Monday, April 28, 2008

The Lineup From Hell

Remember 1987? The Year the Tribe was on the cover of Sports Illustrated picked to win it all? That season was done in by a number of things, but most notably the famed and fabled "Bullpen From Hell," which features guys like Ed Vandeberg, Scott Bailes, Rich Yett, Mark Huismann, and Don Gordon. This year's team, despite all of the pitching talent, is floundering because of the "Lineup From Hell."

Take tonight; with Grady Sizemore injured, the lack of any sort of consistent hitter outside of Victor Martinez was scarily evident. David Dellucci was forced to lead off, with Jamey Carroll hitting second. The bottom of the order featured Ryan Garko (0 for his last 23, hitting .227), Fake (.224), Franky G (his two hits brought him up to .240), and K-Mike (.200). Dellucci left four on base, Carroll (.219) left five. The Indians as a team left 18 on base in the 5-2 loss. 18!

Meanwhile the Yankees scored four runs in the sixth without the ball leaving the infield. Two infield joke hits, a walk, a hit batter, two groundouts, and a third joke infield hit did in Aaron Laffey, who pitched a gem, but was done in by bad luck.

Back to the stagnant offense. Without Grady, you really see just how poor this team is offensively. Other than Victor, who scares you? Certainly not Travis Hafner, who hasn't had a big hit in weeks and is killing the Indians with his extreme lack of production. With Garko in a deep slump, why would anyone pitch to Victor?

Hafner is the main problem. He barely is making a loud out these days. He is turning into a strike out machine and a guy who reeks of being a possible performance enhancing cheater. Don't say you haven't thought of it. One bad year has now turned into 800 AB's without showing any signs of being the guy who owned AL pitching from 2004-06. If he doesn't wake up, forget the playoffs folks.

This team flat out needs multiple bats. That lineup tonight was a disgrace. The Indians have now scored three runs in their last 25 innings. They are getting no production from every power position in the lineup: 1B, 3B, LF, RF, DH. None. Changes must be made, and fast. Give me Ben Francisco. Give me Barry Bonds. Give me Kenny Lofton. Give me ANYTHING!

Wake Up Pronk.. We Need You For The Show

Any of you watch "The Wiggles"? There is a character on the kids show that wears a purple shirt and is constantly falling asleep (his name is Jeff). Time after time, the other Wiggles have to keep waking him up; it gets old and tired but they keep doing it because he is an integral part of the band. Jeff from the Wiggles is very similar to Travis Hafner. A guy with crazy/sick talent and skills who is now having to be told to WAKE UP constantly over the last year plus.

The man known as "Pronk" is vital for the Indians success and right now he is just not cutting the mustard. The club's #3 hitter is slumping yet again and as TBS' Buck Martinez said yesterday he looks very uncomfortable and unsure at the plate. We endured Pronk's "off-year" last season and the team rallied mostly without him, but this year it cannot happen again. Hafner is too important and now he is also a big money investment after inking a four year 57 million dollar deal. He signed that deal because the guy could mash and his slugging percentage numbers were off the charts in 2005 and 2006. .595 and .659 respectively. In 2007, that number dipped down to .451 and there was concern. Is Pronk hurt? Did contract talks distract him? Is Pronk a new man now that he is Amy Beekman's hubby? Tribe brass and players all say he did have a few nagging ailments and his shoulder may not be 100 percent, but he is still scalding the ball at batting practice. Cool. Great. In 2008 (yes we are only 25 games into the season) Travis' slugging percentage you ask? .366.

What do Eric Hinske, Melky Cabrera, Mike Napoli, Carlos Quentin, and Casey Kotchman all have in common? They all have 5 or more HR's this season. Pronk has 3. Travis Hafner when his head is screwed on straight is a better hitter than all of these guys. He is not finished. No way. On April 8th in Anaheim, Travis put the team on his back and delivered a 2 out 2 run HR in the top of the 9th off Justin Speier to win a game. He crushed the first pitch he saw and stood there and admired it. The skills are still there and that night, so was the bat speed. Since that night, Hafner has 1 HR and 9 RBI and 2 extra base hits!! Come on Big Fella! Wake up! It starts tonight against the Yankees.

Friday, April 25, 2008

A Thing of Beauty

I was in the house tonight at the Jake. It seriously could not have been a better night. 75 degrees, a slight breeze, big crowd, and a Tribe win. A few things taken away from the game.

