Results tagged ‘ Cleveland Indians ’

Major League Baseball announces pace of game initiatives for 2015 MLB regular season

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Major League Baseball has announced new initiatives to increase the pace of play, effective immediately for the 2015 season.

The new rules and guidelines are as follows:

  • Enforcing of the batter’s box rule, requiring that all batters must keep at least one foot in the batter’s box unless one of a group of exceptions occurs.
  • An addition of timers that will measure non-game action and break time between innings and pitching changes during each Major League game. One timer will be installed on or near the outfield scoreboard, and a smaller timer will be installed on the façade behind home plate near the press box. Immediately following the third out of each half-inning, the timer will count down from 2:25 for locally televised games and from 2:45 for nationally televised games. An MLB representative attending each game will operate the timers from the ballpark and will track the following event
  • Time Remaining Activity
    40 Seconds PA announces batter and begins to play walk-up music
    30 Seconds Pitcher throws final warm-up pitch
    25 Seconds Batter’s walk-up music ends
    20 Seconds-5 Seconds Batter enters the batter’s box
    20 Seconds-0 Seconds Pitcher begins motion to deliver pitch
  • Pitchers will be permitted to throw as many warm-up pitches as they wish prior to the point when 30 seconds remain on the clock; however, pitchers will be deemed to have forfeited any of their traditional eight warm-up pitches that they are unable to complete prior to the 30-second deadline. Exceptions to these rules will be made in a variety of circumstances, including if the pitcher or catcher ended the prior half-inning at bat or on base.
  • Batters will be encouraged to get into the batter’s box with 20 seconds remaining on the timer.  This is the same time that the broadcasters return from commercial. The pitcher is expected to begin his motion to deliver the pitch as soon as the batter gets into the batter’s box and becomes alert to the pitcher. Batters who do not enter the box prior to five seconds remaining on the timer and pitchers who do not begin the motion to deliver the pitch prior to zero seconds remaining on the timer will be deemed to have violated the break timing rules.
  • These rules will be enforced through a warning and fine system, with discipline resulting for flagrant violators. No fines will be issued in Spring Training or in April of the 2015 regular season.  Donations will be made to the Major League Baseball Players Trust charitable foundation based on the level of adherence to the new rules.

“These changes represent a step forward in our efforts to streamline the pace of play. The most fundamental starting point for improving the pace of the average game involves getting into and out of breaks seamlessly,” MLB Commissioner, Rob Manfred said.

PHOTO GALLERY: Spring Training, Day 2

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More smiles on Day 2 of Spring camp, and why not? Spring opener is just 11 days away!

–Photos by Dan Mendlik

Pre-Spring injury updates: Jason Kipnis, Nick Swisher, Gavin Floyd, Brandon Moss, Ryan Raburn, Giovanny Urshela

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The Indians medical staff released the following updates on Thursday, regarding some rehabbing Indians players:

2B Jason Kipnis (left ring finger extensor repair)

Responding as expected following left ring finger extensor tendon repair.  Currently unrestricted with defensive work and throwing.  He is working through a return to hit progression, currently at the front-toss phase of cage-hitting.  Expected to resume hitting on the field within the first week of spring training and should be available for game activity shortly after games begin in early March.

1B/OF Nick Swisher (bi-lateral knee surgery)

Comes into camp unrestricted with hitting and throwing.  Currently on a structured running and agility progression designed to allow his knees to accommodate to the increased volume and intensity of spring training.  Scheduled to begin outfield specific work and base-running in 2 weeks.  Expected to resume game activity in mid-March.

RHP Gavin Floyd (right elbow olecranon internal fixation)

Currently throwing bullpens and building up volume and intensity.  Will follow a structured bullpen and live BP schedule, very similar to the rest of the pitchers, but individualized to monitor his recovery with respect to his elbow medical history.  Expected to resume game activity (potentially a non “A” game environment to start) by the second week of March.

OF Brandon Moss (right hip labrum repair)

Currently completing a hitting and running progression post right hip surgery (labrum repair).  Continues to hit all of his goals in terms of his physical assessment and functional performance.  Currently completing overhand-toss hitting and building up his sprint work.  Expected to begin position-specific running in 7-10 days and begin hitting on the field at the end of February or early March.  Expected to resume game activity in mid-March.

