now, we are back to phase one, rebuilding. And it sucks!
We always rebuild, that is Mark Shapiro 101. “If you suck, rebuild” And this year we “suck.” So Mark got to work and made a few trades, bringing in new faces to the Indians organization. Now we will finally get to see Carrasco’s true colors, and if Shapiro made the right deals. And you know, if we don’t succeed next year, look for some new faces. I think we will falter next year in our pitching. It isn’t looking strong enough to me. I think Shapiro needs to go out, and get a veteran pitcher for the Tribe in the offseason, just to strengthen it. It wouldn’t hurt.
I gotta say, being an Indians fan is the toughest job. You can’t expect to be good two years in a row with this shaky club, but the love of the fans and hope of the city always will’s a no good season into becoming a strong finish. That’s Cleveland for you. We don’t leave a game just because we are getting beat 6-2 in the third inning, we don’t throw beer on the field cough cough… Cubs. We have one of the best fan bases in baseball, and we are proud to be Cleveland!
We aren’t Red Sox Nation, and we aren’t Yankee Nation, but we sure as heck have some loyal fans over here in Cleveland Nation! In the 07 ALDS, that is when I got my first real chance to see what real fans are. And that was Cleveland, the loudest park in the playoffs. We love our playoff baseball in Cleveland, and next year we will be gunning for a spot. Be on the lookout!
––– Tribe Talk With Ted