Friday, June 13, 2008

Now What?

The Tribe bats go off for 12 runs and a season-high 18 hits. Aaron Laffey pitched six strong innings, but there is a lot of doom and gloom in the Wahoo Nation. With the news that Catcher Victor Martinez will miss the next 6-8 weeks after having surgery to clean out his elbow, the Indians probably picked the worst time to have to make a run. The White Sox were just swept by the Tigers and the Indians have taken won three of four with a favorable schedule of NL West teams and the Cincinnati Reds ahead of them.

They have to make the run now, and they will have to do it without their captain. He's been giving his all, playing hurt with hamstring and shoulder injuries all year, but clearly Victor was not the same guy. "He wasn't hurting every single day, every single at-bat, every single throw," said Wedge. "It was here and there. . . . Until it becomes a daily thing, and the guy is strong enough to go out and play, you want him to go out and play. And he wants to do that.

"He knows we're better as a ball club with him at 80 percent, especially when you have other injuries to other key players." The good news is this means more AB's for the best backup catcher in baseball, Kelly Shoppach. The bad news is that Yamid Haad currently sits on a roster that already possesses Jorge Velandia and Andy Marte. Nice bench!

Now we are looking at an everyday lineup essentially without you #3 and #4 hitters (Travis Hafner, or whoever that guy is who wears #48 these days also sits on the DL). With Jhonny Peralta barely hitting his weight (.225), where does this team go for offense? Ben Francisco has to keep mashing the way he has since he has come up from Buffalo. Last night's four-hit game was a clinic in line-drive hitting, something Travis Hafner hasn't done all year. Ryan Garko will continue to bat cleanup and will have to continue this hot streak. Believe it or not, Casey Blake becomes that more important to this offense, which has shown some signs of life in the past few weeks. Another man to watch is on-coming OF Shin-Soo Choo (three-run pizza last night), who like Francisco, has done nothing but rake since being activated from the DL.

The reality? This season is cooked. Without your main cogs in the lineup, on a team which has such a small margin for error, is missing 40% of its starting rotation, and has a bullpen in shambles, the time is now to trade C.C. Sabathia. Start the bidding. The earlier you deal him, the better the offers will be.

1 comment:

kingdiesel said...

It Aint Over Yet Baby!