OF Ryan Raburn (left knee surgery)

Completed rehab and off-season S&C work.  Comes into camp mostly unrestricted. Will monitor his work load early as his knee adjusts to increased volume and intensity. Expected to be available for game activity when games begin.

INF Giovanny Urshela (left knee PCL sprain)

Giovanny had completed his rehab from his left knee PCL sprain and has tolerated all baseball activity well.  He will be unrestricted in terms of all baseball activity at the start of spring training.  Will monitor his overall activity early on as he adjusts the increase in volume and intensity of activity.

PHOTO GALLERY: Pitchers and Catchers report, Feb. 18

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Pitchers and catchers reported to Goodyear, Ariz., today, but as you’ll see, most of the squad is already in the house. They look pretty happy, too, don’t they?

–Photos by Dan Mendlik

Cleveland Indians Charities receives Boys and Girls Clubs Corporate Volunteer of the Year Award

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Cleveland Indians Charities has been named the 2015 Corporate Volunteer of the Year by the Boys & Girls Clubs of Cleveland.

Drs. Rebecca Robbins and James Anderson also were recognized; CIC and that duo teamed up with a variety of dental health professionals in July to provide free dental care to over 350 Boys & Girls Clubs members at the Terrace Club at Progressive Field.

The clubs are one of the biggest beneficiaries of CIC, recipients of financial, in-kind and volunteer efforts. The clubs have received nearly $3 million from CIC, including a gift of $1 million in 2012. In 2014, that included support for youth programs including:

  • SMART (Skills Mastery and Resistance Training) Girls: A program designed to encourage healthy lifestyles for adolescent girls.
  • SPARK: An initiative that helps underperforming first-, second- and third-graders improve reading skills.
  • Passport to Manhood: A program concentrating on specific aspects of character and manhood.

Also honored at Friday morning’s breakfast at the Boys and Girls Clubs’ Broadway club was Timmesha Jackson, the 2015 Cleveland Indians Charities Youth of the Year. The award recognizes outstanding contributions to a member’s family, school, community and Boys & Girls Club, as well as personal challenges and obstacles overcome.

Timmesha will attend New College of Florida in the fall to study Marine Science. She’ll receive a $5,000 scholarship from the Indians.

What national media are saying about the Cleveland Indians — Spring Training edition

Update: This post has been updated on March 24 to reflect Sports Illustrated selecting the Indians as a favorite to win the World Series. 

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Could MLB see another “Indian Uprising?”

Cleveland hasn’t won a World Championship since 1948 but boasts loads of talent, with leftfielder Michael Brantley, first baseman/designated hitter Brandon Moss, first baseman Carlos Santana and reigning AL Cy Young award winner Corey Kluber, who went 18-9 with a 2.44 ERA, 1.09 WHIP and 269 strikeouts last season.

Update: This post was updated on March 9 to reflect Jon Morosi’s ranking the Indians No. 4 overall in MLB.

Update: This post has been updated on March 2 to reflect more national media picking the Indians to do big things.

Spring Training is right around the corner, and it’s time to start thinking baseball. Looking to build off two straight winning seasons, the Tribe is poised for a breakout season according to some prominent national baseball writers.

CBS Sports has the Tribe No. 5 overall in its Spring Power Rankings.

They could stand to avoid another slow start. Throwing out a bad April, the Indians went 74-60 last season. The defense should be better, as should Jason Kipnis at the plate. Carlos Santana not trying to play third base will help him avoid a slow start and Carlos Carrasco’s hot finish looked pretty legit.

Grantland’s Jonah Keri, meanwhile, has the Indians No. 5, too:

Now this is a bandwagon I will not be trying to slow down. Put it this way: Last year, the Indians won 85 games despite an injury-plagued Jason Kipnis flukishly hitting like a 75-year-old Rey Ordonez and the combination of first baseman Nick Swisher, utility man Mike Aviles, and outfielders Ryan Raburn, Michael Bourn, and David Murphy providing nearly 2,000 plate appearances worth of sub-replacement-level performance. Three of those five guys have been relegated to bench duty this year, while Bourn and Swisher still look to be significant contributors, albeit on a short leash. The addition of Brandon Moss plus a healthy Kipnis could significantly boost results for a team that finished seventh in the AL in runs scored and ninth in homers last year. Meanwhile, the rotation includes defending Cy Young winner Corey Kluber alongside not one, not two, but three starting pitchers who look like prime breakout candidates: Trevor Bauer, Danny Salazar, and Carlos Carrasco. Combine the revitalized offense with a potentially fantastic group on the mound and you have an extremely dangerous club — one that might very well end Detroit’s AL Central reign.

