Cleveland Indians All-Decade Team Studs and Duds: The Infield

(Photo by Jim Rogash/Getty Images)
(Photo by Jim Rogash/Getty Images) /
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(Photo by Ron Schwane/Getty Images)
(Photo by Ron Schwane/Getty Images) /

Shortstop

Alright, I promise they all won’t be like this. But yes, shortstop is an easy call and Francisco Lindor was the stud of the decade. He’s been the face of the franchise for the last couple years and is arguably a face of Major League Baseball at this point. He’s been not only a stud with the bat but a stud with the glove, winning Gold Glove awards and looking Omar-esque at the position. Depending on how much longer he’s with the club there’s a chance he could repeat as stud of the next decade. Only Asdrubal Cabrera came “close” and even his 9.4 fWAR couldn’t compete with Lindor’s 27.2

Finding a dud was actually borderline impossible before the 2019 season. The Indians have done one thing well the last 30 years: find shortstops. From Omar Vizquel to Jhonny Peralta to Asdrubal Cabrera and now to Lindor. The Tribe’s run of star shortstops is nothing short of marvelous. This has left little room for a dud to find his place. Jason Donald got some looks for a while and while he was bad he still managed to produce a positive fWAR and his 86 wRC+, while bad wasn’t horrible.

By default here, the award may have to go to Eric Stamets. I almost feel bad for the guy as he was thrust into the Opening Day role as starting shortstop, something only six players can claim for the Cleveland Indians in the last quarter-century. He was clearly not ready and produced a -0.7 fWAR and -42 wRC+ this past season…and no, that’s not a typo, he actually had a -42 wRC+. His batting line was an ugly .049/.149/.073. He only played in 15 games though and it was only 48 plate appearances. But boy…were they ugly. One positive note (I’m trying to be kind)? He did have a 10.4% walk rate. Of course that 50% strikeout rate kind of kills it…

Stud: Francisco Lindor
Dud: Eric Stamets

Mike Clevinger's name joins the Tribe rumor mill. dark. Next

So there you have it, the Cleveland Indians All-Decade Studs and Duds of the infield. Five guys who were pretty obviously the “studs” followed by some dreadful duds. So who did I miss that you think should have been a stud or a dud? Let us know in the comments below and be sure to check back for the outfield and pitching editions to come.