IBI Digest: 10/13/13 - 10/19/13
Recapping the week on Indians Baseball Insider
This week, the Tribe officially opened for business this offseason by re-signing veteran reliever Matt Capps to another minor league deal with an invite to spring training. It's not quite as exciting as the Nick Swisher or Michael Bourn signings, but it's a start. In addition, the offseason leagues in Arizona, the Dominican Republic and Venezuela are now all in full swing as various Tribe prospects are participating. Also, the 2013 IBI Awards have officially been announced!
Here's what else happened this week on Indians Baseball Insider:
Around the Farm: Instructs October 12, 2013: As par of a special exhibition series against the Korean Professional Baseball development league team, the NC Dinos, the Indians lost 4-0 in a 1-hit shutout effort. The only standouts for the Tribe were on the pitching side as Jacob Lee, Sean Brady and Francisco Lopez each had shutout outings.
2013 Instructional League Notebook: Part 1: In the first installment of a two-part notebook, Tony Lastoria recaps the Arizona Instructional League season for the Tribe focusing first on pitching as far as standout players, disappointments and injuries throughout the campaign.
2013 Instructional League stats: As the 2013 Instructional League season is now in the books, Tony Lastoria breaks down the final stats for the Indians prospects who participated this year.
Around The Farm: October 12, 2013: With AFL having an off-day, Arthur Kinney focuses on the Venezuelan Winter League. Particularly Jesus Aguilar, who continued his hot start going 2-for-3 with two RBI and a run scored.
Tribe Happenings: The Indians success in '13 started at the top: You have to give credit where credit is due and Tony Lastoria is here to credit the front office and the organization for assembling a winning team in Cleveland and giving fans a positive outlook for the future.
Tribe Madness: Previewing the Stadium Region matchups: The tournament to determine the greatest Indian is underway. Rick Lamborn is here to give an overview of the initial rounds of this history-oriented competition.
Around the Farm: October 13, 2013: Arthur Kinney recaps the day's action in Venezuela as Jesus Aguilar topped the list with another multi-hit game. Tribe prospects Bryan Price and Alex Monsalve also rounded out the highlights.
The IBI Awards: Most Valuable Hitter: It's the time of year when the IBI staff comes together to nominate Tribe players for the annual IBI Awards. In the first of various categories, Jason Kipnis earns the title of Most Valuable Hitter.
The IBI Awards: Most Valuable Pitcher: The IBI staff returns to vote on the second category of this year's IBI Awards. In a tightly-contested race, Ubaldo Jimenez barely edged Justin Masterson for the honor of Most Valuable Pitcher.
In defense of Carlos Santana: In response to a surprisingly overwhelminging amount of negitivity from fans surrounding Tribe catcher Carlos Santana, Jeff Ellis attempts to re-establish his value despite the possibility of him losing his starting catching job next season.
Around the Farm: October 15, 2013: In case anyone is paying attention, Jesus Aguilar is now batting .647 to start out Winter League after yet another multi-hit performance. In Arizona, Tyler Naquin lit things up with a 3-hit game with two RBI.
The Corner of Carnegie & Ontario: How much money is available?: Jim Pete analyzes the Tribe payroll heading into the offseason taking into consideration the salary increases and players up for arbitration as well as some other questions the Indians need to answer before November.
Around the Farm: October 16, 2013: Michael Goodman recaps the action in Arizona and Venezuela as Jesus Aguilar recorded his sixth straight multi-hit game of the Winter League and Shawn Armstrong was finally able to bounce back with a strong outing.
The IBI Awards: Least Valuable Pitcher: The nominations continue as the staff visits the opposite side of the "award" spectrum. Brett Myers and Chris Perez highlighted the most disappointing pitchers in 2013.
Trend Spotting: Drew Stubbs and his value as a sub: Michael Hattery analyzes the value of Drew Stubbs despite his disappointing numbers on the surface and makes a case for the Indians to keep him on the roster next season as a utility outfielder.
Around the Farm: October 17, 2013: Jesus Aguilar had an off day on Thursday as he only got one hit in a game. Will Roberts had a solid start while relievers Jeff Johnson and Bryan Price had shutout outings.
The IBI Awards: Most Valuable Reliever: Things didn't go exactly as planned this season with the Tribe bullpen, but there were still several standouts and the IBI staff has their nominations for the most impressive relievers.
Orbiting Cleveland: Can Aguilar help in 2014?: Could the first baseman be the first player to provide internal assistance? Steve Orbanek gives a progress report on Jesus Aguilar and an outlook on his future, including a potential MLB call-up.
Around the Farm: October 18, 2013: Offseason leagues roll on in Arizona, Venezuela and the Dominican Republic as the Indians were treated to a good dose of offense by their prospects, including Tyler Naquin, Joe Wendle and Jesus Aguilar. Tony Lastoria reports all the action.
The IBI Awards: Most Surprising Player: In this next category of this year's IBI awards, the staff votes on who had the most unexpected performance this season. Despite numerous nominees, Yan Gomes was the winner by a landslide.
Tribe Madness: Previewing the League Park Region Matchups: IBI history buff Rick Lamborn is back to preview the next set of matchups in his tournament to determine the greatest Indian of all time. Find out which players will be squaring off.
Friends of the Feather
The John Hart Tree Bears Copious Amounts Of Fruit: Find out how some of the most prominent figures in today's baseball world had ties with and were influenced by former Tribe general manager John Hart as TD of WaitingForNextYear.com connects the dots.
One of seven Cleveland Indians free agents, reliever Joe Smith wants to return: Like fellow veteran Jason Giambi, reliever Joe Smith makes it clear he targets deal with Cleveland. MLB.com's Jordan Bastian convey's Smith's desire to return to the Tribe as well as speculates the probability of other potential free agents re-signing with the team.
Jake Dungan is a communications student at Stark State College and an intern with the Akron RubberDucks. Follow him on Twitter @MajorLeagueJake.