Bob Nightengale, of USA Today had some insight on what the industry has been saying:

Nightengale isn’t the only national writer giving this year’s Indians squad high praise. ESPN’s Dave Schoenfield and Buster Olney have both put the Tribe high on their list of teams this season.

Schoenfield ranks the Indians as his 4th overall team, and 1st in the American League in his annual Spring Training Power Rankings:

Big offseason moves: Acquired 1B/OF Brandon Moss from the A’s for 2B Joe Wendle; signed RHP Gavin Floyd.

Most intriguing player: Corey Kluber beat out Felix Hernandez for the American League Cy Young Award, becoming one of the least likely winners in the award’s history. Simple question: Can he do it again?

Due for a better year: Jason Kipnis was an All-Star in 2013 and finished 11th in the MVP voting but suffered an oblique injury in April and played through it all season. He also hurt his finger working out in December and had surgery but is expected to be ready for spring training. After creating about 101 runs in 2013 he slipped to 53 in 2014. Expect a nice bounce back.

Due for a worse year: Michael Brantley hit .317/.385/.506 and finished third in the MVP voting. While I’m believing in most of the power uptick, he was a .277 hitter entering the season. He should be good again, but I would expect something closer to a 5-WAR season than a 7-WAR one.

I’m just the messenger: The Indians did not have a good defensive outfield in 2014, ranking 29th in the majors in defensive runs saved at minus-37. They ranked last in ultimate zone rating at minus-39.9 runs, so different metrics agree that they were lousy in the outfield. Have they fixed the problem? Not necessarily. The biggest culprit was David Murphy at minus-17 DRS; Michael Bourn was rated at minus-6 and Brantley at minus-3. Of the various subs, all rated below average except Tyler Holt. Bourn and Brantley are slated to start again in center and left, but right field is open. Considering Murphy didn’t hit either, it seems unlikely he wins the job on a regular basis. Brandon Moss can play out there and he’s rated at plus-3 runs over the past three seasons, but he’s also coming off hip surgery. Cleveland’s best bet is for better performances from Bourn and Brantley but don’t be surprised if Holt ends up getting a lot of time in the outfield.

The final word: Picking the Indians to win the Central isn’t really a radical pick — they won 85 games last season and 92 in 2013. The offense should be above average, especially if Kipnis and Moss are healthy. And while the defense is questionable (last in the majors in overall DRS), the young rotation has come together. Kluber, Carlos Carrasco, Trevor Bauer, Danny Salazar and T.J. House should be an excellent five-man group, with depth from Floyd and Zach McAllister. Second-half stats aren’t always predictive, but the Indians had the best rotation ERA in the AL after the All-Star break. Jose Ramirez or rookie Francisco Lindor will be an upgrade defensively at shortstop. Brantley, Carlos Santana, Kipnis and Yan Gomes are right in their peak years. Go support your team, Cleveland.

Prediction: 90-72

Olney, whose ESPN Insider article praises the new experiment of 6:10 start times, citing the ballpark’s location and keeping people in the city, is a good read for fans as well.

Think how much went badly for Cleveland in 2014. Jason Kipnis had a terrible, injury-plagued season, and so did Nick Swisher. Carlos Santana played himself off third base early in the year, and Asdrubal Cabrera struggled so much defensively at shortstop that the Indians moved him before the deadline so they could install Jose Ramirez. John Axford was signed to be the closer, but lost the job early in the year.

Despite all of that, the Indians weren’t eliminated until the final week of the season and closed with 85 victories, after winning 92 in 2013.

So 81 wins? This team is better than that, with Corey Kluber now leading the Indians’ staff, with Carlos Carrasco and Trevor Bauer continuing to improve, with Cody Allen locked in at the closer, with Michael Brantley and Santana now established as lineup anchors, with Kipnis coming back and Yan Gomes ranking among the league’s best catchers. The defense, the worst in the majors last year, is going to be better.

