A potential massive problem for the Cleveland Guardians moving forward

Cleveland Guardians v Minnesota Twins
Cleveland Guardians v Minnesota Twins / Brace Hemmelgarn/GettyImages

Through their first 12 games, the Cleveland Guardians are 9-3 and have the second-most wins in all of baseball entering play on Thursday. The Guardians have managed to win their first four series of the season, and they have clearly outperformed the expectations of most so far. However, there is a problem that must be addressed that could impact future outcomes, and surprisingly, it has nothing to do with the offense.

The biggest issue moving forward for the Cleveland Guardians is the number of innings they are getting from their starting rotation, and losing Shane Bieber for the season is only going to make this more difficult to accomplish. 

With 46.1 innings combined from 10 non-Bieber starts, the Guardians are only getting about 4.2 innings on average from their starters. While they have managed to win seven of these games, it is incredibly difficult for that to continue if they are not able to get lengthier outings from their starters. Eventually, this will compound on their bullpen and lead to them being overused, and exhausted later in the year. Should this happen, it is going to make what has been one of, if not the best bullpen in baseball to start the season less effective, and will eventually result in games being lost because of this.

This is where the loss of Bieber truly hurts because he was someone that the Guardians could count on being able to go 6+ innings on any given night. Bieber pitched exactly 6 innings in both of his starts prior to being shut down for the season, with only one other Guardians' starter pitching 6 innings or more so far (Logan Allen's 6.2 innings pitched versus Seattle).

There really is not a rush to do anything at this time, considering that only 12 games of the season have been played, but if the Guardians are not able to get longer starts from Tanner Bibee, Logan Allen, Carlos Carrasco, and Triston McKenzie soon, they are going to have to start exploring other options. There are some internal arms they could look to supplement their starters, if not take a spot in the rotation. There is also the possibility that the Guardians go out and make a trade or even sign one of the free agents who are still available. Should something need to be done, there will be no shortage of avenues for the Guardians to take.