December 4, 2014 (3 comments)
Given teams in the Caribbean are playing to win games -- as opposed to the minor leagues, where player development is more important -- watching the usage of players and who teams trust is instructive. For example, seeing Giovanni Soto be trusted as a starter, after not pitching extensively in that role since 2012, is a real sign of faith in the left-hander. Join Jim Piascik as he breaks down Soto’s start on Wednesday and the rest of the action from across the globe as he takes you Around the Farm.
November 28, 2014 (0 comments)
Most of the Cleveland minor leaguers playing in winter ball got Thanksgiving off yesterday, with no scheduled action in Puerto Rico or the Dominican Republic. Every player in Venezuela and Australia got a day off as well, leaving only Tim Fedroff in action. Join Jim Piascik as he checks in on the outfielder and takes you on a Fedroff-focused trip Around the Farm.
November 27, 2014 (1 comments)
Given how short the season is in the offseason leagues -- and the absence of other baseball for us to pay attention to -- it is easy to overreact to small sample sizes. Such is the case with Jose Ramirez, who is having a rough go in the Dominican this offseason. Join Jim Piascik as he looks into whether this appears to be a fluke or a trend, writes about Jesus Aguilar's return to action, and checks in on the rest of the action from across the globe as he takes you Around the Farm.
November 22, 2014 (4 comments)
The winter leagues in the Latin American countries provide an opportunity for players to play in more games and for Latin American players to play baseball in their home country. It gives some upper level minor league players a stage to showcase their talents and other players a chance to make up lost innings or at bats. In a piece that originally posted this time three years ago, the IBI's Tony Lastoria re-posts this piece with a few updates on the Winter Ball Experience for American players.
November 21, 2014 (10 comments)
Expectations can drive our perception of things. If we are anticipating it to be freezing cold in mid-November, we can brace ourselves and be prepared. If we are blindsided by it, that cold can feel even worse than it already does. Jesus Aguilar’s four-digit OPS last year in the Venezuelan Winter League has raised expectations, but as Jim Piascik explains as he takes you Around the Farm, while it feels a little disappointing on the surface that he is not hitting at that level again, the first baseman is still having a good season.
November 20, 2014 (0 comments)
In order to make a minor league team work, you need players who are willing to move around the field and not be an everyday starter. One of those players for Cleveland is Audy Ciriaco, who logged significant time at first base, second base, third base, and shortstop for the Columbus Clippers in 2014. Ciriaco recently re-signed with the organization, and as Jim Piascik recaps while taking you Around the Farm, celebrated with a big night down in the Dominican Republic.
November 18, 2014 (12 comments)
According to reports out of Venezuela, information from an MRI performed Monday on third baseman Giovanny Urshela’s left knee showed a PCL tear. The IBI's Tony Lastoria provides the details on the devastating injury for Urshela and the Indians along with an estimated timeframe for a return to the diamond.
November 15, 2014 (3 comments)
Another Arizona Fall League season wraps up today as the championship game in winner-take-all fashion convenes with the Salt River Rafters squaring off with the Peoria Javelinas. The Indians have several Indians players involved with the Peoria team and chasing that championship, one of those being catcher Tony Wolters. The IBI's Tony Lastoria recently had a chance to sit down and talk to Wolters about his transition to catcher, his time in the AFL, plans for this offseason and more.
November 14, 2014 (10 comments)
One of the great things about following the minor leagues is watching a player finally put everything together. Roberto Perez was never a top prospect, but over the past year, he has improved to the point he is a legitimate major league player. Join Jim Piascik as he writes about Perez being at it again last night in Puerto Rico, Giovanny Urshela’s continued excellence, and much more as he takes you Around the Farm.
November 13, 2014 (25 comments)
Right now, it seems there is nothing Giovanny Urshela cannot do. The third baseman may not have the first round pedigree or a massive signing bonus that typically gets national attention for a prospect, but Urshela continues to prove his worth on the field. Join Jim Piascik as he recaps another big night for Urshela in Venezuela as well as the rest of the action from across the globe as he takes you Around the Farm.
