Your 2011 Cleveland Indians

Monday morning was Decision Day for the Indians. One by one, the players remaining in position battles were called into manager Manny Acta’s office. There, he and GM Chris Antonetti delivered the news. Some good. Some bad.

The five spots still open were filled. The players who got the nod came with their own unique background.

There was the rookie (Vinnie Pestano). The undrafted free agent out of Harvard (Frank Herrmann). The veteran mulling retirement (Adam Everett). The non-roster reliever two years removed from pitching in Japan (Justin Germano). And the former top catching prospect and a key chip in the Cliff Lee trade (Lou Marson).

For every congratulatory high five, however, there was a handshake of support.

Shown the door were infielders Luis Valbuena and Jayson Nix, catchers Luke Carlin and Paul Phillips and reliever Jess Todd. All will likely head to Triple-A Columbus, with the exception of Nix. He is out of options and can decline an outright assignment. Before Nix is designated for assignment, the Tribe will try to find him a big league job via trade.

Your 2011 Cleveland Indians are as follows:

STARTING ROTATION

1. Fausto Carmona
2. Carlos Carrasco
3. Justin Masterson
4. Josh Tomlin
5. Mitch Talbot

“In order for us to have the success that we’re anticipating, we can’t afford to have one or two of those guys to go backwards in their development.” — Acta

BULLPEN

Closer: Chris Perez
Setup: Tony Sipp
Setup: Rafael Perez
Middle: Chad Durbin
Middle: Vinnie Pestano
Long: Frank Herrmann
Long: Justin Germano

“It should be a good mix. It gives Manny the opportunity to not only match-up right, left, but different styles of hitters, too.” – Antonetti

LINEUP (tentative)

1. Michael Brantley, CF
2. Asdrubal Cabrera, SS
3. Shin-Shoo Choo, RF
4. Carlos Santana, C
5. Travis Hafner, DH
6. Orlando Cabrera, 2B
7. Austin Kearns, LF
8. Matt LaPorta, 1B
9. Jack Hannahan, 3B

“I feel a lot better this year because, going into the season last year, we had three guys in the lineup who were going to play for the first time in the big leagues on an everyday basis. We don’t have that case right now.” – Acta

BENCH

Outfield: Travis Buck
Utility: Shelley Duncan
Utility: Adam Everett
Catcher: Lou Marson

“The flexibility gives Manny more options. It gives him the ability to take advantage of putting each guy in a position to be successful, whether it’s an individual matchup with a particular pitcher or to help complement our pitcher that’s on the mound. We have the ability to go a number of different ways.” — Antonetti

DISABLED LIST (unofficial)

INF Jason Donald (fractured left hand)
CF Grady Sizemore (left knee injury)
OF Trevor Crowe (right rotator cuff)
RP Joe Smith (strained abdominal)

“It’s Spring Training. Inevitably, when you have 60 guys in camp, I’m sure that there will be a few guys that have some bumps and bruises along the way. Hopefully we can minimize the extent of those and the duration of those.” — Antonetti, earlier this spring

Check Indians.com for more.

Also, I appreciate your patience while I got the blog up annd running again. Had some technical difficulties over the past week or so while we were transitioning to a new blogging system. And, this is my last day in Arizona. I am flying back to Cleveland tomorrow and I will be back providing coverage from the exhibition in Columbus on Wednesday.

Stay tuned for more.

–JB

10 Comments

Woa, this new thing is freaking me out a bit! If I don’t have to log in, that means I could use my…*gasp*…real name!
Anyway, I’m fine with the line-up. Kind of surprised that Marson is going to sit on the bench instead of getting regular ABs in Columbus, but I think the priority is the pitching staff, not a back-up catcher, and Marson knows these pitchers. I think the fact that Marson can throw guys out is a factor, too.
I do wonder who gets the bump when Donald returns. What happens if Hannahan plays like a champ? Does Donald get the nod regardless, possibly becoming the utility guy with Everett being let go?
I would love for the Tribe to have an official set-up guy. I know that’s a luxury for most teams, but it would be really nice to know who’s coming on for the last two innings.
This should be an interesting season. There will be far more to watch for this year. Here’s hoping for .500!

Hold onto your hats, folks:

SIZEMORE, KIPNIS, CHIZ, WHITE
– KEARNS, HANNAHAN, ORLANDO
______________________________
CONTENTION

I understand why they chose the players they did. The only one I had a real problem with was Marson. However, I guess his defensive skills as well the thought that the organization is not ready to give up on Marson as part of the Lee deal. Still I liked what Phillips could bring. Obviously I was not privy to anything but the stats and the games I heard and saw the Indians play in Spring training.

If I were in the Indians shoes, I’m sure I’d keep Chiz and Kipnis in the minors for now also. It makes sense financially. But doesnt mean its not frustrating to know there’s talent right there at our fingertips-and their being withheld could be the difference between competing and not.

JDOG: you forgot Pomerantz!
Go Tribe!

Could be the difference between competing and not? Doubtful. Success in the minors doesn’t automatically translate into success in the majors. Kipnis, in particular, still needs time. There’s no point in rushing prospects up for no reason — and we know we’re not going to be in contention this year.
@Aaron, I kind of wonder if this might be the opposite for Marson. I’m sure his familiarity with some of the starters and his defense are why they’re keeping him as the back-up. But if they thought he could be more than that or had more value, I feel like they’d let him go to Columbus to work on his offense.

Pingback: While We’re Waiting… Roster Cuts, Cavalier Effort and Buckeye ‘Backers | WaitingForNextYear

Am i missing something or is there no way to get to this blog from the “new” Tribe page?

How do you keep LaPorta on the 40 man and send Huffman down to triple A? You keep Duncan over Huffman in the outfield I don’t get it. If you want to keep Duncan as a 1st baseman that I get especially considering LaPorta’s performance. Why isn’t Buck or Huffman starting in left field versus Kearns. The two best performers in spring training, one is a backup and the other gets sent to triple A. Anybody want to talk about Chisenhall. Now I know why they call Cleveland the “MISTAKE BY THE LAKE”. It must be in the water. It’s hard to be a Indian fan.

one of these things is not like the others: Perez, Sipp, Perez, Durbin, Pestano, Herrmann, Germano … I’m looking at you Durbin … predicting a performance somewhere in between 2010 Jamey Wright and 2009 Kobayashi, 13 appearances, 6.50 ERA

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