Clevelinks: Cleveland Indians Strikeout Feat; Johnson Mystery; Bauer Notes

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Cleveland Indians to Reduce Trevor Bauer’s Pre-game Workload


The Cleveland Indians have an interesting piece in Chris Johnson. Johnson, 31 in a week, batted .321 just two seasons ago when he nearly won the National League batting crown. That success, however, did not carry over into 2014, and he has been a shell of his former self and barely better than a replacement player ever since. Given these struggles, the Atlanta Braves and Cleveland Indians swapped ugly contracts in July, and Johnson has played fairly well in limited results with the Tribe.

In just over 75 plate appearances, the right-handed batter has gotten on base 36% of the time while posting low power numbers. His .097 isolated power, which measures the difference between a batter’€™s batting average and slugging percentage, is abnormally low given his career averages. While some may expect this number to increase in the future, his ground ball rate has risen to a super-high 56.4% for a slower batter. This makes it difficult for Johnson to amass extra-base hits, even though his 23.6% line-drive rate is nothing of which to be ashamed.

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With all these inconsistent results, Chris Johnson is an absolute mystery heading into 2016, says Katrina Putnam. He has the potential to be an above-average batter while playing below average defense, or he could implode into a below-replacement-level player. Luckily, Giovanny Urshela should be able to play a significant amount of time at the hot corner.

In other news, the Cleveland Indians want Trevor Bauer to cut back his pregame work. According to MLB.com’€™s Jordan Bastian, Terry Francona has been reluctant to use Bauer out of the bullpen due to his heavy pre-game workload. Francona does not want “€œa guy throwing 75-80 pitches”€ before even facing a batter. Pitching coach Mickey Callaway talked with the 24-year-old about changing his routine to better suit the team’€™s needs.

Finally, Corey Kluber and Carlos Carrasco have accomplished several feats this season. Both have surpassed the 200-strikeout threshold, becoming just the 23rd duo to do so in American League history and the only Indians teammates not named Luis Tiant and Sam McDowell. As Jordan Bastian notes, Danny Salazar may reach 200 strikeouts as well, since he has 186 on the year. Should the team boast three pitchers with 200-plus strikeouts, they would be just the fourth team to do so.

More from around the AL Central:

Cleveland Indians€™ Chris Johnson Is a Mystery Heading into 2016 – Wahoo’€™s on First

Detroit Tigers: Brad Ausmus to Return in 2016 – Motor City Bengals

Does Robin Ventura Deserve an Extension? -€“ Southside Showdown

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