Archive | March 2014

The Cleveland Indians and the “Promotional Player”

Originally posted to

When an MLB game, or really any sporting event for that matter, is promoted on a national network like ESPN, the promotion usually takes the form of “Player A and Team X travel to take on Player B and Team Y”. So typically you get something like “Mike Trout and the LA Angels travel cross country to take on Derek Jeter and the New York Yankees!” or “Andrew McCutcheon and the Pirates pay a visit to their cross-state rivals when they take on Chase Utley and the Philadelphia Phillies!” Read More…


The Cleveland Indians and Pragmatism

Originally posted to

Why did the Indians sign Nick Swisher and Michael Bourn as free agents?

That’s a pretty silly question right? They signed those two players to make the team better. Obviously.

But think about it a little more deeply. The Indians aren’t exactly major players in free agency. While Swisher and Bourn are nice players, they are at stages in their careers when it can be reasonably expected that their skills begin to decline. Beyond that, these two players are pretty expensive relative to the Indians’ budget; Swisher makes an AAV of $14 million over his four year deal and Bourn makes an AAV of $12 million over his four year deal (both contracts are backloaded). It doesn’t really make a ton of sense for the Indians to hand out hefty contracts to players likely to experience significant skills degradation over the length of their respective deals.

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The Allure of Being Wrong

There are literally hundreds of reasons to love the game of baseball, but one of the things that continues to drive me back to the game is that it is constantly proving me wrong. As much as fancy myself an intelligent baseball fan, the game is always surprising me in ways I don’t expect.

To illustrate the point, let’s use the oh-so-popular technique of the blind résumé: Read More…