The Tribe’s New Look Is a Good One
May 16, 2015; Arlington, TX, USA; Cleveland Indians shortstop Jose Ramirez (11) turns a double play as Texas Rangers left fielderDelino DeShields
(7) is out at second base during the sixth inning at Globe Life Park in Arlington. Mandatory Credit: Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports
Matt Bretz: “Give up” is a bit strong, but I’m definitely in favor of the Indians optioning Jose Ramirez to Triple-A as soon as possible. While the last couple games have been better for him offensively, overall he’s really struggled on the year and his defense hasn’t been anything special this year as well. As mentioned several times, he’s only 22, so why let him struggle like this? No shame in sending the former top 110 prospect back to Triple-A to get some work in. Even if Lindor “isn’t ready”, the Indians can still afford to send down Ramirez thanks to the presence of Aviles. Time to let Ramirez go back to Triple-A and play second base again, while also getting some reps at third base and possibly the outfield. Long-term, Ramirez is not the answer at shortstop. Lindor is coming; it’s only a question of when. Get Ramirez to Triple-A to work on becoming a super utility player sooner rather than later.
* * *
Brian Heise: I loved Jose Ramirez at the start of the season. But unfortunately, due to the current state they find themselves in, I don’t feel like the Indians can afford to wait around for Ramirez’s bat to show up. At 15-23 and 9.5 games back in the division (as of Wednesday), they have lost some of the luxuries that could have been afforded to them had they gotten off to the hot start we all said they needed. And while his .209 BABIP indicates his rough start is largely due to bad luck, it’s not as if his offensive returns when he is hitting well make much of an impact. Yes, his speed is the one true asset he brings to the club, but his inability to actually get on base and use it renders it null and void. With Francisco Lindor ready to beat down the door in Columbus, it was imperative that Ramirez play well and demonstrate his value, not only to keep himself on the big league rosters, but to buy the Indians time in terms of Lindor’s service clock. Unfortunately, none of that is happening and we are quickly approaching the point where Ramirez’s offensive ineptitude is becoming a real issue. And don’t take this as a bashing of Ramirez. I was fully in favor of him being the starting shortstop from day one and believed he would do enough to force the issue and make the Indians contemplate possibly moving Jason Kipnis back to the outfield. Talk about a swing and a miss. Even if we are headed for an inevitable Lindor debut, I don’t think that means we will have seen the last of Jose Ramirez. A trip back to the minors to take away some of the pressure and get him back on track could be just what he needs. But, to allow him to continue to struggle is a disservice to everyone.
* * *
There’s also an argument for keeping Ramirez in Cleveland…
Next: Ramirez Deserves A Longer Chance