1. Rafael Perez was back tonight. He was absolutely dominant, going 2.1 hitless innings backing up the Byrd Man who danced through 5.2 IP, allowing three jacks (two to Jason Giambi) and several more loud outs.

2. It's nice to have a real closer. Rafael Betancourt got the Yanks 1-2-3 in the ninth, something JoBlow never seems to do. Not to mention, you had confidence the game was in hand going into the ninth. That NEVER happened with JoBlow.

3. All six Tribe runs were scored with two out. That includes the three-run pizza by Jhonny Peralta. It's about time Jhon stepped up. His first inning two-out single plated another. He has four RBI on the night, giving him 10 for the season. He nearly doubled his season's output in one night.

4. Pronk has to get going. Yes, he was 1-3 with a walk, but he continues to look bad at the plate and should be moved out of the three hole. Dare I say it - the Tribe brass is already regretting giving Pronk that $14 million per deal.

5. Franky G's solo jack was an absolute bomb.

6. There were so many annoying, loser, bandwagon Yankee fans there tonight. F them. Walking out, these two degenerates said to people walking by "26 World Series Titles, that's all I have to say." Have another beer, you low class piece of garbage!

7. Jerry Springer was sitting in my row, five seats away. He came to the game in a suit, no tie, BY HIMSELF. He sat there all game long and had hot chicks coming up to him one after another to get pictures with him or his autograph. You would not have believed how well he was received. It was like Elvis was there.

8. Back to baseball, would it have killed Eric Wedge to play Ben Francisco tonight rather than K-Mike? K-Mike went 1-4 and RAISED his average to .163.

9. Kosher Dogs cost $5.oo this season.

10. The Yankees lineup is so loaded, but they look like an old, slow team tonight. Plus, outside of Joba Chamberlain and Mariano Rivera, that bullpen is awful.

11. Good to see ex-Indian Billy Traber make his return to the Jake. He still has that hitchy delivery and is so easy to steal on. It cost the Yankees a run when Grady Sizemore stole on him and Jamey Carroll singled Grady home.

Get On That Double Dutch Bus

How about the Local Nine taking a pair at the K huh? Tribe sweeps a twin-bill from the all-of-the-sudden-lowly Royals 9-6 and 2-0. In the nightcap, Cliff Lee dominated yet again. What is going on with the lanky lefty? This dude is flat out unhittable as he throws a complete game picasso. Lee is 4-0 with a 0.28 ERA and is just attacking hitters. Toss in a career best 9 K's and excellent composure and the Tribe is finding a guy that really is a huge lift to this still below 500 but rising ballclub. This doesn't look like the same Cliff Lee who last season nearly took off Sammy Sosa's head and screamed down his catcher Vic Martinez all in one night (DCB was there btw) does it? Brian Bannister of the Royals on Lee: "That guy's got Nintendo numbers," Bannister said. "I'm not being sarcastic ... that guy is the hottest pitcher on the planet."

The big blow in Game 2, Dave Dellucci's solo hot n' ready off of Bannister in the 7th. Big Dave crushed the first pitch he saw and AC added some state farm insurance with a 2 out ribbie double. 5th time in the last 6 doubleheaders that the Tribe has swept.

Game 1 was all about taking that weak Brett Tomko to school. Grady Sizemore showed up big with a 4 hit day including 2 RBI and a home run. Fausto Carmona went five to snag his 3rd win and clearly labored at times, but he is allowed. Best bullpen performance of the day goes to Masa Kobayashi who spins 1 and a third quality innings for an all-important "Hold". Better news is now I will not have to watch or listen to that boring Ryan Lefebvre for a while. Gotta give props to Benny Francisco for his 2-5, 2 RBI game as well in his first start. How can you send this kid down?

This was a much needed sweep. Tribe now has some confidence heading home to face the dreaded Yankees, who always seem to pound on the Wahoos in the regular season.

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Sowers AND Laffey?

The Indians announced that Jeremy Sowers, not Aaron Laffey, gets the call-up to take Jake Westbrook's spot in the rotation. "We were very comfortable going with either one of them," Eric Wedge said. "We had different reasons for choosing Jeremy. He's not the same guy. What he's gone through, the adjustments he's made, some of the things he's learned about himself. I think he's better for it. We saw it there in his final start last season and he brought it into the spring. I was very pleased with Jeremy and Aaron this spring. You work off of what they've done in the past, what they did in the spring and what they're doing now." I was a little shocked by the move. As was KingDiesel.