November 12, 2014 (4 comments)
The countdown is on. At some point during the 2015 season, Indians shortstop and top prospect Francisco Lindor will make his long awaited Major League debut. The IBI's Tony Lastoria recently had a chance to sit down with Lindor to talk about his looming arrival in the big leagues, what he is doing to improve, get his thoughts on not getting a call to Cleveland and more.
November 9, 2014 (4 comments)
To say that 2014 was not kind to outfielder Jordan Smith is an understatement. Smith was a top prospect in the Indians organization who struggled with the bat all season and is currently out in Arizona participating in the Arizona Fall League. The IBI's Tony Lastoria recently sat down with him to get his thoughts on his 2014 season and his preparations for next year.
November 6, 2014 (5 comments)
A bunch of Cleveland’s prospects in the Arizona Fall League were in action Wednesday, with three pitchers taking the mound and two hitters in the lineup. A few performances were better than others, but overall, it was a very good night for Cleveland. Join Jim Piascik as he recaps all of the action from across the globe and takes you Around the Farm.
November 4, 2014 (5 comments)
Back on July 12th the Indians made a small trade to acquire left-handed pitcher Nick Maronde from the Angels for cash. It was not a headline making trade, but it is one that could help the Indians pitching depth in 2015. After a tough year in the Angels system, he regrouped with the Indians this season and is pitching in the Arizona Fall League. The IBI's Tony Lastoria recently had a chance to sit down and talk to him about his season and his trade to the Indians...
October 31, 2014 (10 comments)
The final two offseason leagues -- the Puerto Rican Winter League and the Australian Winter League -- both began play on Thursday, marking the first time every offseason league was in action this season. Cleveland had a couple prospects in action, but as he has all year, third baseman Giovanny Urshela stole the show. Join Jim Piascik as he recaps Urshela’s sustained dominance and the rest of the action from across the globe as he takes you Around the Farm.
October 30, 2014 (0 comments)
Oh, the many fun things that can happen over small sample sizes. If we did not know any better, Jesus Aguilar’s 1-for-10 skid to start his time in the Venezuelan Winter League would be a concern. But after knocking a home run, a triple, and a single Monday night, Aguilar continued to show things are alright on Wednesday. Join Jim Piascik as he recaps Aguilar’s night and the rest of the action from across the globe as he takes you Around the Farm.
October 28, 2014 (3 comments)
The Indians have had a boom in recent years with relief prospects who have impacted in Cleveland or who have established themselves as legit relief prospects. What once was a big issue for the organization with developing their own bullpen prospects has turned into a pretty steady stream of talent in the big leagues and upper levels. The IBI's Tony Lastoria recently sat down and spoke with another emerging bullpen prospect Louis Head who is pitching in the Arizona Fall League this offseason.
October 24, 2014 (1 comments)
Another day, another set of Giovanny Urshela hits. The breakout 2014 season of Urshela just continues to roll on, with the third baseman destroying the pitching of the Venezuelan Winter League. Join Jim Piascik as he recaps yet another big Urshela night, discusses the winter ball debut of two prospects in the Dominican Republic, and much more as he takes you Around the Farm.
October 23, 2014 (0 comments)
Here is a current listing of players from the Indians’ organization currently participating in winter ball this offseason. This is not a complete list as it will undoubtedly change over the course of winter ball as players finish up play and other players end up being assigned to a league.
October 23, 2014 (7 comments)
Sometimes the significance of a performance goes beyond the numbers in the box score. That was the case for Yoiber Marquina Wednesday, as the 18-year-old made his offseason debut in Venezuela. While the inning he pitched was not clean, his presence on the mound itself means something. Join Jim Piascik as he breaks down Marquina’s appearance and the rest of the action from across the globe as he takes you Around the Farm.