While we watch the Cleveland Indians lose games in late innings, remember these games don’t matter… but the stats could mean something.
We know that Spring Training games don’t matter, but it doesn’t make losing any more entertaining. The Cleveland Indians have done their fair share of losing in the spring. In fact, they’ve done their fair share of getting blown out of the water.
The Indians have one of the worst team ERA’s this spring, but a lot of that can be attributed to the performance of some minor league guys.
Shane Bieber, Trevor Bauer, Tyler Olson, and Oliver Perez have all pitched very well this spring. But Chih Wei-Hu and Ben Taylor have been dreadful. Adam Plutko has struggled and a lot of the minor leaguers have played pretty poorly as well.
As for the hitters? We’ve seen slow starts for guys like Jose Ramirez, who is just 2-10. Jake Bauers and Jordan Luplow have been sluggish. But we’ve also seen strong starts for Jason Kipnis and Carlos Santana. If you recall, Kipnis was hot last spring as well, but he slowed down drastically when the season started.
There is also, of course, the plethora of defensive blunders that comes with Spring Training. Jake Bauers didn’t have a good day defensively today to continue the trend. So what does this all mean?
Not that much, honestly. This team could come out cold as they have in previous years, but none of us will point to Spring Training as the reason for that. This is about getting players into a flow of playing, and seeing what the young guys can offer. But so far this spring, a lot of the young guys playing in Goodyear have not looked great.
Can that change? Sure. We also have yet to see three of the Indians starters play nor have we seen closer, Brad Hand.
This team needs help in the outfield and in the bullpen. We already knew that. The answer isn’t in Spring Training, but we can see the signs of the problem developing in Goodyear.