WB: To me, Laffey should be the guy. He is dominating Buffalo (3-1, 3.13 ERA) and proved himself big time down the stretch last year. Sowers can be figured out after the first time through the order. One thing this does say is that the Tribe brass has confidence in Sowers again, something they clearly didn't have last year, but he has faced the Yankees before. Laffey hasn't. You have gotta love this Tribe rotation depth. How many teams can put a quality pitcher like Westbrook on the DL and have not one, but two options to go to that most teams would love top have in their major league rotation. What I don't understand is why Ben Francisco is 100% ticketed back to Buffalo by Saturday while K-Mike continues to stay on the roster.

KD: As I sit here and watch Jeremy Bonderman give up yet another first inning run to Texas, I definitely am a bit surprised that Aaron Laffey is not hitting the bump against the Yankees on Saturday. The Tribe is pointing to Sowers' performance in a September game in Seattle, which is fine, but what about Laffey in the ALCS at Fenway shutting down the Red Sox? The Yanks definitely don't crush soft tossers like they do hard-throwers, but I think you have to go with the best guy. Sowers is higher on the pecking order because of his 2006, I get that.. but it is still about winning games now. Texas just gave up a solo slice to Curtis Granderson.. Thanks Rangers!


With last night's rainout and today's doubleheader screwing up the rotation, it looks like Laffey will have to come up and start Monday against the Yankees. They come in for four games starting tomorrow and it sets up well for the hated Bombers, who miss both hot Tribe starters Fausto Carmona and Cliff Lee, as well as the injured Westbrook. It looks like this:

Friday: Paul Byrd vs. Andy Pettitte - which means we have to see K-Mike in LF.

Saturday: Jeremy Sowers vs. Ian Kennedy - smells like a 10-9 game. Is there any more over-hyped arm in baseball than Kennedy? Maybe Jon Lester.

Sunday: C.C. Sabathia vs. Chien-Ming Wang - The question is which C.C. shows up? You know the Yankees will make him work.

Monday: Aaron Laffey vs. Mike Mussina - Lets hope that Laffey pitches like he did last season and the New York bats are baffled with their first time against the kid.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Rain Out

Only the rain can stop the Indian Express! Tomorrow we all get a real treat, an actual old school double-dip, starting at 6 PM EST. Fausto Carmona goes in the opener and Cliff Lee gets the ball in game two.

I'll say it again, we'd better see Ben Francisco and Andy Marte in at least one of the games. Speaking of which, the great Plain Dealer Tribe beat write Paul Hoynes buried Eric Wedge in this morning's Indians Chatter:

Hard to figure why Ben Francisco wasn't in the starting lineup Tuesday night after being called up to replace injured Jake Westbrook. Maybe it's because he's only here for a short time. Manager Eric Wedge all but said he'll get sent down when Aaron Laffey or Jeremy Sowers is promoted from Class AAA Buffalo to start Saturday against the Yankees in Westbrook's spot in the rotation.

Still, this team is lifeless offensively. Francisco is the player the fans have been screaming for every since he was cut in spring training in late March. Why not give him a chance to lift the team in left or right field? Could he possibly do any worse that the guys Wedge has played for the first 19 games?

Casey Slams The Blog

Well Well Well. After weeks of weak pop outs, lifted-up arms on called third strikes, and lost balls in the lights, the Tribe corner players wake up and aide in smoking the Royals 15-1 at Kauffman Stadium. The man known as "Fake" Casey Blake with a perfect night at the plate going 4 for 4 with 6 RBI and a Grand Slam in a 5 run 4th inning. Good swings by the Wahoo third sacker and buddy of Eric Wedge and just in time. It was a sweet night and a lot of fun, almost like a party.. or even Jason Kaplan's bachelor party in Amsterdam.

Heck, even Dave Dellucci turned on a couple of balls and smacked a solo slice off of Gil Meche, who looked as dazed and confused on the mound as Sal Governale at a Passover seder. Franky Gutierrez also really looked cozy at the plate and hit some ropes, en route to a 3 for 5 night with 3 steaks. Plenty of support for "The Ace" CC Sabathia who throws 6 scoreless innings with 11 punchouts.

It was the CC of old and Blake agrees saying "It seemed like C.C. set the tone out there. He was C.C. tonight. And we just had a lot of guys swing the bat really well." Hopefully the boys in the red, white, and blue can keep this going with Fausto Carmona on the hill tonight.

