The Cleveland Indians have a special talent in Francisco Lindor, who should only continue to get better in what will be his second full MLB season.
Who can limit Francisco Lindor’s potential?
The surface-level answer is no one. But then we wouldn’t have an article about it, would we? The Golden Glove shortstop is practically the best in baseball, and the Cleveland Indians get to have him on the roster.
While Francisco Lindor is a gem to Cleveland, he is still a young player with a lot to learn.
This was his second year in MLB and with the Indians. So far, he hasn’t usually let pressure get to him—his batting average with bases loaded was actually substantially higher than with empty bases. He also holds his own against lefties, batting .292 in his 202 times at bat. He has shown to play at an average level at away games, batting .258/.314/.377 this year, versus his .344/.401/.493 at Progressive Field. Lindor also struggles on unfamiliar grounds, literally—he had a .226 BA on turf, but a .305 on grass.
He’s been growing like a weed as a fielder, making it harder to get past him on a good hit with every season. Lindor went from a 3.87 range factor to a 4.27 this year, and jumped from a .974 fielding percentage to a .982 this year. His 83 double plays was the final kicker leading to his Platinum Glove Award.
In regards to his abilities against the Indians’ main competition, Lindor is a serious threat to otherwise unstoppable pitchers.
While everyone is lighting their hair on fire for Chris Sale, Lindor won’t even blink in 2017. When playing the Boston Red Sox this upcoming season, Lindor will have no trouble deflating all their fans’ boasting about Sale.
In the division, the Detroit Tigers have Justin Verlander as one of their best pitchers. Again, Lindor does great against this righty, slashing .500/.750/.500 in his 10 times at bat against him during the regular season.
When it comes to batting against Ian Kennedy or Yordano Ventura of the Kansas City Royals next year, again, Lindor should bat just fine. He was 4-for-7 against Yordano this year, batting .500. He struggled a little bit against Kennedy, hitting .250 in his 16 times at bat.
There are only a few flaws that Lindor has. Watch out for him on anything else besides grass, and don’t be disappointed if he’s a little less than fantastic on the road. Otherwise, buckle up and watch Lindor dominate as the Tribe’s superstar shortstop.