The AL Central might be the best division in the majors, but as of this morning, I’m leaning toward picking Cleveland. Eighty-one wins seems well within their reach.

SI’s Fansided writer M. Carman highlights the Tribe as a prime dark horse to surprise the league http://fansided.com/2015/02/23/5-dark-horse-teams-2015-mlb-playoffs/2/

“Detroit is the near consensus favorite in the revamped AL Central. The White Sox have added a Jeff Samardzija and David Robertson. The less heralded Indians are ready to steal the Central crown.”

Hall of Famer, Peter Gammons also feels strongly about the Indians’ chances to compete this year. We think? These are his 4 teams that will make the LCS come October:

MLB.com National writer Tracy Ringolsby likes the Indians philosophy of standing pat, on a team that has promise. In a division where there’s been a lot of player turnover, the Indians are content.

http://m.indians.mlb.com/news/article/110959426/tracy-ringolsby-after-standing-pat-indians-ready-to-contend

In case you need a reminder, pitchers and catchers report Wednesday!

Happy Valentine’s Day! Enjoy these cards from Tribe players

 

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Thanks to @CLERallyChicken, one of our most engaged followers on Twitter, we have some Valentine’s Day cards from Tribe players!

Share with friends, loved ones, etc. to make this Valentine’s Day a happy one!

PHOTO GALLERY: Progressive Field construction updates, Feb. 11

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Winter is slogging along, but our construction crews are still hard at work to have the ballpark ready on April 10!

A couple of these photos were taken from time-lapse cameras we have mounted outside the Gate C area; others were taken inside the construction zone today.

We’re just a week away from Pitchers and Catchers reporting to Goodyear, and 58 short days away from the Home Opener!

–Photos by Dan Mendlik

Tribe Equipment Loaded, and Heading to Goodyear!

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The surest sign that cold weather, snow, and the Cleveland winter are almost gone? Cleveland Indians trucks stuffed to the rim, leaving Progressive Field with gear and equipment heading to Goodyear, Ariz. for Spring Training!

Two full, 53 foot tractor trailers are making their way to the Cleveland Indians Spring Training Facility and plan to arrive between Tuesday night, and Wednesday morning. Once the trucks reach their final destination they’re unpacked quickly. This allows for the Indians players to hit the ground running and prepare for a successful upcoming season.

“When we arrive we’ll have the locker room functional by Wednesday late afternoon” said Clubhouse Manager Tony Amato.

The packing and planning for a trip of this magnitude is no easy task, and goes all the way back to as soon to the day that the 2014 season ended, Amato said

“Our ordering was done in October and November and then the stuff came in after the first of the year” He said, “It’s been about a five week process as we get ready.”

By Amato’s estimate, between the two trucks there are about 50 pallets of various items including: bats, balls, sunflower seeds, weights, uniforms, golf clubs, and yes, even Terry Francona’s famous scooter. By the way, in case you missed it: We have a Francona scooter bobblehead on our 2015 promotional schedule.

Amato said that having a year-round operation at the Arizona facility is something that makes he and his colleagues’ jobs easier, as well as the organization as a whole.

“What we have is functional. We have guys there right now working out. (Goodyear Clubhouse Manager, Fletcher Wilkes) does a great job taking care of the guys and it’s a huge difference to have our own facility year round,” Amato Said

In all, stuff being shipped includes:

  • 1,500 dozen baseballs
  • 35 plus bikes
  • 18 to 24 bats per player
  • 1 pallet of Bertman Ballpark Mustard
  • 12 pallets of bottled water
  • 100 plus uniform sets
  • Thousands of pounds of player equipment
  • 1 red scooter

Pitchers and catchers report to Goodyear on Feb. 18, with the team’s first full-squad workout set for Feb. 24.

-TribeVibe contributor Ryan Delgado

 

 

PHOTO GALLERY: Early February status update on Progressive Field construction

 

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The calendar has turned to February, which means the 2015 season is inching closer. Construction is on schedule for Opening Day!

Take a look at the newest photos of the Right Field renovation project. Lots of interior work being done, and replacing a newer variety of seats. Only a few more weeks until our guys start playing ball!

-Photos by Dan Mendlik

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