The Tribe is not a panic team, it is still early and give Wedge credit for shutting the mouths of the pregame doubters (us) and sticking with his lineup. OH... did I say PANIC? How about the motor city kitties! The Tigers cruise over Texas last night, yet announce after the game that the slow-pitch softball team continues to tour as Miguel Cabrera moves to first base and Carlos Guillen to third on a permanent basis. Epic. Why not just let the guys run to their positions on the field every inning on a first-come first-serve basis? Glad Guillen is signed through 2011. What is this the 1996 Red Sox? Jose Canseco, Mo Vaughn, Reggie Jefferson, and Wil Cordero where are you? Maybe you can join the Tigers of 2008.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Crow...and I Don't Mean Trevor

You think Eric Wedge, Fake, and David Dellucci read this blog? It sure feels like they did. Almost as if they held up a giant side that said "F-YOU" to us at DCB, the men we love to bash have had a huge night, and it's just the top of the 5th inning.

Wedge eschewed our advice to play Ben Francisco and Andy Marte and stuck with his boring regular lineup. He was right. As we type this, Fake is 3-3 with 5 RBI and a grand slam off of starter Gil Meche which broke the game open. DD is 2-3 with 2 RBI and a solo Pizza which chased Meche in the 4th.

It also looks as if C.C. Sabathia is back on track. So far, he has struck out eight and walked none in four innings. Nothing like the KC Royals to get you back on track.

A p.s. to this story - I benched C.C. on my fantasy squad and put Meche in my rotation. Talk about reverse karma.

BREAKING NEWS: Westbrook to the DL; Francisco Gets the Call-Up

According to the Indians website, rock-of-the-rotation Jake Westbrook has been placed on the 15 day DL, retroactive to April 20th, with a left intercoastal strain. The man we've been calling for, OF Ben Francisco, has been recalled from Buffalo to take his spot on the 25-man roster.

With yesterday's off-day, there was no need to bring up a starting pitcher until Saturday, which you can bet will be Aaron Laffey, who is dominating AAA these days. So Benny will get some run in the OF this week. To me, Eric Wedge better start Francisco in LF tonight. Play him while he is here, the kid can rake. We know what K-Mike and Dellucci can (or should I say, can't) do. Why not give Franky G a night off in Right tomorrow night and let Francisco play RF?

It's a no-brainer. This offense needs a jump start and fast. Andy Marte deserves a start or two this week as well. With Fake not even hitting his weight, lets see what Marte can do.
Meanwhile, this Westbrook injury doesn't seem serious, but he was in such a groove and has been so solid thus far. It's a real shame to stop his momentum. The good news is Laffey is a proven commodity and would be in most starting rotations in the majors today. He will most likely start Saturday against the Yankees at the Jake.

The question will be that if Francisco come out smokin hot and is hitting the ball while the tribe offense awakens, what will happen when Laffey has to come up and make his start? Who loses their job? Jorge Julio? Tom Mastny? Do they cut the cord on K-Mike or Dellucci? Should be an interesting week.

Monday, April 21, 2008

The Numbers Don't Lie

Peep em:

FAKE - 10 for 56, .179 BA, 1 HR, 10 RBI. Six of those 10 RBI have come in two games. So he has four RBI in the other 15 games he has played in.

K-Mike - 5 for 40, .125 BA, 0 HR, 5 RBI. He isn't "J-Mike" until he hits again. Nothing like a .213 on-base percentage.

A.C. - 11 for 57, .193 BA, 0 HR, 6 RBI. The kid gets a pass because we knew he'd struggle early. But under .200 isn't acceptable.

Franky G - 12 for 59, .203 BA, 1 HR, 5 RBI. Again, I'm giving him more of a pass as well, but three of his five RBI and his only HR came on opening day.

Jhonny Peralta - 15 for 66, .227 BA, 3 HR, 5 RBI. Five RBI from the guy who is protecting Pronk and Victor is not good. He also has more K's (16) than hits (15). This doesn't account for the fact that his range at SS looks even worse this season.

Pronk - 16 for 70, .229 BA, 3 HR, 12 RBI. Where are the big hits? This was a guy who hit .311, .305, and .308 in '04, '04, and '06. Now, he is a strikeout machine.

Grady - 19 for 73, .260 BA, 1 HR, 8 RBI. In the middle of a 2-22 slump. He is the straw that stirs the drink, yet he isn't getting on base. Grady and Pronk MUST get going.

