What Cleveland Indians fans should watch for in the ALCS

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Cleveland Indians

CLEVELAND, OH – JUNE 09: Edwin Encarnacion #10 of the Cleveland Indians celebrates with Terry Francona after hitting a two run home run in the fifth inning against the Chicago White Sox at Progressive Field on June 9, 2017 in Cleveland, Ohio. (Photo by Justin K. Aller/Getty Images)

The Cleveland Indians may not be playing in the playoffs, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t important players to keep an eye on. Starting with the ALCS, we’ll preview which Indians alum are playing, and maybe future Indians to enjoy.

The Houston Astros and the New York Yankees kicked off the ALCS on Saturday as the Yankees cruised to a 7-0 Game 1 victory. The winner will represent the American League in the World Series, while also displaying the 2019 formula teams should be aspiring to build toward and overcome in 2020.

The blueprint for these teams starts with building through their minor league systems, specifically the Astros that bottomed out before finally getting things turned around. After that? Not much for the Cleveland Indians to match, these two teams spend A LOT of money to stay at the top of the AL. According to Spotrac, the Yankees spend the third-most in MLB at $218 million, and the Astros are seventh at $168 million.

This current run for the Indians had their payroll peak around $136 million, which means they’re a Giancarlo Stanton-size trade away from matching the bottom end of these payrolls.

For Cleveland Indians fans, there are a lot of ties to these two teams. Who will you be rooting for? Personally, it’s hard to cheer for either for a variety of reasons, but maybe if you’re like me, you’re watching for the ties to the Indians and maybe scouting available free agents that you’d like to see in The Land next season.

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