Guardians All-Time Lists

Cleveland Indians: Top 5 players from the first half of 2018

(Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images)
(Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images) /
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Cleveland Indians
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Trevor Bauer

Who would’ve thought the outspoken righty would arguably be the Tribe’s best pitcher this year? Trevor Bauer surely did. After an offseason of working in his “lab” to change some of his throwing mechanics, Bauer came into 2018 with a vengeance. He created a new form of curveball in an attempt to replicate Corey Kluber’s.

The result? Bauer has been one of the best strikeout pitchers in baseball. He’s got an insane 31.4 strikeout percentage and has the lowest HR/9 innings rate at 0.40. His 2.24 ERA is second in the AL and third in majors behind Chris Sale and Jacob deGrom. That’s some pretty good company for Bauer.

It’s also something Tribe fans have not been used to seeing. Last year at this time, fans were calling for Bauer to be benched after the drone incident. There was worry about another first-half struggle after a loss to the Mariners at the start of the year.

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You know who didn’t doubt him? Trevor Bauer. Bauer is a pitcher who has nothing but confidence in himself. He’s so confident in himself that he’s agreed to never sign a multi-year deal. This also involves a bet with him, a friend, a paintball gun, and a certain lower-abdominal area that we cannot name should he sign that deal.

So instead of giving into pressure, Bauer has gone out and proven that he is also a Cy Young contender. According to Bauer’s career history, the best is yet to come for him in the second half.