The DD/K-Mike Platoon - 14 for 75, .186 BA, 1 HR, 9 RBI. Per today's Lorain Morning-Journal, it's the worst production of any left field spot in the entire American League.

Contrast that with the left field numbers for this year of last year's other AL playoff teams: Boston: .324, 6 homers, 21 RBIs; New York: .261, 2 homers, 5 RBIs; Los Angeles: .295, 3 homers, 10 RBIs. The Indians' .186 batting average out of left field is 44 points below the next closest AL team, which is Oakland at .230, but the A's still have gotten 15 RBI out of that position.

Imagine if the Indians starters (aside from C.C) have been as bad as the hitters have been. They'd be the worst team in the majors.

Check It Out

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Why Not?

Here's a question for you all. The Indians brass forced Andy Marte to be on this roster, since he is out of options. Yes, he was a one-time phenom prospect. Yes, the reason he is still around is because the Tribe was burnt by giving up on Brandon Phillips too early, so if you are keeping him on the roster, why not use him?
Casey Blake stinks. Bottom line. The guy is still hitting under the Mendoza Line. Fine. He is your everyday third basemen. I get it. But if Marte is eating up the roster spot that should be Ben Francisco's, THEN USE HIM! Fake doesn't deserve a day or two off? Notice Wedge sat a struggling Jason Michaels. He sat a struggling Asrdubal Cabrera for two days. Yet, while Fake still toils at .180, he continues to get at bats. Give Marte a chance! It's not like he could be doing any worse than Fake. How can you know if the kid is a keeper if you don't give him any run whatsoever?

OK, I know Marte isn't good. He is pull happy, has a long swing, and is an average defender at best. If the brass agrees, then get rid of him, get Francisco up here, and let him play left field instead of this clown show of a platoon.

p.s. I am typing this while watching the Tribe offense continue to sputter. 1-1 in the bottom of the sixth. How many more good starts can one team waste? Our bats once again look terrible. Jhonny Peralta just K'd on three pitches. Wow, was that weak.

Saturday, April 19, 2008


I second that emotion. David Dellucci is a chump stain. I saw him lose not one, but two balls in the lights of that ridiculous dome (that should be blown up by the way). What is this amateur hour?

Dude is a 34 year old journeyman who can't hit his weight, starting in Left Field, and we are supposed to be a team favored by many to win the World Series? Sorry, he can't cut it.

And how do we get shutout by Nick Blackburn a night after chasing Francisco Liriano? Baseball is a strange game.....


The Tribe today could not do much against young Nick Blackburn of the Twins and they get blanked 3-0. Spare the details of this one and the fact that once again Jake Westbrook gets no run support, the bottom line is Dave Dellucci is just not good enough. The mediocre at best LF butchered two balls today in the lights of that weak Metrodome and also grounded into a pair of double plays. Thanks Dave. Tribe needs a bat in LF, a REAL one.

Friday, April 18, 2008

The Blog Brings Love And A W

UH... YESSAH! We asked for a blog entry to get the Indians back on track, and we celebrate today. The Tribe finally wakes up and routs the rival Tigers 11-1 at Dolan Field. Fausto Carmona goes 6 plus to earn the win. He got himself into early trouble but worked out of it. He also received help from Gary Sheffield who failed to slide in the 6th inning on a Carlos Guillen would-be RBI single; the J-Mike actually comes up large and guns Sheff out at the plate after he failed to slide. Heck, even unabashed Tigers Slap Rod Allen on the TV side said Gary should have slid. The bats come alive as well as Travis Hafner and Ryan Garko both hit 2 run slices. The Tribe continues to own Justin Verlander and give credit to Eric Wedge who pushes some nice buttons. Wedge plays Jamey Carroll for a slumping Asdrubal Cabrera (4 for his last 34) and JC delivers 2 ribeye steaks. Even the J-Mike played and had 3 RBI. Alright Tribe.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

I've been asked to pen something, since once I've gone into blogging retirement, my beloved Cleveland Indians have started the season in the tank. Ready for some of my Tribe rantings a mere 15 games into the season?I know, we are just 5-10 and it's early, but don't fool yourselves Tribe fans, it's danger time.

1. C.C. Sabathia - what has happened to you? Since the playoffs started last year, C.C. has turned into mush. He has zero command. All season long in 07 he had pinpoint control, now he is a walk machine. One or two bad starts in a stumble, four or five bad starts is a trend, but what is nine considered? C.C. is on my fantasy team as well, so not only is he killing my favorite team, his is killing my WHIP and ERA as well. Not cool fat man. He will be benched starting next week. Seriously though, if C.C. doesn't right himself, the season will be sunk and he'll be dealt this summer for prospects.

