Clevelinks: Cleveland Indians Appears Out on Relievers and Chocolatey Love

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The Cleveland Indians are potentially out on adding a reliever and a chocolatey, Tribe-filled Saint Valentine’s Day

According to ESPN’s Jim Bowden, the Cleveland Indians do not appear to be in on Joba Chamberlain, Rafael Soriano, or Francisco Rodriguez. While Cody Allen has emerged as a solid relief option, the Tribe has expressed interest in bullpen upgrades. Were the Indians to sign Soriano or Rodriguez, they would presumably take over the closing role, as they collected 32 and 44 saves, respectively. Each of these players, however, comes with cause for concern.

The last few seasons have seen K-Rod’s home run per nine ratios balloon from a low 0.50 to an alarming 1.85. Despite this increasing home run rate, his ERA has managed to stay low these past two seasons, 2.70 in 2013 and 3.04 in 2014. FIP estimates that Rodriguez has been lucky, and it suggests that ERAs of 3.65 and 4.50 would truly reflect his performance levels. A likely explanation for his low ERA in 2014 would be his 0.99 WHIP, a number that is 0.16 lower than his career average and will almost certainly rise this upcoming season.

On the surface, Soriano’s 2014 seems like a solid year, but Drew Storen replaced him in the closer role late in the season after a few implosions. Beyond this concern, he struck out a solid eight and a half batters per nine innings last season, while showing average command. Perhaps the two biggest downfalls to signing Soriano are his age and salary, as he will be 35 years old on Opening Day, and he has made no less than ten million dollars in each of the last five seasons.

The Indians have had a solid bullpen the last few seasons, and we have seen the Bullpen Mafia rise to power and disassemble. Cody Allen and the rest of the bullpen looks primed to continue their success into the next season, whether it be with or without the help of a new addition.

Saint Valentine’s Day is a wonderful day to tell our loved ones just how much we love them, whether it is through a card, a teddy bear, or a box of chocolates. And odds are that if you are reading this, you love baseball. So what better way to combine loves than in a Tribe-metaphor filled box of chocolates? Justin Lada interprets different storylines and performances from the 2014 season in just this way

These stories and more from around the league:

’12 Reasons to make the Cleveland Indians your 2015  Valentine’ – Wahoo’s on First

‘Indians experimenting with new start time’ -Wahoo’s on First

‘ESPN not high on the 2015 Twins’ – Puckett’s Pond

‘Royals should open the vaults for Yoan Moncada’ – Kings of Kauffman

‘MLB could be making changes gto strike zone’ – ESPN.com

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