2. The Left-Field Platoon - I don't care how David Dellucci is starting to swing the bat and what Eric Wedge tells me, this DD/Jason Michaels platoon needs to be blown up immediately if not sooner. Seriously. These two scrub dogs are 4th and 5th outfielders tops. This is a power position, yet we get no power out of it. You've got Ben Francisco who is in Buffalo for the third straight year who is a batting champion. He has speed and can play all three OF positions, yet his path is being blocked be these two jamokes? They are hitting a combined .177 with 1 HR and 6 RBI. Like KC Armstrong once said....Nice!

3. The Bullpen - I don't even know where to start. Do you blame Mark Shapiro for picking up the $4 million option on Joe Borowski and not even considering the fact that this guy caught lightning in a bottle last year with 45 saves. Did we really think that would happen again? What about the fact that bullpen coach Luis Isaac allowing a guy topping out at 82 mph trot out of the bullpen twice in a week and watch him blow games against Boston and Anaheim? Even Tribe radio men Tom Hamilton and Mike Hegan picked it up right away saying "something is clearly wrong with him."

Or do we talk about the fact that the magic of the '07 pen already looks like it won't repeat itself. Jensen Lewis' velocity is down. Rafael Perez has looked like the guy we saw in the Red Sox series so far, not the guy we saw in the '07 regular season. Rafael "The Realtor" Betancourt, the new closer, has already given up two HR's this season in seven IP, last year in over 80 IP he gave up just three. I'm not worried about him. He'll be fine.

What about Wedge going to Jorge Julio with a 2-1 lead in the 7th Tuesday night over Masa Kobayashi, Lewis, or Perez? He walked the first two batters he faced. There is a reason he was available on a minor league deal. This was as important as an April game could be, yet it was Jorge Julio out there? That was a headscratcher to say the least. So Borowski is on the DL, Tom "Nasty" is back, Craig Breslow has looked halfway decent as this year's Aaron Fultz/Scott Stewart/Jim Poole/Al Morman/Cameron Cairncross/Tom Martin/Carl Sadler 2nd lefty.

Do I think the pen will be fine? Yes, I do, but if you think we are going to get dominance we saw last year, you are fooling yourself. The Tribe pen has already blown three games in the 9th inning. Not good.

4. Casey Blake - How many more years can I take of this garbage? Take away his bases clearing double on opening day (the hit of the day, I admit) and the man I call "Fake" is hitting a robust .121 with 3 RBI. THE GUY IS YOUR EVERYDAY THIRD BASEMAN!!!! Like Left Field, Third Base is a power position, yet the Indians are getting NOTHING from the spot. At least Fake plays decent defense. Actually, we shouldn't really blame Fake, he is what he is and if Andy Marte wasn't such a bust, we wouldn't be in this position - year six of the Casey Blake era. Don't discount the organizational hole at third base. Wes Hodges is the closest thing to a hot prospect at 3B in the system, and he is in his first year in AA Akron. The only saving grace is that Fake is a free agent next year and hopefully will be long gone.

5. The Approach at the Plate - These last two nights have been brutal to watch. Where is the patient Tribe approach that Wedge preaches? These guys, one after another, seem to be hacking away at first pitches. From Grady all the way down to Fake, these guys look lost at the plate, save for the God that is Victor Martinez. The bottom of the order is a black hole. Franklin Gutierrez is hitting .182, Asdrubal Cabrera .173, and Fake .146. That ain't gettin' it done. Not like the Tribe bench has a ton of reserves that can help. Jamey Carroll? Andy Marte? J-Mike? Not exactly what the Red Sox have coming off the bench with guys like Sean Casey, Alex Cora, and Coco Crisp. The bottom line is that the starters better start hitting the ball.

6. We Need Another Bat - Do I sound like a broken record? I hear Trot Nixon is looking for work. Hahahahaha.

7. The Chicken Fingers Platter at The Jake (I refuse to call it Progressive Field) is an A-Plus this year. Also, love that the new cups are made from Corn. Tribe goes Green. Classic Dolan.

That felt good. Now it's only April 17th, but somebody needs to wake this team up. Lord knows Eric Wedge isn't breaking away from his "one game at a time, grind it out" approach. Nor should he.